Class #2119

Mat Workout

50 min - Class


Increase your awareness in this fun, flowing class with Brent Anderson! He introduces new concepts and exercises to prepare you for a few advanced movements and to create space. He also uses creative cues to help you find "home" in your body.
What You'll Need: Mat

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Hello, my name is Brent Anderson from Polestar Pilates and I think it's time for us just to have a really fun intermediate transition class. I'm gonna introduce some new things that hopefully will be new to you, and new to you on Pilates Anytime. So, let's get started with just an awareness. You know me, I always start with a little awareness drill because I love to compare how Pilates really makes a difference in our life. Before and after every class we should be able to feel something different in our body, increase the awareness, the flow, the energy, the groundedness, the flexibility, the suppleness, all those beautiful words that we use inside Pilates.

So, let's have you stand actually on the wood floor, if you can just get to the side, whatever you're at. And with that just have this imagination that you are your skeleton, so let your eyes close and be the skeleton of your body. So it's your femur, it's your humerus, it's your ribs, it's your spine, and imagine a heavy elastic band connected to the crown of your head. And that heavy elastic band is suspending us from the ceiling, so we really feel like we're reaching for the ground instead of reaching for the ceiling. See if you can create that sensation.

So we feel the space between the head and the neck, we feel the space between each of the cervical vertebra, the shoulders are dangling on the ribcage, the ribcage space is increasing because of gravity, the space in the spine is lengthening, the space between the pelvis and the femur increases, you can feel the legs dangling, just barely reaching the feet bones more and more. This is what we want to create, is that sensation of space. So rather than the sensation of reaching the head to the ceiling, see if you can shift to where you're actually reaching the feet to the floor. It's a very important distinction. And with that relationship, now, we're gonna work all the way through our body, from our toes up to the crown of our head.

And we're gonna notice that in our skeleton form, without all of the muscles and other tissues and guts, allow the body and the skeleton to sway. And notice how it always comes back to center because of the elastic band connected to the crown of the head. And so you'll feel the bones moving in all directions. You can almost imagine the wind blowing the body from behind, the side, or the front, and just be ever aware of where is your body in space, how does the bone absorb, the joint absorb that movement through transition and how well does it know home? So we're gonna try to identify home in the skeleton.

So bring your attention to your toes, and you'll notice as the skeleton sways forward you'll actually feel the toes and the metatarsal heads engage to the form. And as the skeleton sways back you'll feel them disengaging. And as it sways forward you'll feel the engaging. You'll also notice that the arch of the foot increases as you move back or sway back and decreases as you sway forward, that's the natural absorption in the foot and it should be the same on the right and on the left, so just begin observing. If we come to the ankle bone, we call that the talus, the talus is underneath the two leg bones, the tibia and the fibula, and the tibia and the fibula wrap around the ankle bone as if it was a cowboy sitting on top of a saddle, that's how I want you to imagine it.

So the talus bone is the saddle and the bones of the leg come around it like the legs of the horseman. And notice that when the body sways forward the saddle is a little wider in front so the legs become taught, or the fibula and the tibia become taught, and as you sway back it becomes loose. As you sway forward it becomes taught. You'll also notice that the second toe becomes stiff when you lean forward and relaxed when you come back, and that's the natural way of propelling our body when we walk, when we jump, when we run. The tibia and the fibula come up the body, they come up and they articulate with the femur.

So the tibia creates the plateau, or the table, for the femur condyles to sit inside of it. And there's a beautiful mechanism we call the screw-home mechanism or the arthrokinematics, or the spin and glide, that when we bend our knees a little bit, you just sort of balance on that elastic band a little bit, you'll actually notice that the femoral head, or the femoral condyles, sorry, are spiraling a little bit on top of that tibia. And there's this beautiful spiral and opposition all the way through the legs that are made to absorb forces. Now a lot of times when we're sitting for long periods of time we lose those natural bone rhythms or arthrokinematics in our body. And that femur comes up laterally at a angle, and if you place your fingers on your greater trochanters, what we often refer to as our hips in fashion, actually not our hips, but it's our greater trochanters of the femur, and that's that hard bone that's the most superficial out the the side.

If you draw a line across the front of your pelvis until you hit the inguinal preise, that's right about where your real hip joint is. And it's really important for us to understand in alignment that from here, with those eyes closed, just notice that you can shift very little side to side and still be on top of that hip, that femoral head, to be able to keep your balance side to side. You don't have to sway a large distance. It's one of the cool things about us being bipedal animals, different from every other animal in the animal phylum. From there, your pelvis is connected in the front with the pubic bone and the back through the sacrum.

And that sacrum is like a triangle, and that triangle is gently leaning forward. So if you just close your eyes again and feel that skeleton suspended, and imagine that sacrum being tilted forward. Some have more tilt than others, but that determines the curve of a lumbar spine. So if you know that you have a lot of angle in that sacrum, you're gonna have more curve in your back, if you have less it's gonna be less curve. And place your finger now on your belly button, and that actually is directly in front of the apex of that lumbar curve.

