Hi everybody, I'm Jenna Zaffino back with a ball class. And the thing about a ball class is that it can tend to get a little crazy sometimes because we do have things we can bounce on and have a lot of fun, and so I'm gonna format this with a mindset of that yes, we are engaging into play, which is a very important value in my practice, and one that needs to be there in order for me to feel like I'm not taking myself too seriously, and also to kind of, like, just explore the possibilities of what exists in my movement on the ball and an unstable surface. And then, the second part that I want us to think about today is the concept of the space between. So, there, in our work we can think of it as the space between the inhalation and the exhalation. It could be a pause.
I will reference this poem that inspired me to work this class this way online, and the space between references the beginning of one conversation after another one ends. So as we're working through some really energetic work, I also want us to look for the pause, and the moments of stillness and floating, since we're all really cosmic today. So, let's begin with just a breathing exercise. So we're gonna take the hands and I'd like you to just to take your right thumb on top of your left and just place it on your diaphragm, so that you can feel and we're gonna do a non kinda Pilates centered breath which just simply means let your belly go for a moment. And we're gonna breath in through the nose.
And then just exhale through the nose as well, so just letting everything settle. This also helps me as a teacher. Breathing in, and notice the expansion of the diaphragm, forward, back, side to side. And as you exhale, just notice the recoil back into the center of the body. And just see if you can follow the movement of the diaphragm, possibly finding the space to achieve more length in your spine in your seated position.
Letting your shoulders relax. And on our next exhalation we'll start to breath out through the mouth. (breathing) And just starting to feel a little more abdominal engagement, and again breathing in, and exhale. And we'll do one more. And you'll notice today, that I'm gonna step kind of in and out of my comfort zone, referencing back to some Fletcher Pilates work, and also some of my own explorations.
So as we inhale, let's open the arms wide. And then as we exhale, let's breathe out and reach the arms overhead and just reach up to the ceiling, and see if you can pour weight into the bottoms of your feet. Almost like you can start to take weight off the ball, and then inhale, breathe into the lungs, and exhale, reach up again. Pouring weight into the foot center, starting to get a little activity in the legs to come up. Yeah, changing your feet if you need to under your knees.
Breathe in, and exhale. One more time, little different to feel like the exhale might be shortening and we're working to find length within that exhale. Good, and then let's take our hands down on the hips, and we're gonna start to work little pelvic clocks. We're gonna tilt to our 12 o'clock position, which is our posterior tilt, rolling the ball forward. And coming back to center.
And then tilt to your anterior tilts. Sometimes you might get a little soundtrack to the ball. But that's okay. So tilt forward, and then reach back. And start to notice the movement of the sits bones.
So as we come forward, let's exhale. Gathering the sits bones together, zipping up the belly. As we go back, reaching the sits bones apart, but still finding space in the lumbar spine. So it's not a matter of compressing, but a matter of being aware of the mobility that exists there. Good, let's come back to center, and then we're gonna inhale going to the right hip.
I'm gonna mirror, and then exhale going to the left. You can think of almost rolling or passing the ball from one sits bone to the other. Just kind of a nice image to feel some downward energy, downward pressure. I forgot to say that I'm working with two of my favorite people on earth today, which is really fun. Good, one more each side.
And now we're gonna go into some circles, so come to the center, we'll go posterior. I'm gonna mirror, we're go around to the right. We'll go anterior, and around to the left. And so, as we do these, we can get really fancy with them, we can get really, like, hulahoop-ish. But I want us to see if from the rib cage up, can you keep everything really still while rolling your hips around in one direction?
So if we were to take a picture from here up, we would see nothing happening. And let's do one more in this direction. And then we'll reverse to the other way. We're gonna start slow, cause we have a lot to get to. It's gonna be intense.
And just trying to feel not only the way the hips are moving on the ball, but also the way those femur bones are moving in and out of the sockets. And just exploring the depth of that awareness. Good, and then coming back to center. And then we're gonna open the legs to a wide second position. We'll bring the arms out to the side, and we're gonna just shift over to the right.
So I'm gonna go mirroring, reach out through the knee. Now, make sure the knee presses back. You're gonna have that nice hip opening, and then I want us to reach the knees in opposition. As we slide back to the center. So you're really, it's almost like you're pulling a band between the two.
And then stretch in the other direction. And this is very yummy. And then come back to center. You know, we can get really in to this, especially on the ball and start to send the ribs forward and get crazy, but let's try to keep our alignment, and just picture that the weight of the body is actually what's moving the ball. So pushing down and out into it, even with your long leg.
And then moving to the other side. Always grounding through the feet. So let's do one more over. We're gonna take a bend in the opposite direction from the bent knee. So a side bend all the way over.
