Class #3446

Traditional Reformer Flow

45 min - Class


Use the springs to help you learn how to control your body with this Reformer workout by Adrianne Crawford. She teaches a traditional flow, adding in breakdowns of transitions and some of the more advanced exercises throughout the class. She pushes you to clean up your technique with cues that will help you avoid going through the motions.
What You'll Need: Reformer, Pilates Pole

About This Video


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Okay. So, hi, I'm Adrian. I'm going to be teaching a intermediate reformer today on the grots equipment. Um, and we'll probably break down some of those exercises just a little bit. I'm going to be a little more picky and we might not do the full in our immediate routine, but you should be familiar with these exercises. Okay. So let's go ahead and have you to sit down properly.

So you want to make sure where you sit that you angle yourself appropriately so that you are directly down in there and there goes her headrest. Right? Let me just adjust that a little bit more. Okay, go ahead. All right, so her head rest just fell down. So for work, you want to make sure you're on your toes, you get all 10 toes on there and your heels are up and tendency as we're moving is to let your heels Kinda drop. So I want you to really keep those heels up while you move. And you're also going to be very wide on this one. So you turned out as much as you can where you still have that foot position, those toes on there. And then with the heels up, you're going to begin, you're going to start to stretch out. Both of them are on three springs, depends on your body type and your, your abilities and your strengths, how many springs you would actually use.

Pilates Stance

So one thing I wanna make sure is that when you're moving that you're not just letting those springs bring you in. The garage has really specific, these springs help you to learn where that resistance is coming from. So think about that when you come in that you're pulling it in yourself rather than the springs pulling yet, right? So you're going to move to your arches, we're going to do 10 push your heels down and control that in and I'm going to pull her heels down to pulling those heels down. Does that feel different when I do that? Yes. Good. Getting yourself long, pulling up while you're moving. When you've gotten to your 10 you're going to change.


Go ahead and change to your heels with your feet together and flexed. So exactly. I want to shift you a little to come back in cause you're a little bit too far over. Okay, now go back out. She just off centered, so I fixed that all the way out. All the way in. These are lengthening and strengthening exercises while lengthening and in. Once you get to your 10 you're going to go down to your toes, turn the feet out and then stretch out and hold.


You're going to lower, lower, lower the heels, lift, lift, lift. This one you can really be specific and get yourselves working deep in that lower powerhouse. So below the Navel is where I want you to think of really pulling in and lifting up, especially as your heels go down as that's where we tend to like lose that strength in our tummies might pop up. Some of us, she's got a very little tiny eye, lower and scoop, so to you, but different body types, right? I left. Hello left. And once you get to your tens, now the transition is you're going to, when you're on the garage, you grab those straps in your lower your bar all at the same time for your hundreds. You can also lower your headrest at the same time, but that's okay. We'll come back to your, you load your head rest because the next exercises get another time.

Tendon Stretch

That's okay. As long as it doesn't hit you. All right, so you're in your a hundred position. Arms are up, everything works simultaneously. So as you stretch those legs, you're gonna lift your heads and touch chest, reach forward and begin pumping the arms. Breathing in, breathing out. So I'm going to come around, I'm going to pull on you because really you're trying to stretch yourself. You are stretching the arms as well, reaching forward and filling up that space in your back. Now your arms should be way up here. That's it. I wanna pull on you and I want you to curl up in your chest. Mark. Go ahead. Two, three, four, five, two, four, five and hour three, five. And out. Two, three, five.


I think one more and then rest. So you're going to grab your straps. This is about transitioning. When you transition, you're going to sit up and drop one spring. Now you can can't do this on the other equipment. That's why the grass is so special is that these transitions are part of your workout. There is no stopping.

You're going to adjust your straps because you're getting ready for your short spine. You want to make sure when you adjust those drops on the, on the grots that they're kind of over to the side so they're not right above your face because you don't want them to accidentally drop and hit you. So I want to show you so that it lowers down and then you put the leather into the metal. Exactly. Then you're not going to pull them. You're going to lift your bottom and put your feet in the straps. So don't pull cause that can injure your shoulders. And if that's too difficult than this exercise is probably, you're probably not ready for it.

And then you get yourself into position. Let's have you do a couple frogs just to get the straps to adjust a bit and to get yourself adjusted to it out and in. So if you understand that there are principles in place and there are six of them, breathing, centering, concentration, control and precision. You want to make sure and there's flow. We are flowing through these.


You are now getting ready for your actual short spine, so I might break this down. You're gonna first stretch out. Once you're there, you're going to lift your seats up and the legs all at the same time floating over so that the carriage is now in. Now that you're up, you're going to bend your knees, you're going to hold and your bottom shouldn't move. It should stay still. When those knees bend, feed, stay where they are and you slowly articulate down. We're going to start slow and then we'll speed up. You're trying to get that back to stretch until your tail are down.

