Class #1981

Healthy at Any Age

55 min - Class


Niedra Gabriel shows us that healthy bodies can start Pilates at any age! In this class, she takes Shirley, who is 83 years old, through her very first Pilates session. The focus of this workout is on stabilizing the center of the body and increasing range of movement in all directions. You'll perform a few repetitions each of Footwork, Pelvic Tilt, Frog, Leg Circles, Short Box, and Running.
What You'll Need: Reformer w/Box, Towel

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Hi everybody. I'm here today with my good friend Shirley, who I've always known from where I live, but I've never worked with before. Surely. How old are you? 83 I am so excited to work with you. I'll have to tell you. Um, is this, this is your first class. Do you know anything about Pele's? No.

Okay. So just to give you a little overview in plots, what we look to do is get your trunk stable so you learn how to stabilize the center of your body and from that point strengthen and increase your range of movement in all directions. We work a lot on the spine. Now I know you volunteer to come for the class. So is there anything specific that you have as a dream that you would like to be achieving? A flat stomach would be fantastic. Oh, K do you do any exercise right now? A few Neimans in the morning and some stretching and I walk once a day.

That's great. Okay, so I would like you to stand facing me and you place your feet. We call this a [inaudible] stance with just slightly turned out. Put your hands on your hips. So you have these two hipbones here. I'd like you to push just slightly with your hands into the hips and then lift your chest up so you feel how you're making the waist longer. That's one of the most important reasons the belly starts to flop out.

It's because we shrink down as we get older and there is no space. So if can't go in, it goes out. So just relax. Just kind of let your body goes soft. And then again, hands here so you feel where your hips are and lengthen up. Try to get the whole ribs. That's it. Now as you do it this time, pull the stomach in just a little bit. So are you want to feel that you're getting taller now, let go of your arms and try to keep that height coming up through there.

Now pull your shoulders up, pull the belly up, and then roll the shoulders slightly back and down. So you just have a sense of always in your daily life. I want you to keep thinking of lifting up slightly instead of just giving into gravity. There you go. So surely I'm going to be asking you to sit down. Okay, let's have you just sit down. Very good. Now when people sit down and stand up, it's interesting in this starts young that they actually fall down.

They're not using their lower back, their hips and their legs. And it's very interesting that people get weak in their legs, in the lower back, very young. So usually people sit getting into a, or even at the table they grab and they block the fall. So in this work we're looking to reestablish the strength in the center of our bodies and the back and the hips. So we are going to practice sitting down and standing up and I will help you so that you can do it. Cause you probably couldn't do it by yourself today. That's true. So we'll get your feet and look at your feet.

You want them in front, close to your hips. I would bring the feet just a little bit closer in because I want you to think of this mechanically. You need to get your body weight right over the feet in order to make them stand up. So watch that. Your knees don't come too close together, po. Get them a little that and now lift your belly up. Yes, look how much lovely and tall you are. Lean a little bit forward. Now let's have you put your elbows like this.

Keep lifting your body up and come right over your feet. And I want you to stand up and push. [inaudible]. There we go. Now I know you felt weak, but that's part of getting new strong. So hold your elbows, lift up, stand up. And now as you go down, I want you to take your bottom back, but bring your chest in my direction. So bottom back, bend your knees, Bend your knees. That was very good. Okay, you can put your hands down. So at home, I want you to practice.

This is low, but the chairs are higher. So when you sit down at home for dinner while to watch television, you try to sit down without hands. Just a little bit, a little bit of homework. So sitting here, stretch your legs out and pull the toes up and the feet up, up, up, up, up, up. Can you get them any more? That's it. And then stretch. You could slide the heels and stretch down and then push your heels away. That as you get the heels to bed to push away from you and down.

Just to get the feet a little mobile. And one more time like this. Pull them, pull up, pull them and down. Good. Bring your feet back. So now you want your feet under your knees. So little bit further out. Yeah, so not too much in. So they've kind of straight. Put your hands here and lift. That's it.

So I'm looking at this big lift up here and now can you pull your belly in a little? Yes, but lift up. This is going. That's it. That's it. That's what we want. We want your spine to hold you up. Can you relax your shoulders and still lift? That's going to be tricky lifter. That's okay. Now still nice and tall.

Can you lift your right knee just a little bit and put it down? Now lift up again in your body. That's it. That's what I'm looking for. Lift your left knee up and down. Lift your body up again. Lifted good. Lift your right knee up and down. And one more time.

