Class #2281

Mat Workout

55 min - Class
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Find the artistry in your movement in this Mat workout with Rael Isacowitz. He teaches a simple but challenging class, concentrating on being as precise as possible. He encourages you to stay focused and to be inspired by the beautiful shapes you are making.
What You'll Need: Mat

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It's such a pleasure and honor being back home at Pilates Anytime. Thank you to Pilates Anytime for providing this forum. I've got an amazing group of people, in fact I've got a mother-daughter combination, which I love. And I taught the mother at about the age that the daughter is now. So that goes many back years, and generation after generation of Pilates practitioners.

We're gonna keep the class relatively simple and fundamental today, but that does not mean that it's easy. That word just doesn't apply. It's deep, it's focused, it's precise. I want you to really make it as precise as possible. Pilates is all about shapes, and if you think of an artist creating a shape when an artist draws a beautiful curve, or an arc, or a straight line, there's something in it that makes it so beautiful.

I want you to think of your bodies like the brush of an artist. So, if I ask for a curve, I'm not just asking for that. It's if I say the shoulders are above the hips, keep the shoulders above the hips, rather than just slumping down. And we think of these two shapes, so let's begin. Thinking, trying to create these two shapes.

Sitting toward the front of your mat, creating a straight line, and I hope my line is straight. And think of that line. Perched on your sit bones. And we inhale, and we exhale. Using your arms for support.

And inhale, and exhale. And inhale, and exhale. Feeling the muscles of the back supporting you. Inhale, and exhale. We take one more inhale, and as we exhale we elongate the spine to create a gentle curve.

We call this a c-curve, but we don't slouch backward, we in fact elongate the spine, and then allow the spine to again spring back to its straight line. So notice I didn't take it back, I simply kept the shoulders where they are but I reached the spine back to get that elongation. And Emma, if you can keep your elbows just a little wider, that's it. And then inhale, and use the strength of the upper body to support you. And exhale as you round, And inhale as you lift, and lift, and lift.

And exhale as you round. Beautiful. And Erin, you can soften your elbows just a little. And inhale as you lift. We'll accentuate it with our arms, so we're an artist this round shape.

And now we accentuate it, by sending our arms forward, Kristen, bring your shoulders forward a little, little further, little further, little further, now they're over the hip joint. And open wide as you inhale. And exhale as you round. And open wide, as you inhale, feeling the breath. And exhale, rounding.

Beautiful work, and inhale. Denay, let the head go with the spine. So exhale, the gaze here is slightly down toward the mat, and then you open the back, open the chest, open the arms, looking straight forward with determination, and exhale, and we slowly roll back, just to the sacrum, and we roll forward to that same c-curve, and we open the back, and we round, and I often use the image here of a wave. Seems so appropriate that we're at the beach, and getting that wave, rolling up, and then inhale, beautiful. And exhale, Kristen and Emma, an inspiration to see a mother and daughter working so beautifully, synergistically together.

And lifting up, and then opening the back. And exhale, rounding. And rounding. Good, Linda, go in a little deeper, inhale, and lifting. Make sure that the hands are very relaxed, and exhaling, rounding the spine.

Denay look down just a little, and then rolling down, hold it right there. The lower back has just imprinted into the mat. You bring your heels to touch your fingertips, just your fingertips, little deep Emma, thank you. Feel the back sinking into the mat. We call this imprinting into the mat, and we slowly lay the body down.

The arms are active, they aren't relaxed, they're pressing gently into the mat. The feet are spread on the mat, and you press down into the feet as the pelvis tilts and curls upwards, and then you move through the spine, this is call the pelvic curl, as we roll up to the shoulders. Inhale, mobilizing the spine, as you roll down through the spine, and right at the end you lay the pelvis down. Inhale, press down into the feet, and then curl the pelvis. When you can't curl it anymore, you start lifting the spine off using the hip extensors, lifting, maintaining the abdominal engagement, inhale, and exhale, as you roll down.

