Class #1894

Theraband Intensity

50 min - Class


Intensify your workout using a Theraband in this Mat class taught by Rael Isacowitz. Rael teaches the fundamental intermediate exercises, and makes them more challenging through the added resistance to promote muscular development. Explore variations of Leg Circles, Swan, glute work, Teaser, Open Leg Rocker, and Pushups.
What You'll Need: Mat, Theraband

About This Video

Oct 30, 2014
(Log In to track)


Read Full Transcript

My name is Rael Isacowitz, and I'm delighted to be here with Pilates Anytime. Again, I wanna thank Pilates Anytime for creating such a fertile platform for Pilates professionals and enthusiastic students to get together. And I've got some of my absolute favorite students and professionals here today, we're gonna go through a class, utilizing a band, just to provide a little bit of resistance. Somewhat fundamental intermediate class, but utilizing resistance, which is so important for muscular development, and really, for all facets of fitness. So, let's begin.

We gonna sit in an open leg position, just to get those hip joints a little open. Holding the band in front of you, so you're holding the band from the top, letting it hang, it's just in your thumb, and that's gonna work better for the choreography. Holding it just like that, we bring our hands back to the knees. And using the support of your arms, to establish that perfect alignment, think that you're perched upon your sitz bones and try and put as little weight on your sitz bones as possible. And use this moment, to create the mood of the session.

This is where you dictate the flow, the mood, the introspection of your session. And we inhale. (inhales) And exhale. (exhales) And inhale. And exhale.

(exhales) So important here, to gather your energy inhale, and exhale. And as it were, set the stage, for the workout. Inhale. And exhale. (exhales) And we inhale.

And this time, as we exhale, we round the back and stretch the arms forward and then we open the arms as we flatten the back. And we round the back, keeping the shoulders above the hip joints, so we don't lean back, and we inhale as we open. (inhale) And exhale as we round. Feel the spring in the spine, as if the band is mirroring the energy of the spine. And it's like a coil rebounding.

And round. And the activity of those back extensors, so profound in our work. And round. And now, we go up. Inhale.

And exhale. (exhales) And inhale as we come up. And exhale. (exhales) And inhale. And exhale.

And inhale, but this time we take it all the way over, put your hands flat on the floor, facing away from you, and stretch the chest up, so you're looking up towards the ceiling, lifting to a sitting position again, reaching over, and round. We do that again. And we lift up, and we take the arms over, place them on the ground, we're lifting the chest up. Oh, I love feeling those mid-back extensors! And we come back to center, we open up, we round the back, and we lift up, the band here provides a beautiful stretch, so relish it, enjoy it. Placing the hands down, and lifting, lifting, lifting, lifting, lifting, and up! All the way, rounding.

And this time, as we straighten the back, we bring the hands back to where we were, and provide that little bit of support, feel the arms working. It's so important, sometimes I feel that we put our arms there for decoration, and yet, the arms in this work, they bring power to the body, that upper body, and bring the legs into a parallel position, nice and close, to your bottoms. Reaching forward with the band, and we roll down, through the back, and keeping the arms behind you. I'm going to suggest that you bring the heels just a little closer to your bottom, as we prepare for the pelvic curl. And we inhale.

And as we exhale, we lift roll up, and press the band against your thighs, as if you're doing a chest expansion, by pushing down with the arms. Feel the triceps, feel those shoulder extensors, and then slowly rolling through the spine, and reaching back. And then, rolling up. Pressing down. Feel those shoulder extensors, wanna feel those triceps, pushing up with your thighs into the band, and slowly rolling, rolling, rolling down.

And inhale. And exhale. Pushing down. This is a unique position, we've got all the extensors of the body working. The shoulder extensors, the back extensors, the hip extensors, all the extensors working. And rolling through the spine, all the way back.

And rolling up, I want you to think about the fact that we really live in a world of flection, and here we got this beautiful feeling of extension. So enjoy it, utilize it, it's so important, even in this very basic form, and straighten the elbows even a little further, little further, yep, you can do it. And slowly roll down, we've got one more to do. Reaching back with those arms, and rolling up. And pushing down. Down into the thighs.

And in this position, just five shoulder extensors, extensions, so you lift the arms a little, and then push down to the floor. Lift the arms a little. Push down to the floor. Lift arms a little. Push down. And push down.

And push down, I'm sure everyone can feel those muscles working, and rolling down. And arms stop when they're just in line with the ceiling, lift one leg and then the other to tabletop. Taking the legs toward me, we inhale, and exhale. And inhale. And exhale.