Lift up your body and lift your left leg up and down and lift up your body. Do you realize that when every time you lift up, your belly gets smaller? I mean, it's not going to go away today, but does it make sense to you that part of it is because you're down that it pushes out sense? Yeah. So what you want to focus on as again, a little, I'll give you homework today when you remember, just try to be tall and elegant because that gives room for your internal organs. Okay? Now you're going to get to lie down on your back. So this is where your head is going to go. So one minute, let me set something up here. I'm putting this up.

Your bottom has to come a little closer in towards me, right? Right. And sliver yourself down. Now, how tall are you? Surely. Surely your five eight bring your knees into your chest just for a minute. Stay there and I am moving you out, making the machine a little bit longer and then you're going to have this lovely place for your feet to rest and your hands by your sides. Now you remember that beautiful long feeling you got in your spine a minute ago sitting. Can you see if you can get a sense of being long? Yes like that?

Nah, that's it. And then relax your bottom there they are there. Now just hold it for a minute because I'm going to put a little something under your neck to give you more height because you probably feel a little odd in your head. Put your head back down and the back of your neck is also part of your spine. Just let me give you a lit there just that little bit.

How does that feel? Okay, I'm having some, uh, the muscles in my back are beginning to complain a little bit. Okay. The muscles in your back are beginning to complain a little bit. Are they feeling that they're too compressed? Like you're spasming or, or that it's okay now, but a minute ago it was like, it was just about shirting just as, okay. So if you feel that coming on again, tell me right away because we'll adjust.

Some things kind of moved around and it was okay. Good. So when you're like here, we'll have your knees lined up with your shoulders and you know Sierra, you have all five toes here and we're bring your heels together. This we call a [inaudible] stance. It's like when you lift the baby up by their arms, legs are a little bit out. And in this technique, Joseph plot is created.

We emulate that as just a natural place for the body and the bones to hang. Now while you're here, see if you can just have a gentle feeling of your stomach being in. And now while you hold your belly and then you're doing well, why don't you just to take a breath in and feel your, that's it. And then breathe out. Now see if you can still hold your belly and have a breath.

So your breath goes yes. Don't have, take a deep, deep breath. Just a natural breath in a bit. Good. And still feel energy here. Good. Good, good, good, good. Now shoulders. Okay. Do they feel okay against this? So you are going to push with your feet against this bar.

I'm putting you on what we call to sprig. Now Watch those knees they say, or they fell in. I want you to keep them out and what we're doing is aligning your whole back up nice and straight and you are going to push evenly with both feet all the way til your legs go to straight. Just push with your legs, push, push, push. Keep going. Going, going. Can you go out more, more, more, more, more to straight and then bend the knees to come back in. Yes. How did that feel? Was that stress stressful on your legs? You feel you could deal with it?

Um, Shirley, this, you said that this was a really good exercise to do every day and I agree with you. I've had a lady your age who was with a walker who did this exercises for awhile and threw her walker away. So we are going to do this again. I want you to feel that strength in your belly. Can you very slightly squeeze your bottom two so you'd like, you have a little core set and now push with the legs. But almost imagine that it's coming from your belly. So press with the legs, push, push, push, push, push. Keep holding your belly all the way, all the way, all the way, all the way out to straight. Good.

Squeeze your bottom just a little bit and then bend the knees to come back. So as you come back, let the knees open a little bit to there. Yes. So you have this v you going out a little bit, you're coming back, but all the time your body is just stable and calm because you're holding your stomach, you're holding your hips. If you're not kind of floppy, let's have you get press out again. So the knees are even good. Your bottom is long, your stomach is in, you come to straight and then bend the knees and come back and let the knees open. That's right. Very good. And press out again. Press.

Watch the knees that they don't flop in. So right here when your knees us straight. Stretch both knees. Can this sleek go straight? I want you to tighten here a little bit. Can you squeeze? Yes. That's it. That's it. Can you pinch my hand? Yes. And then bend the knees and come back.

So what you're starting to do is get your legs to work intelligently. When you are going out, sometimes your knees were going in a little bit. And this can happen to a lot of people. They just kind of fall inwards and then the body's weak. You want to just keep your bottom to slightly squeezed.

You get yes to get the legs like this and out you go again. Press with the legs, press, press, stretch. Very good. Now when you come back with the knees, go out the way they were. Yes. So you control the legs one more time like this. Pull your belly in. Good and press too straight and then bend the knees to come back. Very good. Now we're going to move into a different position.