And you never tire of doing a good pelvic curl. Inhale, it's a life's journey and exploration. And exhale, as you find new ways to go deeper to mobilize the spine more freely, lifting up, lifting up, lifting up, inhale, and exhale as you roll down. All the way, inhale, to what we call a neutral position. It's between arching and curling, it sits in your own personal neutral position, and rolling up.

Good, and hold it high, hold it stable, and we're gonna test the stability. The leg closest to me, you simply lift it up, gently, and you tip the floor with the toes, and exhale, keeping that angle stable in the knee joint, and three, and four, and five, gently place it down, minimal transfer of weight. Just feel how the shift gently to the other leg, and now one, and two, and three, and four, and five, and put it down. Lift a little bit higher, and as the pelvis rolls down, the fingertips reach toward the sky, and the palms face each other. Brings the legs together, as the arms open out, and pressing the air, compressing the air, and the arms open out, and then compressing the air, and feel how even the inner thighs squeeze as the arms come toward each other.

And inhale, keep the back broad, and exhale, squeezing together. And inhale, and squeezing together, and inhale, hold it right there, just hovering above the ground, but it's not relaxed arms, they're reaching, they're working, and slowly place them on the ground, and bring the legs toward me. So the back leg, the foot will lift off the ground squeezing the legs together, and exhale. We call this spine twist supine, we're doing it today with the feet on the ground. And inhale, reaching to the back.

And exhale, and coming toward me, bringing the knees, they're stuck together, it's like one leg. And exhale, and inhale. And exhale, beautiful work, and inhale, bring it over, over, over, over, little further, a little further, a little further, a little further, keeping the scapula on the ground, and exhale, bring it to center. And inhale as you go over, and over, and over, and over, I'm liking this a lot, Denay, keep the abdominals engaged just a little deeper to protect that lower back, so you don't want to arch here, and exhale back to center. Glide the hands behind the head, and we call this the chest lift.

Allow the head to simply relax in the hands. Inhale, prepare, exhale as you lift off the mat. Drop your chin just a little, Kristen, and you'll gaze forward towards your leg, that's it. And Emma, allow the back to sink a little deeper into the mat, yes, try, come up a little higher. A-ha, inhale.

And exhale, so we held that for quite long, but that's good. Inhale, and exhale, enjoy the moment. Inhale, put your hands behind your legs. Use your arms to lift just a little higher, and use your arms, Emma, you can actually use, you can see I'm using my biceps here, so there, allow the back to sink, sink, sink into the mat, and there's no tension here. Inhale, reach the arms up to the ceiling, gently wrap around the head, and exhale down.

And inhale, and exhale. Inhale, and exhale, lift a little higher, use your arms Denay, don't be shy. What tends to happen when I ask to the arms, people just glide there. No, actually use that upper body to lift yourselves a little bit higher, uh-huh. Inhale, and exhale, as you go down.

And inhale, and exhale, lifting up. So much nicer, so much nicer Kristen, I can not tell you how much more beautiful that looks. The shape is inspirational. Inhale as you take the hands back, and exhale, two more, inhale, and exhale. Inhale, and lift up a little bit.

Take the hands behind the head, and down. Last one, inhale, and exhale, lift up. Inhale, exhale, lift a little higher. Hold that height as you inhale, and now rotate toward me, exhale. One, Inhale, and then to the opposite side, two.

And three. And four, so to keep the alignment, to make sure you're looking in the right direction, we'll reach the arm forward, and then to the back, and toward me, exhale. Inhale, and exhale, keep the height. Yes, and the shoulders have nothing to do with this. This is all about the top of trunk, the shoulder girdle rotating, keeping the legs stable, keeping the legs together, and reaching, and reaching, now come to center.

Hands behind, lift a little higher, and now four more, with the hands behind the head. And one, and two, and three, and four. Come to center. Hands behind again, lift the legs up, take the arms up to the ceiling, and reach back. So we're gonna do a preparation for the hundred.

We lift up and send the legs out, and we inhale as we come back. And we exhale, reaching the legs. If you can, just opposite your eyes, that's perfect. And inhale as you reach back. And exhale.

