Class #2915

Reformer Workout

45 min - Class
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Explore "getting on your leg" in this Reformer workout with Troy McCarty. He focuses on the function of the legs for ballet dancers in the hopes of making them expressive and articulate. He works on filling up the space while maintaining good alignment in the body.
What You'll Need: Reformer, Jump Board

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Hi, I'm Troy. Thanks for clickin' on and watchin' my class. This is Shelby. She's a wonderful student. She's from that fantastic Amy Havens, so I'm very excited to work with her, all right?

And today, we're gonna explore getting on top of your leg. You know, legs are very important for ballet dancers, and back in Cleveland, I worked with a lot of dancers, and we really, really talk about the function of legs in ballet and how the legs have to be expressive, and you know, very, very articulate. So let's begin. I have the reformer set up with three red springs. Shelby, if you'll lay down, we're gonna start with some very, very basic footwork.

Footwork is very important because it's a chance for you to take a look at movement quality, what the feet are doing. Remember, Joe told us if the feet are strong, the body is usually strong, so let's begin. So we're gonna start with a little first position, and we're gonna be right in the middle of those heels. Now, you want to get that foot right centered in the heel because we have to use the backs of our legs so much in Pilates, the backs of our legs so much in ballet. So let's prepare with a inhale, please.

And during your exhale, let's go ahead and send the carriage out. Press and then pull the spring back in, very good. And press two, and pull it in, and press three, and you're gonna recoil that spring, and go four, and back in, and press five, and bring the carriage in. Go six and pull it in, little gentle squeeze of the heel. Seven, and in, perfect.

Go eight, and in, two more, please. Nine, one more, very good, and 10, very good, and bring it back in. Now, from here, we're gonna go down to the toes, all right? Now, I'm not letting my dancer get into a lot of turn out. We're working in a very, very comfortable rotational position.

So we go down to the toes, and we're at the base of the toes. Your heels are still touching, they're gonna squeeze. Now, I want you to pay more attention about how you open up the spring and how you close that spring up, all right? So we don't ride the springs. Here we go, let's inhale, let's exhale, and let's go ahead.

Press the carriage away, one, and pull that spring back in, nice. Go two, good, and back in. Press three, and back in. Press four, excellent, and pull it in. Press five, and in.

Press six, pull the carriage in. Press seven, and in. Press eight, and in, let's do two more, please. Press nine, and one more, and press 10. Very good and bring it back in.

So we're in the first position, and the heels were down by the gear bar. We're gonna lift those heels up like she's in a releve. All right, now it's real easy for your dancers, especially your younger dancers, to start rocking out on their little toe, over on the big toe. A good placement for the feet is 60% of the weight is between the first and second toe, 40% goes out through the rest of the foot. And that way, the ankle is structured correctly, all the way up through the leg and into the torso.

Let's prepare our body with a inhale. Keep those heels lifted, a little gentle squeeze, and exhale, extend one, and pull the spring back in. Press two, and in. Press three, good, and in. Press four, and in.

Press five, and in. Press six. Good, press seven. Excellent, press eight, two more, please. Press nine.

On the 10th one, I want you to hold it out there. And 10, now hold, all right? So we're gonna do some heel drops here. Still keep that little pressure of the heels, then we lower the heels down softly. One, we're stretched back here, and back up.

And down two, good. Now, it would be very easy for some of your dancers to push that kneecap through. We don't want that, that's a hyperextended leg. We want to pull the quad up and keep that knee in a good position. Go five, very good, and let's do five more.

And go six, excellent. Keep that nice, lovely, organized torso, seven, perfect. Good, Shelby. Eight, two more, please. Go nine, and one more, and go 10, brilliant.

Bend your knees and return the carriage. Now we're gonna go into a little wrap position. We're gonna be parallel right across from the two hips, right, and then we're gonna wrap the toes around. This is a very, very important position. This is a chance to get all those muscles in the feet to start really activating.

You know, every time your foot touches that bar, we're using the different muscles in the feet. With a wrap position, we're accentuating the metatarsals, and that's important for your dancers to get that good jump quality. Let's take our inhale, please, then exhale. Let's push the carriage away and stretch. One, perfect, and pull that spring back in.

Push two, and in. Press three, good, pull it in. Press four, and in. Press five, pull it in. Press six, and in.