And just breathe here, take an inhale, and exhale, reach a little farther. And then as we come back to center, and other way. So take a breath to stretch. And now to center. And just expanding in all directions.
Inhale, think of the creasing in the left hip. Deepening the stretch and coming back to center. And breathe in, and crease, and come back to center. So we're gonna take this into a little circle, a side bend over. As we come back to center, start to contract forward, rounding the body through center.
And then you end up in the opposite side bend. And then come back to center. And then we'll go to the left, I think. Yeah, up and over, and then round forward. So you can even an upper contraction, a spine stretch.
Reach over, and come back to center. Any time I use the ball, I am relying on it for some balance, but also thinking about can I find a little lift, so even here in this second position, can I get my legs a little stronger? Good, and then roll over and back to the center. And one more time, breathe in, and breathe out, and breathe in, and back to the center. Now from here, we're gonna turn over towards our right leg.
So we're gonna drop the left knee down, and come in to a little hip stretch. And you can kind of roll the ball to your right. Reach the left knee down, and then let's do a bit of a pull up through the front of the left pelvis. And we're just gonna reach the knee in opposition and then we'll take the arm up overhead, and then side bend stretch away from that hip. Breathe in, and then exhale, come back to center, and lift up a little taller.
And three more. Breathe in, and if you can straighten that back leg, go for it, but sometimes it's nice to play between the bend and the stretch so you can get a little more hip flexor, maybe a little more quadricep. And one more, up and over. And back to center, and then come all the way back through center, rotating, now go to the other side, so dropping down. A little roll of the ball away.
Reaching up, breathe in to go up and over, and then exhale to come back to center. Always be mindful that there's a bit of extension in our side bend so that we're not extending and bending forward. Trying to feel that nice opening of the entire front line of the body, front and side. And back to center, good. And then let's come all the way forward, okay.
So that was the slow part, let's bounce. I love bouncing because it gets a little lymphatic drain, it gets a little gravity in to our feet. We're gonna start with about a hip width distance apart and we're just gonna bounce. And you can breathe, I know, can you believe we're doing this? This is what I brought to Pilates Anytime, we're just gonna bounce on a ball.
Call me in 45 minutes, good. So let's start just by finding that little buoyancy. So there's a bit of a glute squeeze, there's a bit of a lift of the pelvic floor. You don't want to feel like the muscle tissue that you're landing on the ball with is just slack and relaxed, but your also not bouncing like a robot or a statue, so you're just trying to find a nice rhythm, and we're gonna do what we can to cabbage patch, and to get together. Okay, so let's just reach up and down.
Just a little jumping jack arm. And I like to make noise, because why not? A little rhythm in it, it's totally fine. Good, good, so as we get comfortable with this, when you are comfortable, you're gonna walk your feet a little closer together and bounce with two feet side by side. Which is a little more difficult cause of the narrow base.
Good, alright, we're gonna try, woo, to work on some coordination. So, in Fletcher, we call the knees together, knee bolts. Like there's a bolt between your knees. And we're gonna try to keep those knee bolts as we extend one arm, I mean one leg. So we're going, up, extend, up, extend, up, extend, up, extend.
And you can reach with a flex or a point, whatever you'd like. Yeah, somebody got, if you get the ball that's deflated a little bit, you have to work a little more at your core. Good, up, stretch, up, stretch, up. So we're gonna coordinate this a little more for the brain. A little neuro plasticity as Erika Quest talks about so much.
So we're gonna go side to side with diagonal arms here. Same, let's see if we can make this happen. Same with the feet, but the diagonal arms. There we go! We're takin this show on the road. So don't think about it too much.
Just side to side. And we'll go eight, seven, remember with the standing foot to press down in order to lift up. Three, two, let's come back to just a bounce and let the arms drift down, okay. We made it, we did it, it was actually really good. Alright, now from here, let's go in to jumping jacks, so wide and narrow, let's just do feet first.
Out, in, out, in, out, in, out, in. And important to know where you are on the ball, right? So keep that pelvis, it's floating, it's the space between tucked and arched. But it's not anchored, it's not held. It has to be adaptable, yes?
Let's add the arms. Close. Actually, that would be opposite, wouldn't it be? So it goes open, there we go. Good. So this is the easy part.
The hard part's gonna come in a moment when we start to turn it around. So I want you to start to get in to a connection with your butt to the ball, to the mat, to the floor. We'll go eight more. Eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two, and one, and in. Good, settle it down. Alright, keep a little bounce going.
Bounce just, nice and light, nice and easy. Almost 10% effort, if anything. So in order for us to turn the ball to the right, we have to not only have to turn the ball, our body, but we also have to turn the ball. So we're gonna go three bounces. It's gonna go one, two, three, and you're gonna have to jump and turn the ball.
