Class #1061

Reformer Workout

50 min - Class
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Sarah teaches a Reformer class that is great for all levels. Whether you are a beginner or advanced, a basic level class can help you check your alignment and technique. Sarah is very clear and thorough in her cues, so you can really fine tune the small details in each exercise. Thank you Sarah!
What You'll Need: Reformer

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All right. Hi, I'm Sarah Berta Chellie and I'm back teaching you a basic level reformer class. I'm also appropriate for all levels really. So if you're an advanced student and you want to fine tune your details, this would be a great class for you. We're going to mostly use the reform. We are going to use the reformer. Let's say that I'm, I am going to use the box for the final exercise today, but if you happen to not have a box, know that you can certainly modify and do this exercise without a box. I'll explain later. Keto, are you ready to work out? All right, let's stand facing forward and look down at your feet for a moment and make sure that your feet eat are underneath your hips and then stand tall.

Elongate through the crown of your head and organize your bones. Inhale here and with an exhale, peel forward one vertebrae at a time articulating through your back. Allow your arms to relax, but keep your shoulders kind of plugged in. Your head, dangles your abdominal. Stay engaged with an exhale round and roll back at you. For some reason you don't feel comfortable rolling down with straight knees.

Simply bend your knees, standing nice and tall at the end. Inhale, exhale to peel forward, articulating. Feeling enough weight in the balls of your feet. Soften your knees if you need to. Otherwise, keep them pretty straight. Inhale here and with an exhale, articulate and peel up through your back at the very end. Feel the opposition of the feet rooted to the earth, but the length through the crown of your head. Last one.

Exhale to peel forward, staying engaged in the abdominals. Relaxed. Exhale to round and roll. Lap [inaudible] and let's move to the reformer. So I've got a set up for footwork on a heavy spring. I'm on three reds and a blue. Um, my bars in the medium position and I'm gonna start with my head rest flat. So let's lie onto our backs.

And we're actually going to start with a warmup here for the abdominals. My feet are just a little bit above where I would push out for footwork so that I can find a pelvic curl. Legs are about hip width. Distance. Inhale here with an exhale. First, draw your abdominals active and allow your low back to soften into the mat using pure ads and then lower the tailbone down. Feel open through your neck and shoulders. Exhale to flat in your back. Again, your jaw is soft and lower the tailbone down and continuing that action. It's an exhale to flat in the back. Softening the ribs and talking the tail.

Okay, and then relax the pelvis down. Still engaged with the core and exhale again. Take a breath here, holding the position and now articulate up through your back one vertebra at a time and we find the pelvic curl position. Inhale here and exhale to lower down. Now I forgot to mention earlier that the head rest should be flat.

Please make sure that yours is inhale here and with an exhale, articulate up one vertebra at a time, feeling abdominals first, and then legs kick in to help out. Pressing high with the pelvis. Still engaged with the apps. Exhale to peel down one vertebra at a time. Feel that your arms are heavy in the mat. Your feet are pretty relaxed in space. Exhale to peel up.

It's kind of a hard cue to give though because I want them to be slightly flexed but not overworking. Inhale here and exhale to peel down sense at that top position that you're trying to press the pelvis a little bit higher, but leading the way with the pubic bone. So here we go. Up again. The pubic bone presses a little bit higher. Your arms are pressing into the bat, the abdominals. Very active void of tension in the neck and we lower down and one more pelvic curl. Please. Inhale here. Exhale, abdominals active first and we articulate up second in hell and that lifted position. Use the exhale to lower down articulating through your spine.

Find your pelvis in neutral and then use your abdominals to brace that spine. Still bring your feet and knees together. Reach your hands to the ceiling for me and then open your arms wide, spreading through the front of your body. Exhale to lift them up. Inhale, opening the arms wide feelings spreading through the front and back body. Exhale to lift back up with the next one.

Keep your arms wide and then bend your elbows and see if you can find the pegs where your shoulder straps live. Feel that your chest is open, but the back of your body is open to keeping your feet on the bar. Inhale your legs to the right and then exhale and pull back to center. Now when I move my legs, it's actually my spine moving. Go left and exhale back to center. Tailbone heavy in hell to twist the legs. Move as one piece. The shoulders stay down. Exhale to pull back and again we inhale to twist and we ask hail to pull back. Pause here.

