Class #2333

Refresh your Practice

45 min - Class


Refresh your Reformer practice with this detailed workout from Karen Sanzo! She starts with the feet and works her way up the body to clean your technique and tie up any loose ends. She guides you through with articulate cueing so you can begin to notice the subtle changes in your body.
What You'll Need: Reformer w/Box, Franklin Ball, Overball

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Hi, I'm Karen Sanzo. And in this segment we're going to refresh our reformer practice. And what I mean by that is, um, Lynn has been doing reformer classes for over a year now and it's time to actually go backwards a little bit instead of forwards and tie up some loose ends. And what I mean by that is that oftentimes people get really excited about advancing their practice and really excited about learning new exercises. But I like to go backwards just a little bit and reacquaint people again with some of the peculiarities and the specialness of some of the exercises.

We're going to start with footwork. I'm going to take these balls here and I'm going to have her put the ball of her foot right over this and put the ball of your other foot right over that. And Lynne's feet in particular, she likes to work a lot from her long toe extensors and so she likes to curl her toes harshly back. So what we're working on is to lengthen out the piggies so that her forefoot can actually receive, uh, the flection. So as her foot kind of goes a little bit further forward, see how the toes nicely go. This has changed. This is getting a lot better.

Can you kind of feel that? Now? Lift your heels up a little bit and continue to roll forward. And this is bird feet, right? Bird foot is four foot flection, long toes relax. And now take the ball backwards and feel your ankle crease. But keep your toes curl. That's a very good.

Now can you keep your feet in that position and just kind of move them forward and back like that. And then what I want you to feel when you keep your feet in this position and your ankle in this position is how much work comes into your thighs. Okay? So that relaxing your shoulders don't use all that extraneous stuff because we all create strategies for ourself to help us feel the exercises better. So I feel like my job is to help you feel what it is that I want you to feel.

Okay? And then go ahead and go all the way forward. And now go ahead and let your toes lengthen down low. Let me pull these just a little bit under you, just a little bit here. Like you have a high heel, she won. So now in this position here, lengthen out your toes so that they don't grip. There you go. And then I'm going to move this ball underneath there. Very good.

So now like high heels should have tried to relax these tendons. So just kind of look down here and see if you can just relax these tendons, narrow your thighs just a little bit, and then press your heels down. But leave your toes where they are. So just a gentle, like you're trying to smash the balls flat. So press down with your heels and then release and then press down with your heels and then release. And now make a little magnetism. There you go. Feel how when you make a little magnetism between your heels, how it affects your thighs.

I also feel it's so important that we don't always as teachers, reposition people's feet all the time because then they can't feel how the repositioning fields. And that's very, very good. Okay. And so now let your feet come back again and curl them again. Good. And then let them go forward. And then let the balls of the feet go down and then plant your heels down. Now remember the inner thigh connection.

Remember the ankle bones attracting inward. Again, feel how that organizes the feelings of your hip all the way up here. Very good. And then bring your legs all the way back. Nice job. And we'll take the balls away. And now you just go ahead and lie down on the reformer and we'll bring that to life and foot work just a little bit more. So I'm gonna put you on not a real heavy spring to start with.

And we're actually going to start with your heels on the bar. And so I'm going to have you pull your ankles back. And then what I want you to is to relax your toes as if they were over the ball so that you're going to lengthen your toes. But you're going to keep your ankle crease backwards. Okay, so I'm not positioning your feet. You are, but I'm going to hold my hands here and now you're going to push your legs straight as you push away. And the first thing that you notice is how late the spring is, right?

I have one green and only one red spring on. So keep doing this. Your Pelvis is neutral, your Chin is soft, your neck is relaxed. Very good. Different cue for you. Now as you push the carriage back, attract your feet to the ceiling. Feel your front thighs in your belly. Kick in. When you come in, press your feet to the floor, feel the back of your thighs, kick in, press up with the legs to go out. Push down with the feet to come in and do that. About two or three more times.

Inhaling here, exhaling, and then last two, and then come in and then last one, and then bring yourself all the way in just to give you that little feeling of what that feels like. Now Watch, we're going to bring you down to bird feet. So we're kind of going backwards a little bit. So for foot flection. Now you're going to raise your heel member when that ball was underneath there. So press your feet to the floor as you go out and then continue to press them to the floor as you come in. Remember that magnetized ankle connection, you how that goes.

Very nice. Could you feel how that went all the way into your thighs? Sometimes you just feel and see just something a little bit more subtle. Couple more times like that. Good. Last one. And now bring yourself in and we'll go to our Palladio's v. So you're going to slide down to the balls of your feet and raise your heels up and now attract those ankle bones. Now don't move your ankle position.