So that's the narrowest part of our body. So just with your eyes closed again, suspend until you notice that when your body sways forward at the ankles that belly button naturally pulls in towards the spine, and as you sway back it relaxes. And it's just the body's natural way of when our posture is in the right place the muscles and the tendons and the fascia work correctly, subconsciously and subthresholds. That means it just does it automatically when we're lined up, you don't have to tell somebody to contract their muscle, it just does it naturally when you have the right load and the right alignment. And then we can work our way up the spine and come up to the base of the sternum.

The base of the sternum is around T7, so that's the base of the shoulder blades, and they should be lined up very equal, as well. So just notice when you breathe now, deep breath in, does the body sway forward or sway back when you breathe in? And when you exhale what direction does it move in? Now some of you will stay still through the whole movement, some will find that you sway forward, and some back. And that just tells you which direction you breathe into.

Do you breathe in the front of your chest? Do you breathe to the side, do you breathe into your belly? And that will actually shift the weight of your body on your feet. And then we come up, and just place your fingers underneath your ears, just behind the jawbone, and imagine that imaginary line coming down through your neck, this is a plumb line, through the heart, through the lumbar vertebra, the L3 right behind the belly button, down through the femur, all the way down to the front one third of the knee, and down through the ankle. So now, and again, the eyes closed, and so that dangling sensation, just notice how well your body lines up with that axis, with that plumb line coming down from the ears, and notice where you might have restrictions and where you might feel imbalance, where you might feel discomfort, where you might feel weight in one side more than the other, and just take a quick picture of that in your mind.

We'll come back to it at the end of the class. Alright, open your eyes, everybody have a picture? You got the picture? On your backs, knees bent, let's start on the floor. And again, like I love to start, we're gonna start with a little bit of oscillation.

So you're gonna take your feet a little further away from you out in front until where your feet want to come up a little bit, so you're on your heels with a little bit of bent knees, yeah, good, toward the front, that's perfect right there. And now pull your toes up towards your nose and put them back down towards the floor and create a rocking sensation through your whole body. So you're gonna pump it with the ankles, and you get it so it rocks all the way, yes, there we go. Rocking and getting that flow puts in that energy. And again, imagine you're a jellyfish or just loose bones and you're just rocking it back and forth through the ankles.

So it's just the oscillation through your body. And see where, again, you might be having too much stiffness, where you might have a challenge, and pump it a little bit faster, it should be in line with the song. ? Row, row, row your boat gently down the stream ? ? Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily, life is but a dream ? That actually is the pace that we do all of our oscillations with the joints of the body, so whenever I'm mobilizing somebody as a physical therapist I'm always singing that song in my head, and I would pay $1,000 to anybody that can teach me another song that matches the same rhythm as Row Row Row Your Boat, that's a deal. There we go. So now bring the feet back in place, and let's go right into our bridging.

With that kind of idea of flow, as you exhale roll that spine up onto or between the shoulder blades. Be careful not to overextend the ribcage, so bring that ribcage down just a touch, softening in the sternum. Take in another breath, and exhale sliding the ribs, one rib at a time, down into the mat, creating that length. Now let's use the image of being a jellyfish, since we're close to the ocean, right on the sand of the beach, and you're just on the edge of where the tide comes in and the tide goes out. So your gelatinous bodies are on the sand, no bones, just a bunch of cells, and that warm one foot high wave comes in and rolls your gelatinous body up off of the sand.

You take in a deep breath and the tide is going to pull your gelatinous body back out into the water as you lay one vertebra, one cell at a time, back on the mat. Again, the tide comes in, rolls your body up, take in a deep breath, exhale, and it pulls you back into the ocean. Feel that space, feel the segments moving, creating movement. One more time, rolling up, and exhale down. Now this time we're gonna roll ourselves up, and imagine you have two little shovels on the side of your hips, and we're gonna go into a figure eight.

So we're gonna take that right hip down towards the sand, drive it into the sand, pull that scoop up, and take the left scoop in, and bring it back up, and rolling into a figure eight motion with the spine, dropping down one segment at a time, finding that figure eight motion, that infinity sign, all the way through your spine. So you should lower down one segment, do the figure eight, drop down another segment, do the figure eight, drop down another segment. Now if you can get five segments of doing figure eight, you are doing fantastic. And relax. Let's try something a little different.

Let's try doing the figure eight from the bottom and the ground up. So we're at the bottom now, we're going to reach up with that shovel, and over, and up with the other shovel and over, and work our way back up through the spine, sending the hips, leading with the hips around, leading with the hip around, really opening up that spine, creating that figure eight, working from the bottom up, when you're all the way up then we're gonna go back the other direction, drive back down with that scoop, and the other side, up and around and over. Now if you had a little piece of paper and it was down by your pelvis and you had a writing utensil coming off of your pubic bone, you'd be able to write a figure eight, and we would see that overlay of the figure eight coming down lower and lower as you did your exercise, and back up. So the idea is not to repeat the same exact pattern in the same place each time, but actually to move it through. So let's try it one more time.