Float the legs to a tabletop position with softly pointed feet and continue on. We inhale to the right, keeping the shoulder blades anchored. Exhale, drawing those legs back to center. Using your ads in hell to twist in the other direction. Exhale, drawing those legs back to center. And again, inhale to twist.

Yeah, exhale to pull back in. Finding the core and one last time please. And exhale those legs back to tabletop position. Pausing there. Bend the knees slightly and find the foot bar so that your feet are resting. Reach your hands up to the ceiling.

Settle your shoulders so that your neck is long. Inhale here. Exhale to lift the head and chest. The arms come down. The pelvis stays heavy. Inhale to lower down. Exhale to lift again. Feel the length through the back of the body, the jaw soft and lower down. And again, we're going to exhale to lift and hold here. Really keep the height of that curl and gently place your hands behind your head. Press your head to your hands, keeping your upper body lifted.

Lift your right leg off the bar. Stretch the right leg to straight. That's the inhale. Exhale to pull it back in. Wow. Inhale to reach out. Exhale to pull in, deepening the contraction of your abs. And one more time like that. Exhale we pull in, put the foot down, put your head down and just release your hands back to the ceiling.

Exhale to lift your head and chest, holding the height of the curl. Place your hands behind your head. Press your head into your hands. Fingers are classed, left leg lifts up, it stretches out, and with the exhale you pull in, deepening the abdominal connection. Inhale and exhale, pull and one more time. Exhale to pull in and hold foot down. Lower the head, release the hands again. The hands are going to go to the ceiling here. Exhale, lift the head and chest for me. Take your hands around to your legs and lift your body a bit higher. Take both hands to the right leg on the outside and find a nice twist.

Stretch the other leg out to straight. Maintain the height of that curl and the rotation here. Gently placed one hand behind your head. If you can place the other hand behind your head if you can maintain it. If not, perhaps hold on.

Yeah, put your foot down. Lower your head down again, just reach your hands up to the ceiling, the shoulder rest. Kind of get in the way here. Exhale to lift your head and chest. Ho Take your hands to your thighs. Lift a little higher. Finding those obliques. We take our hands to the left thigh and we twist and lift straight in that right leg. So you're making like a crisscross position.

See if you can hold the height of that curl. Place one hand first behind your head and then if you can hold it, place the other hand. But if you can't, feel free to hold on and gently rest. Good. So that's a quick warmup addressing all of the movements the abdominals need at this time. Let's place the heels on the bar, getting ready for footwork. So I'd like you to feel that you're a center of the heel is on the bar. Your ankles are flexed but not gripping.

So arms are heavy by your side. And with your exhale, go ahead and press your legs to straight. Inhale to come on in. Think about accessing the back body as you press out and inhale in, see if you can sense your inner thighs working. Inhale in each time I go out. I like to think a little bit more about the rib connection. Each time I come in, I like to think about keeping my pelvis stills stable. Exhale, arms are heavy on the mat. Inner thighs are involved.

See if you can feel that moment at the top where you pull a little straighter. And that doesn't mean I want you to lock your knees. I just want you to lengthen out through the crown of the head. Last one is coming. Now. Exhale up and gently come on in.

Place your toes now on the bar and you should feel that your all your weight is on the balls of your feet, your toes kind of relaxing over the bar. Exhale to press out and inhale in sense that all five toes are relaxed over the bar and also all five metta tarsals. That would be the ball of your foot are heavy. Exhaling, pulling up a little taller, a little longer and inhale. Tailbone is heavy. Feel that your arms are pressing heavy on the mat. Your chest is open. Yeah, and a couple more there. Exhale and one last time please. Exhale gently.

Come in here. Watch this. Your feet are not too wide. Bring your heels together and perhaps look at your feet for a moment and make sure your toes are only separated, maybe two inches so we're not very wide. Really pull those heels together using the inner legs and make sure your knees are not too wide either. Here we go. Exhale to press out and inhale, tail his heavy. Exhale. Beautiful. See if you can get all the air out, even though we're moving with a little bit of energy here [inaudible] and perhaps if you needed to move a little more, a little less fast, you could certainly slowed down and do fewer repetitions.

At the top here, you want to feel as though you're drawing your whole inner leg together. Being mindful that your heels stay connected, your jaw is soft and your chest is open. Good. Let's do one more time please and gently come on in. Take your feet wide on the bar so your heels are in a wide position. Your ankles are softly flex, so not rigid, but flex a bit here and then pay attention to your feet.