Short Spine

Once you're down, you rest. I want you to count to two before you go again, you're in to do that one more time kind of at a slower pace. Reach out, you get kind of a wrap and I want you to live from your powerhouse, from your bottom, from your abdominals. Then the legs just kind of lightly go with you. Over bend journeys. Keep the heels where they are as you roll everything down and rest. So now you're going to put that into a flowing movement.

So it's like an airplane taking off a runway. You're going to go out, up and over. So there's no real pause there. And then bend your knees, keep the feet here and roll down. Now you're missing, cause I want to make sure that when you come down that this part of your back actually tries to get down more things. So keep stretching down longer. So get your legs a little straighter. Yep. And keep it rolling. So the legs are lengthening still. As you're rolling down, even more tabling all the way down. And then rest. So bend your knees.

We're going to start again. Ready? Together out. Hips and legs. Your bottom up. Dare we go. Keep it going. Keep it going. Keep it going over bend. We're going quick, clear now. Roll down. So I want to see those legs get longer. Coleen and your bottom. Drop more. Yup. And then come down, saw smile and I'll lift up and over.

Out, up over bend, staying in control. Roll down. Once you're down, remember you have to count to two before you go again and lower. Okay, so I'm going to have you do that one more time together. Everybody's going to come down together. Hold. Now when you go out you shouldn't stop. I don't want to see you.

Stop here and then go up. I want you to go out, up and over. All the see, nice, smooth transition. Ready out, up and over or the little pause so you can see how difficult these can be and all the way down. Oh, down, down. Okay. You're going to grab your handles and set up for your uh, coordination. So now you've got your handles, elbows are down and your lift your heads and chest off of the mat. You're looking at your nails now. You haven't done anything. The arm jet, good heels together, toes apart. Let me make sure you see your toes. Arms down, legs out into the exercise. Stretch out, open. Close the legs, bend the knees all the way to the ears and arms bent. So don't let those elbows come off the mat. Reaching out, up open, close.


Nesen arms up. Inhale to stretch. I'm going to see more curl here and in and up. Don't let your bottom come up though. Yes, that's it. There is correct. Stretch. Open-Close bend up one with Chris Cross beats. So now you're gonna go out of hold and cross the legs beating. One, two, eight counts. Three, four, five, six, seven, eight bent in, add up. All right, let's go ahead and have you guys set up.

Put the straps on the hooks for now. You're going to set up for your long box. Normally we would go and do the swan here on the barrel, but we're going to just go straight into your long box series. So the nether of you're going to need to get your box and then you would make sure that you drop one spring so you're only on one spring. You can put that bar. Yeah.

So inside is good because then you can access it when we're going into short box. So now both of you are going to lie down for pulling straps. So you want to make sure shoulders are on the box. So make sure you move backwards. And then you're going to take a holder straps and walk up. If you can hold the handles even better. Uh Huh.

And then you can take these and then you walk up and then hands on the outside. Alright, so there's always resistance. You should only be on one spring. Both of you are. So now you're ready. You're going to reach down. So arm stay long. Lift. Just the arms, not your chest yet. Lower your chest, both of you and roll your shoulders back. Hug them together.

Pulling Straps

Holding for three counts, two, three and come back down. So Kali moved backwards a bit more. You're way too forward. Lot more. Keep going. Keep going. I know yet. So your shoulders should be on the box, not off of the above. Youtube. Move back a little bit. Okay. So it becomes a little bit different here.

Reach down towards the floor alongside the carriage reach back and now holding that. Can you roll your shoulders back? Yes. Hold that for three more. Hug the shoulders, two, three and straight down. These are not the easiest exercises. They're the kind of ones that make you want to grunt cause they're really difficult and reached down hold. So you got your chest too high.

I want you to lower your chest and hug the shoulders mark. Yes. Hold that one, two, three and lower. All right, let's go to your t. So you slide your hands to the end of the leather all the way down. Arms go out in a t position and they're up. So I don't want to see them drop down. When you're moving, they stay up. This one, lift your chest and head. Reach back, opening up the chest. Hug those shoulders together. Pinch between here, hold two, three and open.


So always keeping resistance on those straps. So don't let them loose loose. Then reach back. I'm going to bring you up a little bit more and there you go and open three times. The last one reached back to get those arms up higher and hug those shoulders and in very nice, grab your straps in one hand, you're going to add one spring when you step off, and then you'll adjust the straps behind your back. And as you can see, you're still transitioning. You're still moving. There's no real pause when you sit down, let's have you do that again.