This is a zip lock bag. This is one, and your crotch is the other end. And then when you press out, your knees will touch together. Go push and then pull in good press and then come in and you can see how your foot position is staying the same. And then bring yourself all the way and do that one more time and bring yourself in. Now I'm going to change the springs to be a little bit heavier, actually a lot heavier. Now she's going to have three reds and one green on. Okay?

So what's going to happen now she's going to come back to the foot position, which is your heels again. So go to your heels and really extend these angles. It's actually called Dorsey flection. So you're going to pull the ankles up and now I'm going to let your toes relax a little bit and work through your ankles. Okay? Push your feet to the ceiling as you go out and then pull your feet to the floor as you come in. So if you how now the springs are a little bit heavier. Yes, but you're keeping a nice position in your pelvis and you're working your leg. So the out meets the in. Meet your out, meets you're in, you'll do four and impress your feet up as you go out.

Push your feet down as you come in. And here's three and return and two and return on this last one. Go out and stay out. Now just nod your Chin and lift your head up and look towards your toes. Notice when you lift your head how sometimes the pelvis wants to lift.

You need to iron your pelvis flat. That's it. Be How nice that makes your thighs long right here and then lower the back of your head down. That's a big change for you, Fia. How that stays nice and long there. Now you're going to take this right leg and touch my hand right here. Touch my hand. That's it. Just like that. Now re lengthen your left leg.

There you go. You feel help that that's really, really work here. Okay, now circle this leg a couple times. Just like you're in mat class. Stop it at the top around and then stop it at the top. Notice here when you do this, you really have got to lengthen this thigh long. Push that carriage long push. There you go. One more time and then lower that leg down. Repress both your legs, regroup the scoop, and then take your left leg up with this leg to the ceiling from up this quadricep member. How that's getting a lot stronger. Repress your right. Yeah.

Like I have an iron and it's coming right down that right thigh. Good. Circle this leg three times in each direction. Can you relax these toes and work through your leg? Oh, that's hard for you, isn't it? But you're doing a good job. Relax these piggies here. Work less in the toes, more through your entire leg. Two more, and then last time and then lower that leg down and then bring yourself back in. Now to bird feet on this heavy spring, you hear the word bird feet and you think like a bird on a perch, right?

Some people call that prehensile is just four foot flection. Drop your ankles down and maintain the same position of your heels on the way out and then pull in. Keep the position of the heels on the way out and on the way in. By maintaining the position of the heels, it kind of encourages all the work to come deeper into the thighs. Can you kind of feel that a little bit there? Good at two more times. Very nice.

Right here. And these toes, big change for you last time. And then bring yourself all the way on. Nice job. Come down to the balls of your feet, squeeze your heels, lift your heels, keep them locked in space. How many different ways can you teach foot work? Right? But anyway, I think it's so important that we maintain the position of the feet. The thighs stay heavy as you go out.

And then you peel the legs apart because we know that footwork is really thigh work. It's really legwork. Okay. Our feet being a vehicle, if you will, to get to the thighs and we'll find the same thing to be true of the wrist and the arms and a little bit. Two more times out. Be careful for your pelvis, right? Because your pelvis likes to curl up and you need to check yourself in neutral so that your pelvis stays nice and heavy. Last two, very good. And then last one and then bring yourself in and then rest right there. Nice job. Go ahead and close the legs. Rest your legs for a second. I'm gonna move you to two red springs tie-in connection.

Now from the arm to the trunk, I have these straps here. I'm going to have her use short straps. I like to have two different options and we've already decided that these short straps here, I think work really well for her. Take your arms till they're over your shoulders and just hold right there. Let your feet stay right here just for now.

I want you to notice the position that her headrest is up. Okay? I'm gonna move your hair out of the way. So you go. So with her headdress lifted, you can see that her chin, she's not forcing it down, but with the head rest lifted, it allows a little bit of neck flection. Okay, so that she doesn't lurch her chest up. The pulling of the arms makes a direct connection to the ribs. You're going to lift this left leg in, let it come pass tabletop and let your shin rest, and then take a big inhale. As you exhale, your front ribs drop and your other leg comes in. Fabulous job just right there.

She's quivering. I can feel it in her arms right here. Take a big inhale and take a big exhale. This is the exercise folks right here. This is the exercise. Her arm strength connected to her trunk strength. Her pelvis is not in neutral right here because her thighs are deeply pulled in.