Staying in on an imaginary surface. So as I press out my feet, stay stable in space and inhale to come in. Now it just occurred to me that I didn't really talk about the headrest I have chosen and so has keto chosen to take to keep the head rest flat here and that's because I like to work if possible with the idea of a more neutral spine while we're doing our footwork, exhaling out and inhaling in. If it's more comfortable for you to have the head rest elevated, please feel free to elevate it. While we're doing our footwork, for many people with tighter shoulders that will be more comfortable. The bonus of me chatting is you get a few more reps here, so keeping that pelvis heavy, think of drawing your inner legs and heels toward one another. Feet stay soft.

I think of the bottoms of the feet relaxed and last too and last one, the jaw is sa neck and shoulders. The weight of tension. Place your feet on the bar for me, toes on the bar rather and see if you can spread those five toes more than metatarsal than the toes themselves. So the ball of the foot is spreading and then here the feet stay still as you press out. Exhale, inhale in again, sense that you're connected to the abdominals. As you extend the legs straight, tailbone is heavy as you come in, lengthening those legs all the way each time. [inaudible] see if you can feel that you grow a little taller, lengthening through the crown of the head here as well. Arms are heavy on the Mat, your jaw is soft.

And last two here. [inaudible] gently come on into the stopper and then bring your feet close together. Not touching but close. I often look up just to gauge that I'm at center and then feel those toes wrapping over the bar. Exhale to press your legs too straight for me. Feeling the length out through the crown of the head and then lower your heels under the bar and press back up as you press up.

Keep the thigh bones where they are, lower the legs down and press up. And what I mean by that cue thigh bones where they are is that I want you to make sure you're not letting your knees roll out in, in as you go up and down with your feet. As you press up, keep all five toes well waited and as you lower down, press under the bar, exhaling to press up. Inhaling to lower under the bar. Last two X. Hey, the tailbone is heavy, the abdominals are active and stay here. We're going to just bend one knee and take a stretch on one side. I like to adjust my foot a little bit higher on the bar or the bar is actually lower down on my foot, closer to my arch just so that I feel supported and then that allows me an opportunity to really drive the heel under the bar and give into the spring a little bit and enjoy a really nice stretch and then switch sides. Again, feel free to adjust the foot if that suits you so that you can really enjoy that stretch so they're not.

The other thing I like to think about is the ball of my foot really spreading. So each bone spreading open, not my toes as much as the ball of my foot. And we're going to switch again enjoying the stretch and see if you can play a little bit with just microscopic shifts through your foot to loosen up the Fascia on the bottom of the foot. So I'm just kinda shifting a little bit on my foot to enjoy. Do you like how I use my hands as if they're my feet?

I hope you're enjoying that out there and switch and microscopic little shifts and joy, that release and we're going to press up. We're going to bend the knees, come all the way into the stopper. Okay. Gracefully ease ourselves up to a sitting position. So here I'd like to do some sideline single leg work. So I'm going to have us on one red and one blue, which is about, you know, two, one and a half to two springs. It's a pretty light load.

So let's go ahead and lie on our left side. I like to put my hand on the peg. If I can, but if that's not comfortable, you could have your arms straight here. But I like to hold the peg that's behind me. So I create a little pillow for my head here and see if you can arrange your legs so that it is directly underneath your body. Slightly forward would be okay for a tight Achilles tendon, but more underneath you as ideal.

And then go ahead and press the leg out to straight. Now sit here for a moment and be beaten. Organize your underside leg, feel it heavy, pull your bottom rib up, your pips are stacked in, your shoulders are stacked. And I'm using my other hand to Kinda support a little bit on the shoulder rest. So I feel good here. And then as you bend your knee, the standing leg, that's my right leg. You want to really avoid tucking your pelvis. It feels like I have to aim my tailbone back a little bit and exhale to press out. So I'm inhaling to bend my knee.

I'm exhaling pushing through my entire foot to press out in health to bend and exhale to straighten. Now see here, if you can really feel that your whole core stays still. Another thing to think about is where your thighbone is of oftentimes the thighbone will float up a little bit and see if you can really feel here that your thighbone almost turns down and, and a little bit exhaling to press up. Good. We're just gonna do two more here. Inhale to bend, exhale to press up and one last time and we press up and we're going to stay there. Lift that heel up. Now where the heel is lifted, it's going to stay. So I'm going to bend my knee as low as I can here, but keep my heel from lifting any higher. Exhaling to press out one and inhale to bend.