When you sit down, you did it pretty much the, you're going to sit right at the edge of the mat. So your bought you're, you're almost off of here. So one foot at a time, one foot onto the bar, then you sit all the way down. See how she's almost at the edge there? That's what you want. Then you've got your straps adjusted, you're gonna lie on her back with your hands above your forehead. There's a specific way classical bodies move. So not everybody's familiar with that. And this is new to you. Good. All right, so you're looking up, you're curled into yourself.

You're going to take into your backstroking. They're on two springs, arms and legs up. They open, they sweep together and they hold and count to two, one, two, and you come back in. So straight up, open the mirror, each other, arms and legs, and then you reach. Squeeze your bottom. Can, you can get those legs longer and can you get a little more deep and scoop and come back in as straight up. Open reach. That's it. I want you to lower your legs, Coleen, and keep her reaching out. Go ahead and go back in reverse. That goes straight out whole. Can you curl up here? Hold, hold, hold. There you go. Open.


Lift together. Bed Two more. So the difficulty is right here. You hold a tried to deepen that, like curling up in the [inaudible]. Open lift together bed. One more time. Reach out. Long Cow. Two, two, one two. Open up together. And Ben, you take the stress. Here's another transition. You're going to sit up, the straps are in one hand. You're not going to put your feet down. So do that again. You're going to come up into a teaser to transition.

So you've now just finish your backstroke. You take the straps in one ha light up. Take the shop's in one hand. Now you're going to sit up in a teaser and drop one spring. So you can use your hands to do that to help get you up, but your legs stay up. Does that make sense? There you go. Take your time. That's it.

So something to work towards, right? All right, so everybody is now going to lie down. You'd get yourself adjusted. You can move your hands around to help you move around. But it's coming up that you've got the straps in your legs. They're gonna lift. All right, so lie back down. Just checking that you're both centered. All right? So you're just ready for this.

You're down in like a crucifix position. You're gonna make sure your tailbones are on there. And so in other words, you're not too far out there how? And you've got enough room to where you're sitting. Take your time, curl yourselves up, arms sweep in as you bring yourself to balance. Now that you're up there, you're gonna lower the lift three times down to the top of the hips, not past the hips. The idea is to stop at the top of the hips and then come all the way up.


High is you can't, let's do one more all the way up and now you're ready to lie back 10 you feel has the springs. If you let go the straps and I let them go loose, you lose your balance. You have to work to keep that resistance going. All right. Again, this time you had a little circles. Come on up. Find your position. Good going down. Now remember you're working on going up with the arm. So bigger arms. If you've got this, you go bigger.

If you feel a little unsteady goal, a little smaller [inaudible] there you go. And now up and come back down. So generally you do about three things with the arms. So now they've got one more set. You're going to come back up and reverse your circles.

You come up now ccs stay in control. So don't feel like you have to go big, even though she's kind of telling her to go beg you, do what you can control. That's it. Now come back down. Very good. Exactly. So that's things to work towards in your workout. I'm gonna have you go ahead and just drop this straps and can be a little loud. And then let's have you flip your box and set up for short box.

So you'll need to turn your box and you'll also need to add a spring and grab your bar and your pad. Okay, so now you're getting set up for your short box series, doing a traditional map or reformer. Intermediate. All right, so move your pads a little bit closer. Yeah, not too close, but enough. Yeah. All right. So really it's important where you place your feet here, you want to make sure your feet are hip width apart.

So I like to look at the springs. You can see the springs in your feet should be kind of right in the middle on the garage. So a little wider. Cecelia, what's great about the growths too is this is long enough to be able to get your in the right position. Go ahead. All. Alright. You want a good hands with trunk in the back? You get your arms wrapped around your waist, you've got your bars set up, your legs are long. Both of you can go ahead and push down. Where is your box place? Something's off. Yeah, you actually need to step off and move that box over the shoulder pads.

I just noticed that. Okay. It depends on how tall you are, but your legs are long enough to be able to reach that. Good. All right, so she's got her box over your shoulder pads and now that way it gives her a little extra leg room. You might not be able to see that, but the idea is to be able to push down those ankles. He really active in your feet, so that strap is really there to guide you.

I want you to move backwards just a little bit. Yup. Okay. Now go into your head position. So both of you look great, your theater hip width apart, your alignment looks good and you're in your c. You're going to start to go backwards and I just want you to stop about tabletop position and then curl back up. So now a little bit further back. Keep your arms on your waist here. Yup. Now use them and pull in.