And inhale. And exhale, stay up there, inhale, prepare, and we go, exhale, two, three, four, five, inhale, two, three, four, five, exhale, two, three, four, five, inhale, two, three, four, five, exhale, two, three, four, five, inhale, two, three, four, five, exhale. Inhale, two, three four, Bend, hold onto the legs, and lift up a little higher. It's good to regroup in the middle of the hundred, just to establish the position, allow the back muscles, making sure that they're elongated, quite relaxed, the abdominals are working, keeping the body nice and high, ready to shoot it forward again. And push, inhale, prepare, and exhale, two, three, four, five, two, three, four, five, exhale, two, three, four, five, exhale, two, three, four, five.

Da-da-da-da-da, and let's bend. Put the feet down, stretch one leg, stretch the other, and reach back, palms facing each other. We inhale as we lift the body into that same chest lift position. Allow the pelvis to go posterior, meaning allow it to scoop under as you now lift the whole structure. Oh, you are so good, I love it.

Inhale, Denay, so here it's a very unique shape I want, I don't want that. I want a nice big ball of energy, like this. Rather than a broken bird, I want a bird with soaring wings. Inhale, and exhale, as we reach down, feel the back, and then reach other head. Inhale, come into that chest lift position, allow the back now to sink back into the mat as you lift that whole structure.

Palms facing each other, inhale, Erin, don't sink the head so low, that's it. That's it, so much more beautiful, I cannot tell you how much more beautiful it looks when, if there, as opposed to dropped in the middle of your arms. Inhale, and exhale. And all the way down, inhale. And exhale.

And inhale, and exhale, as you roll, and all the way down. And inhale, and exhale, and inhale, and exhale, as you roll all the way down. And inhale, and exhale, inhale, and exhale, hold it right there, rather than taking the arms over head, we take them out to the side, palm facing upward. Bend the leg that's closest to me, stretch it up. Flexing that foot, we go into the leg circles, bringing the leg toward the back of the roll, toward the other leg, and then you release it, and it swings around.

And around, and inhale and around, and exhale and around. And inhale and around, and exhale and around. And inhale and around, and exhale and around, last one, inhale and around, and exhale, other direction. So we go, inhale and around, and exhale and around. And inhale and around, and exhale and around.

And inhale and around, and exhale and point, bend the leg, stretch it out. Bend the other, reach it up to the ceiling, flexing, toward the front of the room, so it closes over the leg slightly as you inhale and around, and exhale. And inhale and around, and exhale, okay don't worry about anything me, inhale and around, and exhale, preparing for the other direction. And inhale, good, Emma And excellent, you're coming across nice and far, I love that. And exhale, and inhale and around, and exhale, point, bend, stretch it out.

Lifting, bring the body forward, reaching arms to the side of the legs, so they're right there. Now lift them a little higher so they're parallel to the floor, reaching, reaching, reaching. Slow, slow, slow. Wow, beautiful work. Beautiful.

I'm loving your shapes, that's what I'm loving. Drawing the legs toward the chest, we're gonna roll like a ball. Nice and deep. Emma, I think you can even bring those legs closer to your chest, I do, I love that. Don't exist in the comfort zone, exist outside of your comfort zone, and inhale, and exhale.

And inhale, and exhale. And inhale, and exhale. And inhale, and exhale. Okay, we're gonna stop there for a minute. Emma, most of us dream to have spines as long as yours, and what you're doing is you're breaking your spine by dropping your head too low.

Elongate that gorgeous spine of yours, that's it, that's the line I'm looking for. Right there, that's the line. And inhale, now nothing moves, and exhale. And inhale, and exhale. And inhale, and exhale.

And inhale, and exhale, hold it, hold it, hands on your knees, as you slowly roll the spine down, roll the spine down, slowly. Keep that height, put the hands on the leg closest to me, single leg stretch, we go exhale, inhale, and change legs. Inhale, and exhale, inhale, keeping the feet on the same line, and exhale, inhale, and exhale. Inhale, and exhale. Inhale, and exhale.