Exhaling to press out too. So we're going to fatigue this one leg before we switched sides. Ah, what I start to feel is my outer hip really working to support. How about UK? Duh. Yeah. All right. We only have three more, actually, four more [inaudible] and exhaling all the way up to straight. Good and exhaling all the way up to straight.

And just one more time please. All the way to straight. We hold for a moment and gently bend the knee and come on in. You're going to find a graceful way to come up to a sitting position. I often like to use my hand to assist. We've got some fun hair going on. We can swivel to the other side.

So again, I'm arranging myself so I'm pretty centered on the reformer. My other, my right hand, my bottom hand is holding the peg. If that suits you, your foot is pretty underneath your body and then you're going to press your leg out to straight and you want to try to keep that foot very well waited. Watch the, the, the knee doesn't turn upward here, so then we're going to bend the knee to come in. That's essentially our starting position. Exhale to press out, trying to keep the pelvis nice and still in hell bend and exhale to press out. So finding the flow of the breath here, trying to keep the pelvis nice and still, it almost feels like you have to aim it back a little bit to keep it from talking. And many of you may find that it would be useful for you to sit in this low position for just a moment to let the backside of the leg release slightly, allowing you to perhaps go a little deeper into the position.

And we are going to do just one more after this one, harassing the leg out to straight. We hold here, lift the heel. Now keep the heel in that lifted position. Feel the length through the front and the back of the leg here and we gently begin. So now you're keeping your foot from lifting or lowering your heel from lifting and lowering. Inhale, bend and exhale to press out. Pay attention to your pelvis, stacked your rib cage, stacked [inaudible] and I find if I pushed down just a little bit with my bottom leg, I feel a little bit more grounded on my underside and exhale all the way to straight. Inhale, exhale all the way up.

Good. [inaudible] and this will be the last one please. And we'll gently come on in all the way into the stopper. We ease ourselves up to a sitting position and so we're going to keep the same spring load for our next two exercises. Go ahead and roll back onto your back and Ron are reformers how we started before. Once again, at this point, if you need your head rest up, that would be okay. We're going to find the straps.

Reach the hands first to the ceiling using your feet to assist you. I want you to make sure you're not too close to the shoulder rest so that you'll be able to lift when I ask you to. And then B, be very in your abdominals here. Arms are nice and straight. Float the legs to tabletop, softly pointed feet with an exhale we lift the head and chest up. Nice and high. Tailbone is heavy. With an inhale we lower down and with an exhale we find that connection to the core to lift and inhale down [inaudible] so pay attention to really keeping your pelvis as close to still as possible, but still maximizing the height of your curl. Exhale to lift.

This time and we hold and you're going to glide your legs out only as far as you can. Stay connected to your core. Exhale to pull back in and intensify the ABS. Inhale to reach out. Exhale to pull back in, intensify. Last two. Inhale. Exhale. Pulling in chest is open and last one please. Exhale, pull in and hold here and lower your body down.

Let's put feet and straps. So I like to have my straps kind of close to my heels. It gives me space to point and flex my feet as I pleased, but certainly make it comfortable for you. So my heels are together. I start with my toes pointed just cause it looks pretty. And then we're going to bend the knees, starting finding our frog position.

Here's where I want you to actually flex your ankles a little bit. I want you to bring your knees in slightly so you're not opening to wide. Feel that your pelvis is heavy, your abdominals are active. We exhale to press out. Inhale, tailbone heavy in, exhale to press and inhale. So see if you can kind of marry your legs together. What does that mean?

It means that I want the inner part of the legs to touch at the same spot on both legs. Exhaling out and inhaling in and ex hair. The head, neck and shoulders are relaxed. Last two here. Good. One more time. Please press the legs to straight and hold. Point your feet. Lift your legs up only as high as you can with your tailbone.

Very adamantly down. Exhale to press down through center. Inhale, lift. Again. Tailbone is heavy and as you press down, see if you can keep those feet long, but the toes relaxed. Inhaling to come up. Exhaling to press down, feel those inner legs working. Inhale out. And with the next one we move into circles. We exhale down. We circle the legs in a moderate space here, so I don't want you to make a huge circle. Exhale to press down through center again and inhale around to the top.