You want the ball to spin? I do, ideally. It might be challenging on the mat, but that's what we'll do, okay? Ready, we're gonna go four and four, to the right. And we go one, two, three, and turn. One, two, three, and turn.
Spot your focus, two, three, and turn. One, two, three, and center, don't hold, two, three, four, five, six, go three and then go left. Go one, two, three, and turn. One, two, three, and turn, yes. One, two, three, turn.
One, two, three, oops turn. And slow, two, three, four. Do we want again or do we want to let that one go? Try on the floor? Move it forward on the floor, here we go.
Go one, two, three, to the right. One, two, three, good. One, two, three. One, two, three, now eight, get your bearings. And four, three, three and then jump.
Go one, two, three, and turn. One, two, three, turn. One, two, three, turn. One, two, three, and we're there. And eight, seven, six, five, four.
Why not guys? And then just kinda take it down, little bit. Calm your breathing, I'll move back too. On the mat, nice and easy, slowing it down. We laughed, we flew, we bounced.
Now it's time to work again, so we're gonna actually do one more little bounce, and we're gonna take it over toward the window. Christy, you just get to bounce up and down. So we go, one, two, three, and turn around. Uh huh, uh huh, good, now we're just gonna settle the bounces down a little bit. So why do I like those?
Cause they're fun, A, and that's important. Two, I just love the, there's a sense of lymphatic drain you get from the rebounder that's really wonderful. Get a sense of connection just by kinda shaking it out, and if you have one of those days where you need to shake it off, bounce on a ball. So, alright, moving on in to rolling down. So we're gonna have the legs parallel.
And since we're working with some proficient bodies, we'll have the arms forward. So this can be easy or hard, we're gonna walk out to a roll down. The easy way is to let your weight just drop back in to the ball. The hard way, or the more challenging way, is to start to articulate the pelvis in order to move the ball forward. And as you're rolling, you're rolling in to a contraction.
We're gonna try to walk out in four steps. It's a heel-toe, resist the urge to just drop your weight in to the ball, so you're really working your flexors. Heel, toe, heel, toe, and heel, toe. And once you get out there, press your hips up to the ceiling. Let's find our glutes, we don't have a chance to do that so often.
In addition to our hamstrings, so squeeze 'em, press 'em, and then from here, start to flex forward. Curl in to an upper contraction, pull the belly in and toe-heel to walk back. Ideally, we are staying on those railroad tracks. Straight and narrow, trying to lift up. Good, let's do this again, so breathing in.
Curling and walking forward. Finding the connection, almost like rolling like a ball on your spine. Good, reaching, taking a moment to extend the hips. Open up the hip flexors, keep the rib cage connected. And exhale curling forward, walking back.
Toe, heel, toe, heel, toe. heel, toe, heel. Good, let's take it out to the side. A little more challenge from side to side, so we're almost in what might be a second position or hug a tree. And again, pelvic tilt. Now your goal is to try to walk out the same way without letting your arms float forward to catch you.
Lift your hips off the ball as soon as you can to get into that ideal position. Let's press the hips up, we're gonna breathe in and reach to hug the tree. Breathe out, open the chest, press the hips a little higher. Inhale reach, and exhale open. You can expand that chest, keep the shape of the arms but work the back of the arms into the ball.
One more time. And open, then come into a connected position with the arms. Breath in and exhale, curl forward. Walk back toe-heel, keep the hips lifted. Curl up off the ball as soon as you can.
Excellent, good, last one. Reach arms up by the head, and if any of these is feeling too challenging, you can always go back to the first one. Or hands on the ball, here we go. Arms by the ears as you go. Curl the pelvis under, walking out.
I should say all of these are inspired by Blossom, who does awesome stuff with the stability ball. Let's reach all the way back. Let's take the hands behind the head, the hips are gonna stay lifted. We're gonna heel-toe the feet out into kinda a wide position again, and we're in hip extension. So this is again, glute work.
But we're gonna peel down like a semicircle using the ball for feedback. So let your sternum drop in through your shoulder blades against the ball. And then on your next breath, wrap your ribs around the ball. And on your next breath, wrap your sacrum around the ball. And reach the tip of your tailbone all the way back to the ball.
Let your sits bones spread, you can bend your knees and flex your hips to lower down a little bit more towards the ground. And then from here, rather than rolling the ball back, let's roll the hips up back to that flat position without moving it, so we're much more dependent on our legs, and we're gonna lift up and find a sense of extension, even though we're more flat in the upper thoracic. Deep breath in, heart gets heavy through the shoulders, hollow through the belly, dripping the pelvis down one bone at a time until we get down to the bottom. And then take a breath there to open. And curl up, pubic bone to belly button.