Roll all the way up, we'll just work on the one coming down. And let's see if we can find five different levels of doing the figure eight, dropping down, yes, very nice, and finding that space and controlling that movement, because the more segmental movement we have in our spine as we prepare, when we go into the intermediate advanced exercises we're gonna play with today your body is gonna be ready and it's gonna be so much easier to do those intermediate exercises when your body is prepared. And relax. We're gonna go right into chest lifts. So hands behind the head, elbows in the peripheral vision, give yourself a little bit of traction at the back of the head so you get that nice length, and as you exhale we're going to send the ribs into the mat up underneath the heart as you roll up to the base of the shoulder blades.

Inhale, arc the arms to the legs. Exhale, lift yourself up a little bit with your hands. Really get the spine to come up. Neck should be relaxed. Hands come back behind the head in that same height, and then roll back down.

We'll do three more. And exhale, roll up. Inhale, arc. Exhale, lift. Stay there, inhale, arc back.

Exhale, roll down. Two more times, exhale, roll up. Inhale, arc. Exhale, lift. Inhale, reach back.

And exhale down. Lift the legs up to 90/90, arms down to the side, we're going right into a set of hundreds. Bring the head, neck, and shoulders up. And again pulsing with the hands. In, two, three, four, five, out, two, three, four, five.

Reach the right leg out for one breath in, and out, and switch. And in, and out, and switch. And in, and out, and switch. And in, and out, and switch. Both legs out, and both, and out, and bring the knees in.

And exhale, and reach, inhale, exhale, bring the knees in. One more time, and out, and ex, and bring the knees in, give yourself some love, hug in the knees inside. Take the hands behind the thighs, as you exhale roll up in a modified roll up, without thrusting, nice and easy rolling up, find your balance, exhale, roll back down. Now we're gonna play a game called Red Light Green Light, so this is how it goes. When I call green light you're moving.

When I call red light you gotta stop, which means that if you're a thruster or you're a rocker or a roller, you rock and you roll with a so much soul, I'm gonna catch you and you're out of the game, you got it? (woman laughing) So here we go, green light, rolling up, perfect control, there's no reason for any of you to have to thrust. Red light. Green light. Red light.

Green light. Keep going, don't stop. We're still in a green light. Red light. Keep going.

And finish up all the way down. Hands over your head, legs extended out, we're going into the full roll up. We're gonna do it with singing. Song is beautiful, your diaphragm is another, your vocal cords are another diaphragm for us to work on. So just take a deep breath in, the song we're gonna sing is like this.

Could we do it in Spanish? You guys all know how to count to eight in Spanish? (woman laughing) Yes? (speaking Spanish) Yeah, can you do it backwards? (speaking Spanish) Alright, we'll do it in English, here we go. Inhale, hands come up over your chests.

Exhale, and as you roll up. ? One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight ? Now, here's the rule, if I catch you not singing, I can't watch you at home, but I can watch you here, you're gonna sing a solo, you got it? So let me hear you sing, we're gonna start with eight, I'm gonna give you the pitch. Ready, inhale. ? Eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two, one ? Deep breath in, a little bit quicker, exhaling.

? One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight ? ? Eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two, one ? You need to sing, I'm not hearing any voice. (woman laughing) Now here's what happens. This is what I'm hearing, on four, five, and six, I hear a little constipation, so it sounds like this. ? One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight ? ? Eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two, one ? Now I promise you, and I promise you implies any time land, that if you belt out four, five, and six, your roll up problems will disappear. It's a promise, you ready?

You're gonna belt out four, five, and six. I'm not gonna sing, I'm just gonna start the choir. Inhaling, hands floated up over the chest. Exhaling, here we go. ? One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight ? Well you're not the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, I'll tell you that much. (women laughing)

Take in a deep breath, exhaling. ? Eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two, one ? One more time, a little bit quicker. Inhale, floating arms up. ? One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight ? ? Eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two, one ? Now, I'm really tempted to make you sing a solo, but I'm gonna spare you on TV. She's a famous Pilates Anytime teacher, if you don't know her, but she's not singing loud enough and I'm right next to her.

Alright, so bring your hands down to the side. Get comfortable on the mat, we're gonna go into a little bit of roll overs. So bring your knees up into 90/90 to start, and really what we want to do is we want to create a little bit of stiffness up across the shoulders. Not in the pelvis, a lot of times we misunderstand the powerhouse and we try to recruit and hold all these things down here, but we really want to move the pelvis, and so I need you to have more of a relaxing attempt at this, so we're gonna take a breath in and we're just gonna start sending the knees up and over your shoulders until the weight is between the shoulders. Just keep it real simple, like rolling like a ball, a modified roll up, bring it back down to that same point.