I know it feels a little scary, as if you're gonna tip, and exhale. And inhale. And exhale. And this time we open the arms, so we get a little more balance, and we close to come to center. And inhale, reach, the arms out.

And close to come to center. And reach. This is so important, because it works the back of the shoulders, the posterior shoulder, and reaching out. And one more. And reaching out.

And one more. And reaching out. And come to center, and take the arms overhead. So what we do is, we lift up this time, so we mobilize the spine from the other side and we put it on and just over there. Now, Meredith, watch that your legs don't go down there, there we go! I'd love to see just a little more push there, yeah, so that band is nice and tight.

And stretching back. And reaching over. And down. And stretching back. And reaching over.

And stretching back. And reaching over. And here we've got a little hundred, and we go, (whooshing) (whooshing) (whooshing) (whooshing) (whooshing) (whooshing) (whooshing) (whooshing) (whooshing) (whooshing) Good. And lifting the arms. Put the feet down, while you're still up there, stretch the legs out to relax those hip flexors.

And reaching back. We roll up, inhale. Exhale. Again, we utilize the band to inhale, open out, and actually take it even further back, than that shoulder line, bring it forward, and then round. And take it back. And inhale.

And exhale. And open out, pull against the chest lightly, back, and rolling down. Yes. And inhale. And exhale.

And open out. And back. And (whooshing) And reach. And inhale. And exhale.

And open out. And (whooshing) And back. And reach. And open out. Wendy, just watch those shoulders, a little bit tend to creep up.

So it's not as if I want you to pull the shoulders down, I just don't want them to go up. They want to float in a neutral position, just floating in a beautiful neutral position, and then bring them back, and bend the legs. Let the band hang on top of the legs like that, and cross under like that. And hold the thumbs to the ceiling. Just like that.

Arms straight forward, thumb up to the ceiling, good. And we roll. And roll. And roll. And roll. And roll. And roll.

And roll. And roll. And roll. And roll. And lift up in the back, lift those legs slightly, and then up, and two, and let's see that upper body strength, Mary! Yes! And up. And up. And up! And down.

Stretch the legs out, put the band around the leg closest to me. And we roll down. One leg is flat, and doesn't that feel good right there? Just feels so good, let's in fact, utilize the position to internally rotate, and then stretch. And internally rotate. And stretch.

Internally rotate the shoulder, and stretch. And internally rotate, and stretch. Lift the leg up, put the back down, and keep the elbows tight by your side, leg circles, we go one, and we can really go to down here, three, releasing that hip joint, da! And da! And feel so good, and other direction. And one. And two.

Feeling the release of that hip joint, da! That hip disassociation, so important in Pilates, that joint disassociation. There! Nice. Lift up so you can see where I am, I lift this arm above the head, keep this arm absolutely still, and I open out the shoulder, and open out that leg. Such a great feeling. Keeping the pelvis as stable as possible, the scapula and the shoulder is stable, bring it up again.

To there. Lower the leg. Straighten. Can we roll up from here? I think we can.

Yes, we can. And we put the other leg in. Okay. So again, we roll down, and we feel such comfort at that point, where we get, so Sarah try not to lift the arms, just go with the flow. And pull.

And reach. And pull. And reach. And pull. And reach.

And pull. And reach. And pull. And reach. Lifting up, and the leg goes down, elbows tight by your side, and inhale.

Did we circle the legs in both directions before? Good. And three. And four. And da.

And six. And seven. And eight. Other direction. And one.

And two. And three. And four. And five. And six.

Seven. And eight. And now, we lift up, so we can see. I don't want that to spring off me, and you take the arm overhead, and you put the head down, and you keep the other arm by your side, you get that lovely opening of the hip joint, stable pelvis, opening of the shoulder, which is so unique, such a wonderful position for the shoulder. And you bring the leg straight back up, and you join the other one in there.

Both legs are there. And we do the corkscrew, bringing the legs towards me. And around. And the other direction. Inhale.

And exhale. And inhale. And exhale. And inhale. And exhale.

And inhale. And exhale. And inhale. And exhale. And inhale.

And exhale. And inhale. And exhale, love that, open the legs. And this is for the glutes. And we should feel them.

And open. And close. And open. And close. Keep that sacrum nice and anchored.

And close. And open. And close, now just the leg closest to me, open that. One. Five times.

Two. And three. And four. And five. Other side.

One. And two. And three. And four. And five.

And together! Open them both out, bend the knees. Keep them open, even a little further open, and straighten. And bend the knees. Little further open. Yes, and straighten.

Nice, very nice, Amy. Bend. And straighten. And bend, a little wider. And straighten, now I'm not sure whether we gonna be able to do this, but I just have the idea, let's reach forward, let's reach forward, and we're gonna go into our open leg rocker, from here, open the legs a little wider, and roll.