I'd like you to have your feet a little bit further over the bar. Bring your knees together. Can you squeeze your bottom a little bit? So you take these muscles that you don't want the lift. Did you sell? You lifted? I don't want you to lift. If you look at my legs, all I'm doing is kind of pulling them together a little bit to get a squeeze. So if I was to put my hand here, can you squeeze my hand? That's the fear.

You see you're making your muscles a little bit tight. Now relax. But when you move your legs, I want that kind of a right now with the feet here, can you curl your toes over a little bit? Yes. This is called bird on a perch. So you know how a bird claws a branch. That's the feeling you want. You're doing this with your feet. So here you are. Nice and tight.

Press out with your legs again. Press and Shirley is on two springs as she's working on a grads machine. When you need to come back, keeping your belly in. Very nice. And again, press out. Good, good, good. And come back.

Now as you do this with your, I want you to look at your knees and don't let them flop around. So you control the legs to go straight because we want the legs straight from the hip. So as you go again. Uh Huh. That was excellent. And then come back because this is very much re teaching you to watch out for your own body to make it do what it's supposed to do. And one more time press good, good.

Very good. And then come back. Very nice. Now this one, you had your toes curled over, now we're moving you to your heels and this time that's just like you were doing a minute ago. Can you pull your foot up more there? Just like that. And then the other fatigue, pulling the feet up and spreading them. So this is called all this is called footwork because you're getting your feet to start to be doing some work. So here you are. This is starting to feel good.

I can feel your muscles holding your hips and your legs. Your belly is in press. Again, push out. I meant to shout with your legs. Nice. And then come back. Very good. And Yeah, if you want to adjust your heels so you feel safe, you can move them.

If it's sometimes you people like it a little lower down, you feel good here. So I'll you go again, which I stretch the legs out and be slow. Or should it be faster later on it'll be faster today. The speed is slow for you because you're just figuring out what to do. So let's do this scene.

You've asked me the question about whether the speech would be faster or slower. I want you to give me two slow ones and then do three or four. Let's go four for four quicker ones where you're holding the legs, you're holding your stomach, you're holding your back. So you pull the toes up and press good and then come back. Good. And now did you near the bang. No Bang. And you have to control it.

Even when it comes in out, you go again, press good and comeback. Good at press. This is excellent. And come back and press and come back. And one more time. Press and come back. Very, very good. How did that feel? Yeah. Okay. First feeling that you're in control on the muscles for the first time in a long time is a nice, so we ma, I'd like you to put the toes back on the bar in a Palati stance so your toes are apart right here.

The it kind of in this funny v. Now before you go out you will go to straight again and your keep your legs like steel rods with a strong bottom and you'll push your heels down and your heels up. So if I was to be, you'll be doing this movement, you'll lift your heels and you'll lower your heels up and down to stretch your ankles and your calves a little bit. So he'll know no knees going in. Come back in. You want your heels together, the knees in a v yours belly strong. Yes. And push out with the legs from this place.

So they're going to come together like that. So push with your legs to straight. You see all your knees are coming in. Don't do that. Come back in. So you only be here. Here you are. And you want them to come like that. Not like this. That's right. That's exactly it. So out you go. Out You go. Good, good, good, good, good. Till the legs are nice and straight all the way.

All the way. Get them straight. Good. Squeeze your stomach and your bottom. Now push your heels. Keep the legs straight and lower your heels towards me. No, don't, no, no, no, no. Just let the heels come down a bit. You feel that stretch and then push up a little bit. Can you with your lift your heels up? No, not moving on the bar.

I want your feet down a little bit more and then lift the heels. That's it. Now lower your heels down towards me. Lower, lower, lower, lower, lower and lift. Lift, lift, lift up. Press up. Can you live like you go lifting up right one more time. Lower down and then lift up again and then bend the knees to come back in.

So bend your knees and bring the kerogen. How did that feel comfortable? Was it a little confusing for a long time? Yeah. Now, do you feel you could do this exercise again? Sure. Because what was happening when you were letting your feet go down and up?

Was your knees rolling in? They were going like this way. Can you see me? So when you were doing it, you kind of went that way. And I don't want, we want to train your legs a little bit more open because it's healthier life. If you're here, it, it, it lets the body collapse in on itself. You're like falling inside.