It is allowing the pelvis to posteriorly tilt, and that's fine for this particular exercise. Is it true that you can feel the connection between your arms and your trunk? Right? One more big inhale. One more big exhale, lower one leg, and then lower the other leg. Okay, so again, connecting through your arms. Good. Now feel how your your, or excuse me, the knuckles are just facing the ceiling. There you go. Look your eyes into your cheeks. There you go. And then take this leg in, pass tabletop, and then match it with this one. Okay, so keep the tension in your arms.

Now what I'd like you to try to do is let your thighs go away from you until your pelvis approaches neutral. So as your pelvis as she's me, as your thighs go away, your pubic bone drops down. Hold yourself right there. Take a big inhale. As you exhale, pull your knees back into your chest, let your tailbone curl, let your back go flat. Not because you press your back, but because you curl your pelvis and do that again. Start to lower the thighs away. Pause right there. Now keep that con very good. You can see your quivering right here. Keep that belly pulled in, and then the last one, pull the knees all the way in and then rest your feet on the bar and then release your arms. We'll do one more variation. All right. Okay. Inhale again. Take the arms to vertical. There's two red springs here. Just as a reminder, she really wants to pull her arms really bad and get into a hundred beats and I'm not gonna let her because I want to be connected before that happens.

Let's take the left leg in first. This time. Take the other leg in and now on purpose. Let's go to neutral because your body understands neutral. So neutral just means we're not shortening this distance anymore. Now Open and close your arms. Don't move the carriage. Good.

Take as many. Very good. You're keeping equal pressure on the straps. Relax your jaw two more times out. Give your heels a little squeeze. Very good. Last time out, last time in paws, elbows bend wide. It looks like this. And then they go to the ceiling. Just three times. Goalpost, arms out and then up last time and then come up and then put your feet down. Whew, my goodness. And restaurant there. Very nice connection.

Switched to the long springs now, or excuse me, the long straps. So now take your legs in. So I'm just taking you through the differentiation between what's neutral, what's not neutral, okay. Because both of them are valid for different reasons and she doesn't have any back problems, so might as well train them in both. Pull your knees well in, let your shins rest down. Pull your arms slowly, all the way down by your side. All the way down. Pull, pull, pull, pull, pull, pull, pull. Very good.

Now nod your eyes. Excuse me, nod your head and then curl your ribs right here and that will lift your head. Keep pressing those arms. Very good. Big Inhale there. Think forehead to size. Think thighs to forehead. Very good, and then slowly resist as you reluctantly lower the heels to the foot bar. Arms to the ceiling, and then restaurant there. Inhale again a little bit quicker now. Arms pull. FYS come in, you're going for the whole session. Curl your trunk. Hold right there.

And then release arms, legs to foot bar. Last one, getting ready for your a hundred beats. Ready. Inhale. Exhale. Fise pole trunk curls up. Curl up, hundred beats go. We're just doing 50 exhale. Good. Exhale. Good Curl. These ribs. Curry. That's good. Two more sets. Inhale, straighten those elbows out. Last time. Inhale, last time. Exhale, legs come away. Arms come back.

Oh my goodness. Very good. Move yourself away from the shoulder rest just to snitch. Okay, we've got 50 more beats to get done. Take your arms down to the tricep position. Okay, so the forearms now come to vertical. Remember we're just cleaning things up here so the knuckles face the ceiling, your shoulders are broad, you're doing really well. One leg comes to tabletop, so now it's specifically stays at that 90 degree mark. Take the other leg in. Beautiful job. Squeeze the heels. Open your toes just to Smith.

Now just tricep. Press your arms down to they touch them at three times down. And then Ben, beautiful job. Knuckles go long and strong too. Last time. Three, hold the triceps. Inhale big. Curl the trunk. Reach the legs away. Soften to those. And then 50 more go. Inhale, two, three, four, five. And exhale. Two, three, four, five, go air. Yeah, go. One more. Inhale. Big.

One more. Exhale. Slowly bend, knees in. Tricep your arms. Bend your elbows, and then put the feet down. And then rest right there. Nice job. Okay, something else? Familiar feed in straps. So press your feet. Let's put one leg in [inaudible] and then take the other leg in. Okay, so how complicated can feet and straps get? Right. Well, we're just going to clean it up a little bit because we see the toes, we get this little toe challenge.

So a lot of times what happens is I say point the toe and then we get a toe cramp. So what I'm going to do is I'm going to take the foot strap and I'm going to put the foot strap really close to the heel and I'm going to take the other one close to the heel and I'm going to say, Hey, can you lengthen your toes and then can you actually lengthen the front of your ankle? So it's not that you're just going to point your toes, but that you're going to angle the front of your ankle forward. Yeah. This is called Plantar flection. So it's almost like this ankle kinda sucks into your calf. And then we lengthen this way. Very good.