Hooking that pelvis around, and pressing the hips open at the top. Let's do that one time, one more time. Breath in, and reach through the chest, through the thoracic, all the way down. See if you can get the sensation of your pelvis hanging so again, there's like space between those lumbar vertebrae, and then start to roll back up again. All the way to the top.
Now from here, we're gonna go into a little rotation, so we're gonna drop the right hip, like the pelvis is on a rotisserie. So release the right glute, but press the left one over to the right, and then come back to center. Find that center axis and then lower the left. And press it back up, and lower the right, and press it up. And lower the left, and press it up.
NoW we're gonna semicircle with the right lowering down, so lower the right, but start to contract. Curl down, reaching down, let the right hip go all the way down to the mat. So flexing that hip and reaching the back of the right glute towards the ball. Yes, then we're gonna center, so reach through the center, right knee reaches out, right hip tilts, left hip reaches back to the ball, and we're gonna start to roll up on the left. Kinda doing a circular motion coming to center.
We're gonna go left, left hip tilts down and roll along the left side of the back. Reach, this is a lot of specific articulation through the ball. Rotate over to the right, curl under and press the hips up to that extended position, finding center. Let's do it one more each side. So rotate right, and curl down.
Reaching back, press the right hip back through the ball. Rolling through center over to the left. Curling up, finding the left side oblique, stretching that QL out, come back to center. Going to the left, breathing in and out as needed for this one. The freedom here is that there's no breath pattern for this exercise cause I made it up, what! And come back to center and start to curl all the way up to the top.
Good, alright, so from here, we're gonna keep upper back on the ball, but I want us to walk back a few steps so that we're just, like the head, the upper thoracic is on the ball. And we're still in that wide position, and we're just gonna start to twist. So we're gonna drop the knees to the right, and we're gonna start to roll the ball back to the window behind us, so that's our first action. Moving the ball with the weight of the torso. Then we're gonna come through center, and come back onto the back, lifting the hips up.
And then we're gonna go over to the left. Pressing down to get leverage on the ball, so that we can float the upper body up, and then come back to center. So let's take a full breath in each direction. Inhale, exhale, finding that connection not only from side to side, but also front to back. Back to center, and one more.
And back to center. From here, we're gonna try a little side plank. So you roll those hips over to the right, we're gonna roll onto the right side of the body. We're going to anchor the back foot, and straighten the front foot. If you can get both heels down, awesome.
If not you can keep the front foot on the walk. Uh huh, good. You're gonna reach the left arm to the ceiling, and a big stretch over the ball. So from here, lift up to the ceiling, and then gesture over to the left leg, out the beautiful windows. And then inhale, lift up.
And exhale, side bend over the ball. And I almost feel better reaching the right arm long here, for me. And then lift up, you can even anchor down in to the right arm as you reach out over the legs. And lift, and exhale and reach. And one more time.
At the end of a session like this, I just want to feel like Stretch Armstrong. Like my arms and legs have been pulled out. Good, and then let's take the hands behind the head, bend or plie the legs, roll back on to the upper back. Find a moment of hip extension so we can remember where those hips are, and the knees go over to the side. Extend, anchor if possible, it's a lot of nice control going on.
And then let's extend the arms out overhead. And we'll lift and stretch. I'm gonna get a little bit more stable on my mat. And then up and over. You can always play with the idea of the bottom hip lifting up into the top hip for a little more stability.
I love the idea of pushing down to get up. Reach, and one more up to go over. And reach to go back. We'll take the hands behind the head, plie the legs, come back on to your back, and our last one you can choose which version works right for you. If you're feeling like a bad mama jama, bring your arms all the way back by your ears.
Walk your feet a little closer together, and we'll curl up with the arms by the ears. Walking back, lifting, lifting, lifting, getting ready foreshadowing our teasers for later. Good, alright, so from here we're gonna come to standing. We're gonna do an exercise that I like to do against the wall. I had a little moment of creativity and thought, we don't need a wall, we can do it right here.
So we're gonna take the ball to our right hip. And this is a balance exercise, so you want a good, if you have shorter arms you might need a smaller ball, but we're gonna make it work, cause you're gonna work that lat. So, the ball hugs in to the side bolts, so it's right in front of the greater trochanter. And then we're gonna find our balance on the opposite leg, so the leg that's closest to the ball comes up. Okay, so that in and of itself is challenging.
We can reach the arm out to the side. So then, we're gonna let the hips collapse a bit. So we're gonna let that opposite hip stick out, good. Now the idea is to press hip to hip to ball, but then resist with the hand, press into the hand. And ideally, hopefully, we're working for a level pelvis as opposed to a hip hike on the opposite side.