If you open the legs up a little bit, you will be more strong on your bones. And we want to keep your bottom, your bone strong. So you see a, right now you have a v with your feet. They're a little bit open, just like a ballet dancer. So when you go to straight, I want you to keep that shape so when you will, heels go up and down. You keep them there and the way you keep them there by tightening your bottom and your stomach a little bit. Let's try. So press out again. Good, good, good, good, good to straight. You did it this far. This is good. Now keep your bottom tight. That's it. Just like that.

And lower your heels to me and still squeeze your bottom. Yes. Now can you lift your heels up and squeeze your bottom and think of where your knees are. Can you make your knees turned out? Just like that. Lower the heels a little bit down and lift the heels up. Good. Keep your heels together. Pull your belly in. Good and lower your heels again. Lower, lower, lower, lower and lift your heels up. Good.

Lower your heels down. That's a keep your bottom tight and lift your heels up. And one more time, Shirley. Lower down and lift your heels up. Bend the knees, come back in. Good. That was a good try. But there's room for improvement.

So that's why we all have a lot to learn. How did that feel? I didn't realize that the bar that my feet were wood was movable. So that was a bit of a surprise. Did it feel like it was moving? Oh yes.

But actually I can feel that in the muscles in my stomach from flexing my feet. Right? Well that's what we, that's really good news that you could feel your stomach because that sometimes takes two or three times before you can feel the muscles. If you're feeling it today, we're on the right track. Now I would like you to hold these two handles with your hands, right? One and one. Lift your arms straight up just above your shoulders.

And can you bring one foot towards your chest and then the other one? No, you're not going to push out. I just want both feet off the bar. Right? So now before you were moving the bar with your feet, now you're going to move the bed with your arms. I'm moving you to one spring. So keep your belly nice and strong. Keep your back flat. And let's see if you can stretch your arms.

Try and touch that window over there. You're gonna pull your hands down to the bed. Keep your head down pawpaw, pawpaw, potency. Feel what it's going to feel like. And then lift up again, reaching these arms nice and long. How did that feel? My stomach. I can feel it. Yay. So press down again.

It's good because all these exercises should feel like they're connecting into your belly and back. And again, press down like this, reaching them long, but keep your back nice and flat and long and come back up. Wonderful. Where do you feel that stretch in place? Wow. So surely. I'm glad that you're feeling the stretch in your stomach.

Now I'm going to take the handles. You are going to put your feet back on the bar. Woops. Bend the knees in. Nope. Bring them towards your chest and put you lift your feet up. There is a bar. So today, every exercise we only do a few times, but every lesson you would do a little bit more. We never do.

A lot of times in Polarez we do a little bit of this and a little bit of that and a little bit of that. So your body's stimulated to get more active but not tired out. That's a big thing we don't want you to do is get tired. Now let's have your feet hip with the part. This one you won't push.

I put you on three springs just to keep the cat, the bed quiet and I want to see if you can squeeze your bottom a little bit. Pull your belly in and roll your bottom up in the air. So you want to lift up, lift up, lift up. Oh that's good. Can you go any higher? And then as you rolled that, don't push out to stop. And now when you roll down, I want you to think of your belly like a hammock.

Like it's something dropping in so you roll down again, roll, roll, roll, roll row and bring your bottom all the way down. So you think of your back like a string of pearls or like a dog with their tail between their legs. It's getting very scared. And then it becomes happy again. So tuck your tail good and start to roll up and as you roll up, see if you can tighten your belly. Roll, roll, roll, roll up and then roll down again. Row. Pulling your belly in. Roll, roll, roll, roll, roll and down. Very good. One more time like that. Roll, roll, roll and up. And then roll down.

So it's really like a massage for your whole back. How did that feel? Good. Wonderful. Just hold on a minute. We are now let me put wrap extensions on. So you're going to do a little bit more with your legs, but they're going to be in these straps. So you're going to have your legs in the air, but you've got these straps. We'll hold your legs so that your back can stay flat and your stomach can stray long. I'm putting you back on two springs.

I would like you to press out with both legs so the carriage goes to straight. Just push with your legs. Good out. You go out, you go out, you go to the legs. Nice and straight. Good. Now can you lift your left foot up in the air and do you see this? Put that in. Press out with it. Let's get the leg here. Lift the other leg.

Put your foot in the strap. Now I have to get these straps right by your heels. How does it feel right now? This position for you? Comfortable. Let's get you into Polaris position where your toes are part. Can you separate this joint?