Seven, in. Eight, in, two more, please. Nine, and let's do one more. And go 10, very good, and bring it back in. Let's bring our heels out to the sides of the bar.

All right, now we're back into some rotation. Once again, I'm not letting them fall out into that joint. I'm finding a nice comfortable position. Let's have that heel right in the middle so we really feel the backs of the legs. Let's take our inhale, please, Shelby, and let's exhale.

Push the carriage away, one, and then pull that carriage back in. We open those coils up, two, and we close the coils. We press three, and back in. Press four, and in. Press five, pull it back.

Press six, and in. Press seven, and in. Press eight, and let's do two more, please. Press nine, and in. One more, and 10.

Very good, and bring it in. Let's move our feet down to the base of our toes in this position, all right? So we're right there so the toes aren't hitting that metal bar. Let's take our inhale, please, and let's exhale. Let's push the carriage away, one.

Good, and pull the carriage back in. And press two, and in. Press three, good, pull it in. Press four, good, and in. And let's do one more, five.

Now, let's just hold. Let's let the right heel go down, the left heel comes up, so a little heel drop. Right, so this kinda let the spring pull that heel, feel that nice stretch. We press through the feet, and let's try the other side. We go down with that heel, good.

Let's do it one more time on each side. And go down, good, and just kinda let it stretch there. Excellent, we're still keeping that lovely placement of the pelvis, perfect. All right, very good. And then bend your knees and bring that carriage back in, perfect.

All right, so we're gonna go to a single leg now, and we're gonna use two red springs. We're gonna start with the right foot on the bar at the base of the toe, all right, and the other leg extends out over the bar. Now, it's really important that you watch that you don't drop your leg down so far that the weight of the quad adjusts the pelvis. We want to have it up. I usually ask my dancers to go kinda, like, maybe that mid-shin area, all right?

We're also looking for a separation of the toe and the thigh, long legs as possible. We're gonna press the carriage away. We're gonna bring this leg to a tabletop, one. Right, so there's a good clean tabletop there. Two, we extend the foot up to the ceiling, good.

Now, the carriage stays still, we lower the leg down, it taps the bar, it comes back up. This goes into a flex, this does a heel drop, and we point, and we reach it back up. We bend the knee and we bring it, and right back out to where we started. Let's try it again. So we go (speaking in foreign language).

We flex and we point and we bend and we reach again. Two and up we go, down and up. A flex and a point and a bend and a stretch. We go three and up, we go down and up. Flex and a point and a bend and a stretch.

We go four, and up and a down, and up, and we flex and a point and one more time, please. We go five and up, down and up, and we flex and we point and we bend, all right, good. Let's try the other leg, right? Lot of movement in the legs happening. We're stabilizing the pelvis.

Shelby's reaching those legs. She's filling this whole room up with her legs, all right? So very articulate legs. Here we go, we go (speaking in foreign language). One and a up, we go down and go up, and we flex and we point and we bend and we stretch.

And a two, and up and a down and a up, and a flex, point, and a bend and a reach. We go three and a up, down and a up, and a flex and a point and a bend and a stretch. And we four, and up and a down, and up and a flex, point, bend, one more time. Five and a up and a down and a up, and a flex and stretch and a point, very good. All right, excellent, excellent, right?

So let's go into the hundreds, all right? So this is kinda sticking back to some of the classical origins that I'm from. Basic one hundreds to get the abdominals warmed up, some circulation in the body. So we're gonna reach the hands up, all right? Now, we want to start with the hands always below the shoulders, and we're gonna bring the legs up one at a time into a tabletop position, right?

So the heels will touch, and I like to see the knees open just a little bit like that, right? Again, we have a gentle squeeze of the heels. Let's inhale through our body here, wide breath through the back, let's exhale. Pull the arms down, extend the legs out, upper body comes up. All right, we can turn out just a little bit, and we're gonna pulse.

One, two, three, four, five, one, two, three, four, five, two, two, three, four five, two, two, three, four, five, three, two, four five, three, two, three, four, five, shoulders wide. Four, two, three, four, five, five, two, three, four, five, five, two, three, four, five, six, two, three, four, five, six, two, three, four, five, seven, two, four, five, seven, two, three, four, five, eight, two, three, four, five, eight, good. Nine, two, three, four, five, nine, two, three, four, five, 10, nine, eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two, now reach, bend, and let's return that body back into its laying position. Put your legs on the rest, good. All right, so with the hundreds, we want to be able to pulse the arms, keep the carriage still.

