Class #2195

Explore Fascial Connections

35 min - Class


Find your fascial connections in this explorative Reformer workout with Wendy LeBlanc-Arbuckle. She focuses on waking up our deep bio-intelligence so we can develop awareness within our bodies. She also works on finding relationships with gravity and space so we can put the right amount of effort into each movement.
What You'll Need: Reformer w/Box, Small Tennis Ball, Pilates Pole

About This Video


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Hi, welcome back. So great to be with you. I'm here today with Addie and with Mr Bones and we're going to play with the reformer flow. And I say play because yes we do think of flow as play and all that sort of thing, but what we're really going to explore is a fashionable relationship. What does it feel like? Which is one of the reasons why Abby is standing here with just enough with just because I asked her, I said, what does it feel like to have this size of ball, what size and feel like to have this like?

And what we're looking for is not squeezing as much as evoking waking up. What is inherent for us are deep bio intelligence knows how to move us. And mostly we're often controlling ourselves so much that we get stressed out through working so hard. So how do we have just enough effort for the movement? And that's what we're exploring. And in order to do that, we have to have relationship with gravity and space, the space around us.

So we've asked Mr bones to join us with all these interesting little connections. Uh, the therabands. So the blue theraband is symbolic of what we're calling down the back. That's our relationship to gravity and that's a widening, softening and widening. So if you put your hands right here, your clavicles and just trace under your clavicles and just think wide. And notice as you do that it sort of softens your whole face. It has your jaw relax, it puts your head into the right vestibular balance place over your feet.

The softening and widening gives us lateral support, peripheral support. That's what creates uplift. So the softening and widening from the top of the sternum, the maneuver IOM at the top of the sternum when we widen and then allow the waterfall down the back through the shoulder blades, spine sit bone, tailbone, hamstring. That's why we've got the blue theraband along the back of the leg all the way down to the tripod of the foot. That's the down that ignites, wakes up.

Uplift, which is the green theraband. Inner Ankle. Inner thigh comes along the back of the leg again because the inner thigh interdigitates with the hamstrings with the front of the pelvic floor. And that works with the so as along the front of the spine, through to the scalings to the inner ear up. So the lift want to be able to move your head freely and you'll see how we'll play with that. If you can't move your head freely, you're stabilizing through your shoulders and your neck and your jaw. So to let that free, you have to get shoulder blade to deep belly, a feeling of waterfall down the back and internal lift up the front.

And that's what breath support is all about. And we're going to look at that when we do for work. And the other red theraband is showing a very deep connection of how we talk about rooting the leg to the spine. This is a natural relationship. The body knows, but mostly what we often do is straighten the leg from the knees. And so what happens is you lose your hamstrings, you overwork the flexors at the hip, overwork you back. Knee straightening goes right into the back, a sheering of the back. Same thing with your arms, Russ.

We'll see how on the reformer as we're playing with we're working the springs and being with the strap. How if you over straighten your arm and hundreds or in any sort of strap work right away, you'll go right into your neck, jaw and shoulders and lose the relationship to gravity that gives you just enough effort for the movement. So this is really, really important and it will transform how you do your product, your practice, no matter what practice that is, pull out these yoga, it doesn't matter. So from the spine to the back of the leg diaphragm as a postural muscle, the way where our diaphragm lives in relationship to chest, head, feet, pelvis is completely changes how we move and the quality of our movement. So you'll see how we'll play with that. So what Abby is doing right here at a kind of show, when Abby straightens her legs from her knees, her knees push back. And what do you notice about that when you, the difference between straightening from your feet and straightening from your knees.

My hamstrings are more engaged when I'm stating for my feet. So right away she said when she's straightening from [inaudible] her feet, which means soften on the inhale X. Hell, how does the shoulder blade to deep belly straighten your legs, connect your legs to your spine? Right away you feel much more. Inner thigh feels more feet more connected to her whole body, not just her knees. So this is a big thing. Great. So let's start with a footwork. And it was really, it really made a difference to me to ask Abby what size of the little balls, something a little bigger or something a little smaller. What is it?