Round Back

You're really curling into yourself. Go as far as you want. You can go all the way back if you want. This feels so good. Stretch. You can take your arms back, you can keep them forward. Now the work is curling forward. Do One more breathing. Go ahead and inhale. Exhale, back stretch. You can do a pushup that's feels really good too. It gives you these stretches that we can always access and other forms and an incurable forward. Take a hold of your bars instead of tall.

You're going to a flat back. If you need to move backwards, do so cause sometimes you'll see light forward on those. Check that foot position again. Make sure your hip width apart, arms are straight up, your tall steel planks. So I want you to really think of lifting up off of your hips as you go back hinge. When you feel a little shaky, I want you to come back up. That's it. Very strong. And come over and check your arching here. I want you to fill that up.

Flat Back

Keep that where it is. Now you're flat. Now go back. Don't arch more ribs. Pull them in. Yes. Now come up and continue. Don't pop out. Pull back in. Yes, one more time for lift. That makes you strong. Reach down, stretch, come back up. Arms will be up if you need to move back. Do so now. Otherwise get yourselves ready. Lean a little bit forward. And now one, two, three up. One, two, three up. This is a stretch.

Side to Side

So don't think of so much bending as lifting as you stretch. So I'm going to hold you here and I'm going to lift you lift. You get those ribs in more. Yes. More. There it is. You feel that? That's which I want to see and over. So you're lifting up, you're not arching lift. That's it. And up. One more. If you can't each side over. This is very nice. Add Up.

And if you've done both sides, go ahead and restaurants, give your arms a break, take your arms back up. You're getting ready to twist. So arms are up. You're twisting from the ribs, not the hips. So the hip shun twists with, you've got that foot position, you've got your ankles pushing down through those. The strop is got that tension on. Now you're going to twist the right much as you can towards the corner of the reformer. Get those ribs together and now you're going to hinge. So now you're here and now you're over and you come back up and you get yourself center on when I correct you twist to the left.

Twist and Reach

Now she got a good hinge your long, so I'm going to adjust you a little bit. Push and pull those ribs back more. There it is. Now come back up Sandra. So make sure that when you go that you're not arched, that you got that flat back. You got those ribs together and you come back up and your center and you do one more turn and reds more. More.

Yes, that's it. Up Center and rest. Very nice. All right, let's put the bars underneath here and take one leg out of the strap. You're going to take it straight up, or excuse me, you're going to hold your thigh into your stretches first. So lift your backs, so sit on top of your hip more so you're not falling back. You're more forward. And here we go, Ben. Journey three kicks one, two and now walk up your leg. Now you might have to do a little adjusting, hopefully not, but if you feel like you're a little off center, fix those hips.


Now they don't have to do a lot of adjusting later. Put your heads on your knees and then go back and then walk down. Leg is at 90 degrees square off. Curlier chance this one. Okay, that's fine. You can go all the way back or you can just go tabletop. You'd, you'd listened to your body and do what you're familiar with and then come forward and sit up tall.

Now both of you can kind of hop that right hip forward a little bit. It doesn't quite look center. So you're getting your box shoulder to shoulder, shoulder to hip, hip to hip. You're making sure that those lines don't change as you move. And the tendency is for those lines to change. You have to control it when you're moving. So head on your knee.

This is where it changes. As soon as you go back is where things change. Don't let it curl, girl. More pelvic curl. That's it. Now walk down. So kind of stop right there. Curl back up. Make sure your shoulders are centered as you curl back up. So also be conscious of what both legs are doing.

You want to make sure you're not rotating or turning those knees in and sit up tall. Let's go all the way back and you do some leg circles. You'll go back. So this one you will take your hands back, your hands are on the floor like a pushup, and then you're going to keep everything still as you do three circles each way. Doesn't have to be super big, just has to be controlled. Two, three, reversing one dole at the other hip move too. And now ground yourselves back up, curling into it all the way up and you'll sit up tall. You're ready to switch legs, good other side.

Single Leg Circles

Get yourself adjusted. Ideally you don't want to have to do any adjusting. You should be in the right position when you come up. So if you had to adjust, it's most likely that you were off center when you were moving. Okay, so three stretches. One, two, three and then you walk up. It's natural. You're going to have to change before you go. Okay, get into a good, see, I can see this hip is still too far back and then your rock back. You planted your tree at 90 degrees.


You can go all the way back or you can just go to tabletop and curl back up. That's more advanced. So you can mix your intermediate. If you are more advanced to add some exercises, lift your hips up and around and go back and walk. Keep that foot that's in this strap active so it stays flexed and come back up. Now did you do three on the other side or did you do one extra one if you did one extra one, do another one.

