Class #1335

Standing Stretch Out Strap®

30 min - Class


In this Mat workout, Ken Gilbert uses the Stretch Out Strap® to take you through many different movements. He plays with the idea of stabilizing the pelvis, shoulder girdle, and head while moving the spine through forward flexion, lateral flexion, extension, rotation, and circumduction. He also shows how to do many exercises, including the Neck Pull, without straining the neck and shoulders.
What You'll Need: Mat, Stretch Out Strap®

About This Video


Read Full Transcript

I'm Ken Gilbert, I'm here teaching a math class to some students who have been with me for years. We're talking about the history of politeness and I in my familiar world and going back as far as 94, and it's been fun to watch the work of all of his. I started studying with Ron Fletcher in 96. It became a very, a important aspect of, of who I am in regards to my body expressive. So I get to have fun and play with some people that I've known for many years now. No one here is unfamiliar, so it'll be fun to see where we go with classes. I like to teach to the people that are in the room.

So today's focus will be the pelvis, chest, and head in relationship to the five primary joint actions of the spine, forward flection, extension, lateral flection, rotation and circumduction. So we'll play with all five of those as we go from standing then down to the mat and then come back up to standing. So have fun with this. As we play with uh, the, uh, optp stretch out strap and we'll play with the idea of stabilizing the pelvis, stabilizing the shoulder, girls' stabilizing the head. Be aware that the pelvis has a halo. That's the way I see it right around the ball and socket. There's a halo that's kind of floats, like Jane Jetson skirt.

And then here at the shoulder girdle halo, the very classical and then the the scapula. So there's the halo there. And then I'm realizing more and more, I keep using the term eyes up and out. Eyes up forward will help that in the halo of the top of the spine be regulated. So the eyes fall, the head will fall, the eyes go up, the head will go up. If you stabilize with the eyes looking out, you'll have a halo of the head in relationship to the pelvis and chest.

So let's start here and we inhale through the nose out through the mouth, and I do use the percussive breath through. Keeps me then from speaking the inhale, exhale. So plea a, yeah, I was in the play. You begin to stabilize the base of the big toe, the base, a little toe in the middle of the heel. You're standing on two tripods tomorrow and then we go to the play and stay. So the pubis and the sake from our drop down in relationship to each other. On the inhale, tilt the pubis up towards the sternum.

Exhale and release it down. Pull it up to the sternum and release it down. We've got six more times through the shortening of the rectus abdominis. It's not about grinding into the muscle. You want to play with a sense of ease and let the pelvis swing forward and center and forward and center. Look for two more times. Rounding over the ball and socket. The socket is moving. The ball is not.

Now we go the reverse pulled back where pubis dropped forward and center pulled back and center and pulled back to center. So the the stabilizer here is the rim of the rib cage, the diaphragm four more and three the eyes are floating out, widen the shoulder blades through. Allow the head to float back over the spine. Last two and one we'll use a single breath front center and back rolling the pelvis over the head of the femur. [inaudible] one more. Want to play with both the extension as well as the reflections and let's go two more and one more and now we play with the swing and widen the shoulder blades like the eyes, you level to the floor for three, two and pulses.

[inaudible] the rim of the rib cage is stabilizing the upper spine, the lower belly and the lower back four three, two and come to center. Play a little deeper and come up. Let's play with this one more time. We'll go a little quicker through that sequence turnout and parallel turnout and parallel play with it. Top of the hamstring and the bottom of the buttocks. Turnout and parallel stabilized here from this high point or what I'm calling the center core, the rim of the rib cage four and three and two. We had a PA and PA.

Let's just play with this inner thighs zip up and then Ben and Zip up and Ben. So we're playing with the stability of the pelvic girdle. The Halo of the pelvis. So the pelvis stays level in space while we move from the femur and Hor. Why batch three c reached the ends of the shoulder blade forward and allows the halo to be more stable. Yeah, that's nice. And this time come up and stay [inaudible] [inaudible] from here. And then same thing we'll do front center back and [inaudible].