Over. Roll back. And roll, over. Roll and lift. And roll and over.

Roll and lift. And roll and over. You're awesome, roll and lift. And roll and over. Roll and lift.

Roll and over. Roll and lift! Wow. Stunning! Put the legs down. Absolutely, oh, oh, oh. Don't worry about this, I was just shifting, keep your band, keep your bands, keep your bands, keep your bands.

Around your leg, just one more exercise here I'd like to do. So, I love this bicep curl, because you're getting the bicep, you're getting the shoulder extensors, you're even getting those rhomboids kicking in, and forward, you internally rotate, externally rotate, as you pull, internally rotate as you go forward. And pull back. And Wendy, you're just leaning back slightly, thank you. And pull there.

And there. And reach. And back. And lifting in the chest. And back.

And lifting, lifting, lifting, lifting in the chest so much, that you actually look up to the ceiling, and stretch forward. Take the band out, hold it in front of you, spine stretch. Ready. Inhale. And exhale as you roll down.

Inhale as you reach through the back, so Wendy we want to stay low there, we want to stay low, and then down. And then rolling up. And inhale. And exhale as you roll down the spine. And inhale, reaching, reaching, reaching, up! And okay.

So, what I want to see, ladies, and I'm certainly not the most flexible, but from here, I want to see some diagonal. Now, the diagonal can be two degrees off center, but this, for you ladies, is too high. I want you to be working for it. I want you to feel that every bit of energy is in, going into that diagonal line, as you then roll in and come up. So inhale.

And exhale as you roll down. And then inhale. That's better, oh, that is better! And then slowly down. And then rolling up. And one more.

And then reach! And down. And up. Now this outer arm stays reaching there, to the front, and then to there. And reaching to the back, and to there. Do you feel those back muscles kicking in?

Again, I love the back, I love the back of the body. Because we live in this world, that everything is forward, to work the back of the body is so important, and reaching back. And boom. And reaching back, and boom. And reaching back, and there.

And reaching back, and there. Now I've got one more in this position, I want you to rotate, to take the band like this. So let's hold, everyone's got their arm, let's do, mirror me. So the arm furthest from me. Is holding the band like that.

The arm closest to me, grab that band. And then you lift up, and two. And three. And four. And five.

Wendy, just keep this arm straight ahead of you, that's it. Now, with a rotation, that's the beautiful part, is we take it up and we rotate to look over! And then back, we'll just do three of those. And we look and rotate! We feel so beautiful in that position. And up and rotate, reaching, reaching, reaching, ah! Ah. That's intense.

Other side. And, so it's all about how you feel, I dunno how you feel, I feel like a flamenco dancer when I do that, oh, yes, yes! That's how I feel, that's just me, today. Tomorrow, I'll feel something else. Okay, ready? Five, like this.

When you're holding this one, there, this one, up here, Wendy, and one, and two, and three, and four, and five, ready? And reach! And two. And three, I probably don't look any thing like a flamenco dancer, but that's what I feel! Ugh. And put the band just in front of you, there, I promise, you will come back to it, so leave it nice and gentle, and lie on your sides. Leave it Amy, don't worry, you'll come back to it.

Okay. Ready? So resting your heads just there. And exhale. And inhale.

And exhale. And. Three. And exhale. Amy, put your hand nice and flat like this, and also Wendy, yes, the fingertips, just give yourself a bit more stability, I love that, I love that, and feel nice and open, and you do, Amy, you look so open across that chest, that inspires me, that's very exciting, and there, right across, yes, beautiful.

And up! Up, up, up! And let's take it, can we do it, yes we can, and da, da, da, da, da, da, da. and da, da, da, da, da. and da, da, da, da, da. And da, yes! Yes! And lifting up, lifting up, lifting up, lifting up, up. And slowly putting the arm down, to lift yourselves up onto the elbow, and here I want you to be very lifted, and pull, and back.

And pull, and back. Pull, and pull and back. Pull, and pull, notice there's no tension on the head, and pull, you're not really leaning on the head, and pull, and back, and pull, and back, and pull and back. And now just to give that gluteal one, like a double espresso, as you bring it over the top, and then over the back. And over the top.

And over the back. And over the top. And this time, over the back, but as we take it to the top this time, we join the other leg up there, and we're on a teaser on our one gluteal. Squeezing together, I love it, I love it, that excites me, that expression, because you're saying, the world is mine, yes, it's got feeling, and up! And two, and three, and four, and five, let's go higher, lifting, lifting, Mary, up here, up here with that arm! And scoop around. Okay.