Cause now you're going to end up going into circles. So go back. Hands are on the floor or underneath the carriage. You're ready to circle three times. Don't let your extended leg that's in the strat turn in. Keep the hip turned out and that will help you three from getting those hips to misalign. Round yourselves back up. Watch that alignment shoulder to shoulder, hip to hip. Come on up. They'll kick. Good. You fixed yourself all the way up.

Single Leg Circles

You're sitting up tall, so fall forward more. There you go. And lift rest. Okay, let's get rid of your boxes, but you're going to add your bars, but you're going to keep your pads and then when you come back, you'll lift your bar. You're staying on the same spring. So not a lot of change happens with that. Lift your head rest and put your pad on the headrest. Get your bar up. Now there's a specific way to get on the reformer.

It's hand, foot, hand, foot, and you want to be writing into your long stretch position long. Yes, correct heals in other words are up. Now the carriage already has their shoulders forward of the bar, and that's the difference we have between the grots and some of the other equipment is it's you're already in there, there's no spring resistance. So you guys are going to push backwards. Breathe in at a, you're gonna try to bring yourself over that bar in that straight line all the way and then make it move. So don't let your heels drop. Get those heels way up. Go ahead. So this is flowing. Push Away, control it in, in. It's that last end.

Long Stretch

That's really hard because that's where the springs are already in. And now you have to go the extra mile to get yourself over the bar. One more out and all the way in. Both of you look great in that position. Nice and strong. Lower down to your knees, place your feet against the shoulder path.

You're going into a down stretch. So now hips are forward, your heads are up in your chests, are open, uses arms. Now can both of you get your heels against the shoulder pets because that's really the foot work that we do. That's why the shoulder pads are as tall as they are is because you really want them to keep those feet actively involved. It's not easy. Usually people are too tight to be able to do that. But you guys are advanced enough to try to get those heels into the path.

Down Stretch

Alright, ready? Push away with the arms and as you come in it's a breathing exercise and it's also a lengthening. You're lifting and opening up the chest. So I want to see once you're in right here, stop. So the carriage is all the way open up the chest. Rural though. Shoulders back. Yes.

And then go again out all the way in and both of you can walk up to the tips of the fingers and do an extra roll with those shoulders. If you want to be really fancy, you can and go back. Cecilia is following your lead. Come back down as good though. All right, now that's more advanced to go into the full arch. You could just walk to go ahead and demonstrate just up to your fingers, keeping the fingers there and is open. Yes, with the heads back. There you go. That's correct. All right, let's have you go ahead. Now there's a transition here. This is very difficult, but I'm going to have you guys challenge yourselves.

Put your hands back on the wire to get into your up position of stretch position. You're gonna first round your back. Stay right where you are with the shoulders so you're not going to fall backwards and you're going to try to lift up, push the legs out and flatten and push away. Good and around, back up into your c. All right, so now you're here all the way in and get that carriage again. Keep it in. Good. Get lifted in here. I'm not seeing enough lift. So tuck your bottom. [inaudible] there we go. Now not using your arms. Push out with the legs. Push out with the legs. Clank. Open your chest more. There we go.

Up Stretch

And then in in round. So I want to see you go out all the way lower. Open the chest, then come back in. That's at Walmart. Time out, plank. Add in. Okay, not bad. Go to a flat foot. Transitioning to your elephants.

Your heads are down and you're up in your cs. How's it? Get your hips to Tuck more and that's where your work is coming from. All through that power house. Ready? Push with the heels down and push back. And then I want to see drag it back in. Drag it back in. So this is a good, would I say like a quality check?


Here is where you can check how well you're doing it. You can feel where you're working. I want you to feel that lift and I'm not seeing it. I'm seeing him come in and out, but I want to see something change in here. There it is. So what I saw as her around more, hey, round last one round and that's not cause these are really easy to just blow through. All right, let's go ahead and have both of you step off.

You're going to slide your pads down and let's go into set up for your stomach massage so you can add an extra spring and then both of you will sit back down now a year ago. Yeah. Okay. She did a fancy move getting on. Did you see how she got up? So she's really advanced. She's been doing this for awhile. So there is a transition way to get into it. So why don't we go ahead and try to do that. So if you've never done this, what you're gonna do is take a hold of the shoulder pad and then you're also going to put your foot on the bar and then the answer hand foot, hand, foot again, and lower yourself down with control. Yes. So always working, right? Get into your c now, is that something you should start off doing? Not necessarily.

It's something that you can work towards and eventually accomplish. All right, so heads are down. You get that scoop. They're on their three springs, heels up as high as you can. Keep those heels up. Now push out all the way. Can you stretch forward more? Fall towards me more.