So you remember how you had your feet like a ballet dancer? No. Heels together and toes apart like that. Okay. Now from here, your stomach is strain is pulled in your knees a slightly out. Start Bending your knees towards your shoulders so your feet will come toward you bottom. So bend your knees and open the knees. Open them. And Ben, Ben, Ben, Ben, Ben, just to here. Knees apart.

Now pull your belly in and press your legs back out. Just where they were. So push towards my hand because she pushed the legs away. Just straight. Good. Bend your knees back in and open the knee. So these funny straps will come in the middle. That's it. Exactly. So you bend them in.

Now pull your belly in here and as you press out, keep your belly pulled in. Push, push, push, push, push. Very good. Now hold it. Do you see where the leather straps are? And you get a sense of where your foot, you're these little knobbly white things are. You want the angle to be about here. So not so high, but lower. Can you get the legs turned out a bit again? Good.

Then the knees come back. Same Way. So your knees are out. That's perfect. So your knees are kind of going towards your shoulders right here. Pull your belly in cause your back is nice and long. Keep your stomach in and get that sense of you're back on the mat and press out again. Push, push, push. Good. Good, good, good, good, good, good, good. Very good. Bend your knees again then.

So this is gently massaging the hips and press out again. Push, push, push, push to straight. Now in this position, your stomach is in. Your back is flat as the way we've been working. Why don't you let the legs we use, we'll do what's called leg circles.

So you live the legs a little bit, open them a little bit, pull your belly in and bring them down a little bit and bring them together. So you doing in little circles or do this again. And one of the things you want to try and do is keep the right leg and the left leg the same. Because if I was to let go of your one leg would fly out more than the other and you want to try and teach your legs to be equal strength. Equal movement. That's already better. I can feel your evening out. The the, the work you're doing. So both legs work the same.

All Open now keep your knees turned out knee. Yes. Tighten your bottom. Yes. So you make the legs work and keep the knees to adapt. That was better cause I, you're right, like always wanted to roll in. Now it's staying out. That's great.

And tighten your bottom and your stomach and roll down. Now we're going to do a little stretch into the legs. So keeping your legs long and straight. Just let them come up as that's a keeping your back flat. How does that feel? Okay.

Bend your knees and bend the knees towards your shoulders. Opening the knees a little bit. Your feet come down just the same place you were a minute ago. Your press, let's have your knees wider. Push your legs out just the way you did a minute ago. So you press your legs out to straight. Keep your stomach in.

Bring the legs up, up, up, just so they're long and flat. Can you have the leg strength and bend your knees towards your shoulders? Yes. So you have this kind of a circle. Good. Now press out again and see if you can keep a sense of your back being nice and flat to see you want no GCO. You're aiming the legs high.

I want the legs here. Say you push away now keeping your back flat and your stomach long. Lift the legs. Lift the legs so they have a little stretch and then bend your knees and bring your feet. Heels to your bottom. Ben, Ben, Ben, Ben, Ben, Ben, Ben. Ben, Ben, good. All the way down.

And last time press out with your legs. It's kind of like where my hand is. So you push away. Yes, that's it. Bottom is tight. Your knees are turned out dumb. Good. Bring the legs up. Bottom tight. Knees, straight. Strong legs. Strong legs, and bend your knees to come in.

Good. Now I'm going to, let's see. Can you push out with your legs one more time? Press out. Lift this leg up a little bit. Now it's coming out. Bend your knee. Good. Then the leg and QC. Put It on the shoulder. Rest over the foot. Bar.

No higher in the air. Huh? Here bend his knee a little bit and put the like here and now bend the knees to come back in. Very good. Oh, okay. Now you are going to be sitting up. So when you sit up, you will need to bring your feet to the floor and swivel yourself around cause you're close to the edge. Right? Move your bottom over there. Right? And remember how you sat down a minute ago when we started.

You have to use your legs. Let's get your heels close. Hold your elbows, lift your belly up. Good and see if you can stand up. But don't you see how your tendency is to do that? I want you to keep the knees out and let's get your yes.

Now can you lift up your body, bring your shoulders forward and see if you can press up or shh. That's okay. That's okay. I know you'd still need help. Your legs are not strong yet and they're kind of going a little bit in a confused way, but that's what this work is about. To keep teaching you how to hold your legs in a place that there'll be strong for you. Next exercises called short box. Let me just set up this. We're gonna do some more.

I'm going to set this up so I will pay this funny box and put it here and I'm moving. Now this box here, Shirley, is you will be sitting here with your legs here. So it's going to be easier to sit. Yes. Want you to get your bottom in the middle. Now this strap, can you put your feet in a strap so your feet are going to be like this and let's have you move your bottom a little bit further back on the box right now.