I can remember Bruce tellin' me feel like you've got air in your armpit. Don't take your hand and get your arm so close to your body. Little bit of air in the armpit, that opens the shoulder. You have that lovely, lovely width across the collar bone. Coordination?

Sure, Troy. (laughs) All right, so bend your elbows, all right. Now, I like to see the hands in a soft little fist. All right, so we know Joe was a boxer. We probably know that he used these hands like fists, all right? Again, we have the legs in a tabletop position, all right, and we have the knees open just a little bit.

So you're gonna pull your arms down, extend your legs out, and your upper body comes forward, one. Now, reach through those and shoulders are wide. We open and we close. One, two, and we bend our knees, we bend our elbows, and stay up there, fine. Go, again, two, and reach.

We open and we close and bend and return. Go three, we open, close, bend, return. Go four, we open, we close, we bend, one more. Go five, we open, we close, and we bend, and go ahead and lay back down. Now, we're gonna try five more, all right?

When you bend the elbow, I wanna see the knuckles come all the way back. And when you bring your legs back in, I want to see you curl your head towards your knees, like a little ball, all right? Here we go. So your legs are up in tabletop position, all right? We have a nice position of that wrist.

You want to watch this, all right, so get that wrist so it's in its nice neutral position. Press out and go reach, one. Go open and close, and we bend. As you bend your elbows, curl, curl, curl, curl, nice! Go two and reach! We open, we close, we bend, and we curl into a little ball. Go three, watch that pelvis, it stays down.

Bend and good work. Go four, open and close and bend, one more. And go five, very good, open and close and bend, excellent work, all right. (exhales) Yeah, I can feel the heat comin' off of you, all right? So, we're gonna go into some arm work, all right? So just bring those legs up to a tabletop position, and again, I just like to see the knees open.

Extend your hands up to the ceiling, all right? We always start with the arms below the shoulders, so we want to stay off that danger zone of the shoulders. What I want you to do is draw a little circle on the ceiling. Now, the next circle includes some of the walls, and your last circle includes the whole room. Now, it's a bit circle, all right?

So we go little circle, a little bit bigger, and your largest circle. A little, a little bit bigger. Now fill this whole room up with that circle, good. And we go a little circle, a little big bigger, and your largest, now, let's reverse. And we go little circle, a little big bigger, and the whole room gets filled up.

A little circle, a little bit bigger, and the whole room, let's do two more. And we go little circle, a little bit bigger, and your largest circle, let's do one more. A little circle, bigger, very good, and largest circle. All right, good. Let's go ahead and put our legs down.

I'll take the straps. Go ahead and stand up on the floor for me. All right, we're gonna go to one red spring. We're gonna put the bar down and we're gonna bring the box up into a long position. Got little notches there, let's take those off.

Yeah, there we are. All right. Sorry, we're gonna bring this back up. All right, so what I want you to do is we're gonna lay down on the box. Your chest is gonna be over your hands, you're on your stomach, okay?

All right, so bring your chest forward just a little bit, so get forward, there you go, and then put your hands a little bit wider. That's it, perfect, right there, all right? Your elbows are down. Now, we want to take those hip bones and push 'em down into the carriage, and let's go ahead and turn those legs out, all right? So the legs are turned out a little bit, shoulder blades are down.

Let's take a inhale, please, and let's exhale and drop those shoulders down. That'll do, let's go. Inhale again, and let's go exhale, and push the carriage away. All right, now hold. What we're gonna do is we're gonna lift up into an extension, all right?

Inhale as we bring the carriage back and lift the chest up. Good, those hips stay down, shoulders go wide. Your head, you're looking right out here. Now, exhale, we lower back down. We're going bone by bone.

Good. And we inhale, and we're gonna lift the heart up. Lots of width, lots of presentation through that upper body. Good, and exhale back down. Let's do two more.

And we go inhale, good. And exhale, let's do one more. And we go inhale, very good. And we go exhale. Bend your elbows and bring it back in, very good.