Round Back

That's where your position is. Now in that position, you're in a whole lower lift. The heels bending come in out and I'm going to have you hold out. Now you too can fall forward more. Yes, there's your stretch. You feel that now you're getting more stretching your lower back, lower lift in, so that's where you want to make sure you're feeling some work happening in your lower back has stretched, not a pain, a stretch, so careful that you don't fall backwards. Now let's pick up the page and do three more. Come in, out, lower, lift in out. Can you fall forward more, Cecilia?

There you go to and now you stay in. Now if you are on four springs, you would drop one spring, but since they're on three, if you're going to stay with those three, take your arms back. Don't let your knees go wider than your hips. If you're really powerful and you've done this for a while, don't go wider than it heads if this, if you're not so flexible, you can go shoulder with apart. All right? So both of you are pretty flexible. So hip with the part with the knees, lift your backs, heels up. And if that doesn't feel comfortable with your hands, you can put your knuckles in the mat, which is the way I like to do it personally. But you guys look comfortable.

Flat Back

All right? So hills are up out. You go lower lift bending, come in and you're gonna just keep moving and I'm going to talk, right? So you want to make sure you're in control. Once again of those springs, you can see how different these springs are. They are going to pull you. And that's the idea is to teach you where that resistance is coming from. Can you get taller though? Yes. So really lift your backs and tumor out.

Now your knees are going to wide. Don't let them go wide. When you come in, they're going to want to, they're going to want to go out and then you're going to come in. Then you're going to drop one spring and reach up. So now you're in your reach and position. Now the springs are a lot lighter. Slowly push out. Keep those hills up and come back in and lift, lift left and push out. You'll do to work and don't fall backwards. Stay on top of the hips if not forward at the hips. It's called reaching.


Pretty sure lifting. Last one I had you do an action. Go ahead and rest for a second. Put your feet down. I want both of you to drop to one spring. Go back into your rounded position, feedback on the bar. You're going to do your round again and now you're on one spring.

Round Back

I want you to notice the difference in the resistance here, so you had helped before. Now you don't have as much help to pull you in, so stay forward of those hips and you bring it in. You feel how different that was from when you had springs. Good. Do one more stay rounded up and over those hips. Now add the springs, go back to three springs. It's really important to understand the difference of the weight of the springs.

Two, three more with the springs, and that's the idea is the springs are teaching you how to control your own body. All right? You can come back and drop back to those two springs. You're getting ready for your twists or arms are up. You're tall, you're not falling backwards. Yes. Now you're going to twist. You live taller, taller, taller, and then you're coming back in. Now, here, keep those heels up and don't let the heels shift. That's how you can tell if your hips are off, right? You want to get that placement and she [inaudible] and [inaudible].


The closer you are sitting on towards the spring, sit up taller. The harder it is. Push out, lift, lift, lift. Now your heels are shifted, so fix that. There we go, and come back in and if you've done enough, you can stretch if you'd like. That's it. And then in. All right, let's go ahead and you can do a stretch. You're going to set it for semi-circle. So you guys will not need your pats here, but you are going to drop your bars.

Hamstring Stretch

You should now add your, you should be on two springs. There we go. You're fine. You're on two. That's fine. [inaudible] and then you want to drop your headrest. Actually it doesn't matter. I forgot. You're going to keep the headrest up. It doesn't matter cause you don't need that. All right, so heels together, toes apart. And this is tricky to get into. You grab those uh, shoulder pads and you push yourself down in your bottoms or up. Correct.

So she's got her feet on the bar. Hips are up. Now this is a really good teaching exercise for hip placement. You want to make sure your hips are square and right now yours are not. Okay. So you should look at your hips.

You should be able to see them and see that there's a straight line from hip to hip bone. Alright, now the other thing is as you move, as the arms tend to bend, I want your arms to stay straight the whole time. You're going to start by rolling down, trying not to move the carriage. Ideally it's going to have to move some, but you want to try not. You let your bottom drop into the well and you push out. Keep way down there with your seat. Now at your out. Don't move the carriage.

Semi Circle

That's where it really gets hard. Lift your bottom up. Bring it back in. Okay, so lower yourself down. You're going to do two more. Just like that. Lower. Don't move the carriage. There we go. Now she's really down her bottoms in that. Well, you should feel the springs push out. Don't lift your bottom as you push hold now do not move the carriage so you gotta keep those arms active. That's it. That's it. Good.

And come back in very challenging one more. And then you're going to get ready to reverse. Lower, lower drop. It's one of the best stretches that are my favorites. Lift feels really good and come back in. Now you're going to stay up as you go out. So you were reversing this stretch.

You lower. Don't move the carriage all the way down and then bring it back in and then out. So right here, I shouldn't see the carriage move as she lowers, lowers, lowers. Good job. And N I last one out. Control it out, Huh? And come back in. Okay.