Your feet. I want you to pull up and have them. You see now it's strong. The strap is strong. Need to keep the fee? Yes. Just like that. Because they are going to hold you a little bit. Put your hands on your belly and lift up your body. Now can you tighten your bottom so you squeeze your bottom a little bit and relax your bottom. I didn't see anything happen, so okay, well show me again. Squeeze.

I see you lift your body and then relax. Oh, there's a little bit, so I'm going to demonstrate something for you while you're sitting here. If I'm sitting, do you see how I can pop up a little bit and relax and pop a little bit? Do you think you can do that? Okay, let's have a look. Let's see what happens. So squeeze and lift. Yes, that's it. And then relax. That's what I, when I ask you to do it, that's what I want you to do.

What you're doing then is you're taking all these muscles here and you're making them tight and you're also tightening the bones of the hips. It just helps you like create like a little corset around the bottom and when you use your stomach to gives you this stability that I want you to have more out. So you will be more strong in this part of your body just for daily life. So I will show you what you will do. Now you're sitting right where you are.

You will sit up tall and then you go into a slightly tighter and slightly roll back, pulling your belly in and holding your bottom. But you have to keep the feet like that and then come back again just to there. No more than that. Come back up and sit up tall. Yes. So what are you doing? If you look at me sideways, here you are. You're trying to get us as straight back as you can.

And then when you roll back, this is strong and you starting to get a little bit of a rolling motion in your spine, but the star, so the stomach is having to work to hold you and then you come back up and come back into good posture. So let's have a few of those. You have to keep the feet working good. So sit up tall to begin with. Nice lift. Now tighten your bottom. Pull your stomach in and slightly round your back and roll back. Roll.

So you're trying to get your bottom under you just to there and then roll back and sit up tall. Lift up. Can you get taller? That's it. Can you get taller? Yes. Again, pull your stomach in and you make yourself like a round shapes. He gonna Round and roll back a little bit. Row, row, row, row, row. Good. Come back again. That was good. What you did there. And sit up tall lift. Lift. One more time. Pull your stomach in.

Flex a feet slightly row and then come back up again and sit up tall. Relax a minute. How did that feel? Stretching muscles I have ever used or your used personally in through here. Oh my. Yeah. Okay, so you were saying that you were using muscles and stretching muscles you haven't used in a long time, especially here. That's one of the reasons I only want you to do a very small amount because I don't want you to be feeling like you've overworked, but we want to get these muscles strong again so that you can walk, you can stand, you can sit and you can not feel frail in your life. So just to relax in the opposite direction, just want you to bend over a little bit, hold behind your knees and just bring your body as far forward as you like.

And I'm going to give you a little massage into your back to help relax the muscles and make everything kind of soft and then come sit back up again. So you're sitting straight now hold this stick and I'd like it, the width of the just hands a little wider. Right now. Can you, you want your arms in front? Can you sit up tall? Ah, yes. Can you tighten your bottom? That's it Shirley.

Now keep this height and take the arms up and feel like you're going to touch the ceiling. Same rule. Lift left and then bring the arms back down again and just relax. And again, try to lift your back. Yes. Lift your chest. Lift your neck. Oh beautiful. Keep your bottom strong lift.

Make your bottom tight and lift and lift and lift and sink of everything coming out of your belly and bring the arms back down again. So the hands come down all the way down and you can relax for a minute and you have one more to go. So here we go. Lift your back, pull your stomach. Can you give me that strong step? Bottom lift. Now as you come up, keep looking at me. Don't look up. Just keep your eyes. So your face is like a picture.

And this is the picture frame. Can you get taller? Yes. Bring the hands down. That was very good. Now just at the stick, come forward a bit and let yourself relax. So you're soft, you let the muscles go, they've been working hard, and then come back up to sitting. Now you've done a little bit of rounding, a little bit of straightening, and now you'll do a little bit of bending from side to side. So we're just looking to yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, that was good.

So can you lift your arms up again with the stick and how tall can you make yourself from your bottom up? So try and get even more belly. That's it. And more here. Up, up, up. That's it. Now can you tighten your bottom and just bend a little bit to the ocean and come back up. Lift a little bit more. Other side and back. Can you lift more before you go over in there?

We go over to the first side, towards the ocean. Sideways and up and lift. So we're always making space. Other side and up. And lift. Lift, lift, lift, lift. One more time to the ocean. Sideway sees. Stretch a bit, come back up and last one lifting other side and come back up and I'm going to give you a little bit of a lift again.