So if you'll hook up a blue spring, all right, and if we can just get this bar to come down now, and let's just put it like that, all right? Now, we're gonna go into some hamstring work, and usually, what I do is I take the cord and I put a knot in it, and that just kinda shortens it a little bit, so the dancer feels a little bit more pull of the spring, all right? All right, and then what I need you to do, Shelby, is to bend your knees, all right, and then we're gonna hook up a strap here. So one here, and then one here, and just kinda tighten it up, and your hips are pushing down, shoulders are down. So we're gonna work a hamstring, all right?

So hamstrings are very, very important with legs in ballet. We're gonna take a inhale, and during your exhale, what I want you to do is keep those hips pushing down and pull your heels towards your bum. We go one, excellent, and then we bring it back in. And go two, good, and bring it back in. Excellent work, go three.

Now, feel like you're gonna return that spring. Good work, that was excellent. Go four, good. And one more, please. And we go five, good, and pull it back in.

Now, we're gonna take our heels, we're gonna put 'em together, but we're gonna move our knees outwards, all right? So this hits a area of the leg that's so important for ballet dancers, all right? Hits right underneath that glute medius, which has to be a very, very strong muscle. A lot of movements start from that area. A lot of movements on the reformer start from that area.

So we squeeze the heels, we inhale, we exhale, and we pull, and you can feel that, right? And back in. Now, with the upper body, I just have her hugging the box, shoulders are wide, there's a lovely neck placement. Go two, good, and back in. Go three, good, and back in.

Go four, excellent, excellent, and back in. Let's do one more. And go five, very good, and back in. Let's go back to a parallel. I'm gonna take this one off for you, all right?

Sometimes, the dominant leg can do a little bit more work than the other leg, so we want to kinda take this out of the picture, all right? Dancers get very good at having one strong leg, one beautiful foot, and they forget about the other leg, all right? So I'm gonna change this to a red spring, and we're gonna do one single leg now. So sometimes, our legs, our stronger leg kinda compensates, and the other leg kinda catches up, so we're gonna take that out of the picture. All right, so we're gonna inhale, we're gonna exhale.

We're gonna pull that heel towards that one, very good, and then we bring it back. And go two, good, excellent, and back. We go three, good, and back. We go four, let's do one more, please, good. And go five, good work.

Let's try the other leg, please. So we take a inhale, exhale, and we go pull, and return, and two, good, and return. The hips are pushing down, three, the navel's pulling up. We go four, good, and we go five, perfect work, and bring it back in. All right, good, let's go ahead, slip it.

Go ahead and stand on the floor, all right? If you will, hook up all your springs and change your box to short now, and I'll get rid of the knot in the straps. And the box goes to short, and let's go ahead and just sit on the box, and we'll get the strap out. And good. Now, you want to scoot forward on your box, and I like to see the knees bent.

So, I like the sit bones a little bit closer to the edge, and these knees are bent with the legs coming out to the sides of the strap. And I want Shelby to feel like she's kinda pushing out so we get some energy through this part of our body, all right? So we're gonna go up into the real classical position here, and let's just start with a few roll-downs to get everything warmed up. Let's take a inhale, and take your eye level out, and let's exhale, just pull the pubic bone back. And let's roll that spine down, good.

Hold right there, take your inhale. Exhale, let's bring it back up. So a great place to start a roll-down is usually the pubic bone, and that usually leads the spine to where it needs to go. We're inhale, and we exhale. We pull the pubic bone back.

We roll the spine down, right there would be good. Take a inhale and exhale, let's roll up. Let's take a inhale again and exhale. Let's roll the spine down. I want you to hold.

Now, take your arms and reach out to the sides. Bring your hands behind your head. Bring your elbows a little bit forward towards me. Do a little pulse for me, just a little pulse with your sternum. One, two, three, find that little shaky part and stay within a (mumbles).

Four, good work, five. We got some tightness under there. Six, seven, eight, let's do two more. Nine, one more, let's roll up through that spine. Let's try it one more time.

Now, we're not pulling on the head. Usually, what I like to see is fingertips, all right? Usually, when we do that, that's a big cue to (grunts), and we don't want to do that, we want just fingertips. Elbows are a little bit forward so the shoulders can come down. Take your inhale, we lift the spine up.