Both of you can grab your ankles, try to get that carriage in. Give yourself an extra stretch forward without arching. So keep those ribs together. Grab the, uh, shoulder pass. Lost my train of thought and move yourselves back. Okay, you're going to step off and let's go ahead and skip the leg circles and go into your Neely knee stretch series. So you're already on your two springs. You're going to add your bar and you're going to get into a rounded neve stretch series. Let's go ahead and put your head rest back up and then you're going to kneel on your knees. So your hands are on the bar end.

Remember that foot placement with your heels. So you really want to try to get those toes to Tuck so you can get those heels way back. They're pushing back, but all right, so you're in a nice c curve here. Scooped up some tuck on anymore. All right, now yeah, don't go too wide with the knees. Make sure they're underneath your hips. Very nice. You're ready to go. Yes, UCLA. Sit back more. More right there. Now push out, add Curlin so I want you to work on that end. Work is really on the end because the end is where you're trying to tack more tuck under, so you're getting that lower back to really curl onto it's stretching three, get it more scope here for fat, eight times six and there is an accent. Seven Walmart it head up, chest open.

Round Back

Sit back now and push out and in in now your heel still pushing back. Make sure they're pushing back for five and this is really tricky. Not to bang it in. You have to control it and that's not now transitioning from here is also challenging. If you can do it, stay forward. Don't let your shoulders fall back, get into your seat. You guys can do it. That's it. Fall a little bit more forward so your shoulders are more on top of the springs or that metal bar. Now you're going to lift the knees and push out.

Flat Back

So knees up and curl back. End. Now this is really good. You want to round more though? Can you tuck on her? That's it. So you might have to pause. I'm going to make you pause. Come in and pause. Tuck. Yes. Push out, comment, hold, tuck. Ev. Push out. One more out in whole tuck and rest.

Knees Off

See how we can just go through the motions on time. All right, we're all need to be pushed. All right, you're going to step off, add a spring, and then you're ready to lie back down. You're going to, you're walking or running your backliner tools. So the nice way to get yourselves back into the length of it, stretch out. You're going to walk. I knew. Then you'll run. So you're walk 10 run 10 but the idea here too is you're pushing up pulling now. So I want to see that I went up. I'm going to hold you. Okay. And I want you pull up with this leg and push me down so you use your seat more.


More, more wrap at the release. Yeah, I'm losing your socks and push and push. There's not enough push. So use your bottom. Wrap more. Squeeze. There you go. Now push with this foot kick guy. Kind of make the carriage move up, down, up, down, up, down and come back in. That's not easy.

It's really getting your foot to help push and your seat to help lift you something to work towards. Put your feet on the bars for your pelvic lift. You're going to get your bottoms up. Now your ribs are still on the mat so it's not too high. Then you're a straighten your legs, push out, and then you are once again controlling it in.

Pelvic Lift

So if I were to drop it down to one spring, you would know that how light it was. They would just want to slam it. You have to control it. Tumor doesn't matter how wide you go here with your knees. They can be as wide as you want or as narrow, but it's really about getting all the way out full stretch all the way and then slowly lower yourselves down. Both of you are going to step off and let's go ahead and grab your pads. Again. You're going to drop your bars as well.

You're going to set up for your side split, so you'll need to go to two springs. That's fine. Now if you're more advanced, you could go to one spring, but it depends on how you're feeling. They've been working really hard. Great, so the pad, exactly, it goes underneath the bar because you're going to end up standing on here. You want somewhere for your foot to be cushioned. All right, go ahead and step out onto the carriage and then what y'all need to do is put your right foot or whatever, standing foot onto the pat, and then you have to kind of shimming over. Arms are out to the side and you're standing tall. Now if I put a bar here, you should be flat, so I want to see those ribs. Really Scoop. There we go.

That's it. Now you're working in that powerhouse. Little more here. Drop that tailbone more. That's it. Now it's not a big, big split. You're going to push out a little the lift. That's far enough. Now you're in a lift and lift. So through here I should see you lengthening. Push out, and then that's it up. So your flat from the back, flat from the front left.

Side Splits

That waste is getting long and strong. Let's go out a hole. You're going to picking flour. So you're going to keep the carriage still. As you drop down, take your time, stay in control. Curl yourselves up. Give the flowers to the gods. Exhale, you're not moving that carriage. Now, arms to the side. Pull yourselves back in. Hold the end.

Now do the same thing without letting that carriage move. Take your time. Stay in control. Articulate up round, round, round. What's to give. Give the flowers back to the gods and that's enough. You ready to show me in?