So this heel drops down and so we lengthen the front of the ankle and then she's going to check your pelvis because you tend to get in a posture your tilt. Very good. Did you feel yourself lengthen that out? So for, we all need that reminder. Don't we squeeze these heels together now just get long. There you go. Check your show me. You can check your pelvis. So many you could check neutral pelvis. There you go.

And then go back and relax your ribs down. Relax your chest. There you go. So you don't work so hard up here. So now touch your own thighs. That's another thing clients forget to do is to connected to their thighs. Okay, now inhale, take your leg towards my hand. Exhale, stop and pause. Exhale, pause. Can you feel your legs right now? Keep you from bringing your legs over your head. It's this part of your legs that are working hard.

Now use this part of your legs. Push your feet down and resist that part of your legs as your legs come back and now put your toes together and your heels apart and that will work the more medial part of the hamstrings in there. Push down. Keep your pubic bone long as you resist up. Very good. Two more times. Inhale down. Exhale up. Relax your face. Relax your jaw. Last time down. Last time up and pause right there.

Now Roll your heels together. Open your toes. Now lengthen your piggies over length in the front of your ankles. Very good. And then press down. Now your thighs are turned out so I'm not touching as much because I want you to feel the feeling. If you're doing this workout with yourself at home, you're an external rotation of your thighs, lengthening out your pubis so that when the legs lift up and down, the position of your spine and your ribs doesn't change last time, and then come up and pause right there. Now reluctantly bend the knees like you're going to come into a frog shape.

Relax those toes. That's going to be your cue. Relax those sows. Let your thighs come back to your chest. Let your tailbone curl. What shape is the spine in? It's in a rounded shape right now. Squeeze the heels. Let your toes relax. Okay, so the back is flat right now because the thighs are in a tilt. Relax those toes. I know I keep saying that, but I want you to see a lot of people have an over emphasis in those toes.

Now you're going to start to roll your spine away from you and your buttocks away from you until your thighs come to vertical just till your thighs hit vertical. Keep going and stuff right there. Is that work? Yes or no? It's work. Okay, so let your pubic bone dropped at. There you go. There's the length in your torso right there so that you feel that length. Just hold the shape of the frog shade and then press your legs away from you. Squeeze your thighs together and then reluctantly bend them in. Stop.

Differentiate between pressing away and then come in and now from here, let them come all the way in to feel the rounding of your tailbone. Very nice. Roll away your tailbone. Come to a vertical thigh. Pause. Recognize that vertical thigh and then go out and in three times in a vertical thigh one press two. She's pressing with her legs and not with your back right last time.

And then bring them in. Let them come past neutral, round the spine again, not touching her a whole lot, letting her body be guided through from the instruction from here. Now with your knees into your chest, feel how your back might want to do the job. Depress your legs away, but you know that you're just going to roll your buttocks down and roll through your spine and then you can go out and then come in to vertical and then you can roll it back up. So the whole thing can happen faster. But it's just understanding and being able to differentiate. Can you feel that? Okay, very good. Hands on the straps. Take your feet out. We're moving on. Come on up to sitting and turn around and face the other direction. Uh Huh.

Go ahead and put on one red spring for me. Actually, let's take it to one blue spring. Very good. Okay. And then turn around and face this way you're gonna, your feet will be pushed. Put right here. Okay, so move forward just a little bit more. So we're going to teach the roll back first. Then we're going to add her arms in the straps. So you feel this ball back here.

So I'd like you to take your arms in front of you and start to roll backwards to you. Kind of feel this ball and just hold yourself right there. Okay. There you go. You feel that little quiver there and your trunk. So you're going to go to this hip point right here and you're going to pull that hip point away from your thigh crease. Yes, that's it. That's it. You feel your belly working. Good. Inhale there. And then exhale, curl up, pause, and then come back.

So you're not going to leave the ball in a curl. That's a very good. So you have to learn how to articulate the up phase of this so that you stay in the trunk. And right now she is not using her hips at all, all trunk. Would that be true? True, true. And then sit yourself all the way up and restaurant there. So that just gives the awareness of that.

And now let's go ahead and load up your arms here. Put these arms all the way. Excuse me, these straps all the way up on your thighs, Hon. Your thighs on the top of your arms, the thighs of your arms. Good. Now hold your arm in this goalpost position. This is what I call one of these non-discussion exercises. Okay, so she's going to pull her shoulder as, pull her arms back, her shoulders stay there.