Inhale, and exhale, immaculate positions, because you're holding it so stable, and I love this. And you are worthy of the criss-cross hands behind your head, rotate toward me, now you remember, that line that we looked for. And take this arm over, so you're reaching, and reaching, and reaching, and reaching, and reaching, and reaching, and reaching, and reaching, bring the legs to center. Hold it, arms out to the side. Take the legs up for the corkscrew, bring the legs toward me, we inhale, exhale, as we go around.

And inhale, keeping the feet together, does the pelvis move? Absolutely the pelvis moves, from side to center, to the other side, and up, to the back of the room. And around, and up, and roll, and around, and roll, and up, and to the back of the room, and exhale. So we inhale to take it to the side, exhale, protect the back by using the abdominals at their critical point. Inhale, and exhale.

Around, inhale, and exhale, around. And inhale, and exhale, around. Hug the knees to the chest. Hugging the knees to the chest. Hugging the knees, lifting the head.

And now we lower the hands, and we're gonna do a difficult thing here, we're going to try roll like a ball from here. So you need to get a little bit of rocking going. A little bit of rocking, I don't mind how long it takes, but I don't want tension, it's just building up the energy, and building up the energy, and building up the energy, and we're finally up to there. Beautiful work, stretching the legs forward, watch this once as I do it, we're not gonna do a full roll over, we're going to roll, the palms can actually face down here, we bend in, and we stretch. We bend in, and we roll.

We bend in, and we stretch. We bend in, there's that moment of balance, and then roll forward. We ready? Reaching arms forward, I'm just loving these shapes. Emma, gorgeous, look at you.

And stretch over, bring it in balance, and then stretch. And in, and over, and balance, and stretch. And when you roll over, the head barely touches, It's really more in the shoulders, and bring it in. And back. Last one, in, and over, bring it in, and stretch forward.

Lifting up into a spine stretch. So we're nice and lifted in this position, palms facing each other. Now Emma, I don't want you to change much, all I want you to do is use your abdominals a little bit more. Those who are so flexible like you can actually push the ribs forward. For me, it's very difficult to do, I lack mobility, but when you're hyper mobility, you overuse the back.

I don't want you to stop using the back, that's what's holding you upright, I just want a little bit more abdominal. And inhale, exhale as you roll down the spine. Inhale, and then exhale as you roll up the spine. Kristen, you're just leaning back a little, perfect. Inhale, and exhale, as you roll down vertebrae by vertebrae.

And inhale, and exhale, as we roll up. And inhale, and you roll down, and inhale, and rolling up through the spine. And inhale, beautiful alignment, and exhale, as you roll down, taking your ankles, pointing the feet, and bringing the legs into you. Now, Erin, if you can take the arms inside the legs, rather than outside. Kristen, you can give me a little bit more back extension.

I love this position, because I always feel that I'm proud, and I am proud, I've got a mum and a daughter, who I've taught in this room, it makes me proud. So feel that sense of lift in the chest. Very open position, and then you round as you roll, and you roll and you lift up. And you roll, and you roll, and you lift up. And you roll, and you roll, and you lift up.

And you roll, and roll, and lift up, okay. So let's up the ante, open leg rocker, same thing. You roll, and you roll, and you lift up. And you roll, and you roll, and you lift up. You roll, and roll, and lift up.

And roll, and roll, lift up. It's come back to here, to join where we were before. Lifting, lifting, lifting, and stretch the legs forward. Okay, so, preparing for the sword. It's a beautiful exercise that involves rotation.

Now, there's a difference between this, and even taller that. So I don't want that, that's pretty straight, I want you to grow, grow. And then we rotate, we reach forward with as flat a back as possible. I know my back's not absolutely flat, but I'm using my back extensors, I then lift up and come to center, there's a little end. So one, and then reaching down, lifting up, and, then center.

The arm comes back on the end. One, and reaching forward, and lifting up, and boom, and over, and reaching down. Lifting up, and boom, yes! And there, I've got that rotation, and then I reach forward. Lifting up, and boom. And rotate, and stretching, lifting up, and stay there, palms facing upward.