Because like we said earlier, you gotta you want to evoke the feeling of lift rather than squeezing and tightening your groin. So we're going to do just enough, right? So this is just a straightening, straightening, and a band going out and coming in. So one of the things that I noticed right away with this, with this foot bar is, and I noticed many times that people do very high foot bar. It doesn't necessarily work for everyone. It really doesn't work for Audi.

And I will show you why you go out. You see how you have to work hard to not work your knees. Yeah. So now come back in and bring your, bring your knees above your hips. Hold it right there and I'm gonna move this down. And then from there, just reached through your seat and yeah, you see how you get much more whole body, right?

So you're going out and coming in. Yeah. So first of all, we're just getting a feeling of what does it feel like to stand up and sit down. It's a really nice thing to do before you go to first position, fanning the feet, softening and widening. Relax, relaxing the chest, softening and widening the eyes. What I mean by that is can you see the sides of the room as you look forward or you're just looking at something or can you actually allow your eyes to soften, which allows your chest to widen, allows you back to widen. It's a whole body distinction to soften the eyes. The eyes are the, our relationship to gravity.

That's it. I'll come back in and now go down on the ball of your feet. Good. And now from here, give me just a little bit of connection through your heels. Connect with me, right? And now just feel what's just enough as you come in. Stay against me. Stay. Yes. So sit bone to heal. See how that softened your chest and open. So now we're, I, I've never done this with Abby before and yet we're just a still, we're, we're just in relationship. She's sensing more of whole foot.

You see how that's taking you out of your knees more and giving you more of you down the back, up the front. How do we feel? The down the back up the front by relaxing the ankles, finding the sit bone to heal, feeling the relationships through the back of the body, releasing to the feet and the front of the body, lifting to the inner ear. There you go. And now you've got it. It's just now she's in it. The feeling, right? Yeah. But feel how you're in a fastly.

She's in a fashionable relationship with footwork now rather than a muscular pushing. She's not just in her calves. And then come back in and go to Bernard perch. And let's see. I'll give you another spring. Great. So now you're just going to let you let your foot feel like it's wrapping around the bar feel.

Yeah. Right. And as you come back in and let your heels be heavy, heavy, heavy, heavy. Excellent. Yeah. As you go out, see, noticing what knows what I'm doing. I'm not correcting Abby. I'm being part of her movement. I'm giving her a feeling of just enough resistance to feel the side bone heavy and she's playing with, wow, what does that feel like?

I see it's a lot of fun. This is what's important. You want to find something new. See, we don't often allow ourselves to drop the ball or to feel like, oh, I don't have everything just perfect. We want to feel that. You want to absolutely feel, what is it that has you dropped the ball? Because then you'll have a more awareness. You've developing awareness. Good. Now stay in. I go back to your heels.

Yeah. I'll come back in and go to your heels again. Okay. There we go. And now feel what it feels like as you go out. Yeah. And see how it's just getting deeper. Right? Widen your baby toes open that. Yes, that's it. And that's hard. That's really hard to widen your feet and yet keep the ball.

There's a lot that's happening that's really opening. Fabulous. Stay in. Go back down to the ball of your feet. Right? And now we're going to do lower and lift. So extending all the way out. How's that weight feeling? Does it good? So extend all the way out this time.

Put your hands on your belly suspenders right here. Feel the lift right inside the hip points right here. The sis come right inside and feel the lift up and how that gives you relationship to the waterfall down. And now this time you'll stay out straight. Legs. Inhale. Exhale. Lower your heels with straight legs down, down, down, soften.

Inhale, lift, lift, lift. Exhale. Soften. It. Keep you like straight. Yeah, just stay straight the whole time. Down and up. Yeah. And do it there. That feeling good. Ex Hey. Yeah. Hell.