We exhale, we pull the pubic bone back, we roll the spine down, we hold. And we're gonna pulse one, good, two, three, four, five, six, good, seven, eight, two more, your eye level, nine, one more, perfect, 10, and then roll back up, very good, and relax, all right? Simple little pulse, lotta abdominals happening. How about climb a tree? I loved his names for his exercises, all right?

What guy could get more creative? Elephant, climb a tree, corkscrew. All right, so we're gonna bring one leg up, so let's use this leg here, and let's bring that up. And let's put our hands behind our knees, and we hold. And we're lifting the spine up, all right?

And we got the hip down. We're gonna do a little inhale and exhale. We're gonna pump the leg up. One, and back down. Go two, and back down.

We lift the spine, three, good, and back down. Now, we're gonna put our hands on top of the shin, both hands, all right? Now, you're gonna pull back into pubic bone. You're gonna roll the spine down. This knee comes to a tabletop.

Now, you take your hands back and you're going all the way back into the well. Reach all the way back and grab that. Now, we extend this leg up to the ceiling, all right? Nice long leg. We're gonna do a little circle around one and up, two, the pelvis stays still.

Hold belly, three, go four. Now, let's reverse, and one around, go two around, go three around, go four around, hold. Now, we bring the head forward, we see the foot, we grab behind the thigh. We walk it up, climbing that tree. Very good, and we bend, and we bring it back down.

Let's put that underneath the strap. Let's try the other leg. A little bit different, all right? Romana showed me to hold that knee to go back. Keep that knee there.

Then I get a chance to do a double (mumbles) with my thigh absolutely still, and I stand my leg up to the ceiling. Let's start with the pumps, all right? We hold that thigh up, we're lifting that lower lumbar up, ears up to the ceiling, and we pump. We go one, back down, go two, back down, three, and back down. Now we put the hands on top of the knee, all right?

We start pulling the abdominal away. We bring this knee into that placement, and now, we take the hands and we aim 'em back. Lovely stretch, good. Extend the foot up to the ceiling, the pelvis is still, and we make our circle, one around. Go two, good.

Go three, excellent. And four, nice. And one, good. Go two, go three, very nice, Shelby, and go four, good. Now, bring your head forward and see your toe.

Bring those legs, walk it up and stretch it up. Reach up there, try to get that hip down. Excellent work, and bring it back in, all right? Let's put that foot underneath the, and let's bring this foot back up, all right? Now, what you're gonna do is you're gonna take your hand and you're gonna grab the strap.

You're gonna take this hand and you're gonna grab your ankle, your heel. All right, a basic stretch. Now, what we're gonna do is we're gonna roll down. You're gonna open the leg out to the side. So you roll back, and you won't go all the way.

You go roll and you open, good, excellent, and you bring your head forward and you bring that leg back. Good, and you roll and you open the leg, excellent. This stays down and you bring it back. Let's do one more, please. And we go roll and we open.

We're looking at the pelvic placement, we're still lifting up through the abdominals, and we bring it back, very good. Let's try the other side so we're equal. All right, so that grabs that strap, and we open it out, and let's roll down, and we open the leg out, very nice, good, and we bring it back up, back into that position. And we open the leg out, perfect, and back up. Let's do one more, please.

And we open, very good, and we bring it back up, lovely work. And bend your knee, bring it in. Okay, go ahead and step off, please. Let's keep the bar down and let's go to two red springs, and let's get into some leg straps today. Great.

Okay, go ahead and lay down on your back, please. And we're gonna bring the carriage, and we're gonna get into some leg straps, good. And extend your legs up to the ceiling. Great, so where we put the strap is really important. You always want to get that strap down by the heel, the mouth of the heel, 'cause we don't want anything to happen with the alignment of the ankle.

Plus, you can always feel the backs of your legs a little bit better, rather than having the strap up here. All right, so we're gonna start with the tail bone down, and you have your upper body nice and organized, so we have lots of width across the shoulders. We have arms that are reaching down. We have those scapulars down in our fingertips. We have a lovely long neck.

Let's prepare our body with inhale. Using the backs of your legs, let's pull the straps down, one. So it's not about the feet pushing into the strap, it's about the backs of the legs pulling the strap down towards the spring, and then bringin' it back up. So you're making the coils open with the backs of your legs, and the fronts of the legs close the coils. Go four, let's do one more, please.

