This video is part of a course.

Class #3858

Expand and Stretch

15 min - Class


Welcome to Day 4! Today, Gia teaches a feel-good class that will allow you to stretch and expand. Now that you're starting to wind down toward the end of the week, it is beneficial to find a nice release in your body.

This is a great class on its own or you can include it after a more vigorous workout if you need additional stretching.
What You'll Need: Mat

About This Video

Aug 05, 2019
(Log In to track)


Read Full Transcript

Hi, I'm Jia Calhoun. Today we're going to do a class that's focusing on expansion and stretching should feel good. Um, toward the start. At the end of the week where you're winding down, need a little bit of a release. It's also great after a hard workout or you can add it to any other class if you need just a little bit of an extra stretch. So we're gonna start with a quick little warm up for your spine on Quadro pad.

You want your hands right under your shoulders, your knees, right under your hips. Long neutral spine. You're going to start with your tailbone. You're just going to round your back thing of pulling your tailbone under, articulating through your spine, letting your head be the last thing to round into your cat position. And then again, starting with your tailbone, you're gonna tilt it back into an arch again. Your head is the last thing to come into your arch for your cow. Again, starting with the tail rolling up and then, then starting with the tail into arch.

So if you can articulate as much as you can, it'll really just help warm up your spine and then arching the back, trying to keep the shoulders away from the ears to more. Last one and we're gonna come back to a neutral position. I have my toes flat under. If you want to Tuck your toes under this way you can. I prefer here just because it feels better on my feet. We're going to reach one arm forward.

The opposite opposite leg is going to reach back. Let's flex that foot. The palm is facing in like you're shaking someone's hand and just gonna hold. Starting to build heat and new center. I'm trying to keep the hips and the shoulders even. So not letting this hip drop down and keeping it square.

This breathe while you hold and slowly come back down. Other leg, you know, reach it like back. Other arm is coming forward again. That palm is facing the side. Like you're shaking someone's hand trying to keep your leg parallel so that way your hips can stay square and then pushing up out of that arm so you're not sinking into that shoulder. And then back down again. First side. This time we're going to add a little bit of uh, elbow and knee. Move it.

So you're going to bend your arm and leg, pull your elbow, knee together. You're going to round your back and then you're going to reach back out. We did it three more times so you can pull into your abdominals, round your back, let your head go, working on a little bit of balance to more. And then reach out. Last one, keep pushing out of that hand. It's on the mat so you're not sinking into that shoulder placed arm and leg down and you're going to reach out through the other side.

So you're gonna pull your elbow and knee together, round your back. Try to keep your shoulder away from the ear and then reach back out. Three more well thinking and pulling my abs in and up to help me balance two more. And rich. Last one. You can exhale as you pull in. Inhale to reach, and then back down. Keep one hand on the mat, you're going to reach the other arm up into a twist and then you're going to thread that arm through.

You can place your head down if that feels good to you. This hold, that stretch should fill a nice shirt on your upper back, your tailbone is reaching up. It's breathe into that stretch. Open up your back and then coming back up into that twist with the arm reaching up and then place the hand down a, they say I had reached the arm up to the ceiling and then thread the arm through. He can place your head down if that feels okay to you. Try to keep your hips square so you're just twisting the upper back. You're not letting your hips go as well. It should feel a nice stretch between your shoulder blades.

One where deep breath here and then reaching back up. We're gonna do that one more time cause it feels nice reaching the first arm up and then twist. Let's pay attention to what your hips are doing so they're not twisting with you. It's just the twist in your thoracic spine. One more deep breath. Think of bring breathing into your back and then untwist and back to center. Last side and reached through. Think of reaching that bottom arm all the way out to the other side, finding length in that arm. Lengthen your spine and then read the arm up and then back to pet.

Now we're going to go into, I think it's called puppy pose. I see my dog doing this all the time and I think it feels really, I think it feels like really good and it looks like it does when she does it. So you're going to keep your hips over your knees and you're gonna reach arms forward. Almost like you're going into child's pose, keeping your arms straight. You're going to let your chest drop down toward the mat and your tailbone is reaching up to the ceiling. Get a nice extension on your upper back. Feels really great and kind of opens up the muscles around your armpits as well.

Breathe into that stretch. Keep reaching your tailbone up to the ceiling. One more breath here and then slowly walk back into a child's pose. Let your head go and then roll up. I'm going to go into a hip flexor stretch, so going to bring one leg forward. The other leg, it's going to come back, so the like, that's 40 you want the knee over the ankle so you're not all the way forward here and then the back leg can be bent. If that feels good to you.

I like my leg straight just because I like to reach it out a little bit longer. It gives me a better stretch and trying to keep both hands down. If you need to bring this other hand on the inside. If there's not room you can trying to square off your hips as much as you can. The opposite hand split, it's gonna stay on the Mat.