So she's giving yourself a little bit of a widening right there and you see how that's giving you more space. And your hips. That's it. Yes. And you're doing something that's hard for your body to do because your knees want to bend. Yeah, but that's so great. You see, how do we feel? What's just enough? What we need in order to create a distinction of how it gives you the new spaciousness. Now this time come up from the OP, your transition to running. So now you'll just drop the balls on the up. So come up and then you lower one heel and you bend the other knee. That's it. Yes.

And now I want to do this for just a second because this is a fashional understanding of running. So right there, pause. Soften your knee. Allow your heel to there. That's different. Yes. And then press gently and soften the knee and seal the list. Give you their release.

Do you see how that's different than your knee tightening? Right? Press and lift. Get lift before you release. That's better. That's right, yes. Because it's really hard to not tighten your knees in running. The tendency is to push, push, push, but to get the lift, to create the release of the calf, the release of the Achilles makes all the difference in the world.

And this understanding will give you tendon stretch, which is really hard for a lot of people because they don't get the calf really to get the lift. Yes. Good. And then bend your knees and come back in. Fabulous. Now we're going to go to shortening the straps. Now we're going to do one spring, one red. So from there, just first of all, reach into the strap and allow your knees to come over your hip. Oops. Okay. Yeah.

So you're connecting your hand to your waterfall, right? So inhale, arms up. Exhale, press down. Now you're determining how high to bring your arms, cause you don't want to, don't want to soft, you don't want to shallow. Make your chest shallow. Keep the back of your arm connected to the strap, then come too high that yes. Feel the back of your arm connected to your waterfall. That's it.

Yes, that's ceiling. Inhale. Now this time come back down, right? And this now time, turn your hands towards your body. Inhale, open. Exhale. Close. Yes. Inhale, arms and knees move away. Exhale, they come toward one another. Inhale, your back opens and widens. Exhale, shoulder blade to deep belly brings your knees in. Yes. Inhale, exhale. You see how that really opens up your back? How do you have a fashional connection of your legs and your arms connected to your center? That's it.

Good. Good. Yeah. Great. Beautiful. Now stay right there. Allow your inhale. Exhale. Begin to curl forward. Curl forward as you reach into the strap. Hundreds. How do you round? Keep your arms down. Down. That was beautiful. See how you sort of went into, you know, the hundreds, but we're not doing that a hundred we're doing this one.

Allow your inhale. Now. Keep your arms even lower, even lower down. Down, down there. Good. Allow the saucing and widening. Exhale and feel your shoulder blade to belly. Bring you forward. How does that bring you up? Good. And stay there and pump. Inhale. Exhale. Good. Now slow it down so you're in your breath.

You're in the exhale. Wonderful. Yeah. Feel the breath, opening your back, feel the exhale, bringing you forward. Very different than I was taught this way. You see this is, this is what we're exploring and I really appreciate Abby being with me so powerfully in this because this is hard for us. We want to look good. We want to do it right. Whatever that is. I think right is talking to our bio intelligence when a concept beautiful. Yeah. Fabulous. Great.

One leg goes up and take that leg away as the other leg comes up. Good. Yes. Good. So feel that intern, flex your foot, flex it. Feel how that gives you more lift. That's it. Flex your foot. Yes. Very different. Feels very different to your legs. Yeah, that's it.

And then come back down. Yeah. Great. Put those on your feet. One spring. Still with the short strap. Right? So from here, inhale out in frog. Exhale. As you bend your knees, come back in. Sit Bone to heal.

So you're noticing how is your heel related to your sitting bone. Feel the lift of your inner ear as your send your legs away. No knees. Inhale, exhale. Sit Bone to heal brings it in. Excellent. Right? The inhale takes you out. The exhale brings it in. That's it. Inhale, takes it out. The exhale. Good.

This time you go out parallel and you bend one knee and bring the other leg and straight, bring them clothes right then. And this is beautiful. Keep the straps equal weight as you move. Right. How are you reaching through the strap as your legs are coming in, right? How do you feel the back of your leg connected to the front of your spine? Yeah, that's it.