You're going to end up turning around to the other side. Okay, so it's a lot more challenging. The lighter the spring one foot goes over. So now you're still here. You're going to Shimmy the other foot over. [inaudible] arms out to the side. Get your position long, tall and strong, right? Poor shout and let me see that tummy lift and out.

So pull up, pull up, pull up. Go ahead. Now you're going to go out and hold your getting ready for saw. You're going to go down. Keep the character moving. Very challenging. Drop your chins. Articulate up. Oh, where's the skip?

There we go. Now come back in. Oh sorry, I forgot you had to do another side. Let me get out of it right, and one more side and over. And then when you're done, you'll come back in. Okay, now bring it in and hold. And then you'll stay in. Now go back down. Calling careful. Stay in control. Don't let that carriage move and have you already done it.

You're going to start with the carriage. And when you're done, you'll show me that foot in. Yep. At alas side. Then you can step off, correct. And now make sure the carrot, you then Shimmy your foot in, you'll step onto the carriage. Then you'll step down. Give yourselves a hand. Very nice job. So you can see those are challenging not to move the carriage. Good job.


2 people like this.
Loved all the breakdowns - so great for teachers, as well as for our intermediate to advanced students to just listen to your cues and flow. Also, really felt short spine and long stretch a bit differently with those breakdowns. Traditional, yes, but so much more. Thanks for this!
I am interested in how the Gratz equipment is different from the other reformers. You said in this class that it helps you learn where the resistance is coming from. Can you explain how? Obviously, I have no classical Pilates experience, but I am interested in learning the differences. I have worked on Stott reformers and own a Peak PPS reformer, and do see major differences, specifically in the spring weights, between those two machines.

This class was very interesting, seeing some of the small changes you made in the students movements and how they were initiated in different areas because of that.

Thank you.
2 people like this.
I prefer Balanced Body, but find the exercises harder on the Gratz. A lot of classically trained teachers refuse to teach on anything else. Most Gratz reformers are 80 inches so the angle of the straps is so much greater. The angle creates more resistance. The straps are also leather. Again, totally different. Another difference is how close the carriage comes to the foot bar. That final inch to close the carriage is the most challenging. Let's be honest; on all of the other reformers, you can actually feel the springs pulling you back in unless you really resist. The springs can over assist. Since the carriage does not come in as close to the foot bar and the springs assist during the most challenging part of the exercise, the most intense part is omitted entirely. Also, range of motion achieved is greater on the Gratz for the same reason. I loved/hated the Gratz after recovering from knee surgery. It forced me to keep going to increase my range of motion to close the carriage.
1 person likes this.
Thanks so much Lori M for your reply. I’ve never used Gratz so was interested in learning about the differences.

Thanks for the questions. I am a Romana trained instructor and Gratz is what we trained on, so my preference may be biased. However, I have taught for many years, and on all different equipment from Balance Body, Peak, Stott, Allegro, and the like. Out of my experience in the exercises I teach, Gratz has always provided the most challenge. This is due in large part to the exercises taught as well as the spring resistance that I find to be consistent, because it forces a sense of control in the movement in both flow and function; which is a discipline I find rewarding. This is due in large part to the design as Lori explained very well, especially as she mentioned that final inch to pull in.
In addition the sturdiness of the leather straps is also effective and level with the body, the springs uniform, foot bar length/height level in proportion to getting the full length and stretch out of it, etc. All of which provide a preciseness in centering the body while in motion. This by no means is to say you can't get this on any other equipment, it is just different, therefor due to the principals of Pilates and the exercises I teach I find the Gratz helps me control the flow and control of movement in a more precise way because of the design. I hope this helps answer your question and you continue to explore this wonderful piece of apparatus!
2 people like this.
Thank you Adrianne Crawford and Lori M for your responses. You have piqued my curiosity enough to seek out a classical class in my neighborhood.

One of my favorite things about Pilates Anytime is the community. In the short two years I have been here I’ve had so many wonderful teachers and students answer my questions and help me with form and adjustments I’ve needed.

Thank you both.
1 person likes this.
Loved this solid classical reformer flow! I only wish that the camera would not have zoomed in so frequently. Often Adrianne and one of the student were cut out of the shot. While it's nice to have a visual reference of good form, it's also really useful to see how the instructor uses her hands (both in gestures and in touch) to help a student improve an exercise. Thanks again for the workout!
For the first time in 18 years I enjoyed stomach massage series! Amazing ... thank you! The pleasurable work is in the details ☺.
1 person likes this.
Yes I agree it’s more helpful to see the student who needs help getting into the correct form and the way an experienced instructor corrects them - it’s so hard to teach even just two people at the same time!!! Adrienne has great cues and she makes her points while also maintaining a cadence  and flow - I know it’s not easy so we’ll done! 

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