And back up, and go five. Good, and you bring it back up. All right, so what I'm looking for is a nice stretch between your toes and your thigh. So I want you to feel like you're reaching your feet up to the ceiling, they keep on reaching, they hit the corner of the ceiling, where it meets the wall. They hit the wall.

They reach back out to the parking lot, back to the corner where it meets the ceiling, and back up to the ceiling. You want to make those legs travel through the longest path you can. Let's do three more. And back up, lovely. And go three, very good.

And let's finish at five, good. Now let's do one more, please. And five, very good, and bring it back up. All right, good. So we're gonna kinda do a little bit of challenge, so we have the legs open, we're still parallel, a lot easier for the pelvis to move around with the legs not touching.

Again, it's the backs of your legs. You inhale, you exhale, reach, good, this five times, and back up. Good, go two, perfect, and back up. Go three, excellent, and back up. Go four, good, and back up, one more.

And go five, good, and back up. Let's bring our feet together. Let's turn out the tops of those hips, a little gentle squeeze of the heels. Today, let's bend the knees a little, a little demi-plie, and press those thighs out. Let's go down and up five times, please.

Go one, good, and back up, excellent. And two, good, and back up. Go three, and back up. Go four. One more, please, and go five, very good, and back up.

Now, keep that same position, all right? Let's do circles, all right, so knees are bent, and we circle around and around. Five, one, heels touch, we squeeze, and we bring it up. We go two, lovely, good. So we're keeping the same amount of turnout.

The knees are bent, three, good. We go four, excellent. Let's do one more. And go five, good. Now, let's bring it up and let's reverse that.

And go one and around, nice. Two, good. Go three. Go four, perfect. And go five, very good, and bring it back together, extend your legs up to the ceiling, full stretch.

Let's go back to our turned out position, please. Let's pull the legs down to a 45-degree reach, good. Now, let's do our plies, all right? So we're gonna bend our knees and we're gonna draw the heels into the body with a squeeze, and then we squeeze and we press out in a stretch. We go in and a squeeze, good, and we push out and stretch.

Go three, excellent, and push out and stretch. Go four, good, and stretch. Let's do one more, please. And go five, very good, and stretch. Now, hold.

We're gonna draw our heels into our body and we're gonna hold for a moment. So go one. Now hold. Now, without moving the carriage, extend your legs out to the side, two, to a wide second. Good, stretch those legs, let me see, yeah.

Now, pull those legs together, three, good, and connect, and back up on four, all right? We draw the heels into our body, the pelvis is still in its place. Now, holding the carriage still, we extend and make movement, good. Separate the toe from your thigh, excellent. You bring your heels together, good, and back up, let's do one more.

In you go. Reach, pull, very good, and back up, let's go to parallel position. Just open your legs out to the side and stretch everything out, good, excellent, good. And then we pull the legs back together, so bring it back together, and bring 'em back up to the ceiling. Now, this time, I want you to feel like you're pressing the walls out with your legs.

So, push the walls away. Now pull something together, let's do one more, please. Press the walls away, excellent, and bring the legs back together. Go ahead and bend your knees. Let's go ahead and step out of here, all right?

Go ahead and stand on the floor. And if you will set me up with a red and a blue spring. I'm gonna take the box and put it on short, all right? And we're gonna bring the bar up to the footwork position here, and snap those in. And what I want you to do is come around to the other side, please, and I want you to put your foot so it's like a thigh stretch, all right?

So I want your foot against the box, your other foot here, and your hands on this, all right? Good, and just go ahead and extend that out just a little bit so we have some room, right there. Now, lengthen that spine out, all right? Now, fully stretch this leg here. And I want you to push the box back, one, good, and pull it back in, let's bring it in.

Let's go to this red spring. Go, push, two, good. Now hold your eye level up and back in, and go. Now, try to keep that hip down, three, good, and back in. And go four, good, and back in.

Go five, and back in. Go six, good, two more, and go seven, make sure you don't hyperextend your front leg. And go eight, very good, and bring it back in. So this is a good exercise for our dancers 'cause it's hittin' those low glute muscles. Let's come around and try the other side, all right?