So we're gonna breathe in as we let it go, and then exhale, press up, and check in with that standing leg, we're not locked out in the knee, we're just rolling the hip right on top of the femur. We're gonna bring it up again, lifting taller ribs coming up outta the hips, reaching and coming back up. We'll do three more. And I am famous for sneaking in turnout, any way I can, and I just caught myself, so make sure you are working a true parallel right now. Aren't we all?
One more time, good. Press up, now hold strong through that outer hip, and you're gonna reach the opposite leg back, we're gonna come in to a lunge. So our lunge comes down, we've got a lot of feedback on that standing leg, and yes, we're lifting the leg up. So we're coming up, we're squeezing, we're pressing, we're working it right in to that ball. We're gonna inhale, back, and exhale, come up.
Inhale, back. Ideally the feedback is bringing us, woops, a lot of information and helping us push from the right place. Extending your hip open. I wouldn't say so much that we're working a tuck when you come up, but there is almost like, more extension so you can get right into the glute muscles, where many of us tend to be weaker. I know that's the truth for me, especially post partum. And up, one more.
Good, and all the way up. Now let's see if we can hold that balance, just for fun. We're gonna reach that ball out in front. Yep, hold on to your center, me too. And then reach the arms up overhead.
And then from here, we're gonna reach that leg back, and we're doing a little tilt on top of your legs are gonna go straight, mine is gonna go out the window. And then we're coming back up through the center to come up on balance, so we'll go back this way. So reaching back, flat back as you go forward. Leg goes out, all that beautiful glute feedback on the opposite side, lift your chest. Press forward, yes, and again reach.
This is a great time to revisit that connection front, back, side to side through your torso, good. Last one, reach, yeah, and even the tiny mat can bring in to play quite a bit of challenge stability-wise. Good, bring it down, hello! Other side, here's my hip, yes. I read this quote once, or stat rather, that was like 94% of all people who end up in the nursing home, meaning they don't come out, do so because of loss of leg strength. So, I feel like if we address this now, we're also addressing a potential problem later.
Alright, so here we go, finding your foot centers. Finding the elongation of your spine, picking up the leg that's closest to the ball. Reaching the arms out, slightly in front of you for a little balance. We're gonna let the hip sink, let it go, and then squeeze it over to the ball. Try to counterbalance by pushing your hand into the ball as well.
We're dropping it down, and we're pressing it up. Good, dropping it down, and squeezing it up. Breathing in, revisiting that, allowing the diaphragm to move in addition to the rib cage. And working a pump around the center of the body. We've got two more, rockin it out on this side.
Unless I just jinxed us. Good, last one, and we bring it up to stay. And we hold that connection on the opposite hip, and reach back in to our lunge, find, woops, the floor behind us, nice and stable. Squeeze, press, and lift, gonna find that one again. And we go back, press, outer hip to inner hip to ball.
Good. We've got four. I chose these exercises because they are very challenging to me, and I'm sure, others as well. But they also hold so much benefit for just standing work. And finding that connection.
Did I say, let's do one more. Sorry, and bring it up to balance. Okay, here we go, bring the ball around in front. Find that balance, get our connection, breathe in and exhale lower. I should say if balance is a challenge, you can always tap your foot to the ground wherever you need it.
Good, and working from the outer hip, pulling yourself right up on top of that standing leg, nice ladies, and then reach back. Yes, and squeeze to pull forward. I also think that some of these get us out of our comfort zone. I can, I can do a teaser, most of us Pilates people can anywhere you want me to. Ask me to stand on one leg, sometimes, not so much.
Reach. Good, that's four, thank you for counting. And up, and lower all the way down. Okay, alright, it's gonna get nicer from here, I promise. So we're gonna take the ball to the front, and just a little calf stretch maybe is needed.
Let's press the arms down for a moment. And just press back and work as much as you can. Lift up, move it back a little bit so you can get little deeper. Good, one more breath here. And then come back to your center.
Let's do the other side. All those little intrinsic muscles of balance, screaming. Yeah, I can feel it in my calves. Getting it, yeah, good, okay, coming back, okay. So we're gonna do two isometrics for the abdominals.
And if you think about it, when we talk about flection, we've got our rectus, our obliques, and the ball provides a nice surface for resisting those things. So we're basically doing a standing roll down. What we're gonna do is have your feet hip width distance apart, hands on the ball, and you're doing cat backs, so curling your tail under, again not locking the knees. And really hollowing and lifting the belly up. But when we exhale, you're going to curl down, like washer woman on the chair, to press into the ball and to try to feel a little more of that engagement through your abdominals.
So breathe in, release the pressure, and exhale, contract down into it. Let your head hang, let everything reach. And breathe in, and this is a strong muscular contraction, so we're trying to recruit as much as we can get online happening at the same time. Two more, pressing down, pressing down, pressing down. Good, and last one, and pressing down.