I'm going to guide her head position and now she's going to roll those hip points back again. Roll those hip points. It don't, don't roll with your shoulders. Roll with your pelvis. Roll back with your pelvis. Yes, there's the pelvis. Come on. More pelvis there. Hold right there. Whoo. Yay. That's good ratio there. Keep that. Keep that. Now keep pulling your arms back as you curl forward over my hand. Come on.

Curl forward. Girl. Forward. She's making sound effects in pause right there. Just three times broad and shoulders grow your arms wide pull. Yes, very good. Now member of the hip points, those are dear year baby pelvic points right there. So you're not just leaning your body back. Let me have your head back here please. There you go. Nod Your Chin, look towards your, don't go back any further.

Otherwise you won't be able to get up and then sit yourself up last time. Arms. Good. So pell, this lead with the pelvis. Yes, more pelvis, less arms, more pelvis. Come on. We can see it more pelvis. That's it. Hold that pelvis right there. Hold fine. Breathe. Yes, you can make those sounds for real. Live work three, two and one and sit yourself all the way up. Nice job. Woo. Very good. Now again, when you get the articulation of that spine in a good down and an up shape, you really learn how to curve the spine appropriately without always grabbing into the hips. Okay, come to your hands and knees please.

Facing the bar here. I'm going to lower this foot bar down because I like to use this um, foot bar as a little bit of feedback for your arm position. So, uh, to come and put your hands at the edge of the bar there and then crawl forward with your knees until you think your knees are under your hips and curl your toes up underneath you. Very nice. Now your elbow creases, we'll face each other and your forearm now will touch the bar, but feel how you might feel like you're, you're way far forward. But indeed let, let's drop your chest bone down. Let your shoulder blades kind of live on your ribs. Good. All right there. Okay, so not a lot of discussion here, but you know your rib cage is not square. It's not like your shoulder blades. Just occupy the upper quadrant here. Your, your ribs. It's like a cylinder.

So, so your ribs are like a home for your shoulder blades and hers. You're really doing well right here. So now she's gonna lift her, I call it the face package. So if she were to extend her neck, it would look like this. If she already has dropped her head, it would look like that. But now she's going to keep her head level. I'm going to give her a little bit of resistance here and say resist me. So Fia, how that Kinda ties into your trunk right here. Okay. So without moving your arms, use your legs to push the carriage back and then pull it right back underneath you. Can you feel my fingers here? Don't Cha. Don't let that drop down. So resist that. That's enough. Good. And then pull in. Press legs, stop.

Pull thighs, home, press legs, stop. Pull thighs home. Now you hold the thighs and now we're going to ask the arms. You hold the thighs in, hold the thighs into the stopper and now push your arms like you're trying to pull your hands that way. Good. Stop, and then come forward. So the arms are going to push in this direction like you're pulling. Here you go. And then come forward. Feel my resistance here.

One more time like that, and then bring yourself forward. Okay, regroup your blade position. Nice job. Now I'm going to take you down to a light spring. You've never done this one before. Be Sure your elbow space each other. Now meet my resistance here. There's a very light spring, so you're going to push your legs out a little bit and then pull them back in.

Can you feel how that's a little bit different feeling for control? Yes or no? Yes. Yes. Good. Harder, good. Two more times like that. If you're how your back might want to sag right there, but you're not going to let it sag. Good last time. Press through the balls of your feet. Good. Now do your arms like your arms are going to push you away and then come back, regroup these shoulder blades here. There Ya go. That's it. Back.

And then nice job with a straight elbows into your triceps last time. And then come back in. Sit back towards your heels. Bring your hands to the top of the bar and restaurant there just for a second. Okay. Feel that weight bearing into your arms. So important as well. Okay, I'm gonna take this foot bar up again. So I'm gonna raise this up to here. Okay, I'm going to come to put two red springs on again. Hmm.

And now curl your toes back against a shoulder rest. Preparing for knee stretches and airy. Nice common exercise here. Okay, so look down towards your springs. Pause right here. Now round this part of your spine into my hand. Ooh, very good. Less of your shoulders. More of your trunk. Curlin good.

Feel my hand position here. Feel how that connects here. Elbows are straight, forearms are tidy. Everything is happy there. Move your legs behind you on an inhale. Pull your legs underneath you on an exhale. Spine doesn't change. Push legs. Exhale, resist legs home. Very good les. Shoulders, more belly. Okay. Now on your own, it's a little bit more dynamic than that.