So now we're moving the spine, the lower spine and not the pelvis and it's not a glute squeeze. We want to play with the abdominals and the erectors of the lower back, four and three keeping the knees wide, reaching behind to keep the knees open and repulse. [inaudible] it's a great way to strengthen and release the lower back, the lower belly [inaudible] four three, two and center p a and come up. Let's go ahead and return to parallel arms. Reach out, fingertips for play with a web spaces between the hand through. Lift the sternum, so from the bottom of the sternum to the top of the sternum.

You lift and then let it rest on the diaphragms. Wrapping the transversus helps you find that. Squeeze the space between your arm and your hands. [inaudible] bring your hands right in front of the shoulders rather than the net. Bonnie, a little lower. The lower with the sternum. Widen back four, three, two. Now take it up overhead. Take it slow. Keep it back wide. Shoulder blades wide. You're rolling the head of the humerus inside the socket.

Widen the shoulder blade so you want not to be here. Instead to be here. The thumbs will go back a little bit. The arms are lifted up. You have to work from here to stabilize the arms lifted and space between. Lift your sternum, widen her back. The opposing force is coming here for three, two from here. Now head, neck, shoulders round over. They'll take your time with this. I'm going to do it in stations.

Reach the shoulder blades forward to the front wall or the window round over. Now Thoracic, so your no rounded over, no lower than the bottom of the rib cage. The diaphragm. Now here's a fun part to play with. We're going to open that doorway between the diaphragm and the top of the SOS. Keep the lower back lifted around over now and go deeper into the connection with your abdominals.

And now tip the pubis forward and round over all the way fingertips towards the floor, crown of the head towards the floor. You want the crown of the head to be towards your toes so that you open up the back of the neck. Now pull from your lower belly in and up and then exhale, tap down and pulling it up. Opening up the back of the neck so your chin is more toward your chest rather than lifted away from the chest. And four more and working deep underneath the sternum. And last too [inaudible] and last one and let's roll up one time here.

Sacrum to place of the [inaudible] pelvis. The lower belly pulls in and up and now the lumbar over the sacrum keep the shoulder blades wide, the thoracic lifts and the sternum lifts and the crown of the head lift. So you want the shoulder blades to stay wide. Keeping that connection from here, allowing it to be lifted in easy. Going down to get the strap, head, neck, shoulders, and arms from widened shoulder blades. Allow the head to be behind the arms. Do you want to see your arms in the peripheral vision, thoracic ribcage, room of the rib cage, and then rounding down now into the Lumbar and then open as you round over all the way. Take hold of the middle of your strap. Do nothing with it.

Just hold onto it and roll up pelvis in place. And then lumbar. Keep your sole blades wide. Can feel a little funny if you're used to using the shoulder blade, his shoulders to lift your spine and then coming up and neck and head. Let's go to one, one, one on one. So you refer to this from the center out one morning and expand the web spaces. Reach the arms up overhead.

Let the arms slip forward for instead of pulling you on back the head stay floating over the back. Do you want to play with the Trapezius as a stabilizer, the Rom Boys as a stabilizer? What I'm learning is that many people have learned to hold their head up this way. We want to go another way with this, we want to wrap from the back to the front. So we're here. Head, neck, shoulders and arms rounding over and then [inaudible] traffic rounding over. Stay at the rim of the road. Case for a moment. Your arms are reaching straight forward. And then here's that opening at the top of the lumbar and then round over all the way fingertips to the floor. So you're actually tipping the pelvis, pull the strap into your shins and roll-up crown of the head stays towards the toes. So it's a rolling. This is all about fluxion right now.

Lower belly pulls in and up. Now widen the shoulder blades and we start to get into the extension. Keep the shoulders forward. Why back? Neck and head all the way up. Let's go to two. Two. We'll do the same thing that I wanted to do.

A reverse which allows the shoulders to open. So in my recovery from my shoulder, I like to play with this understanding here in relationship to the halo stain, open and wide. Here I like to think of the model is that this is the bottom of the arms. This is the top of the legs, and if we play with that model, then we have an awareness of front to back simultaneously wide back, reaching dynamically with a strap, head, neck, shoulders, and arms. Rounding over, yes. Then thoracic opens up, reach underneath the sternum or you want to spread that space between the shoulder blades, then stay the lifted in the Lumbar, lower back, and now tip the pubis forward. Rounding over all the way fingertips to the floor. Pull in with the strap, open up the back of the neck and roll-up strap comes up the shins.