Bring the legs together, bending the knees to anchor the heels into the ground, and we go one, two, and two, two. And Denay, try and keep the arms just hanging off the shoulders. And boom, boom. So don't overdo it with the arm, the work is coming from the trunk, and pull, and pull. And pull, and pull, and pull and pull, and pull, I know our hip flexors are really working now, so let's give the hip flexors a little rest, but we'll come back to that gladly.

I know you're all excited to come back to it. So ready, from here, we'll do back support, as we lift up, and stretch those hip flexors out, and we come back to there. And we lift up, reaching, opening the clavicle, the collar bone, and back, in fact, feeling those scapulae just pulling together, slightly, to keep the chest open, open, beautiful line, and down, and a beautiful line. And down, hands behind the head, keeping the legs straight this time. I don't want any movement in the legs, it's just the body, pull, and the body, pull.

And rotate, twist, and exhale, exhale. Exhale, exhale, there's an inhale in between, and exhale, exhale, and da, da-da, and da, da-da, and da, da-da, and da, da-da. Gonna do a difficult thing, lift the opposite leg. Pull, pull, and pull, pull. The opposite leg, Emma.

And yes, I know that's tough, keep the foot pointed. And yes let's flex the foot, okay, and flex, and flex, and flex, and oh my lord, what made me do that? And flex, and flex, and lifting the arms, and stretch forward. Now, looking toward me, you roll down, facing me, you roll down, good. We're gonna do some side lifts, exciting.

So, resting the head, this arm is supporting you, it's not just like that. I always get a little sad when I see weak upper bodies like that. I want powerful upper bodies, like an eagle soaring. So, you can press just gently into that arm, elongate, I want you to think of elongating that body even more. So stretching out those fingertips, and stretching out those toes.

Emma, are you elongated? You're looking short to me, even though you are probably close to six foot. So ready? And up, exhale, and inhale, barely touching, Emma, I don't even want those toesies to touch. And inhale, there Emma.

Exhale, and inhale. And exhale, yes, and inhale and exhale, up, up, up, up, up, up, up, up, up. Emma, Emma, Emma, Emma. (women laugh) and inhale, and take inspiration from your mother in front of you right there. And inhale, and exhale.

And inhale, and exhale. Up, up, up, and do we feel those inner thighs? And we feel the gluteals, and we feel everything working, as we lift up onto our elbow. Now we're so lifted on that elbow, Denay, that we don't allow that shoulder to sink. You wanna be lifted, you wanna be proud, you wanna be proud, and taking that top leg as you go.

Pull, pull, and back, pull. And pull, pull, and back, pull. And pull, pull, and back, pull. I love your attitude, Erin, I can just see it glowing. (women laugh) I love it, I love it, you've got good attitude, good energy, your energy's like glowing.

Pull, and back, and pull back, and pull and put your hand flat, Linda, and, thank you, Linda, and stay back. Now tilt the pelvis forward just a quarter turn. That's it, oh yes, Denay, you can go a quarter turn a little more, now look up, like that. Proud, and lift that back leg, goes up, and two, and three, tilt the pelvis a little more, Linda. And forward, so that the right side of the pelvis goes forward, there.

And up, and up, and up, and stay up. Wow, wow, wow. I'm liking this so much. Bring the legs around to go to the other side. And lying down on the other side, ready.

And lifting up, and down. And two, and down, I like it Linda, now you're well supported, with that front arm, three, and down. (quietly inhales and exhales) And, (quietly inhales and exhales) And up, and slowly up onto your elbow. Supporting really, and we go pull, and back. Oh, Linda, Linda, Linda, you lost all that beautiful posture, thank you, thank you.

And pull, and back, and pull, and back, and pull, and back, yes, Erin, keep that bottom leg working. And Emma, Emma, Emma, those bottom ribs of yours, keep this lifting all the time. Da, da, pull, pull, and back, pull, and pull, pull, and back, stay there, quarter turn. And we go up, and Erin, look straight out, don't lose that great attitude, that great energy. And up, and up, and up, and up, and up, and Emma, are you lifting your leg?