I want you to [inaudible] it and then relaxed down all over. Let your head go down just at everything. Go. That was beautiful. Now I will take the stick. How did that feel? [inaudible] person. You're a new person. It's such a heart, Shirley.

Well those muscles haven't been used in years. It's obvious. I know, I know. It's so good that you're, you're doing this. It really is because unfortunately we need to use everything and it gets harder and harder to use it as you get older because our life gets more, you know, around the house and around the home. But I'm so glad you're coming in and I definitely will be giving you a few exercises later in the week that I want you to do at home regularly just to keep up the momentum of what's happening now. We have one more exercise on this box, which is, here you are. I want you to sit up again and can you take now have a look at me, because when you bend your knee in your back, we'll go down a bit.

So you want to try to keep it up. The most important thing is I want you to feel your belly. So even though it's gonna round a bit, don't just fall down of who you're, you're your bones. We really want, you're really trying to get back on your bones rather than off the bones. That makes sense. Okay, so let's sit up and just bring one knee.

Just pull it in a little bit. It's going to come out of the strap. Can you bring it? One foot stays in the strap and the other knee comes into towards your chest. Lats, it. How does that feel? Looser now. Yay. You feel looser. This, that's the idea. We want you loose.

We want you strong. Now from here, can you just stretch a bit and bend it down? Let it kind of, how can you pull it close to your chest? Good. Lift your chest lifted up again. Branded one more time, lifted up again. Bend the tap, put the foot back underneath. And you'll do the same with the other leg. So as you break first, you sit up tall, then you bring the knee in and how close. And just keep thinking of your stomach. Is your stomach a little bit sucked in?

Yeah. And then stretch it a little bit and and stretch it a little bit and down and stretch it a little bit and very good. Now you get to stand up, you get to come off. So first of all, let's get your feet to the ground. Now remember right now I want you to sit back in the box. I know the box is a bit funny, but I don't want you to push with your hands.

Want you to hold your elbows. That's it. Lift your back, pull your stomach in and see if you can stand up. No hands. Good with, because that's about six inches. I know, I know that you can relax your hands now down. Oh, you're going to see, so you did say that because the boxes higher in your right, but your first instinct was to push up with your hands. So one of this is to reeducate yourself. So when you can sit down and stand up without help, you don't use help because that will keep making your legs strong again and your stomach strong again. If you always, I mean if you always do this, it's a habit so you don't always have to do it and later you'll be able to go lower and lower without someone helping you because you'll be practicing.

So remember homework today at dinner time when you sit on the chair for try to sit without holding on, just figure out where your bottom will go. Hold your elbows just to keep them out of the way. Try to be tall and try to make your legs and your stomach do the work versus okay, I'm down and I'm going to eat. Okay. I do it the easy way. We all do. So now you're doing it the hard way. So surely please stand up.

I'm just going to remove this [inaudible] let's have you, do you remember how you were at the beginning? You were lying on your back. Okay. So you need to bring your bottom close, close, close up, and your feet will be on. So this how does it feel now to lie down is your back. It's good.

So your back is comfortable because I know at the beginning you said you felt your back was spasming a bit. So I think you, you, you're a little bit looser right now than you were. So I'd like you to have your toes or the ball of the foot on the bar, right? And the first movement is going to be that you go to straight. So tighten your stomach, tighten your, you're bad x. Now did you see how you crawl your bottom up? Don't curl your bottom up. You want your back flat.

Can you squeeze your bottom without lifting it? That's it. Sit like squeeze my hand. Yes, that's a feeling. That's exactly right. Your belly is in your hips as strong now and keep this strength and tress with your legs until they go to straight. So Push, push, push, push, push, push, push, push, push. Good. Now keep this feeling here, which you're doing.

And I'd like you to take this knee and just bend it and push this heel towards me. This heel will come down just like that. You feel like you have a stretch on this side. Now push it back up. This foot stays on. Now go to straight again. So both knees straight and you'll do the other side. Lift style, both knee, straight down, both knees straight. And then one knee Benz. Nope.

So you got the exercise. Here you are, and you'll go one straight, one straight. Once you go back and forth, one strength and one strength and one straight and one and straight. Good. Bend your knees to come in. So you've got the exercise, but now I want technique. So I want you to hold your belly and try to hold your hips because what was happening when I was looking at you, you were just flopping out. My teacher used to say, you look like you're dancing salsa and this is not Salta.