You're starting to build into the the speed of your practice. Now, less shoulders. That's always the cue. There you go. Round from your Bra Strap area to your waistline. Keep this rounded. Push legs, stop, pull legs, yes, push and then switch to pull. Keep these ribs up less shoulders. There you go. Three more to best one. Now you're getting to do a couple more.

Now that you feel how that it takes a little while sometimes to get that connection. Very good in the arms. Look how nice and strong your risks are. Beautiful job. Come in and pause. Now. Journey your spine to a little bit of a lengthened position here. And so shoulders drop. Lift your face a little bit and then shine your necklace forward as if your necklace. There you go. Sit back in your booty a little bit.

Now you're going to maintain that shape. Nice strong arms and then push your carriage back and then pull it under. So again, no spine shape change. There you go. Act like you're pulling your arms away from each other into my hand. They had that tidy is up your triceps. Can you kind of feel that?

Come there now I'm not there, but you still pretend like I am. Three more. Good job. Two more. And then last one and bring yourself all the way in. Sit your bottom down. Very good. Go ahead and step off of there. Grab your long box there. Okay. Spinal extension, a refresh here.

So you're going to lie on your tummy here on the box. And I'd like you to not pull your straps. I'd like you to move your legs further back. There you go. And your shoulders are right at the edge. Your head is in line with your spine and your shoulder blades are living right here. Very good. Now take your hands and just kind of hold them right there.

Almost like you're pulling your arms in this way. Can you kind of feel that tidy up? This right here. Okay. If you held that stage right there. Okay. So now in this shape here [inaudible] you're, you're good. Now just tighten up your right buttocks and your right thigh.

You're going to lift your right thigh up. But I want you to listen to this cue. I want you to lift your thigh before your foot, eh? Not that you really can. Yes, but I can you feel the action here in your buttocks and your thigh? Good. And then lower it down. So think, lift this top of your thigh before your heel. Yes. And then work to lengthen out that neither good. And then lower down.

If I have a hand here on her back and a hand here on her head. This shape of her spine here is staying constant while she raises and lowers that leg. Good. Other side. Good. She does this really well. So why am I doing this? Well, when I support the spine, I'm making the buttocks and the thigh work so that one, I don't support the spine. The buttocks and the thighs still know how to work. One more time like that. Good. And then lower your legs down. Now pull your body more off of the box. That's all right.

Move your body more off the box and then flex your trunk over the box. Kind of like you're doing. Hundred beats upside down. [inaudible] like this. Flex up. Put your hands down on the side of the carriage. There you go. That's it. Thanks for agreeing to do this workout. Okay, so now if you can you move this elbow so I can just show them here. So in this position right here, can d, do you see that?

She's in trunk flection. Okay. So I want that to be understood there. So now as she lengthens her thighs and feels this, I want her to lift her chest just to the level of the box. So let's see what that looks like. Shoulder blades, come back. Use your arms, grow your neck. Very good. Hold right there. Now can you take your arms maybe off of the carriage and just hold there. [inaudible] there you go.

So now I don't want her to lift up any higher than that right now. I want her to recognize where is, boy, does that look good? Can you feel that? That looks really good. She wants her to drop her head really bad, but she's not going to. Good. Rest your arms on the side of the carriage. Very nice. Inhale again, broad in the shoulders here. Now take your arms back by your side as if you were pulling the straps.

Now she knows the exercise pulling straps. She's done this before, so now I want her to pretend like she has the straps in her arm. Look how strong these triceps are, and now she's going to articulate her thoracic spine upward, shining her necklace forward, leading with her chest, supporting with her buttocks and her thighs. Oh my goodness. That's beautiful. Inhale bigger and then exhale. Lower down, hands on the edge of the carriage. Flexing your whole torso down, resting into flection. This actually feels pretty good here to feel the stretching of your low back. Okay. Last time on your own.

Bring yourself to what you believe is level [inaudible]. Take your arms back by your side as if you're pulling your straps, straighten the elbow, tighten up those triceps, tighten the thighs, and then now start to peel your chest up like you're going to look forward. Shining your necklace, less neck, more shoulder blades, and then more spine arching in the upper wrist part of your back upper wrist. That's a new word for dictionary. Apiarists good. And then slowly, slowly lower yourself all the way down. Now grab your straps, move yourself back onto the box just a smidge. So your shoulders are kind of, yeah, and we have going to have one red spring. This is going to be tough.

You Ready? Okay. They let grab your straps right here. It gives you something to hang on to Grad like right here. It just gives you some meat to hang onto there. Okay, you're ready. So your face is level. Now pull your arms back by your pelvis and lift the chest up.