Now, theoretically, when you get up onto your shoulders you should be able to lift your hands up off the floor and find a balance or at least just do a finger touch for balance. So let's try it again with the knees bent. Roll the weight up over, just gentle, find that balance, and see if you can just do a finger touch for your balance, from side to side, right? Keep that as if I'm grabbing hold of your sit bones and lifting you up a little bit to give you that space, you'll be creating a bridge, and now roll back down. This time we're gonna add it with a straight leg, so we're gonna take the knees from that bent knee 90/90, straighten the legs out, take the legs up and over, the same thing, peel it up, you don't have to throw it up, and you'll actually find a better balance here with the legs straight, see if you can find a little bit of balance with the hands being able to lift off a little bit, right?

And now take the hands over the head. Try to keep your balance and hands over the head. Beautiful, now you'll find that's even the easier balance for you to maintain, let your right leg drop down towards the floor and grab that right leg, reach the left leg up towards the ceiling, and then switch. And switch. And switch, you got it.

And switch. And last one, you got it. (laughs) Bring those hands down to your side. Bring your hands down to your side, and roll back down through your spine. Now going right into a little bit of corkscrew in the spine.

So we're gonna take the legs to your right, sweep around a little bit, come up and over into the position, and then roll back down to the right side. Sweep the legs around to the left, nice and easy, only lengthen your legs as far as you feel comfortable, and feel that rolling down on the left side, sweep around to the right, and up onto the right, one more time, each side, doing that motion, that's right. So we're gonna drive it down, which side are you working on, the right side, that's it, sweep around. And relax, bring those knees into the chest, give yourself a little bit of love. Take your hands behind the right leg.

And sort of pull yourself up into position for single knee stretch. So what you're gonna have is that left hand will stay behind the thigh and the right hand will come onto the shin. You got it? (woman laughing) Left hand behind the thigh, right hand on the shin, good. And then just switch it so you know exactly what you're gonna do.

So that left hand is gonna go behind the knee, yes. That's all you gotta know choreography, right? And then we're gonna add things to it. Now, here's a little trick, if you push in a little bit, into your thigh and your hand, it holds you up, can you feel that? Make it easy on yourself, don't kill yourself.

Use your bicep a little bit to keep that spacing there. Now reach the right leg out, let's all go with the same, left hand, let's go to left leg, yeah? Reach that right leg out, good. Now bring that hand on top of the knee, you get the same idea, left hand on top of the knee, and now you're in single knee stretch, right? But feel that same energy that you did as if you were pulling behind or pushing behind the knee.

So left hand is down on the ankle, or right hand is on the ankle, sorry, left hand is on the knee. So bring your left hand, nope. Yeah, you got it. Now, are you guys doing the same legs? Well, you guys are doing opposite legs.

You know, the sign of a really good Pilates teacher is that everybody is doing the same thing and the sign of a bad Pilates teacher is that everybody is doing different things. So let's everybody get on their left leg, you two over here. No, stay, you're on your left leg, yeah? Alright, because it's really important. Left leg, outside hand down.

This is really important, this is aquarium, this is like rubbing your belly and patting your head, you got it? Alright, you're gonna inhale and you're gonna change, but make sure your hands change appropriately. Outside hand goes to ankle, yup, and the other hand to the knee. Inhale, and switch. Inhale, switch.

Inhale, switch. Inhale, exhale, inhale, exhale, inhale, exhale, inhale, exhale. Use your leg to give you a little more stamina because you can push into it a little bit and that keeps you up in that position, keeps it out of your neck. Two more times on each side. You got it, last one.

And relax, roll down, give yourself a little love with the knees, very good. Bring your feet down onto the mat, arms out to the side, we're going a little knee side to side rotation. I love to mix it up a little bit, take your knees to the right. Take in a deep breath and as you exhale send that rib, that first rib on that left side, down to the mat and gradually bring the legs back up into a vertical position. Inhale, take the legs over to the left.

Inhale into the right lung, exhale, take that armpit down into the mat and the ribs will follow, the knees come up. As segmental as you can, side to side on your own. Keep going, side to side, nice and easy, rolling through that spine, comfortable. Bring it back up to the center this time, bring your feet up into a 90/90, keep doing the same exercise, though only go as far as you can control it without your shoulder coming off. Same idea, segmental movement, take it down and over to the other side.

Use the breath into the lung that's away from the rotation. Inhaling into the left side. Exhale, drive it down, then bring it back up. Now for a little more challenge you can straighten your legs up straight up towards the ceiling, almost like a pendulum, and you're going side to side. You'll notice your range of motion changes because the length of the lever gets longer and creates a little more challenge.

Nice, working on that rotation through the body. Very good. We got one more exercise on our backs. We're gonna bring those knees into your chest. We're going into double knee stretch.