That felt good. Alright. That looked good. And don't move that, that band is still there, Mary, that band is there. Waiting.

And lifting up. And down. And two. And down. And three.

And down. And four. And down. And up. And down.

And da. Down. Da. And down. And up! Okay, this is where we need to focus, this is where we bring in the mind, this is where we bring in the mind, don't forget the low obliques as well.

And da, da, da, da, da. Just those little beats, it challenges the stability of the trunk, we've got that arm to hold onto the sky, that's what's giving us the stability, and we've got that little bit of abductor work, yes, yes, mm-hmm. And lifting up. And we put it down, put it down slow, don't rush, and we just ease into that beautiful side kick, and pull and back. And pull and back.

And pull and back. And pull and back. And I'm loving this, Sarah, I love that position, yes, it's all about strength, stability, control, you've got it right there, beautiful, everyone's looking awesome here, boom, boom, da, da. Poom, poom, stay back. And then I believe we wanted to give those glutes a little booster, Amy you should be right there, and up and back.

And up and forward. And up and back. And up and forward. And up and back. Up and forward.

And up and back. Reaching back, reaching back, reach back, and we start lifting it, and as we get to that beautiful spot, we say up! Why don't I get up? Why don't I get up? Yes, so at this point, we're still here, Mary, the leg and arm parallel to each other, and we go one, and two, and three, and four, and five. But then we want to lift even further, and we're lifting up, and we roll onto our stomachs. And what do you have in front of you?

A band! Exactly. So. We have a band in front of us. So bringing the band quite close to you, quite close to you. What we do, is we reach out with the back.

We open the arms so the band rests on your chest. We bring the band together, and then as we bend our arms we actually keep tension in that band, so the arms, elbow at about 90 degrees, think of a little more external rotation, Amy. Wendy, you went too far with the elbows, bring the elbows, you should be at 90 degrees in the shoulder joint, 90 degrees in the elbow joint, and then down. And we reach out. Inhale.

Exhale as we pull. Inhale as we reach forward. Exhale, keep some tension in that band. And inhale, reaching forward. Exhale.

And inhale. And exhale. Two more. And inhale, I like that position, Sarah, and exhale, looks really good. And inhale, reaching forward, and exhale, down.

And one more, reach. And open. And reach, but stay there! We take the band all the way over the back. (sighs) And all the way over to the front. And all the way over the back. And all the way over the front.

All the way over the back. Internally rotate the arms, so you can grab the band. And put it nice and high on the back. And we go one, two, three, and stretch! And one, two, three, and stretch! When those knees bend, those thighs should lift even higher, so look at my thighs, I'm keeping my thighs off the ground, I go, one, two, three, keeping those elbows nice and low, and I stretch out there, keeping the legs together, beautiful! And here, ladies and gentlemen, I want to see your muscles. I want to see those triceps, there are muscles there that should be working, and one, two, three.

And boom! Wow, what a powerful position that is, what a powerful position! And one, two, three, look ladies, power positions, where you just feel the power! And one, two, three, and stretch! (grunts) Now what I want you to do, it's a little difficult, we're gonna unwrap the hands, and put that band nice and high on your back, and then we're gonna put the arms like this, can you see? So I've got a little band and what are we gonna do? We're gonna do little push-ups, but it's from a difficult position. Amy, you got that there? Everyone, there. Sarah, you're pushing down on that band.

Look what you do, put the band on your backs, let it hang, like that. Now, grab it, and you put it down there. A little cumbersome, but it's okay. But I'm taking you up from a really difficult position. You know what, I don't want anyone to hurt their backs, so put your toes down, push into a half-rest position, so you're there, now tuck the toes under, and push forward.

Yeah, looking good! Wow, tricep push-ups. And down, and two. And down, and two. And three, and da. And four, wow, intensifies it, it does, stay up there, stay up there, lifting the leg that's closest to me, we go up and two, and three, and four, and stay up there! The leg goes out to the side, one, and boom, and two, and boom, and three, and boom, four, boom, five, come to center, put the leg down, other leg, and up, and down, and two, and da, and three, da, four, da, five, and up! And one, and back.

And two, and back. Three and back. Four and back. Five, back, put it down, half push-up! Half! Just half. Push-up, put the knees down, and let go of the band.

Put the bands in front of you. (laughs) Tuck the toes under, and stretch into that up stretch. (heavy breathing) Okay, crawl forward a little with the arms, I like calling this the panther. We bend the knees, and we feel like a panther, so lift your head a little, back extensors, and just straighten the legs forward, boom! And then bend. And feel the spring in the legs, feel that little bit of spring, feel that little bit of spring, oh yeah, oh come on Mary, wake up those legs a little.