Now, if you both weren't as flexible as you are, I might start this out on a step or a box, and move down to this level. But because you are, we're gonna go down a little further on to the hands, or on to the forearms. So you're gonna do your tripod position, little more challenging to get that big curve in your back, but it's the same idea, so breathe in. Exhale, reach forward, you can let the weight shift to the front of your feet, but not lifting your heels. Inhale, release, breathe in to the upper back.
Exhale, contract, and press down, press down, lifting that low belly. Two more times, now it feels maybe a little more like, there's so many different words, overhead, or pike on the chair. And exhale. Good, so from here we're going to remember those two positions, and we're gonna keep those forearms on the bar and we're gonna work our way out to a plank, cause we're warm, okay. So shoulders, I'm saying we're warm, so shoulders down, okay.
So we're working to this nice, long plank. We've got our hips open, we're pressing into the ball, and from here, we're gonna round up, so rounding up and pressing the heels down, we're starting to get a little bit of a stretch of the lats, and I want you hollow like elephant, okay. Now, we're gonna left the heels up, releve, lift the pit of the belly up a little more. Press from the glutes, hamstrings, and reach out to your plank with a rounded upper back first, and then extend to your flat back. So this is what I would call and up stretch combo, okay?
So we're rounding again, pressing down, curling, lifting from the pit of the belly, and reaching the heels down as we press that upper back open. And then lifting the heels up, curling the tail under, and reaching long, long, long, long until you can extend and flatten the back strong, good. One more time, lift up. To that pit of the belly, rounding as much as you can. That's it, good, lower the heels, and then lift the heels, one more time, and round forward, forward, forward, forward, and then we're gonna bend the knees, all the way down, we're gonna take the ball underneath the belly.
Like the sweat, love you, love you, here we go. Alright, you are like, I was gonna say a pregnant spider, whatever, that's what you're like right now. You're gonna come up with your pelvis on the ball. You can just let yourself hang. And I'm doing spider fingers right here.
So I've got my feet about the width of the mat. And initially I just want to be able to weight, or unweight, one leg while weighting the other three and be okay with that. So I'm gonna do a couple of different extensions. I'm really in love with hip extension, okay? That's the deal.
So we're gonna pull that right heel to the right glute. Trying to keep the ball stable, both hips level, and I'm gonna push it up as high as I can, to get the glute firing, but not the lower back, which is so, so hard. And then I'm gonna lower it two, three inches, just a tiny little lower. I'm gonna exhale, press up. And inhale, lower, so we can add an element of depth to this exercise simply by lifting your belly and trying to unweight the ball as your leg lifts, as opposed to dropping your weight down to lift your leg, which is the big challenge for a mat work.
For swimming and swan and all of those things. Good, we're gonna do three more. And when I lift up into that glute area, the image that I'm thinking of is that I'm filling up a glass like right to the brim, but if I fill it too much it's gonna spill into my low back, and if I don't do it enough, I'm not gonna be quenched in my thirst for healthy glutes. Okay, so we'll open up at the top, we're gonna extend the right leg back, and we're strong, you can even extend the left leg if possible, and then you're gonna extend the left arm, so we've got that nice, long, oppositional force. Lift that right leg up a little bit more, get right into that glute.
Breathe in, breathe out, lift both arm and leg a little higher, and then lower down, and just round for a moment. Yes, small and mighty. Hopefully my glutes are small and mighty, someday. Alright, other side. Good, alright, it's not always the showy stuff, although the bouncing was fun.
Alright, so, let's shift the weight, find the connection, bend the left heel towards the left glute. Remember, we're looking to be very stable, so fill it up, squeeze that glute, recruit, lift, lift, lift, and lower down. Inhale at the bottom, exhale, lift up. So we're trying to get a good amount of firing from this, so let's make sure we don't just relax on the way down, but rather we just kind of ease out, and then back into it with a little more gusto. Good. This is three.
We've got two. And one more, and lift it up, squeeze it, extend it out nice and long. Find your balance, when you're ready release the right arm, continue to lift, there's kind of an interesting thing that happens where your hamstring can want to take over. So see if you can give a little more direction to the glute. I'm talking to myself as well as everybody else.
And then lower all the way down. Bring your knees down, excellent. Alright, let's bring the heels, or elbows on, those are heels, the heels of the arm. On to the ball, and we're just gonna take a scap stretch here, so you can kinda walk out until you're able to drop down, like a child's pose. If you want a little more intensity, you can move your hips forward over your knees and drop down here.