Grab hold of the legs, roll the head, neck, and shoulders up. Inhale, reach up towards the ceiling, circle the legs out, reach out long, bring it back in, exhale. Inhale up, exhale out and around. Inhale in, up to the ceiling, exhale around and in. Two more, here we go, up and out, and in.

Last one, up and out, and in, and roll over onto your right side. Up on your forearm, legs are straight, a little bit of a pitch in front. Take that left leg and reach that left leg up towards the ceiling, as pure as you can. Let's turn the foot in a little bit, toes down towards the mat, you got it, and pump that leg up, and up, and up. When you lift your leg up also lift your ribs up.

So we're actually thinking of the ribs sliding up when the leg comes up, that's gonna help create that stability in the trunk as the leg is coming up and down. Two more times and then we go right into circles. Straighten out the foot, circles going forward, one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, and reverse, and go, one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, side kick, come forward, pump, pump, and back, pump, pump, and flex, flex, point, point, use your breath. Inhale, exhale. Inhale, exhale.

Inhale, exhale. Inhale, exhale. Last one, inhale, exhale. Leave it there, leave it there, reach that left arm forward, reach it, reach it, reach it, taking a deep breath, feel that rotation through your body. This time as you exhale, connect the sternum to T7 and the belly button to the spine, exhaling like a bee.

(buzzing) Get it going, get it going, let me hear it, loud, loud, loud, until there is no more air, until the air is all gone, everything is connected, everything narrows, and when you exhaust that roll over onto your bellies. I love it. Place your head on the back of your hands, elbows are out to the side, slide the shoulders away from your ears, create that nice space in the back of the neck. Now, pushing your forearms into that mat, I'm gonna have you take your nose and your eyes and just feel like you're filling up the space with a bubble in front of you. So really feel the head and the neck come just barely off of the hands, but lengthening, we're lengthening as if there was a bubble in front of me and I just want to make sure my face presses against the bubble as I come up, and then you come back down.

Let's repeat that four times. Head comes up, head comes down. Head comes up, head goes down. Now this time when the head comes up float the hands and the elbows up to meet your head. Maintain that position, take in a deep breath, and when you exhale bring the hands down into a 90/90 position to your side.

Scarecrow position, elbows are reaching out straight out from the body. Yep. There you go, good. And we're gonna let that come down, let your head rest down, go right into scarecrow, bring the hands and the forearms up. Just the hands and the forearms, the elbows are still down.

Elbows are still down, there you go, that's the rotation we want, we're gonna find those shoulders. Now lift your elbows, bring elbows back down, bring the forearms and hands back down. Let's do two more of those. Hands, elbows, elbows, hands. Hands, elbows, elbows, hands.

We're gonna add the head and neck. Hands, elbows, head, and neck. Neck, head, elbows, hands. Hands, elbows, head, and neck. Neck, head, elbows, hands.

Last one, hands, elbows, head, and neck. Stay there, bring your hands down to the side of your chest. We're gonna go for a little more. Send those elbows away and roll up onto the base of the bottom rib. Be like a pretty swan, yup.

Hands are on the floor, hands are on the floor. Using the hands, come into a pretty swan over that bottom rib, and then come back down. Keep that organization where the head, the neck, that upper thoracic is able to really explore the movement here. That's right, and avoid overextending the lumbar spine. Now this time come up into that same position, yup.

Take the hands out in front of you, lift your legs up off the ground a little bit and we're going right into swimming. And go. And now you know where that extension for swimming comes from and where your shoulders can move without having to have any impingement or stress in your low back. And relax. Roll over onto your other side.

Here we go, up on that forearm, you know the routine now because we've done it on the right. Here we go, right leg coming up, and down. Angle that toe towards the mat. And up, and down, and up, and down, and up, and down, and up, and down. Move these ribs, you'll lift up when the leg lifts up.

And going right into circles, square off the foot, circles forward, and one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, and reverse that circle, one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, side kick, double pumps, forward, forward, back, back. Flex, flex, point, point. Inhale, exhale, inhale, exhale, inhale, exhale, inhale, and lead the leg back. Right hand forward, deep breath, find the belly button, reach, reach, reach, deep breath in, exhaling. (buzzing) Like a bee, make that noise, you can hear the vibration, feel the vibration, those ribs connecting the body until there is no more air. You do buzz better than you sing.

[Woman On Top Left] Yeah, I thought so. Yeah, that's impressive. Roll over onto your tummies. Hands behind your back, heads looking to the right side. Double heel kick, right?

So we're gonna pull up into that position, just let me see you grasp your hands together and reach it down and float it off your sacrum, the head comes up, and just ever so slight lift of head, neck, shoulders coming up. Now you see it? Go ahead and reach the hands down, legs come up a little bit, that's where we're gonna finish each movement. Come back down with the head to the right, head to the right. We're gonna double pump the legs with flexed ankles.