All right, so foot against this box there, and you want to get yourself positioned that your box doesn't fly off the carriage, all right? And we have that nice placement of the foot. You have the toe and the knee lined up, and then she has a soft bend of the supporting leg, she's holding the chest up. We go ahead and we press the carriage away, one, good, and we pull it back in. We're keepin' a nice, neutral spine, two, good, and pull it back.

And go three, excellent, and back. Go four, good, and back, and lengthen through there. And go five, very good, and bring it back. Go ahead and stand on the floor now. So we found the back of the leg, which is very important.

We also have some muscles over here that, a lot of time, our dancers don't use, so we're gonna concentrate on those for a moment, all right? So let's get rid of the box, and we'll go back to that blue spring. So we have a red and a blue spring for this. Now, what I want you to do is I want you to put your foot up against the shoulder rest, like this. So half of your foot is on the carriage, the other part is up against the shoulder.

Raudel would kill me right now if he saw my shoes on the carriage. This is my husband in my life and he runs the studios. I always look where he is. Okay, I can do it. I sneak it in, it's like I got away with something.

All right, so we have the foot here. Now, I'm gonna put my hand here, and it's like I'm aiming my sit bone this way. I'm gonna push away, one, and back in, all right? Let's try that once. So these side muscles, very, very important.

We kinda aim that hip, and I just take my eye level to my foot, and I extend it out and go one, and back in, perfect, and you feel that. Two, yeah. Go three, excellent. Go four, good. Go five.

Go six, good. Go seven, let's do one more. And go eight, very good, and bring it in. Now, you'll notice that she is still keeping that knee over that second toe, that's good alignment. Let's try the other side, all right?

Right, and let's take this leg and go parallel with it, all right? So let's be parallel with this foot here, and that knee stays right over that toe. You kinda aim that hip. Here's that lovely spine. We're still neutral, if you notice.

We take our inhale, we exhale, and we push away, one. Good, we pull in, we go two, excellent. Go three, we're gonna do eight. Go four. Go five, good.

Go six. Go seven, and let's do one more. And go eight, all right, very good, bring it back in, lovely. Okay, let's go ahead and go to one red spring now. I'll change it for you.

And let's put the bar down, all right? All right, so we're gonna stand in a fourth position. So fourth position is a very, very important position for dancers because they do a lotta, lotta interesting turns from this position. And also, we lead, we use our legs a lot from that open fourth, closed fifth. So go ahead and stand on to the carriage, and we're gonna be there.

Now, the front leg turns out, all right? And then this leg is turned out too. Your hips are square, tail bone down. Your arms are just gonna hang there. Now, what we're gonna do is we're gonna try to keep the hips square, and we're gonna press the carriage away.

So we push away, we keep the spine long. Think of your eye level going out to that beautiful view out there. And bring it back up, good. So it's like the heel leads the movement, two, and the toes bring it in. We're holding those abdominals and we're square, three.

Good, that's it, there you go! And we go four, good. Let's do one more, please. And we go five, very good. And we bring it back in. Let's go ahead and switch, all right?

So let's switch it out. All right, legs. Now, we're nice and squaring the pelvis. This is the strong leg. We're lifting the spine up, the tail bone is going down towards gravity.

We're not tucking the pelvis as it's strapping down, so the fronts of the hips are very long. We're still maintaining nice placement through the back, lots of width through the collar bone, and I always like to see the eye level out into the horizon. Therefore, I know the neck is in the right place. Prepare with a inhale, and this exhale, let's push the carriage away, one, and let's return that spring back. And go two, good, and back.

Go three, perfect, and back. We go four, good, and back, one more, please. And we go five, very good, and pull it back in, great. Go ahead and step off there, all right? And we're gonna take a moment.

We're gonna go get the foot board, so the jump board, and we're gonna go ahead and put it on to the carriage. Okay, so we have the jump board on, and I'm gonna use one red spring for this, all right? So, Shelby, all I want you to do is a little bit of a jump here. So go ahead and push out and stretch in through those feet. Stretch in through those feet.

So a dancer, when you jump, you want to go toe, ball, heel, and knees land over that second toe. Push, belly muscles pulled in, good, one more. Good, and press, very good, and bring it back in. Now, what I want you to do is I really want you to push, and I want to see your head come to the same spot each time, so back here somewhere. So use all the power in your legs you got.