The tailbone is heavy. Exhale, make sure you have just a moment of pause at the top to really organize your legs and exhale. And here we'll pause and reverse your circles. Please opening the legs and draw the heels together in the low position. Inhale up through center. Tail bone is heavy and exhale, find those inner lay eggs. Some of us will need to soften the knees slightly and all I mean by that is make sure that you're not in hyperextension of your knee joint here.

So some of you will find if you having a hard time feeling your inner legs working, you might want to bend your knees just a little bit and see if you can find that perfect match of the legs. Last one here, legs come together and whole. We're going to open the legs nice and wide. Exhale to pull back together. What's wide to you? Keep your tailbone down or your pelvis in neutral and draw those legs back together so my wide might look different than your wide. What I'm looking for is for my legs to stay on the same horizon.

Inhaling to open and exhaling to draw the legs back together. One last time. My inner thighs are speaking to me. Hughes together. Haute. Bend your knees, put the bottoms of your feet together, allow your thighs to open and enjoy a little stretch here. So here I like to really think about keeping that tailbone down first. Press on the thighs to open them a little more and see if you can get the whole bottom of the foot to be together here. So my big toes and my pinky toes.

And then allow the spring to assist you slightly, but move into a flat or back or a slightly rounded back where you've dropped your ribs, your low back, and your just your tailbone lifts so it's a little bit more of a back stretch. Dry Your abdominals active. Place your tailbone back down. Press your legs out a little. Take one foot from the strap. Find your foot bar down below. Take your other foot and gracefully come into the stopper.

We're going to do one more exercise on our backs and it's important here that your head recipe flats. So if you had lifted it back up, put it back down now please. Let's go ahead and start from the heels cause it's a little bit easier for most people. Okay. Let's see. We are on a red and a blue spring. That's hard. If you want to work a little less hard, go ahead and sit up and add a spring.

You might want to be on two reds or even two reds and a blue for some of you, but we're going to stay here. Qaeda. Exhale, draw your abdominals active and do a pelvic curl. Peeling up through the spine, keeping the carriage nice and still pressing the pelvis high. Inhale here. Exhale to lower down. The hard part is keeping the carriage still and when you have less spring, my dear friends, it becomes more difficult. Exhale to PLM. We're going to hold this lifted position here. Press the pelvis a little higher, connect to the backs of the legs and lower down.

And just one more time. Please. Inhale. Exhale to PLF. [inaudible] now if you feel confident here, lower your eye, everybody lower your spine down, but if you feel confident here, you may feel free to stay here with your heels on the bar. If you feel like you'd like to push it a little bit, you're going to place your toes on the bar and now we're going to be challenged that much more for the bottom lift with extensions, exhale to PLF, keeping the hips in that high lifted position. We're going to press the legs towards straight, but not too straight and pull the carriage back in. We're going to press the legs towards straight and pull the carriage back in.

And one last time peress pull the carriage back and draw those abdominals active. Lower your spine. Ah, and ease yourself up to a sitting position. All right, we're going to come to a standing position and for this exercise you're going to want a nice heavy spring, but just one spring. For most of you, I'm on a red spring and um, you might want a green and that would be okay. Make sure that when you get on the reformer, you're always supporting with your hands first. And then you're going to step up with one foot followed by the other foot, and then bring your heels back up against the shoulder rest where our heels are lifted here. So I'm getting a nice long straight leg and I'll tell you my hamstrings. Appreciate that.

Lengthen through the crown of the head and you're looking for a nice straight back here. So I'm, it feels like I'm aiming my tail up a little bit and I'm extending my upper back ever so slightly to straighten it out. Inhale to slide the carriage back and exhale to pull in. So pay attention to just your legs moving. Inhale back and exhale to pull in. And what that means is that my shoulders are really stabilizing. My abdominals are supporting and stabilizing, but it is in fact my legs that are moving. Exhale all the way to the stopper.

Inhale back, exhale all the way in and one last time please. Pulling the carriage in. Hold for a moment and simply lower your heels until they're flat and feel nice. Heavy weighted heels here. Again, the next should be long in alignment with the arms. Ultimately we're going to slide the carriage back, keeping the heels down and pull back in.