Yes, up, and up, tilt the pelvis a little forward, Kristen. Take that pelvis a little further forward, tip that, which is that, your right side? Little further, little further, everyone tip some more, tip some more, tip some more, Emma tip, tip, tip. Okay, lie on your stomach. (women laugh) So, interlacing the fingers, lifting the legs just off the ground, do an exercise we call the single leg kick.

But what we're gonna do is to warm up, we're gonna do it with the hands interlaced like this, and just on the ground, we're going, pull, pull, pull, pull. Pull, pull, pull, pull, after 10, we'll lift up onto our elbows, we'll do the same thing here. Ready? In fact, what I'm gonna say, is if you can, it's actually quite difficult, quite difficult, is to keep the arms just off the ground. Lift the legs just off the ground, engaging the abdominals starting with the leg closest to me, we go pull, pull, change, pull, pull.

Pull, pull, da-da, hard because we have nothing to stabilize with, so we tend to rock, and rock, and rock, and let's put the body down. One, da, easier, and, da da, da da, pull, and pull, and pull, and pull. And pull, and pull, and pull, and pull. And now reach both legs out, lifting the back up, and now we're up there. Ready?

And one, two, da, four, da da, ra-pa-pa, da, and pull, and pull, and pull, and pull, and pull, and pull, and pull. And pull, and pull, and pull, and pull, and reaching the legs out, reaching the legs out, lifting the legs a little higher, and stretching the arms forward. Lifting the arm closest to me, and the opposite leg. Now the arm that's furthest from me, and the closest leg. Closest to me, and the opposite leg, furthest from me, and the closest leg, and now just in your own time, and do the 100 breathing.

So exhale, two, three, four, five. Inhale, two, three, four, five. Exhale, two, three, four, five. Inhale, two, three, four, five. Exhale, two, three, four, five.

Inhale, two, three, four, five. Exhale, two, three, four, five. Inhale, two, three, four, five. Exhale, take the arms out to a T position, keeping the legs still in the air, thumbs facing the ceiling, slowly lower the legs, keep the abdominals engaged, and lift the hands up to the ceiling. Thumbs touch the ceiling, one, allow the scapulae to glide together, two.

And three, and four, and five, and six, straight out. And da, and eight, bring the hands under the shoulders. Push into the forearm, not just the hands, the whole forearm. You push into the forearm, and reach back into a rest position. (gently inhales and exhales) Stretching out that lower back, coming up into a quadruped position.

We do the cat stretch, we round the back, and focus on the lower back rounding, through neutral, maintain stability of the lower back, and focus on the upper back extending. And through neutral, as you exhale to round the back, inhale through neutral, and extend the back. And exhale, as you round, and inhale as extend. And exhale as you round, and inhale as you extend. And exhale, this time, bring the leg that's closest to me in toward the chest.

And inhale, as you go through neutral, and extend, and exhale. And inhale, extend, and exhale. And inhale, extend, put it down, other leg, and exhale. And inhale, extend, and exhale. Beautiful shapes, Linda, don't tense up the shoulders when you're going to the rounding.

Remember you're focusing on the lower back, the upper back is quite relaxed, much nicer. And let's do one more for Linda, to celebrate her success. And in, keep the leg out there, and just put it down on the ground. You're there. And the other one joins it.

You're in the front support position. And bring the back leg in towards the chest, if you need to give it a little rest, you can put it down on the ground, or hold it in the air, and change. And bring the front leg in, and change. And back leg in, and change. And front leg in, and change.

And back leg in, and change. And front leg, and we do three tricep pushups, that means keeping the scapulae, still, keeping the arms close to your side. We go, one, don't worry about going too low, worry about keeping those scapulae still. Two, and three. And now watch here, we bend the knees, we're going into a position I call the panther.

And stretch, and I'm slipping a little bit. And flattening the back, and push. And flattening the back, and push. This time we flatten the back, and we do a little hop, boom. (women laugh) I think we're gonna have to do another three for Emma.