The knees now comes up the thighs. Keep the shoulder blades reaching forward. Keep this spreading the shoulder blades wide neck and head as everything comes does up into upright stone. Take the strap behind you. We're going to open the shoulders. Feminists, stand sideways to this is IQ it, so I'd like, hmm. Two Tutu. Yes, thumbs or forward. Who would like to play with this as you round down? Same thing we're doing is we're keeping the strap.

Now taught and against the legs. So as we round over with silver, with reflection, then you're going to reach your arms up behind you and then we're going to reach to the ceiling. As you roll up, opens up the front of the shoulder. We're getting this rotation here without having to compromise the shoulder, playing head of the humerus. Head up and look out to your eyes. Head, neck, shoulders and arms. Rounding over the strap, top reach underneath the sternum and wrap the transversus. Reach underneath the rib cage and then round over lumbar. And now you keep the strap against the back of your legs.

Crown of your head goes to the toes, the lower belly pulls in and up. Crown of the head to the toe so your chin is more towards the chest. Good. And then reach the arms up over the shoulders. Keep the shoulder blades wide so you have space and shoulder blades. Do not pull together. That's nice, Christy. Nice.

And then lift the tips of the fingers to the ceiling. As you pull up, as if somebody is pulling your fingertips to the ceiling, you roll up lower belly. That's the sacrum in place. Keep reaching up, widen the shoulder blades than the lumbar. Keep reaching up. You'll have your own range of motion. It will correct itself. Lower belly pulls in and up. Then the shoulder blade stay wide with the sternum crown of the head and the arms. Return. One more time. Widen the back and head again. It was an arms rounding over just the front of the spine.

Here's the flection rounding over thoracic and then rounding over into the lumbar top of the lumbar and then reaching tipped a few to forward. Keep the strap against the backs of the leg. Reach the arms up over the shoulders, keep the strap taught. Reach the fingertips to the ceilings. If somebody is pulling you up and then round up way up underneath the sternum.

Place to stay from over the legs, pelvis, and then the lumbar and then the thoracic. Widen the shoulder blades. Reach them forward. I have to fight for this a little bit and then neck and yeah, sure. That should change your shoulders a little bit. Let's come back to the front. Let's go with the Tutu and turn out. Let's stay here. So we've worked a little bit with the fluxion, a little bit of extension in that lifting through the shoulder blades, staying wide. We're here and let's do some side bending. Open up the side.

So this is narrow, I understand that. So we're going to play with that for a bit and then we'll open it up a little wider. So I believe in the pelvis, chest head sequence happening. It allows you then to open up the opposing side without compressing so it's not just get over. I want to see pelvis, chest head. So let's go with that. Inhale and its pelvis, chest head. So Lincoln even more on the right, your right side and then reach over further with the left. Good.

Reach a little bit higher with the right side. Then further with the left one more time, higher with the right side further with the left and then he returned. Pelvis. Chest has to be a little bit of a struggle and you want that. Do you want to work the spine that way? And pelvis, chest, head, lift your left side. Lengthen your right side further over. Lift your left side. Lengthen your right side further over.

[inaudible] lift your left. Lengthen your ride. One more time. Further over lift and lengthen and coming up. Pelvis. Chest, San head. One more time. We'll do one breath over. One breath back or return and we're here. Okay.

[inaudible] wow, I'm loving that wave, that feeling of [inaudible]. Hell, this chest and head. Let it float back to center. Let's go. Three, two, three on one side. So now some of you who love to have the label in the middle, we'll go crazy. You're going to have to center now with your own awareness of even shoulder. I know that's going to bother some people did me for a long time till I realized no, the strap center, not the, not the label wide in your bag and side Bend Pelvis, Jeff Tabs you have a little different.

Now the shoulder blades will stay a little wider on their own. Great. The attraction there and let's pulse eat more. Four, three, two, come to center. Tell this chest head and to the side. Other way. [inaudible].