And just take an inhale and exhale. Good. And then we can curl under and come on back up, and we'll walk to the back of the mat with the knees and the ball, so we did that stability with the legs, and we're gonna do another easy exercise with the strong intention, so this is tiger paws, like we have to think of like, our hands got really, really big, thb, thb, thb, big paws, So we're gonna walk out, but the challenge is, you know, that we don't roll the ball side to side laterally, or the pelvis. So how many times have you yourself, or you've seen somebody just thb fly on the ball and then you know, maybe we'll get into it afterwards. What we're gonna do is we're gonna start up, into like the easiest plank you can.
And your gonna have your paws wider than the mat. And you're gonna come up until your feet are about hip width distance apart. You're holding strong as if you're in a plank. Abdominals and back engaged. So think, you're stalking your prey.
And ideally, you're gonna shift and reach, and shift and reach, and shift and reach, and shift and reach, and you don't even have to come out to your full plank. And then we'll reverse. So push through the arm that's still connected to move the opposite side. Push through the arm that's still connected, push through the arm that's still connected, back to the center. So what this does is it just fires up all your scapular stabilizers without having to do a lot of micromanagement.
So here we go, reaching out. She bounces, but she knows her anatomy. And reach forward, two and one, there you go. Very good, three, two, and one. Let's do it one more time out.
Four, three, two, and one. Pushing away to move the arm, four, three, two, and one. Hopefully you have your pelvis on top. We're gonna come into the forearms right from here. Now you've got nice, tight, stabilizers.
We're gonna come into a diamond, heels together come into your external rotation. So another one where we're trying to access glutes, hamstrings, maybe calves and feet, but not necessarily low back so we're gonna let the knees relax. You're gonna go ahead and give the glutes squeeze and then we're gonna lift the knees up, up, up, up as high as you can on your exhale. So inhale, lower, and exhale. Now I know you guys are overachievers and you're gonna want to bend right into that lower back.
I want you to make it about the glutes, not the circus tricks. Those come at the end. Inhale, and exhale, good, yep, mmhmm, that's it, uh huh, yeah drop your head in line with your spine for sure. Good, three, reach, two, up, now one. Lift up and hold.
The question is, can we use the ball to do small pulses without looking foolish, and letting ourself go. Okay, so you're gonna press the thighs in and just see if you can bounce the shape, using your elbows, using your legs up, and pulse in, in. (breathing) Last set, good, those shoulders are nice and warm. You're gonna extend your legs out, rotate them to parallel, we're gonna come up on a plank. You're last exercise here, swimming with the legs.
Don't fall off the ball, lift your right leg higher, switch, switch, switch, try to keep the ball still. Switch, switch, switch, let's do it a little bit faster. Go one, two. Eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two, one, and relax. All the way off, excellent, okay.
We're gonna come on to our bottoms, reaching forward, now into a little control. So, let's take a couple roll downs just because it is a Pilates class so we'll hug in to the ball. Reach the arms forward, you can drape yourself forward over the ball to initiate that shape. And then squeeze as you roll down to your low back. Reach, let's stretch the arms overhead, and let's do a big circular motion with the arms down to the hips, wrapping around, curling up.
Reaching up and reaching past the ball, yeah. And rolling back, pressing down. The ball sometimes is so unpredictable, you just have to figure out, make it work make it whatever you have available to you online and reaching all the way up. This will be our last one to come down. Reaching up, and over, okay.
So, draw your knees in, we're gonna take the ball off. This could be really interesting. We're gonna try to take the feet on to the bottom of the ball, and I'll come up in a minute if this is too much, hopefully you guys can get it up there. Straighten your legs, so it's like balancing a feather, which is the hardest part. And probably what makes your legs start to tremble.
Okay, arms to a T, reach your tailbone long, which is even more challenging. We're gonna inhale to plie, it can be an unlocking of the knees, just a simple bend. Fold the hips, knees, and ankle. Exhale, press up to the ceiling, don't lose the ball. This is tower without any sort of resistance.
Plie, and exhale press, and plie. Feel the folding, right, happen at the joint, at the hip, the knee, and the ankle. One more time, good. Now we get to have some fun, so on the count of three, you're gonna drop the ball, open your legs, and catch it with your ankles. One, two, three, nice.
You're gonna drop the ball, catch it with your hands. One, two, three. You're gonna throw it back up, catch it with your ankles. Nice, and repeat ten times, here we go. Drop, and catch, nine, eight, squeeze, seven, six, five, four, three, if you lose it we do it again.
Last one, good, awesome, and bend the knees all the way down, good! We're gonna place the ball down to the mat, that was awesome, usually I plan one breathing exercise and that one and I've got a full class because somebody always drops it. So, let's extend the legs nice and long. We're gonna come in to a little bit of teaser work. So let's take teaser in parallels, heels right up on the bar, ball, and arms to the side. So take a breath, and just establish the canoe position, so that's your upper contraction here, but with some weight in your pelvis and a little bit of hamstring engagement.