Inhale to slide back and exhale to pull in. So pay attention to your upper body once again, staying still and what that feels like for me is each time I pull in I have to aim my tailbone up a little more. Inhale, pushing back and abs active to pull in. Last two please. Exhaling to pull in and last one we pull the carriage into the stock room. We can stay there. Good. Now I often like to walk to a forward fold here, so I'll release my hands, put them on the floor, the mat, and then allow my head to dangle. If you don't feel comfortable in this position, then you can feel free to step down now and do this on the floor.

From this position, you're going to gracefully find the bar again with your hands, ease a step forward, and then step off of the reformer with support with your hands. And we'll move into some arm work now. Um, I think one red spring will will still be good for this. We're going to have a seat facing the, uh, the pulleys or the straps. You want to make sure that she was sitting right up next to the edge here, although not hanging off the edge. So reach forward and hold your straps and sit up nice and tall.

If you're having a hard time sitting tall here, you could put, uh, a pillow or a little small box underneath you and that would be acceptable. Take your arms by your side, open through your chest and shoulders, and lengthen through the crown of the head. Inhale the arms go forward. Straight. Exhale to press back in, health forward, and exhale to press back. So the name of this exercise is chest expansion. So think about opening your chest, but make sure that that doesn't translate to flaring your ribs. So you want to feel length up through the crown of the head, abdominals active in the shoulder blades. Reach back and down a little bit.

Last two. Exhale to press back straight, straight arm. And one more time. Please take your arms out in front of you. Palms facing upward. Sit Nice and tall. And for most of us it feels like you need to lean forward just a hair bit to make sure you're not leaning backward. Bend your elbows. Pause here. Pay attention to where your arms are. I'd like your wrist to be straight, your elbows to be bent at 90 degrees and your upper arms to be parallel with the horizon without your shoulders in your ears. Straighten your elbows. Inhale, exhale to Ben. So inhaling to straighten and exhaling to Ben.

Many people find it difficult to feel the biceps. Really working here. It's more about stabilizing the rest of the body. I'm good with that. Think about straighten your arms all the way and accessing the bicep at that very beginning of the bend. Now one more time. Straighten your arms and hold. Try to turn your palms to face down. So I'm Ho, I'm gripping the strap, my palms are facing down, I'm still an external rotation at my upper arm and I'm going to bend my elbows.

Creating that same square box, elbows, 90 degrees, straight risks in how to straighten. Exhale to bend, inhale to straighten. So what you want to watch is that your elbows are not bowing out to the side each time you try to bend. Last two please. Not that they're staying connected with an imaginary line. Pause there. So place your straps on your elbow joints or around your elbow, I should say. You're going to start with your palm spacing, your body and that same 90 degree elbow bend with an exhale.

Open the arms to the side and think of spreading outward in hell to come forward or back where you came from. Exhale, open, end spur and come back in. What I mean by spread is you want to spread the front and the back of the body, the shoulder blades and the collarbones and come back in. Ready for a little variation. Stay here straight in your arms. Your palms are facing up. Keep your upper arms still. But rotate your palms to face down. Rotate your palms to face up.

Keep the idea of spreading open through your body. Bend your elbows, come back to where you came from. Go again. Exhale to open. Stretch your arms straight, spread open even wider through the collarbones and the Scapula or shoulder blades. Turn your palms down, turn your palms up and bend your elbows. So all you're doing is stabilizing. Come back home. Exhale to open. Last one, stretch the arms to straight. Turn the palms down, turn the palms up, bend your elbows and come home. Beautiful. That's a nice, nice little shoulder bit. What do you think? Qaeda. Yeah, it is, isn't it? Turn around to face. The other direction.

We're going to finish this series with a little bit of, I'm the hug a tree followed by the salute here, so I like to sit up against the shoulder rest to make sure that I'm not leaning against it. Once again, if you need a box, use it. Bring your hands sort of underneath your underarms and then go ahead and press them to straight out in front of you and sit there. For a moment, spread the front, end, the back body and sit up even taller in how we open, but not too wide. Exhale, we pull the arms forward again. So I like to work with a pretty straight elbow joint, exhaling to pull and focusing on the opening. You want to think of spreading both the collarbones and the shoulder blades. Another nice cue is to lead with the pinky finger here to make sure you can feel that little bit of external rotation.

Sense that your abdominals are playing a supporting role. Last two [inaudible] just do one more here please. And pause with your arms in front of you. Bend your elbows so your hands are just above your ears. Essentially. Exhale to press forward and up so your arms are shoulder width.