He breaching the shoulder blades forward, the very outer chip for the shoulder blade towards the front wall in one window, four, three, two and coming center. Let's play with the hip stretch added in now side sideman and pelvis. Chest head. You're going gonna take the hip in the opposing direction. No, I love it. Say here, stabilize the frame of your arm, neck and shoulder. Pull the hip over the legs and then reach further into the hip stretch. Pull your hips. Oh over the leg.

See if you can do this without moving the torso. It all keep the head, neck, shoulders, stable eye. There it is. And two and one coming up. Pelvis, chest, head side bend first and then we hip stretch. Bring the hips over the legs, pelvis over the legs and reach. Want to stabilize the shoulders, the head, neck and arm. Keep the shoulder blades wide, allows you then to work deeper into the lap. Trapezius and two more [inaudible]. Okay, and the one coming up. Pelvis, chest head. Bring the arms down. So this is getting the shoulder blades wide. It's interesting talking with people saying I feel a little aps for feel masculine was one word that I got.

What happens though is I'm not gonna walk around this way, but this teaches me to relax. It keeps my arms hanging from the shoulders rather than this. There was demonstrating earlier, this is the best I can do post-surgery. This is the best I can do when my shovel blade is forward. Sorry, I fell off. Tip. Here we are like the food channel. I just gave you a tip.

They liked that from their stars, their food channel stars. I gave you a cooking tip. Widen your back and we're going to rotate to the beach. Yes and no. This is the rim of your rib cage were come set on the inhale. [inaudible].

Okay. Right. The pelvis doesn't move at fall. This is just the thoracic, the lumbar stabilizing so that the thoracic can rotate. You keep your chest, neck and shoulders in the middle of your strap. Keep widening your shoulder base. You're not pulling the shoulder blade to pull you into a rotation knife and one more center and overhead. If it wasn't for the strap, this is where I get fatigued cause I'm still in recovery.

So all of a sudden my arm just wants to stop. If, if traction allows me to find the ability to stabilize and find the energy through this arm to rotate to the beach. No. What's somebody gonna do with that cue? If they're at home in their studio somewhere, they're going to rotate to the beach. Lower belly pulls it up to stabilize the pelvis. The Halo, the pelvis is not moving. The Halo of the shoulders is just rotating around the axis of the spine.

That's nice. And one more in center and a let's play with adding that into the side bend hip stretch. Okay, so let me just show it to you for to understand will five bend, hip stretch. And now here comes the rotation. I like to do it this way. It breaks it down a little bit more. Arm, torso. Then torso, torso. We'll drill that and then we'll add the arm return and we come back here cause stabilizing the shoulder goes to the head, neck and shoulders. We'll, we'll move in. Relationship. So here we are wide in the back and hip stretch arm, torso, torso. Be sure that there's no rotation, hips and you want to stand aside Ben, Steven, do it without pulling the shoulder blade back. Keep it forward.

Getting more stretched through the arm that way. Yeah, and four more and three, two and one torso and then arm and center. Other side and we'll shorten it into another pattern. Similar but different. Hip Stretch, shoulder blade reaches arm and rotate side bend side Bend, challenging to stabilize the pelvis from pulling back four more, keeping the shoulder blades wide so there's no compression in the thoracic at all and last time, torso and arm and then let's make it a fluid movement that we get a little bit of a circumduction so it will happen here as we stand. What I'd like to see is that it's all coming from this awareness here, the rim of the rib cage, hip stretch and now we go into the rotation here so that the circum duction we're not just rotating, we're actually pivoting on that spot. Yeah, makes sense. Side Bend, hip stretch and now we go relationship with a strap to the crown of the head. Yeah, that was nice to check and see if we can do it without rolling the hip forward. That's right.

Keep wagging the shoulder blades. You're moving differently from stabilization into mobility and last too. So your right arm is a stabilizer, so was your left arm and coming up either side and we're done with this. Widen your shoulder blades, hip thrash and here's the rotation. Crown of the head in relationship to the strap. Appropriate section so you understand in space and time. Here I am.

Keep the head behind the arm, hit behind me. Arms last time, side bend, hip stretch and come up arm. Yeah, y back we, yeah. Okay. Let's go to the floor. So we're here and head, neck, shoulders and arms. Rounding over the Rafiq Rib cage, rounding over for one shoulder blades and then lumbar rolling over and then tip the pubis forward and go ahead and place your fingertips to the floor. Relevate you'll bend your knees and drop your hips down.

