Class #3916

Why Transitions Matter

25 min - Class


Use your breath as a binding agent to find a seamless flow in this creative Mat workout by Rebekah Rotstein. She looks at transitions as the basis for integrated movement by creating awareness of how you are moving. Throughout the class, she finds ways to connect each exercise to the next as well as finding the connections within a single movement.
What You'll Need: Mat

About This Video

Nov 04, 2019
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Hi, I'm Rebecca Rotstein and our class today is called why transitions matter. And I have the good fortune of my friend Elisa Hubbard joining me for this. I'm really interested in transitions because I think it's the basis for integrated movement. So how do we connect one move to another, and then how do we find connection within a single movement or a single exercise itself? And part of this has to do with the breath that the breath is really the binding agent. And the other part is that it's about awareness because it's when we're not thinking about how we get from one place to another that we lose that integration of the movement and we lose the connectivity.

So we're going to get started here by sitting down on the ground and we're going to start out so that we can make sure that our feet are close to the edge of our mat. Then we're going to bend our knees and holding onto the backs of our thighs. We're going to take a deep breath in and we're going to exhale, start rolling backward just a little bit, and then we're going to roll forward again. So we're just doing a little rocking sensation. Exhale, [inaudible]. Inhale, rising, and exhale, feeling the connection that there is no beginning and there is no end.

That the breath again is that driver. So where does the inhalation begin? Where does the inhalation end? [inaudible] and then you can experience that continuity through the movement. And last time we're going to roll all the way down. [inaudible] stretching the legs out. Inhale, lifting the arms all the way overhead.

And let's grab the back of the mat. We're going to use the mat like a hammock. Let's start actually by bending our knees here and we're going to drop the chin and the hammocks going to help us rise and lower back down. So you might notice that your head slides a little bit here on the mat and inhale, lowering an XL rising. So there's a little bit of rocking sensation as the hair slides on the mat because in order to end in pause right here, you're going to notice that your nose points up toward the ceiling, but then your Chin's going to have to drop just a little bit in order for your hair to slide. To lift yourself up and lower yourself back down. And let's do one more rising up right here.

Let's stay here and we're going to fold one knee into the chest and lower the foot down. And then we're going to fold the other knee into the chest and lower down and fold the first knee in and lower down and the second knee in and lower down. Now we're going to lift one at a time and keep both up here. So we're in this hammock position and let's dip one foot. Exhale, inhale, fold back and exhale so the heels are heavy and dangling and returning back up and exhale. And if you want, you could try coming up a little bit higher. You're going to notice that your throat has to relax and your belly engages more. And this time.

Let's stretch one leg straight out in front of us with a flexed foot. Exhale, reach straight out. Pull the knee back in. Other side, pull back in. Exhale, pull back in. Exhale, pull back in. No, let's sequence it and thread it together. Exhale, one, push out to push out. Three, push out for, keep relaxing through the shoulders, relaxing through the neck. But the front of the throat is active as its also being assisted by the hammock. Do one more set and lower your head back down, keeping the feet up.

So now we're going to bring your legs more into a tabletop position and exon not in curl here. So we use a little bit of front of the chin support, but we're also really being supported by the hammock. Now we're going to rotate, so we're going to stretch out our right leg and rotate, twisting toward her left knee, little oblique action, and then the opposite side and keep going. And XO, XO. So we start to feel how the belly really can be engaged without too much accessory action through the back of the neck. And last one. And then lower the mat, but keep the head up, lower the hands down.

And now we're going to continue the motion doing single leg stretch and switch switch. Exhale. So we've prepared the body to be in this position. Four and three. I'm starting to die too and one and then we lower the feet and we lower the head, huh? Slide the legs out in front of you. We're going to do a roll up, but it's going to be more of a a sun salutation. So you're going to slide the arms out to the sides.