Inhale to bend and exhale forward and up. Focus on sitting tall. This is the point where we start to get a little tired perhaps in the hip flexors or a little tired in the ABS. See if you can tap into the upper back muscles to sit up right a little bit more here. Last two here, [inaudible] and last one please. All the way up. Take your hands in front of you and gently come to rest there.

So we're going to put the straps away here. Step off of the reformer. [inaudible] adjust the spring. So we're on one blue spring. You want this one to be light? Okay, I'm going to stand on my right foot with my foot. Really close to the foot of the reformer. Okay. And my hands are going to support on the bar first. This is a balance exercise, people, it's a little funny to get in, but once you get your middle of your foot on the reformer, you're going to press your leg a little bit behind you and stay there.

Now I'm going to use my hands for balance first and then I'm gonna decide if I'm able to do this without balance. Bend both knees, pitch forward a little bit and see if you can feel your supporting right leg, glute, hamstring, quad, everything. Playing a supporting role here. Exhale to press your other leg to straight connecting with the back of the leg in how to bend in. Now unweight your hands a little bit and pay attention to not really needing them, hopefully. Right? So option one, you'll hold with your arms. Option two [inaudible] cross your forearms on top of each other. One more time like that. Yeah.

And the final option, the knee is bent. We're gonna stand tall with the body. The knee is almost straight. That supporting leg and five times we press back on [inaudible]. Beautiful last one. And we gently take the hand on the bar, take the star, the carriage all the way into the stopper. And let's go to the other side. Let's do a little dance here. Qaeda. So once again, you want your foot up near the foot, the reformer, you're going to take your other foot up against the the the, the carriage there.

I've got both knees bent so my standing leg is bent and I'm pitched forward a little bit. Lots of work here in the leg. My hands are here for support but not doing much. If at all possible, we press back to a straight leg in this position and you want to feel that as best as possible. Your pelvis is staying still. Your abdominals are staying active. Nice big breath. How little can you use your arms? Perhaps they're here. Good. Pause. Stack your body, straighten your leg a little bit and it's a smaller movement. Here we go.

Okay. Really finding the back of the leg. Yeah. Last one. Bring your hands to the bar and gently come to rest there. Beautiful.

Let's have a seat on the reformer and I'm going to add, um, a spring. So I'm gonna put one red spring on and take that blue spring off. So I'm on a full spring here and this is in preparation for the next exercise. So here I am sitting. Let's bring the legs together and see if you can feel the inner heels, the inner big toes and the legs touching. If you find that your ankle bones get in the way, then part your legs a little bit here. Perhaps use a ball if needed.

So sit up nice and tall for me. Feeling that your head is stacked over your shoulders, your shoulders stacked over your pelvis and supported by everything in between. Take your hands up and bend your elbows, putting your hands behind your head. You're going to press your head into your hands a little bit. Keeping your lower body still will twist to the right with a double exhale and twist to the left.

So see if you can feel the upper back involved by keeping the chest open. But the abdominals are definitely working here to rotate. And we're about to add on here. So we'll do one more over to the right and then we're going to hold the twist to the right stay. I want you to maintain the twist of your body, but stretch your arms into an l shape. So the left arm goes up, the right arm goes out. Now here as if you're being pulled by the right arm, you're gonna extend your back a little bit and reach hands behind your head. Sit Tall, unwind, twist to the left.

So one arm goes up, the other arm goes out. As if I'm being pulled by that left arm, I extend my back and reach hands behind the head and on y exhale to twist in how to exhale back in and on y and go again. X and [inaudible] hands behind your head and unwind. One more cause feels good and toys and reach not a very big movement. And here unwind. Last one, twist up rich hands behind your head and on y. For the next exercise, we're going to use our boxes.

I do want to say that if you don't happen to have a box, you can still do this exercise without a box. So the box is going to go on. Long whys. You want to put it all the way up against the shoulder rest. Make sure it's even, and then we're going to lie on our belly. I've got the bar in the same position as it was before, but if you're tight in the shoulders, you could put the bar down open through your chest and shoulders here.

Have your forehead just above the bar, but not really any higher. Now. If you do have a lower bar, you're going to want to be mindful of that cue. Your head should be in alignment with your spine. Draw your abdominals active, lengthen your legs. Press your sternum down slightly and press your arms to straight and hold. Now feel here that you've not elevated your shoulders to straight your elbows.