With me, ready? And pump, pump, and reach, that same reaching position, and you're gonna look to the left now. Coming down, pump, pump, and reach. Pump, pump, and reach. Pump, pump, and reach, flex those ankles when you pump.

Pump, pump, and reach. It's a neurological phenomena to get that pump with those flexed ankles. Pump, pump, and reach. Pump, pump, and reach. Pump, pump, and reach, last one.

Pump, pump, and reach. Stay there, hands up towards the ceiling and bring the body down a little bit, go into a dart position, so you are long, just stay there in the dart, slow pumps, palms up towards the ceiling, just slow pumps. Eight pumps, nice and easy, feel the opening across the front of the chest, the back of the neck is long, long, long, long. So we're not coming up so high, but we are coming up, oh, there it is, beautiful. Pump, pump, pump, and last one.

Come up onto hands and knees. Here we go, quadruped. Going right into alternating arms and legs. Take the right arm, left leg, and reach them opposite of each other, and bring them back home. Now the key is, if I put a cup of hot tea on each of your sacrums, would that cup of tea spill when you lift that leg and reach it back?

So keep going, alternating right and left across the body, feel that connection, think of that length, think of just being the skeleton and moving that skeleton through space with as little effort as possible. Again, minimizing the rotation in that pelvis. Here is that cup of hot tea, careful not to spill it, not so high. You need a cup of wine, she wants a cup of red wine right now. Now, bring both back home, shift the weight to the left arm, left leg, reach the right arm and right leg out, and open up, lifting that leg up.

Now in this position we want to find that connection in that ribcage, shift back to the left and gradually lower the arm and the leg. Shift to the right, shift to the right, and open up to the other side, open up, right, open it up. Where's the ribs, ah ha, here we go, that's it. Back down, nice and easy, get it nice and clean, right, let's clean it up. Watch me for a second if you want to see clean.

You want to feel the connection of the ribcage, right, you don't want to be ribs sticking out, find the connection, find the movement around the hip and the shoulder, it's okay to shift weight, that's how we learn to do the movement. You got it. Now on this last one, going to your right side, you are going to sit down onto that right side. So come over to the right, sit down onto the right, and this is what it's gonna look like. So we're gonna be here with the left foot in front.

And what we're gonna do is we're gonna take the left hand, that's our gesture hand. So we're going to sweep that left hand, and come up, and thread, and reach, and come back down, okay? So it's a combination of like our mermaid and the plank and side kick, all those things we put together we're just gonna sweep them together. So we're gonna sweep, do it with me, we come up, pike and thread that needle, come out into the snake, and then come back down. Let's do it again, and sweep, and pike, thread that needle, rotate around, reach out long in the plank, reach that left arm, and then come back home, dropping down through the hips.

And again, one more time on this side, sweep, and thread, and reach long, long, long on that shoulder, and come back down, and roll over onto your other side. Right leg is in front, right arm is gesture arm, left hand is your plank. Ready, and sweep that hand up, and pike, thread, reach long in the snake, yeah, control that, and that come back down. And sweep, and pike, and thread, and reach out long over that shoulder, reach out long, long, long, yes, and then come on down. One more time, and up, and thread, and pike, and reach, and back down, good.

Now sit towards the front of your mats, looking at each other, grab your knees into your chest. Yep, grab those ankles, little rolling time, little fun, little diversion, right? Now, important warning to you is make sure you breathe out of your mouth or your nose because if you hold your breath air will escape, the question is where. And just to avoid being embarrassed on film we make sure it's out of the mouth or the nose. Ready, so find your balance on your sit bones, get the legs in, but create a bubble of energy coming out from the center, so really feel that energy around.

Inhaling rolling back onto your shoulders, not your head, and come back up onto your sit bones. Inhale back, exhale up. Inhale back, exhale up. Inhale back, exhale up, find your balance, go right into the seal, so slip your hands under your legs, bring the feet together, you can add the vocal if you want to, (barking) but you're gonna slap your feet together three times when you're up on your sit bones and three times when you're on your shoulder blades. Inhale back, (clapping) and up, (clapping) and inhale back, (clapping) keep that same bubble feeling, that roundness, use the back of your legs as we've practiced in single knee stretch to bring yourself up, one more time, (clapping) and up, find your balance.

Grab the top of the legs, alright, you got it, good. We're gonna take the right leg and reach the right leg up, and bring it back down. The left leg, reach it up, bring it back down. Right leg, reach it up, bring it back down. Left leg, reach it up, leave it up.

Right leg, bring it up, leave it up. Open leg rocker, here we go, rolling through your spine, draw that belly back, inhale back, exhale, roll up. Make sure you're breathing, yes. Inhale back, nice, find that balance, exhale up, you got one more of those. Inhale back, exhale up, find your balance.