Yes. Now Roll under one hip and then find yourself into a theater position. Let's go into the center of the room. Okay, so we're going to play with a straps now working with the flex foot. So place the strap I have short on one side and full length on the other. My objective is to get you to widen your shoulder blade through, but when I'm teaching this, I want to see that I keep my thumbs in at the bottom of the stern and my elbows are out to the side and that allows me to play with a wing of the shoulder blade rather than being too, too short or too long or I'm going to tend to do this. So widen your yas. Nice Amy. That's nice. Widen the back, flex the feet, reach to the heels and then roll down to your to sacrum or a navel.

Let's do it again and just roll. Roll two-bath to naval. So there's no backward movement yet. And pubis enabler, you might want to bend your knees. So this is warming up the lumbar and pubis to naval. Pull in and up. You're just rolling back on the pelvis. That's all on your back of your sits bones. Do it again on your sit bones.

Back your sit bones. Two more times onto your fifth bones bath. Have your sip phone last time on and then back. Stay there now. Roll down all the way to the back of your sacrum, back of your pelvis. Elbows out to the side. Flex your feet. You've gotta fight for it. Then roll up looking straight forward. Roll up crown of the head to the ceiling.

Lift the sternum. Widen the bat. You want to learn to float that halo of a head cause that's where we are. Now we're playing with that halo as well. Pubis to fake navel and then back onto the back of the sacrum. Back of the pelvis. Flex your feet back. Oh, nice.

Lowest Rib and roll up. Laura belly pulls in. Enough. Lift the sternum crown of the head. Let the sturm crown of the head. Keep the back of wide. Let's do that one more time to protect for the shoulders. This time, flex your feet, pubis enable, and then back of the sacred [inaudible] lower strip. Then tip of the shoulder blades, keep your shoulder blades wide, eyes leveled to the floor. Your neck is open. Crown of the head to the ceiling, eyes level and roll up or belly pulls in and up. It reached underneath the sternum. Keep the back wide.

Lift the sternum back wide. Lift the sternum back while let's play with this now under hinge for hinge. Now this is about proprioception. The back of the spine, front of the spine. Stay in relationship. Now what we're doing is rolling the pelvis itself over the head of the femur just to hinge. Let's just turn them, widen your back and crown of the head, the new Bram sternum, naval pubis and Mike.

Then up and hinge back. Lincoln up with your sternum head and hinge back. Slap back, back, and come up with pretty and flat backpack. You're taking your focus with you and coming up. We're talking about the mind body stuff and being in the moment. Take your focus with you rather than put your focus behind you or focus ahead of you coming up and hinge back. Yeah, they're taking your focus with you. One more time and [inaudible] lift the sternum, widen the back and come up to upright.

[inaudible] let's play with dropping the pubis forward. Lifting the sternum, widening the back and roll down. Reach to the heel, then hinge up. Proprioception tells you when you're in a full extension, then roll down, typically the shoulder blade and then roll up into extension. It's a hinge. Hinge. Yes. Nice work. The whole spine extension and contraction. There's the flection. Let's do it two more times. And HIMSS to extension, lift the sternum. Remember you're taking your focus with you and then roll down to the tips of the shoulder blades if you can, all the way that far, and then roll up into the hinge. Yes. Nice. Nice. And then just sit up. Yeah, sure. So let's play with, um, Paul. I like this for a bit. So we've dealt a lot with the pelvis, the chest, and now we'll add the head. The way I like to play with this as simple. Again, it's all based on widening the shoulder blades through here.

You're going to put the strap at the back of the head so the strap goes to the back of the head. The elbows come forward. So you see that the shoulder blade stay wide. We don't want to get caught up in here. We want the shoulder blades to stay wide. The elbows forward. So you're reaching forward with the shoulder blade through the elbows. Yeah.