You're going to drop the chin and we're going to roll up here keeping the rounded shape of the spine. Now you're going to start to look up, start to stretch through the upper back, bring the chest up and exhale, folding down again. And let's lower ourselves. Rolling all the way back, opening the arms out to the sides, reaching out through the toes and bringing the arms up. Overhead. Inhale. Let's do that once more and X. So it really is almost like a Peloton version of a yoga sun salutation. And we look up and here let's flex the feet perhaps and feel how you can get a little extension through the upper back and exhale, fold all the way forward and roll through the spine to lower yourself all the way down onto your back.

And let's open the arms out so that they're slightly out to the side, bending the knees. Now planting the feet, flip the palms face down, and let's bridge up. So let's first articulate through the spine and then we're going to lower back down through the bridge like this and we peel up through the hips rising and then we lower all the way back down on the tails. The last thing to go, and let's do one more articulated bridge rising up and then lowering all the way back down. Let's do a leveraged bridge so that we don't remove the curve from our spine. As we rise back up and exhale back down and rise back up, you're going to feel a difference in the engagement in your hamstrings here. Now this time, let's press down through the hands and feel how the shoulders, the backs of the shoulders can be active. Pause here, be careful that you don't thrust the ribs forward, so we're relaxed through the sternum, but we're active through the backs of the shoulders and leave her back down.

Let's do one more rising back up and leverage all the way back down. Now let's slide the left foot out in front of us. Lift the same side arm overhead and this is one of our buff bones exercises that we call the limb reach. So you're going to get a really glorious stretch in a Fastenal glide as you reach through that heel and the same side hand taking a breath in and exhale, do one more like that. Don't worry about the shoulder elevating. In fact, I want you to allow it to, I want you to get the maximum glide potential through the connective tissue through that fascia. And last one and I like to press through my planted foot here a little bit. [inaudible] well and relaxed.

Now we're going to press to that planted foot in order to roll ourselves over onto the side here. Now we're going to press down through the bottom foot just so you have a little connection into the ground. Same thing with the arm. I have my my Palm facing the ceiling, but now we're going to lift the hand up toward the ceiling and we're going to start to roll backward and then we're going to return to stack that top hip on the bottom and once more rolling back and pushed through the ground so that you feel this connection through the posterior hip. Now we're going to develop a that leg. So we're in a very, very narrow support base as we lift that foot up to the ceiling and flex the foot to lower it all the way back down, lower that top hand down by your hip and slowly take that top foot and swing it forward and start to twist so that you open yourself to look up toward that back hand. And then we're going to swap so that we're going to return ourselves the stacked position, the hands going to come down by the side.

And here's where my challenge point is. As I reached that hand forward and I reached that foot back and I'm in this narrow support base and I'm trying to find my balance and I feel a really great stretch around my obliques and let's do that once more. So the hands and the foot swap and the foot goes forward and we start to spiral and feel the nice stretch on the top of the hip. I actually happen to feel it all the way into my hand cause I've got some nerve sensation going on. And then we're going to return once more, stacking the top foot and reaching that hand forward, breathing in and exhale and return back down. So the hand is by the hip, the foot is by the other foot.

We lift that arm all the way up overhead and we slowly roll onto our backs. Again, controlling the descent. And now we're going to go to side too. So we're going to bend the other knee, planting the foot and do a limb reach on this side. So we lengthen out through the foot and the hand right side, feeling the stretch to the body and relax and once more, lengthen and reach and relax and once more length and and feel the stretch lengthening out through the heel again, you, wherever you feel the stretch is indicative of where your restriction might be. So for me it's around my hip and waist.

It might be your shoulder for you and rest. Now push into that planted foot to roll yourself onto your side. And we're going to stay here and then we're going to roll back just a tiny bit in roll forward so that we feel the connection into that back hip and start to roll back and once more, push yourself forward so that your top is stacked on top of the bottom. And then we're going to straighten out the knee and we're going to slowly devil to pay that foot. Bring the top hand up to the ceiling, lifting all the way, the foot to the ceiling, flex the foot and lower pushing out through the heel as we come down to a staffed position, lowering the hand by the hip and we're going to reach that top foot forward and the top arm back. And we're going to start to rotate and twist and look over the open Palm.