Bring your hands behind you, bend your knees, and now just take the right leg up and the left arm up. Yep, bring the left arm down, bring the right knee down, and alternate, we're just getting ready for teaser, you have that figured out already? And switch, and switch, and switch, and switch, a little bit faster, and switch, and switch, and switch, and switch, now you see how easy that is? That's all the teaser is, so now keep the knees bent, bring the hands up in front of you, right, same idea. Just reach the right leg up, bring it down, left leg up, bring it down, right leg up, bring it down, left leg up, bring it down.

Both legs up, bring them down. Straight legs, bring them up, three inches down and up, you got it, we're there, and two, we got there quick but we're there. Leave the legs up, take the body down three inches, back up, you got it, and down, and back up, and down, both arms, legs, body, down and up, find it, you got it, and up, you found it already, you got it, you own it, last one, up, beautiful, sit up at the edge of your mats. (exhales deeply) Very nice. See I had to distract you a little bit with the alternating arms and legs, then you sort of, sneaky right?

Scoot back on your mats, long sit going into spine stretch. Hands to the side, we're going to create a little bit of neuromobilization in our body because we get so stiff from sitting, and we say now that sitting is the new smoking, and so we need to move our bodies and get rid of all those sitting pathologies that we have in our society today. So hands are to the side, walk those fingers out as far as you can on the floor, feel the wood like you're scratching your fingernails to get as far out on that wood as you can. Now what you should feel is some kind of zinger going down both of your arms, that would tell me that you're in the right place as you're sort of walking that out. When you get to the very end of where your hands can go, arms float up.

Hug that imaginary tree, come up and over the imaginary ball, now feel those ribs lifting up underneath the heart as you go down, lay your hands on the mat, palms up to the side of the leg. Relax your face until it becomes very soft. Feel the blood coming to your lips. If you were to speak right now it might sound something like this. I would like to have a Big Mac please.

Because the lips are so full of blood that that's the way it would sound. Take in a deeper breath, and as you exhale stack your bones back up on top of your sacrum one vertebra at a time. So get rid of all the tension you don't need. We hold so much tension. Walk the fingers out, float the arms up, hug that tree, up and over the ribs, hands come down, you feel the face relax immediately, deep breath in, stack the spine back up vertically.

Feel the vertebrates stacking back up one vertebra at a time, walk the hands out, hug the tree one more time, up and over that imaginary ball, hands slide on the mat, stack it back up, going right into spine twist. Open the legs a little bit, arms to the side. Here we go, rotating to your right. Keep the sit bones down, rotate to the left, feel the sit bone down in opposition. Remember, it's a rotation of the spine not the arms.

Rotate to the right, rotate to the left, now come back to the right and stay there, wait for me. Take your eyeballs, just the eyeballs, and you're gonna look to the right and the left with your eyeballs, not your head, just the eyeballs, looking to the right, left, right, left, right, left, a little bit faster, right, left, right, left, just before you puke feel the rotate a little bit more to the right, your whole body will rotate a little bit more, very nice. Now, you're wondering what that is, that's the vestibular ocular reflex because we're also so stuck at looking at computers that it freezes up our bodies' natural movement. Rotate to the left, let's do the same thing. With your eyeballs, looking to the left, to the right, to the left, to the right, just the balls of the eyes, left, right, left, right, a little faster, we are scrambling your vestibular ocular reflex, and just when you feel like you're gonna lose your cookies from lunch today, rotate a little bit further to the left, on that rotation, good.

Now, let's go a little bit quicker, a little bit easier, and just rotate to the right, fluid now, and come back to the left. Feel the springs in your body that you're going into through the ribs, the ribs are like a coil, you wind the coil up and the coil unwinds. Last one, come back to center, going right into saw. Come across, rotate, reach that right hand over that left leg, stack up like spine stretch, twist, saw, stack like spine stretch, twist, saw, stack like spine stretch, one more time, twist, saw, stack like spine stretch, beautiful. Hands behind you, legs together, bend your knees, feet flat on the ground.

If you want to do a classical you could have your fingers pointed towards your bottom. If you want to protect your wrist for whatever reason, I don't care where you put it, just know classical is here, anything else is not classical. So we're not gonna do anything classical anyway right now, but I just figured I would throw that in. But we're gonna keep the knees bent and we're gonna lift your bottoms up. Now what I'm looking for is a hundred position with bent knees.

So you're gonna come up, and we're really looking to get the opening of the hips, bringing this down, opening across the shoulders, lengthening the back of the neck, and then hinge, bringing the hips back down to the floor. And bring the hips up, feel that length across the front, that plateau, I could stand on top of your body. And bring the hips back down. And up. And down.

And up, look at me when you come up, look at me, bring your head up a little bit. Come up, keep this controlled, feel this, there, that's what I want, that's what's opening up that from that chest. Now this time go with the straight leg because we're gonna go into full leg pull. So you got the idea of how you're gonna organize across the front of the hips. So many people cheat by bending their hips and then they don't really, they end up just relying on hip flexors to get their legs up.