And then you're gonna try to reach the legs past the ball, try to keep those heels pressed down as much as possible to make it up to your teaser. You need a smaller ball, I know. Well, for a teaser. Okay, whichever comes first. Alright, so we'll reach up to the tall, tall ceiling and lift up out of the waist and start to roll back again, trying not to move the ball as much as we can.
And reach back, we're gonna do three of these. Circle around, establish the canoe, pressing down, reaching out through those legs. Doing the best we can to press down, yes, work it how you need to. And then rolling back. Inner thighs are active, reaching all the way back.
Last time, feel free to use your hands on the back of your legs. Circling around, okay, that's alright. So up at the top, we're gonna turn the legs out, and we're just gonna pretend to plie, if we can plie, excellent, and then reach forward. So we're gonna bend, we're pretending, and reach forward, and pretend, and reach, one more time. I'm queuing you to pretend, that's awesome.
And then bend your knees in until the feet are flat on the ball. And come all the way back down to your back. We're getting there, we're getting there, we're getting there, walk the ball in a little bit more. Let's bring our arms out to the T, and we're coming once again into our pelvic press. So, we're gonna take, let's go ahead and go hip width distance apart with the ball.
Find our pelvic tilt, we're gonna roll up, slowly standing evenly into both feet. I like to do a little rotation at the top here without moving the ball, so we're gonna go back in to that hip drops. So we're gonna drop the right hip down, press it back up, feel what it's like to transfer the weight from one foot back to two feet evenly. One more each side. And last one.
Hips always lift higher at the top before we let the heart roll down one bone at a time, good. Adding on our hamstring curls at the top, so we roll under, pressing up, reaching to the top. We're gonna press that ball away from us, trying to keep the hips elevated, supporting the low back, and then bend, lift the hips again. We're going for eight, here we go, inhale, exhale. You're hips will drop but try not to let them plummet.
(breathing) Four more. Last one. Lift, hold it, and do your best roll down of the entire day. All the way out, good. Let's take the legs, bring them in to your chest, and then we'll rock up to a seated position.
We're gonna come all the way up, okay. So we finish with our circus tricks, which is just a nice way to see how we warmed everything up. Also can be done at parties for fun. So, we're gonna go into a four point balance, which may bring us into a three point balance, we will see. So we're coming on hands and knees, and initially it's just about finding, yeah, good.
It's just about finding the weight into the ball. Okay, that's it, yep, and then you just do a couple toe rocks, so you're coming forward. But as you come forward, it's about pouring the weight down into your knees, or to your hands too. Try not to jump, but roll and think of shifting your weight just like we did in those lunges. Shift your weight onto the four points.
Until you feel like, possibly, you could stay there for a moment. And this can be just a really wonderful way of finding that space between being on the floor and being up in the air. Certainly being a little more towards flection with your spine. Having your abdominals engaged is gonna help. And sometimes a wider position of the knees can definitely help.
Sometimes narrow can too, good. Excellent, so I find actually the three point to be a little easier than the four, if that makes sense. Which is just knees together now, coming up, finding the balance, deciding which leg is gonna extend away, and then finding the opposition. Ta da da! And them coming back on, yes. So again, the rocking can always be something that brings you back into where you need to be.
And there's an element of patience here that happens, right? Like, you have to work with what you got. Be patient of how you're getting there, good. And balance sometimes is not there. Yeah, sometimes it's not there, sometimes it's not there There it is.
There it is. Do do do do do do Okay, come on up, alright. Alright, so lets come back to a wide second on the mat. And we're gonna finish up with just some stretching lunges, and what I want you to do is, we'll do a little tossing of the ball, so we're gonna lunge on to one side. We're gonna toss and catch it, don't throw it away from yourself.
But what you're trying to do is catch it, and catch it with your whole body. Then we're gonna come into center with a plie, and we're gonna toss and catch it, just being careful of the ceiling. Side, toss, and catch. Center, toss, and catch. So there's kind of that floating moment between the toss and the catch that you manage yourself in.
Side to side, good, reach. Anytime we bring a little external force into the arms like this, automatically translates down into the rest of the body. Kind of a nice little way to do this. We'll do one more through the center. One more through the side, finishing in the center, good.
Let's stand up nice and tall. Let's take a little side bend over, reaching. We're gonna plie, round down through center. Always my go to to kinda shake it out. Reach to the other side, big stretch.
Plie down and through the center. Come back up through center, reach the arms up, press the hips forward, find those extensors we worked so extensively, and lift and bend back, back, back. Come back to center, gather yourself up, lower the ball down, come back to center. Good job, good job, we're done! All together, one, two, three, woo!