Another three for Emma, she's the youngest, and she doesn't keep up with us. Okay, ready, jumping back for Emma. Three panthers for Emma. One, and keep the pelvis low, Emma. Boom, ready, three and go! Pelvis low.

Wow, Emma, what a difference. We're gonna do just from here, you need to take a leap of faith. Three roll like a ball. And one, and two, and three. And we're almost there, my friends.

Lifting up, we're almost there. We're gonna do a teaser prep and then the seal puppy, which is always the savior. And arms in front of you, we roll down, give me one moment. Oh, Kristen, Kristen, just needed to adjust. Rolling down, don't go beyond the point of no return, Kristen.

And then up we come. And two, and up. And three, and up. And four, on the last one, we bring the arms over head, and the legs will straighten out into the most glorious teaser position. And you're there, and you're there, oh you're there, oh you're there, oh you're there.

Yes (laughs) Arms closer together, Kristen. And bring the legs into a seal puppy. So the arms are underneath, and we go roll, two, beat, and forward, beat, beat, beat. And roll, beat, beat, beat, beat, beat. And beat, beat, beat, and beat, beat, beat.

And beat, beat, beat, and beat, beat, beat. And beat, beat, beat, the whole leg moves. Beat, beat, beat, last one. And balance. Balance, press the legs back with your elbows.

Try and flatten that back a little. (slowly inhales and exhales) Slowing the breath down, feeling very calm and relaxed. As you balance, as if you're balancing on the tip of a big boulder. And even as the gentle breeze blows against you, you can feel a slight, slight rocking, but you never lose your balance. (slowly inhales and exhales) And slowly putting the legs down.

And reaching the arms forward, And I know all of your shoulders are relaxed. Let any tension seep out of the neck, out of the shoulders, and feel how the back broadens with each breath, and the vertebrae open with each breath. (softly inhales and exhales) Slowing the breath down. Feeling the hips joints opening out. Each vertebrae letting go.

And taking a big inhale, and exhale as you roll up through the spine. Hands resting on your legs. Using your arms for support, as you open up the chest. Clavicle are open, and you take a big inhale, (inhales) Exhale, big inhale, (exhales) Take a big inhale as the arms go up, and they come around, opening out to the side. Place them under the knees, and use your arms for support to lift the chest towards the ceiling, towards the sky, opening out to the wonderful energy the universe provides us with.

And slowly bringing the body to center, lifting up, taking the arms, floating them around to the side, over the top, squeezing the palms together, pressing them together. Pressing them together, pressing them together, opening the back, drawing a line down the body, and allowing the hands to go back to the legs, to lift up a little higher for an inhale, (inhales and exhales) Two more breaths, inhale. (inhales and exhales) Calming the body, calming the mind, calming the spirit. Thank you very much, beautiful work. (applause) You were awesome, thank you so much.

Comments

3 people like this.
Hi Rael, that was a really beautiful class. It allowed me to step out of my thoughts and instead, be able to concentrate on breathing, movement and shape. Thank you.
RT
4 people like this.
Omg....these r the kind of classes that makes you wanna sign up for Pilates training right away...Pilates at its beautiful best!
I love your classes. You have to come to Zaragoza , Spain !!! thank you!!!!!!
2 people like this.
Super super super thank you ...
DJ
2 people like this.
Really enjoyable - just loved the simplicity and intensity. Such a great class to return to time and again and in particular to revisit when out of shape. Thank you!
1 person likes this.
"Calming the body, calming the mind, calming the spirit" - exactly what it did. Thank you, Rael.
Amazing class- great to focus on deepening the fundamentals I was exhausted and exhilarated! Thank you!
5 people like this.
Rael, you are the best!
1 person likes this.
Brilliant
Thank you all for your wonderful comments, I love them! They reiterate all that I hope to achieve in a mat class. Mat is such an exquisite way of focusing on the powerful mind-body connection, and nothing makes us feel quite as good.
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