Now go ahead and widen your legs. Flex your feet. We're going to play the same thing that we were just doing. Now we don't have the traction through the back of our legs. Now we're playing with the crown of the head. So lift your sternum, widen your back, elbows forward. All of your bringing them in. Narrow right in front of the shoulder joint itself. Yes, and round down to the tips. Your shoulder blade to flex your feet.

There you go. And now round up this time the crown of your head goes to your toes. You stand around, say round, round, round, round, round, round, round. We had your toes, flex the feet and then roll up pelvis, chest and head. So let's take off on the classic neck pole. We'll give it variation, a moment and our roll down. We're not there yet. Roll down. Yup.

Flex your feet Piper at, reached through the back of your legs and roll up crown of the head to the toes. Reach to the back of the legs. Yes everybody doing nicely with the flection and then roll up pelvis, chest and head. Now let's play with it a little bit more. Classically, you're going to hinge back first, hinge back and then contract into the flection. Tips of your shoulder blades. Crown of the head rounds forward towards the toes, round, round, round. Fight for it underneath the sternum and roll up. This took me eight years to understand how to do a neck pole without straining the neck and shoulders wide back. Two more times. Hinge and round down.

Tips of the shoulder blades, elbow stay forward, shoulder blade, stay wide. Gorgeous work here. You're floating the crown of the head to the ceiling level. You focus and then round over and roll up. Last time and hinge back. Inhale and contract back to the tips of the shoulder blades.

Flex your feet last time to round over. Crown of the head is going towards the toes, lower belly pulls in and up. Flex, flex, flex, flex, flex, and then roll up pelvis, chest and head. Nice work. So we played with a halo of the pelvis. We played with a halo of the, of the chest or the shoulders and we played with a halo of the head. So let's go ahead and come on up. Be Inventive and beautiful. Be Elegant about it.

And so we standing with the ankle bones touching above the knee. High inner thigh. Yeah. So let's play with single arm reaches. So we're going out at an angle, so you're going to reach out in an angle. So we'll go to the beach and then come down and it'll go to the parking and come down and then both and come down. So let's play with that now to the left, reach out of the shoulder blade here and return so out of the shoulder blade here and return out of both here and return.

Now let's play with both and see how high we can go. Keeping the palms up. Paul's up, the lower belly pulls in and up. Keep the shoulder blades wide and you're reaching silver blades forward. The palms are reaching out, the hands are relaxed and energized and then reach out. So focus now to the middle finger in Nia. We could call that the power finger.

Reach forward and up. So you're out in an angle. Lower belly. Here's your opposing force. Beautiful. And then down and wide back wide shoulder blades. Yes. Wide Clavicle, halo of the pelvis. Stabilized and last time and stay. Reach the sternum, widen the back and hands overhead.

Hands with the third eye. Hands at the heart and hands at the solar plexus. And thank you.


Fantastic! Love the neck pull work especially. Just what my shoulders needed today.
Simply Beautiful !! Thank You Ken Gilbert :)
So great to take class with you again Ken! Just like old times!
WOW! An amazing workout and education. I felt light as a feather and relaxed after finishing this short effective session. Thank you, Ken, for sharing your expertise with us!
4 people like this.
I don´t know if I have told you lately, but I love Pilates Anytime! I don´t know how I would do without it! Thank you! :)
1 person likes this.
Couldn't agree more, Heikki :) Wonderful shoulder work, thank you Ken Gilbert!!!
1 person likes this.
Wonder-ful! Really, Ken, even this was very challenging, I felt so much better in my hurting shoulder afterwards! Maybe the "shoulder-forward" makes all the difference, - in addition to the help of the band.. I loved it and will spread the news!
One little thing, - for next time-, please speak a little slower for those overseas coming from a different language.
Thank you so much!
I love hearing about your experiences! I am encouraged to continue in my exploration of what I am interested in: the four halos of the Core: at the Pelvis, Diaphragm, Shoulder (Chest) + Eyes (Head). The outer tips of the shoulder blades brought forward while lifting the sternum and resting the rib cage on the diaphragm allows the erectors of the spine to work with dynamic ease.
1 person likes this.
Silke . . . thank you for your suggestion about speaking slower. I travel internationally (South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, and Italy) and must remember to slow down when is am speaking to anybody not familiar with my teaching. Thank you.
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