It's not about the hip flexors, you're gonna lift the legs up from behind. So let's come up into our leg pull position. Feel the right leg lift up from behind, so you're long across the front and back down. Left leg up, and down. Right leg up, and down.

Left leg up, and down, keep the bottom up a little bit higher, feel the bottom lifting from the spine and from your shoulders is what's holding it up. And up, and down, and up, and down, and up, and relax down. Cross your legs. Roll over the legs into leg pull front. Same idea, now we're supporting from the other side, so go into your plank position, bottoms down, yup.

Reaching the right leg, point, flex down. Left leg, point, flex down. Right leg, point, flex down, and alternate. Continue, right, and left, and right, and left, and right, and left, and leave the left leg down. Drop down onto your forearm, stay in the plank position.

15 seconds right here, keep that body long, find where the support comes from, control by moving your ribs, just concentrate on the ribs. If you're moving the ribs up underneath you that's gonna support you, we'll start counting now. 15, 14, 13, 12, 11, 10, nine, eight, seven, six, five, don't think you're going down on one, come back up onto your hands, stay in plank position, from plank position hike bottom up into the air. Take a breath. And exhale back into plank.

10, nine, eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two, back up into pike. Now on this next one you're gonna come into plank, come back into plank, and you're gonna slap your shoulders. (slapping) (women laughing) And 10, and pike back up. We're gonna come back into plank, one more think in plank, come to plank and we're gonna alternate the feet, (patting) fast as you can, fast as you can, (clapping) fast as you can, fast as you can, fast as you can, keep going, keep going, and stop. Walk your hands back up. Drop down into a squat.

Ahh. Energy flow and get those feet out wide, find that squat position. From here take your arms up over your head and press back up, and back down, and back up, lead with the chest, lead with the chest, and back up, and down, and up, pitch the body forward, bring the hands down to the side, and we're doing our set of hundreds here in the squat position, so we get that body planked, you can come down a little bit flatter here, good. Breathing in, two, three, four, five, out, two, three, four, five, in, and out, in, and out, feel the different effect of gravity on your lungs when you have to hold your pelvic floor. Bring the hands in front, going into swimming.

Control it, so nice and flat. That's it, finish it up, finish it up and come up, drop down, and rest. Deep breath into the pelvis, into the belly. (breathing deeply) The exhalation is a spring, not forced. Inhale, push those knees out.

Putting the hands down. (breathing deeply) Feel the back of the neck long. We were made to be in this posture, you know that, right? All native tribes, this is how they do almost everything. They cook, they play games, they go to the bathroom, they birth, in these positions, and sitting takes this away from us.

And so, again, like I said, the diseases we often experience, I believe, because we sit instead of these types of movements. We're gonna come up nice and easy, rolling up, straighten the legs, stack the spine, and find that nice, tall position. Find yourself standing on the wood to the side of your mats. We're gonna go back into that elastic band. You are your skeletons, we've moved in every plane, we've explored every orientation of gravity, we even explored new movements, new origins, and just see where your body lines up, go down to the feet, (breathing deeply) the skeleton moving, swaying forward and back, what do you notice about your feet?

What do you notice about your knees, your hips, your pelvis, sacrum, the low back, the thorax, your breath, your ribs, the shoulder girdles resting on your ribs, your neck, your head on top of your neck? And just take a quick picture of how you feel now, you can do this at home, take a picture, and then compare the pre and the post of what your body felt like before and what your body feels like now. Open your eyes, and we just had a class I had no idea I was gonna teach today, for instruction we just went with the flow and taught what you guys needed in your body is what I think we did. Anyway, thank you for joining me on Pilates Anytime. This is Brent Anderson from Polestar.

It's been a pleasure being with you, and looking forward to a lot more classes on Pilates Anytime.


Love Brent Anderson classes, so easy to follow his directons. Thanks, watching and loving from Australia.
Amazing Class Brent !! Thank You for a fun and entertaining workout.
and the song I sang instead of row row row your boat was Jackie Weavers "I want to be loved my you… laughed out loud at the boopboop~adoop…. now I can't stop laughing… Thanks again, loved the teaser prep work, made it seem so much easier.
Amazing class, thx, love your style.. And the great beginning of this class!! Want to see you more often .. Greets from Polestar Germany :)
So amazing class, thank you, Brent!
4 people like this.
I always enjoy your sessions, you inspire me to explore my teaching of Modern Pilates.
Thank you
Karen Adams
1 person likes this.
Lovely and challenging!
2 people like this.
Really really loved this class!! Fluid and strong with great brain connections! Scanning body prior to movement, then after is a great way to teach our clients about their bodies. Thank you.
Such a fun class. I really enjoyed being a part of it!
1 person likes this.
Great way to bring in the weekend! Thank you Brent!
1 person likes this.
Fun, exciting class. Thank you!
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