You're going to reach the other arm up into a nice twist. Keep reaching out to that back heel if your leg is straight and then bring that hand back down. Now I'm going to place your knee down on the mat. If it's not already on of your foot, and then you're going to sit back toward that heel, flex the front foot, and then keep your back flat as you lower your chest down towards your leg to stretch your hamstring. Try not to lock your knee. If you're hyperextended just think of reaching out through that heel, pulling up in your quad so you protect the back of your knee.

And if you just let your head go, it doesn't feel quite the same. So try to keep your back flat so you really lengthen the whole back of the leg and then bring that leg back, other leg. So going to bring that leg forward. Again, the knee is over the ankle. You can keep the leg behind you bent or you can straighten your leg like I am and just let your hips settle down, keeping them square. Try to keep your spine long as much as you can.

Now the opposite hand is going to stay down. Other hand is going to go up to the ceiling, into a twist. As you're twisting in your back, try to keep the hips to squares. You can. And keep reaching out to that top heel or that back heel. I should say one more deep breath here. Other than bring the hand down, bring your bottom back, knee down, untuck your foot, and then sit back toward that foot. And then flex your front ankle. The flat back, you're going to low yourself down toward your leg.

So if your head is on your knee, that means your back's probably not flat unless you are Super Gumby, which I don't think most people's hamstrings are that loose cause mine are pretty loose and I can't do it. One more deep breath here and then come back. So I'm going to grab a mat cause I'm going to come down to the floor, but you can stay where you are. We're going to go into a downward dog, we're going to go into a downward dog. You're going to find that position, however you like. Your feet are hip distance apart, hands are shoulder distance apart, and then you're gonna push your weight back into your heels. So I always have trouble keeping my ribs in and my shoulders down in this position. So just think of depressing the shoulders, pulling the ribs back into place, but then still keeping the tailbone back. And then from here, just gonna walk your dog.

Just let your heels alternate. If you're like me, your ankles will crack every time they just getting the blood flowing through the joints. Let's do four more. Three, two, one both heels down again. It should feel a little bit looser. You should be able to get your tailbone back a little bit further without arching the back. No, it was breathe. They're going to keep your hands where they are. You're going to bring one, like up to the ceiling. You can let that hip open into an ballet dancer.

So I call a sponsor. Try to keep your shoulders square, but let the hip open. Now I'm hearing gonna bend that top leg. You're gonna reach that foot down to the floor and then think yoga. They call it wild things. So you're just going to reach the top arm back into a little bit of an extension. Push that bent leg into the floor, and then you're going to swing it back up to that Ponce. Coming off from mat and then marine that linked down.

Center yourself back on your mat. Find that downward dog again. Other leg will come up. Open the hip, but again, keep the shoulders square. Breathe into that stretch. You're going to bend your leg, open up the hip even more. Bring that foot back. Other leg. If straight, reach that top arm back. One more breath here. Swivel back to your three legged dog into that Pawn Che, and then bring that foot down. Just walk your feet in towards your hands.

If you can get your feet through your hands, go for it. And then just roll up one bone at a time. Standing up. You're going to keep your knees soft so they're just not locked. Try to keep your weight forward over the balls of your feet. You're going to do a little nerve flossing, so you're gonna reach your arms forward. Flex your wrist, you're gonna reach arms out and let and go behind you a little bit.

It should feel like a tingling all the way up your arms and then just release. Shake it out. Try it again. Reach out through the heels of your hands. Reach the arms out. Let them go as far back as you need without letting your back arch. Flex your hands a little bit deeper and then shake it out.

Just get the blood flowing back in your hand. I'm gonna Finish with the little side stretch. Reach your arms up. You're gonna grab one hand, you're going to reach away from that hand that you've grabbed into a side bend. Just go as far as you can. Try and keep the weight even on your feet. Try not to twist toward the floor or toward the ceiling to stay straight to the side and then back up. Switching hands, bending over the other way, and then back up. Arms come down.

Just roll your shoulders out and you're all loosened up for the day. Thank you.

The Pilates Daily: A Class for Each Day of the Week: On the Mat


Very nice stretch first thing in the morning! My body thanks you Gia :D
Kate V
1 person likes this.
This was a great little class to do between clients today! Renewed energy & clearer thinking!! Thanks!!
1 person likes this.
I'm so glad that you enjoyed my class Kate and Beatrix Nagy!
Oh wow, that was short and sweet, thank you. Perfect for a saturdaymorning.
Lisette-Anne A quick workout is the best way to start the weekend! So glad you liked it!
1 person likes this.
Such a nice progression of movements! Felt wonderful! Also, love your presentation!
1 person likes this.
nice little stretch break!
Kathleen M
2 people like this.
Perfect little stretch class, thank you Gia! 
1 person likes this.
Great class Gia thanks, will definitely do again.
Glad you're enjoying it, Helen! It's so important to move and take breaks!
1-10 of 26

You need to be a subscriber to post a comment.

Please Log In or Create an Account to start your free trial.

Footer Pilates Anytime Logo

Move With Us

Experience Pilates. Experience life.

Let's Begin