Good. Softening. Softening your low ribs, feeling the lower ribs. Soften. Soften. Feeling the widening of your [inaudible]. Yes, that's it. Yes. Good. Yes. Great.

This time you're going out and circles around. Circle around and flex your feet to come back in tail long as your legs come in straight. Inhale. Exhale. Tail heavy, heavy, heavy, heavy. Think less about how big and more about what your ribs are doing. Soften your ribs. Allow your ribs to soften. So as you go out, nice. Yes.

Your back's not working and feel how your tail is long as you legs. Ah, that was it. That was beautiful. That was beautiful. You see how that's just more whole? It's less about the legs. It's more about your whole body in relationship to the circles and exhale. Good. And Go the other way. Down the center. Inhale X. Hey, I'll tell long, long, long, long. Yeah.

Really feel how your tail is lengthening as your legs are coming in. So your hamstrings are really feeling that relationship between the tail lengthening as they come in. Remember, they're connected to the sitting bones, so they're looking for a fashionable release, which is what? Lengthening the tail and bringing the head leg in. Does? Yeah. Far? Yes. Yeah. That's great.

Good, good. Now from there, bend your knees, lower your headrest. Short spine, one spring. So now the straps are not doing a whole lot of help. [inaudible] inhale to go out, exhale and peel off and go over, over, over as the carriage comes all the way in. Inhale, exhale and yeah, roll, roll, roll. Good. This time, inhale out. Exhale over your hips and pause, pause. Good.

Allow your inhale there and now soften your ribs and allow your legs to go over, over, over, over. Yes. So the carriage comes in as you lift. Sit Bone to heal. As you bend your knees. Inhale, exhale, roll, roll, roll, roll. It's a different style. There are many styles of exercise. This one I feel is particularly good for you because it opens up your back. The first one tend to tighten your back. Now go over, over, over.

So you rather than going straight up, you go this way as the carriage comes in. Yes. Good. And back opening as you inhale. Exhale, release, release, release down. Good. One more. Inhale out, softening and widening. Exhale and reach your arms. From right here. Reach, reach, reach.

You feel the difference. So softening the ribs gives more down, more platform to the arms, and come back in and stay. Beautiful. Good. Take your feet out of the straps. Okay. Short box. Okay, so a distinction that we played with a moment ago that I was asking Abby about was how does, how do you wake up your hamstrings in the short box?

How do you feel and how do you feel the strap is long enough so that you can actually reach through your heels to feel the lift through the spine. Right? So we took a little dowel, the short box Dow and the NYP initially. Put it right underneath. Put it at your sitting bones right in front of your sitting bones. Mr Bones is always trying to hog the camera.

We love you. Hmm. So sitting though the dowels in front of the sitting bones. And how does that create more understanding of Lyft? Yeah. See if it's actually talking to the back of her leg. Hamstrings. And what that does is when you get grounding, you get lift without any effort.

So this is something to wake up something. It's not like you're wearing, you're putting a dowel there every single time. But how do you wake something up? So then it's awake. And so let's do round back. Okay. Go ahead and just feel curl and sitting up. Inhale, lift up. Now keep your head in my hand as you curl. Look down would keep your head in my hand, right? Feel your head connected to your feet, right?

Yes. Inhale, lift up. So it's the tail curling. The tail is curling as you're reaching through that. Nice. Yes. Yes. [inaudible] and lift. Feel how that's a relationship between head and tail heads, not moving too much. Right. And now go ahead and take this out and feel flat back.

So sip that sense of and so keep the lift. Keep the up as you lift up, up, up, up, up and back. Now reach the bar up higher and 10 you feel the down of the waterfall as the bar goes up. How's your head lifting up with the bar as you look forward, forward, forward and yes, right? Feel the down to the sit bones. Keep looking that way. Yes and very good. Yes. See how your pelvis is moving. The bar is reaching to the ceiling lifted up, up, up, up, up and beautiful. Yeah.