Let's inhale, let's exhale, and let's go and push, stretch, one, and back in. Two, good, and in. Go three and back in, and go four, good, all the way back here. Go five, that's it. Go six, two more.

Go seven, one more. And eight, very good, and pull it back in. So during that jump, we are really reaching through those feet, separating that toe and thigh, lifting up through the waist, showing those lovely long legs, that beautiful turnout. Let's open to a little bit of a second position there. We have the same thing and we go.

Reach out and a in, and go two, and a in. Go three and a in, go four and a in. Press five and a in, press six and a in. Two more, seven, in, and eight, very good, and pull it back in. All right, let's go to our first position ones, all right?

So let's do a little (speaking in foreign language). So we go and one and a in and a two, back to first. And a open and two, and press and back in, two more. One and in, and two, one more, and a reach, and in, and a reach, very good. All right, many, many, many variations you can do on the jump board for ballet, for the modern dancer, and also for the athlete is good too, and you'll see that in my basketball class, all right?

So we are gonna change ourself to a blue spring, I'll do it for you, please. All right, and then I just want you to get the feel like what your spring is. So before you try this, put your blue spring on, and kinda go back and forth, and notice the tension of the spring's a little bit lighter. You kinda float out there, don't you, and back in. Let's do one more.

Press, good, and back in. Now, what I want you to do is I want you to grab your pegs, and we're gonna be parallel for this, all right? Or you can be in first, whatever's comfortable for you. So, I want you to press, go ahead and jump and feel, like, what you're doing up here. So jump and back in, and jump and back in, and jump and back in.

You'll notice, we're going to the same place out here. One more time, and jump, very good, and in. All right, good. Now, you're gonna jump and you're gonna bring your legs up to the ceiling, you're gonna lift your spine up, roll back down, and come back and jump. All right, so a lot of movement's gonna happen.

So make sure you're on that blue spring. So we go jump and go, and up and back down. Try to lift your pelvis. Go up, little short spine, there you go! And go up, excellent. Go up, perfect, nice! Go up, good, and down, two more.

And go up, good, and down, one more, and go up, good, and down. All right, so you want to be careful on that one because, you know, you don't want usin' momentum and go up on your neck, or flip over. Let's try that in first position, all right? So we go press, and reach, and a up, go high up on those legs, good! And reach, good, and up, two more. Reach, good, and up, one more.

And reach, good, and good. So if you really get the correct timing, the push of the feet, the control of the abdominals, and the rolling of the spine, you'll see that the carriage almost comes to a complete stop, all right? This is a fun exercise. It's not a exercise for everybody. I would never teach this in one of my group classes, but I will teach this to my dancers and my athletes.

So let's do five more, all right? Let's see it one more time, all right? And so we go press, and one, and a up. Go two, and a good. Go three and a up.

Go four and a up, one more. And go five, very good, and up. Good, you got it. We're gonna add one more element to this. Can you go up, bring your heels down like you're doing short spine?

You could? Mm-hmm. Great. I'll try. Yeah? (laughs) All right, here we go.

And we go, and one, up, and down, and reach, good, and two, and up, and down and reach, good! Three and up, good, and down and reach. One more, and go four, up, good, and reach. All right, go ahead and sit up. That was perfect. That is my class for ballet dancers and legs.

I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you'll check out my tutorial. I go a little bit more in depth of what's going on. Shelby, you were brilliant. I really enjoyed working with you.

Thank you!

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Comments

1 person likes this.
Thanks! I liked the jump board sequence at the end.
Looks great! I love Troy's teaching, the way he expresses his knowledge to his student. I took his one spring session at Pilates on Tour. A fan!
I love this video! I have never seen a Troy McCarty video before but now I just want to take a full workshop. I am totally sold!
LOVE this class. One of my favorites. Thank you!
its in my favorites!!! thank you.
Seems easier than it is because it's do fun. I have "ballet legs" but I had a little quiver when I finished,
What a great class! Loved his knowledge, imagery and the sequence of this class. Fun and energetic. Can't wait to share with my clients. Thank you!
Such a strong class. I can't wait to get my ballet daughter on the reformer!
OMG! Troy! That was so much fun! Loved ALL of it! The jump board short spine was a blast! Thank you!
Its been a couple years but I did this class again this morning! It was so fun! Hope you come back soon! Thank you!
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