Inhale le, less neck, less neck, more chest, all guide you. Less neck, more chest. Yes. Lift, lift, lift, and then reluctantly release so that you still get this east centric work right here. And then again, pull the arms, lift the chest, inhale again. Exhale, slowly lower yourself down. Last time blades, arms. I'm going to guide your head and now lift the chest, not your face. Lift the chest more chest more, look down, look down more chest, and then hold and then lower yourself down. Very good. Hang onto those straps.

I'm going to lower her to one blue spring and she's going to feel so successful before we continue on. Okay, you're ready. Woo. Three times in a row. Go. Inhale, pull straps. Just the chest lift. Just very good. And then reluctantly lower your arms down. Take your arms out to the side like a t. Go ahead and pull out and then release. Keep your arms by your side. Nod your face for me a little bit more.

Nodding of the face. Good whole. Now hold these blades right here. Pull your arms back by your side. Now lift your heart right underneath my finger lid. That's it. You're doing so well. And then release. And then last time on your own, I promise. Last time go. Oh, beautiful. Come on. Chest, chest, less neck, less neck, more chest, and then slowly, slowly lower yourself all the way down. Hang up your straps. Climb on off the box.

Go ahead and add a green and a red spring. Okay. The foot bar will go down. There we go. Okay, we're going to come to standing on the carriage now. So why don't you stand on the step back there.

Step up with your right leg first and put it right here. [inaudible] there you go. Yeah. Fuel both of your feet. Be Parallel and take your arms. Put them right on your pelvis, arms, elbows out to the side. Lengthen up through your shoulder blades.

Grow tall through the crown of the head. Now, right here is where your legs will work. Push the carriage apart. It May. It's not gonna move very far because they're heavy springs. Can you feel the action in the sides of your thighs? Look straight ahead and pay you. Go pull your ribs back. Sometimes it's not always pull your belly in. Sometimes it's not always, oh, get more core. Sometimes it's get a better relationship. Okay, so the relationship is the ribs back. That's it.

Everything in a line after she's doing really good with all these heavy sub rangs. One more time out and then one more time in y. Make it easier. If it's successful at the level it is. Okay. Step on your stable platform. You're turning around in the other direction. Step right here. [inaudible] take your arms out to the side like a tee on this one. Hmm. Now feel your arms.

Press down into my hands. Hold it. Feel your arms. Press up into my hands. Good. Feel how that's not your neck, but it's your arms. Press equally with both of your feet. Press out. Remember how you learned how to relax your toes? Yeah, so when you relax your toes and you work through the heels, then you get all this awareness in your backside. Can you tighten up your thighs? There you go. Three more.

Two more. [inaudible] can you push out and hold? Can you let it come in as slow as you can? This is East centric work. I should've done this on the other side, but we're going to do it on here two more times. You're going to push out quick, come in slow, push out quick, come in slow last time. Push out quick and then come and slow. Very good. Let me have your hands step backwards or forwards or however you want. Just happy that's over and it come down and lie on your back now.

Okay. And then go ahead and just lie. Lie flat down. So now for a bridge we'll keep the head rest down. So you've really done all these exercises before, but you may not have done them quite in this, in this fashion. So now with your heels on the bar, again, we're just refreshing the reformer, making some key connections here. It's a good workout. Do you feel your, your thighs working your chest, opening everything, keeping those connections. Arms press down. Lift your pelvis up into a very low bridge. Just a low bridge.

Good pause right there. [inaudible] can you let your toes rest? Yes you can. So you just have to do, you have to ask for it. Okay. We have to create that relationship. You can't assume it's just going to happen. Good. And then drip your chest down. Okay. You're going to lift again. Thighs working. [inaudible] lift up toes.

There you go. Just a reminder. Good. Now take that chest bone like your necklace is going to go towards your chin. There you go. Come on, lift that chest up. There you go. Get longer in your torso. You can do it. Lift up a little higher. Very good. And then drip your chest all the way down. All the way down.

Very good. I'm going to add one red spring on. She has a green, a red and a blue for running. You know when you hear running and the polys workout, we know we're hitting towards the end here. So, uh, lift your heels up for me. Hold your feet in that shape and then press yourself out. Hold yourself right there. Before we do running, let's do a tendon stretch. Lower both your heels under the bar till they touch my hand. Let the toes go, and then raise your heels up, lower the heels down, and then raise the heels up. Good. Three more times like that.