This is Pilati. So the trick here is you have juicy. See, I'm tightening my bottom a little bit. I'm making this strong. It's like I'm taking all my legs and making them together. So when I go up and down, I'm not letting my hips move. I'm not doing that. Which let's, it's a different movement.

Salsa dancing is nice, but it's different. Let's try again. So you tighten, tighten out. You go with your legs. Good, nice and strong. Bend your right knee and keep your bottom strong and presses heel down. Good and down. Good. Now keep this movement no faster than this.

Keep going. And I want you to try and hold the hips so you don't flap. So very firm here and lift. Keep going and down. Up and down. The side is a little weak and down. Keep this strong and lift and down.

Do you feel how you moving from side to side? Do you? It doesn't feel like I am, but you're telling me. Okay. Press up again. Let's pause here. Pause, pause, pause. Both knees straight. Both knees, both knees straight. Yes.

Now squeeze and squeeze. Yes. Now try and do the movement without losing these muscles. Keep this and bend one knee better. Better. You lost it a little bit, but you trying. I can feel it. Lift, squeeze and press lift. Squeeze and press. One more time. Lift, squeeze and press.

And last one. Lift. Squeeze. And press and lift. Both legs are straight. Okay. And then both knees bend both knees at the same time to come back right now. Right here. Squeeze the hips. Yes. Release them. Squeeze them again. Squeeze. Release. Good.

One more time. Squeeze. I can feel the muscles working. That's very good. Release. So that is a very important little exercise to help keep your legs and your hips strong with muscle that hold the bone in place. Sometimes people lose it as they get older. So you're starting to reeducate the legs to do that so that they can be more firm.

So you will now come up to sitting. So you will need to swing your legs to the floor and get yourself nice and stable. Right? I want you to sit up straight again. Yes. Good. So this is starting to look good. Pull your belly in. Good and tighten your barracks. Just the way that's a trolley. Do you feel that?

And now relax. You feel that strain, you feel the strength that you have, the muscles. All right. Yeah, so today we did a little bit. This is, by the way, the end of the workout.


12 people like this.
I love classes whit real people!! What a wonderfull teacher!!
2 people like this.
Niedra and Shirley, gold stars for both of you. The changes all the way through were quite evident. And I agree with you 100%, that we need to get more seniors on the reformer and through away the walkers for good! So important that people see and do this work.
2 people like this.
Wow, what a great first session. Best of luck to you both as you get that flat stomach Shirley. I am sure it will happen quickly as you have a teacher that is just the BEST and you are so positive. Keep up the good work and thanks for sharing.
2 people like this.
Loved loved this class! With the average person being taught it reflects the real responses and how the experience has resonated with them and in them! Niedra loved your execution and patience with Shirley and how at any age changes can be made! Shirley was a doll!! Would loved to see a follow up with her progress!
Niedra Gabriel
Thank you all for your enthusiastic comments. I will share them with Shirley next week - I go over to her house and work with her when I am near by. She is such a wonderful person, and working with seniors is soooooo important and under " delivered" in our current culture. ( they often cannot afford privates or group classes as they live on social security) so any service classes spread out to that part of our community is a gift and more - it makes their lives MUCH MUCH better. Shirley is sleeping better, walking better and generally much happier with doing a few exercises every day. So happy you all got inspired and want more - I know you will go out and help ...
Loved loved this also! Teaching active seniors is a wonderful vocation and I hope to continue my PTA career working with pilates for seniors! Shirley was so great! You were terrific with her! I was happy she didn't fall over from orthostatic hypertension which we so often have to were quite careful with her, which is so important! We always have to teach seniors to stand with support since so many have had injuries where they are weakened. It was great to see your fine tuned training in explaining how to use her body, how to challenge herself and how pilates will benefit her functional strength! Brava!
Niedra Gabriel
Thank you Tessa, I am thrilled with how much interest this lesson has generated. Your vision and desire to work with seniors is a wonderful service. wishing you much success.
Many thanks to you, Niedra, ?? you encourage me! I'll look for more of your work!
Oops. Smiley face got lost... Ha :)
1 person likes this.
What an inspiring session. I find the enthusiasm and sense of adventure you get from seniors contagious! Going back to basic cueing was so useful Niedra and reminds us what is like when you learn pilates for the very first time, Shirley picked it up so well and visually you could see her body start reacting to your cueing.....fantastic, looking forward to a follow up
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