Good arms are widening. Side bend going over. So you're going to the side but feel how head is leading spine is leading over and then come back in. So we're just going to do side bend. Inhale, lift up. Up, up, up, up and right. So how is the lift up taking you over? Yes. And feel that heavy hip, right?

How's the lift up taking you over? Yes. Right? How's the lift up taking you over? Yes. How do we create suspension and float from grounding? Right. And then from there, go into your twist. Feel the up Lyft and coming back. Right. And [inaudible] feel the grounding. Feel your feet. Feel your feet and good. Good. Yeah.

You'll be up, eh. Great. Yeah. Last one. Fill your feet. Good. Yeah. Great. And then school forward, send your bar towards your feet. She'd go out and over. That's it. And then feel the grounding. Give you lift. Great. Climatory this would fine.

So first of all, sit bone to heal. Feel how that right sit bone is reaching long toward that left foot as you're bringing your knee in. Right? Extending that leg out. Once again, how was your leg? We're going back to where we started. How was your leg connecting to your inner ear? See, how does the grounding through the foot give you lift and how does that straighten your leg? That was beautiful.

Yeah, right? Yeah. And hold a little bit lower. Little bit lower. Yeah. So right about there. Right in heel. Soften your knee. Exhale. Press the leg and get long and lifted. Right. And how [inaudible].

Exhale. Reach through. Very good. And I'll keep that leg straight and bring the leg to you and stay up. You stay up and just think of your sit bone down as you bring that leg to you. Just bring it in and take it away. Nope. Keep it straight. Keep it straight. That's it. That's it. Yeah, that's it could. Good. Good, good.

Yeah. This is great. That's it. Very good. Yes. And now walk down your leg. Reach your leg to me. That's it. And walked down, walked down, open. That foot reached to me. Reached to me. Yeah. There we go. That's what you want right now.

Get lift along that left hip. The left belly, right. Reaching that right. Sit Bone. Reach. Ah, good. And do it again. Walk down. Yes, yes, yes, yes. Feel how the down gives you lift. That's it. Yeah. Yes. Yeah. You feel it? That's right. Now this time reach right.

Take it across. [inaudible] in. He'll sit tall. Exhale. Yeah. Oh, good. Inhale, float. Exhale. Good. Inhale, float. Exhale. Very good. And come back to center and change sides.

So right away, as your leg comes in, left sit bone to right foot. Right? And as you right, inhale, soften your knee. Exhale and feel that sit bone to heal. That's it. Your left. Sit Bone to right foot, shoulder blade to deep belly.

How does your breath straighten your leg? How does the back of your arm connect to the waterfall? That's excellent. Good. Good. Good enough. Stay right there and bring your leg in Australia. Straight leg and take it away, right.

Bring it in and take it away. Right. And bring it in and right. Feel your heavy hip. Heavy hip floats your foot. That's right. Heavy hip floats. Your foot and your head. Yeah. See how the down is giving you more hamstring. That's it. More flexibility. That's it. Good.

And now you walk down and as you walk down, right, you want to create lift. That's it. And as you come up, woo. Yeah, that's right. Reach to me and feel the lift right here. [inaudible] that's right. Reach that leg. Reach that leg. Yes. Good. And Curl. Ah, good.

Let's make your body wants one more of those. Yes. Yes. Fabulous. Good, good, good, good. Yes. And viral. Right. So now you take that leg [inaudible] and so let your tail release. Inhale, lift. Feel the ribs up. X. Hey, that's it. Inhale, eh.

Exhale. Inhale, eh. Exhale the knife. Yeah. Yeah. Really good. Great. Come back to center and Bravo. Beautiful. Wonderful. So, um, I think we'll finish.

We'll finish with running. Okay. So let's put the box back. Go back to your running and notice what's different about, once again, we're looking at how is the fascial release, how are you feeling? That leg connected to spine as you run. Okay. Yeah. Yeah.