Inhale to bend the knees and exhale to press back out to straight. I said knees, Huh? Inhale to bend the elbows, not the knees and press back out to straight. Now you're going to feel like this spring might feel a little bit light, but we're going to do single arms momentarily, so I think you'll appreciate the spring. Press your arms to straight and hold here. Keep your right arm on the bar and take your left arm out to the side. Making like a t shape with your left arm.

Inhale to bend your right arm and press out to straight. So I'm bending the arm that's on the bar and press to straight. Good. And one more time there and harassed to straight hold. Put the other hand on the bar. Reorganize. Take your right arm out to the side, making that t position. Now Bend your other arm and exhale to press out. Pay attention to your head, not dipping lower than it started where ideally in a pretty neutral position with back extensors on hold here. Both hands are on the bar.

Now you're going to lift your head, lowering your sternum, coming into a little back extension. You'll find yourself sneaking in a little bit, but I want you to try to limit how much you'd like come into the stopper here. Now maintain this upper body position as you bend your elbows and exhale to press out. Yeah, in how to Ben feel that those legs are energized. Those abdominals are quite active. Upper back is active.

Last one here, come into the stopper and hold, not using your arms very much. See if you can intensify your upper back extension. Hold that. Press out two times and gently come to rest. Stepping off of your box. Find a place where you're comfortable to do a roll down with your feet underneath your hips.

Feel that you have enough weight in the balls of your feet, some weight in your heels too. Exhale to appeal forward, articulating through your back one vertebra at a time, keeping enough weight in the balls of the feet. Allow the head to dangle the arms to relax. Abdominal stay active. Inhale here. Exhale. Draw your abdominals active and stack your spine standing nice and tall. Equal weight on fronts and backs of the feet. Allow your arms to float up. Extend the backs slightly, looking up arms float down and peel forward again. Since that, your knees are straight if possible.

Inhale here, head relaxed. Exhale to stack the spine. [inaudible] I'm just going to float up. Stretching through the underarms. Extend the upper back slightly looking up, arms coming down. And one last time we rolled forward. Exhale to roll up.

[inaudible] standing tall. Feel length through the crown of the head. Your chest is open, you're head stocked on your shoulders, your shoulders stacked on your ribs, your pelvis stacked at your legs, energy through your feet simultaneously up through the crown of the head. And I thank you for playing.

Comments

1 person likes this.
That was the perfect start to my morning.. feel very centered and calm... lovely pace and super clear cues. Great variations as always. Thank you!
1 person likes this.
I agree with Julia! My second morning taking this class, and felt so calm & "in" my body after it. Really enjoyed your cues Sarah, and the tempo felt perfect, thank you for a lovely class.
1 person likes this.
Great class and reminder of how the basics when done efficiently,with awareness and concise cueing is enough. Going to teach this to my reformer class today!
1 person likes this.
Great class with very clear instructions and clues merci beaucoup Sarah!
Lovely to hear from you all! Julia, I hope all is well with you. Hoping to get sent your way to teach sometime:) Elizabeth, I too LOVE working basics with details. Susan, I think about you so often! So glad to be connected. And Genevieve...I am activily reminding BASI how much I would like to return to Paris. Hopefully, it will happen again soon.
1 person likes this.
peaceful class - great attention to cueing. lovely evening class :)
1 person likes this.
Sarah - Other than years of practice how do you keep your cues fluid, voice so soft and your focus keen?
2 people like this.
Great cueing! Years ago during a workshop, a presenter warned against "being too wordy" during classes or private sessions. That always stuck with me, because I find that I speak throughout entire classes as well, but didnt feel that I was being wordy, there's a lot to say when teaching! Especially when you are working with a group. You have proven that it is perfectly acceptable to "speak" throughout an entire session, the difference is using proper cueing, imagery and modifications without being repetitive. Well done, I will be adding you to my favorites list!
Jill, I must confess that beyond practice, I do not have a magic trick for cueing. The best advice I can offer is to work to find "Pearls". Short, sweet and meaningful cues!
Jessica, Thank you! I too caution students about talking too much. The key is to make sure a person is not talking just to talk. If the cues are meaningful and there is enough time to "process", one can continue to guide the student to go deeper. One of my favorite quotes from my Mentor Rael Isacowitz. "Pilates does not get easier...It gets better!"
Great for a first timer! However, I did not have a box and I wished you had shown an alternative option as you did mention that it was okay not to have a box.
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