Wendy, I want you to feel youthful in that springing of the legs, and push out, there! And there. Keep your bottom in the air, Mary. There, that's it, that's it, Mary, that was beautiful, exciting, and push one more time. And bend, push, yes, and this time what we're gonna do is a little jump. And jump! Oh. And hold the band in front of you, okay.

This time we hold it across the chest, actually, across the pelvis, the pelvis. Little bit back, palms facing forward. Are we ready, it's like we got this nice little security blanket around our pelvis, but you know, at some point, it's going to bite us a little. So we go, ooh! And down. Not sure if any of you've got tension going there.

Remember, there's got to be tension. We got tension? Okay, we got tension, good. Good, good, make sure, everyone doing it, wherever you are in the world, we're all together here, and lifting up! And down. And up! And down. And up! And down. And up! And down.

(sighs) So all we've got to do now is a few teasers. Nothing like the band to keep our arms true. Okay, so. I think we'll do three teaser one, which is keeping the legs still and moving the body, three teaser two, and then three teaser three. Teaser two, the body stays still and the leg moves, teaser three, the body and the legs move, but the legs don't touch the ground, so take the legs only as far as you can control it.

Okay, we're ready. Okay, it's exciting. Up! And down. Roll up. And up.

And two. And reach. And up, and up. And three, and reach. And up. And up. Now just the legs.

Down, and up, and two, and up, legs and arms. Down, reach, round, and up. Down, and reach, and down, and up! Last one, and reach, roll, up! And bend the legs, put the band in front of you, put the band in front of you, and holding onto the band, you lift up, all the way over, palms facing back, so your fingers are facing away, just to give yourselves a nice stretch in the chest, lift the pelvis just slightly off the ground and just swing it from side to side. The shoulders are nicely supported, swing it from side to side, and slightly posterior, let it hang, slightly posterior, just off the ground, so it's literally, you're not feeling any tension anywhere, okay, and put the pelvis down, and I'll take the band forward, up and round the back. And put the band down, hold behind your knees, as you lift up, as you lift up, as you lift up.

This is where we began our session, lifting up in the back. And you're lifting up so high that the sternum continues upward, and you feel the extension, extension, extension, and come to center. And just turn to face me. Turn to face me. So again, opening a little, with those hip joints, feel that you're pulling them so far back, that they open up and the back opens up and the chest opens up, and then reach your arms forward.

And then open the arms out. And reach the arms forward, now you'll take the arms over here. Up, and reach the arms. Reach the arms forward, and open the arms out. And reach the arms forward, and open the arms up.

Up, up, and just reach over to one side, as you stretch, stretch, stretch that side. And up, and reach over to the other side, as you stretch, stretch, stretch, stretch. And reach up. Bringing arms around, again, holding onto the legs. And lifting up.

And a big inhale. (breathes) This is the most important part of a session, when you breathe, and it's as if now, you allow every cell in the body to integrate everything that you've done. Inhale. (inhales) And inhale. (exhales) And slowly bring your gaze far into the distance.

Feel the calm, the serenity, and the tranquility, of body, mind, and spirit, coming together. (breathes) Give yourselves this moment of quiet and peace. And thank you very much.


7 people like this.
Amazing class!
1 person likes this.
Excellent workout that went by too fast! One of my goals connected to Pilates is to take BASI instructor training in the future and since I adore all the BASI classes on PA, this video truly represents a pearl to me. Thank you PA for sharing Rael's class. Rael, your classes are always inspirational and a great fun for me. Moreover, I learn a lot by taking them. Thank you!
7 people like this.
Rael is the best! He's so passionate about what he does, he inspires and motivates me by his passion.
8 people like this.
beautiful class!!!! I enjoyed every second of it... more of Rael Isacowitz classes
4 people like this.
Love Rael's passion felt very much at home with his style. Thankyou!
2 people like this.
Thank you Rael. All of your comments and imagery are greatly appreciated. I love Flamenco! Great class.
2 people like this.
Love this man. Utter joy.
5 people like this.
Really enjoyed the emphasis on back extensors aided by the band.... Felt really good during movement and also great after session. Just what we all need!
5 people like this.
Fantastic!!! Thank you, Rael! It's feels so good to be taking class from you (if even from afar). You're the best!
1 person likes this.
Excelente como siempre.
1-10 of 129

You need to be a subscriber to post a comment.

Please Log In or Create an Account to start your free trial.

Footer Pilates Anytime Logo

Move With Us

Experience Pilates. Experience life.

Let's Begin