Just feel the down gives you lift. That's it. The down gives you lift. Yes. Yes. We have much more release in your hamstrings in your calf, right? Yeah. And then bend your knees and come back in. Great. And I go wide on your arches. Bottom lift. Just allow your heels to be and come back in for a moment and lift your hips one inch. Just tiny, just tiny and then go out and as you go out, reach your heels to me.

Good. And as you come in and keep your heels reaching to me, that was long, long, long, long, and go out in Hail to go out. Exhale as you come back in, let your tail drop, drop, drop, and send your sit bones. Long, long, long, good. And go out. Yeah. Inhale, exhale. Can you feel the crease? Let this crease. Let that crease. Those long, long, long, good. No out. Inhale. Exhale. Let your sit bones reach to your heels.

Reach them, reach and Rachel. One more time. Inhale and exhale. Send your sit bones long, long, long, and then roll down. Release, release, release, release. Beautiful. Good. Bring your knees in. Hold your knees and rock. Side to side. Hold them and just knees one way. Had the other way. Feel the opposition. Good. Now, weight shift, weight shift, weight shift.

What's this an opportunity for? What are you doing your thing. Thank you to your body. You know our body serves us in so many ways. Are we allowing our deep bio intelligence to guide us? It really is the most incredible thing in the world. And it's something that I'm deeply grateful for exploring and to discovering so much about.

So I invite you to explore that with us and to really bring your questions and we look forward to hearing from you with your experience. And, um, thank you. So great to be with you, Abby.


Wendy, I am so glad you have mr.bones as the visual for what you are tryng to convey. I am visual so if I can keep that in my minds eye while working its easier to find this elusive sense that is innately inside our bodies. Now over time can people find that same sense as they pick up the pace of their workouts? Hopefully once you cultivate it, it should be there all the time.
3 people like this.
Absolutely, Lynn. You are getting in touch with the deep intelligence of your body...we don't realize how much tension we have created that masks our natural movement. Once you develop this ability, it guides you in movement! Also, I wanted to mention that I just noticed that the Short Box is too far forward for Abbey to release her sacrum on the box as she rolls back....I was so excited about working with her in developing her biointelligence awareness through her fascial tensegrity, that I missed that one!
This was awesome! I really appreciate your respect for movement with true intention and total connection. It wakes up the natural intuition which does truly get masked. Thank you!
1 person likes this.
Thank you, Bobbie. You are so right that getting in touch with our "primal" relationship with gravity, breath and space.... by grounding and centering which create a natural uplift wakes up a more natural, embodied way of being with ourselves in Pilates and any other disciplline!
Dear Wendy, thank you from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia! I am so glad I found you and your teachings! I aspire to teach and pass on at least 10% of your teachings to my clients and even then, I would be extremely grateful to have let my clients (and myself) learn and experience something new within themselves at every Pilates session! THANK YOU WENDY!
Thank you, April, I am honored that you got so much value from the body of work I am teaching. Since you are in Malaysia, I want to introduce you to my dear friend, Pilates and Rolfing colleague, Amy Tan, who also lives in Malaysia, and has asked me to mentor in the Pilates teacher training course she is creating. You can contact Amy at: It would be wonderful to meet you and support your vision as a Pilates teacher. You can also go to our website: and look under continuing education for more videos which will enrich your understanding of listening to the body's innate biointelligence, x
As a home practitioner, not a teacher, I found the concepts difficult to understand. I think maybe this type of work needs to be experienced with a teachers touch. It was too short of a workout with too much talking for me.
Hi Jana, thank you for being in touch. You are right, we are not used to being our own "inner teacher", and noticing how to help our bodies. That is what I am speaking about with this focus...and it is what I am suggesting is the power of Pilates. Often, we just wait for someone to tell us what to do, rather than learn how to sense what works for ourselves. It would be powerful for you to take one or two concepts that I am speaking about and experiment on your own, or with a teacher, and get back in touch with me to discuss your experience. I look forward to hearing from you, xwendy

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