Down heels and then appeals. Very good. Last time down, last time, lift. Hold the lift. Feel your thighs work. Feel your belly, stay connected. Your ribs are softly down. Now alternate this heel drops, this one stays up. And then switch as you do this exercise called running, can you still make the little ankle connection between your two thighs? I mean, between your two ankle bones so that you feel that running is not just a stretch for your calves. The trajectory is like that way so that you feel from the whole back of your thighs, through your whole leg. [inaudible] five and four and three and two and one. And then bend your knees and then bring yourself all the way back yet.

Very good. Alrighty. Good job. So come up to sitting and then uh, just to regroup, a couple of things that were refreshed is foot position, thigh engagement, shoulder position, shoulder blade engagement, neck position, spine position. Essentially everything about Palase. And as I say it, what I realized that you're going to be so excited about, forgot to refresh the plank. Let's refresh the plank. Come back to your knees. We're going to put Lynn on to red springs. Here's the thing about long stretch. Come on down here.

I like to teach elephant first to get the connection, so she's going to come upside down to the elephant position. So stand up please. Heels down on the carriage. Put your feet all the way back to the shoulder. Rest. Nod your head. Relax your shoulders. I'm going to touch your ribs right here. Feel this. Pull in now. Make your knuckles go straight.

This is one of the key position is the strength in the arms. I'm going to put my hand here and I'm going to have you push your forearm into my hand. There you go. Now push both of them in there. Remember when you were on your hands and you pushed against the bar, okay, hold yourself right there. Pull your Tomi in. Push your forearms this way. [inaudible] this way. Yes, there you go. Now move your legs backwards and then pull them underneath.

You inhale and then exhale. Don't lose your arm connection. Keep your arms pressing into my hand. Keep your ribs pulling up to the sky. Three more, less neck. There you go. Two. Oh, that's a good one. Last time. And then pause right there. Come on up, pause.

Scoop your belly and there you go. And then drop all the way down onto your knees. Very good. Now you're going to move your feet into the shoulder rest position here, and take your hands here again. So one of the things you did elephant really well tying in the forearm position so we don't rest into the wrist or kind of rest into the shoulders like this. As you come into plank position, look how nice and straight your head is in line here.

The legs are going to shoot out. The chest comes over the bar. Your carriage will not move. Alrighty. Give it a try. That's it. Look at that. Let's have less neck and let's have more belly. There you go. Tighten your thighs. Inhale, go back a smidge. Come forward a smidge. Inhale, go back a smidge. Come forward a smidge.

Last time. Go back. Stay there. Exhale, pause. Inhale again. Exhale, beautiful shoulder blade position. Come home, drop down on your knees, and then very nice sip off on this side of the carriage just for a second. And refreshing regrouping. How nice it is to get onto the carriage with what I like to call a clean entry. Okay? Just like we do in class. So left hand here, left foot right back there. Do not move the cockerel your piggies way up underneath their nose. Lift him up.

That's it. Just like that. Chest over the bar. Head in line with the spine. Bring your face back away from my hand. There you go. Keeping that relationship, keeping these ribs up. Go back and forth. Just three, one good. And then two, and then three, come forward. Stay forward. Step off to the other side of the carriage this time and then turn around and there we have a refresh of long stretch. Thanks for joining us.


3 people like this.
Finally a workout I can actually do! I have been using a reformer for 2 years but have neck and back issues and mild scoliosis so it has been very difficult to do many of the moves. I am a young 69 years old and don't give up easily, but oh my poor neck and upper back...ouch!
Yay for more Karen on Pilates Anytime!!!!
2 people like this.
Karen, your classes are great, I aways learn something from you. Thanks for inspiring us.
2 people like this.
Karen, your classes are great, I aways learn something from you. Thanks for inspiring us.
Karen Sanzo
1 person likes this.
Thanks Laurine, Jeri Ann, and Rita!!!
The first comments--I love them!!
and...yes....workouts that work.
Keep it up.
1 person likes this.
Nice! I m just getting back on the reformer after a back/hip issue. This was perfect. I appreciate your precise cuing. I learn so much from your style. Thank you!
1 person likes this.
As always Karen is great, my favorite PA instructor. I thought to myself after running, whew...but she got me ;)
1 person likes this.
Enjoyed it so much I did it again tonight. Plank is still really hard on my back but I have gotten brave enough to stand on the reformer!

2 people like this.
Hi Karen! So nice to see you here again! Well who said a refresher wasn't going to be work! This was just great, I just loved your queue "lift the butt before the foot" Thank you!
2 people like this.
Karen, you are wonderful! Actually, - going back does´t mean that it is going to be much easier.. It means to look for the right challenge! And concentrate again! Thank you!
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