And then Dee, rotate returning to your stacked position and bring that top hand forward as that top foot goes back and to see if you can feel a stretch. You're going to find that you might need to pull the ribs in just a little bit, cause there's often a tendency for us to flare the ribs here. And then let's reverse that. Bring the hand down the foot stocks and the foot goes forward and we look over that hand once more. Breathing in and exhale. Returning to our stack position. Foot goes back, hand goes, inhale, exhale. Stay here for a moment.

Let's just enjoy and savor that stretch. And now the hand goes down, the foot goes down, the hand comes all the way up over head, the feet stack, and we're slowly going to lower selves onto our back. Again, controlling the descent through the front body. It's time for a rollup transition. Open the arms out to the sides, drop the chin. And here we start to roll up. Let's point the toes and lengthen. Lengthen, lengthen, lengthen, lengthen. Now let's flex the feet and let's start to extend.

Rising up and exhale. Start lowering ourselves all the way back down. [inaudible] open arms all the way out to the sides and let's roll onto our sides by bending our knees. Rolling onto the left side here and help yourself sit up. Maybe pushing yourself just a little bit back on the mat here and we're going to side bend with a mermaid stretch. We're going to bend over toward that top foot.

Breathe in and exhale lifting up. And now we're going to face down lifting that top arm and both hands are going to plant and we're going to push ourselves straight back up. The right hand is going to rotate and lift. I should say our trunk is going to lift and rotate and then we side bend over for another mermaid and we return over this time. Let's extend the knee.

So it's kinda like that chair exercise where you have the back leg street and then the back leg is going to bend. The knee is going to bend and we're going to side bend one more time. Side bend over here. Now we're going to add in a new element. So let's come back into this position where we push ourselves away, but we straighten that knee. Now the foot is going to lead the spiral to sit back up and we're going to side bend all the way over here and lift up and side bend down, keeping that back knee street.

Push out that heel is what spirals us and opens the hip and side bend and lift. And one more time. So we get that beautiful rotation. Now let's let's lift that top foot a little bit. Let's point the toes and see what happens there. Let's do it three times. One little pulse, two three and reach out through the heel and rotate.

One last side, bend all the way over. And this time let's come into a plank. Let's take the right foot and pull it to the opposite knee and let's swap the other side. Left foot to the opposite knee, right foot to the opposite knee, left foot to the opposite knee. And now let's hold this plank for a moment. Lift the right foot and let's flex both feet for little leg pull action.

Shift the weight back and forward to point. Switch legs, lift the other foot. Flex to shift back. Point to shift forward and switch legs. One more round. Let's lift the right foot again, point the toes, flex the weight, flex the foot to go back and point to shift the weight forward. Switch feet left foot up. Let's flex to go back. Point to go forward. Let's do one more right foot flex to go back. Point to go forward.

And last time point. Flex to go back. Point to go forward. And now we're going to lower ourselves in a chatter, Ranga elbow straight by the sides. And then we can circle the arms around overhead and then help us into a single leg kick. So their hands are clasped. Yep. And we're going to start with our right foot. We're going to kick twice, kick, kick and lower left foot kick, kick and lower kick, kick and lower kick. Kick. And Laura, let's pause for a moment. Let's add another element so that we point and flex the foot, point it, flex it and lower it. Other leg point. Flex lower. Keep going.

[inaudible] and pause. Let's lower ourselves down onto our sides. We're going to have our left cheek onto the ground and we're going to have our hands behind our back. So we're going to do a double leg kick, kicking three times and kick, kick, kick. No, extend the knees, keeping the feet down to rise and lower selves. The second side and kick, kick, kick and extend her lift and Laura selves the first side kick, kick, kick and extend to rise and lower to the second side. Kick, kick, kick and extend to rise and hold it, hold it, hold it, and lower yourself down. And let's roll onto our left side street. From here, swinging the leg forward or both legs forward. And we're going to place our hands behind our head. We're going to do a sidekick series, lifting the top foot and kick forward twice and pointing the toes to lengthen back. So we have our bottom foot stacked. Excuse me.

Our bottom foot is at the front of the mat and our hips are stacked. And inhale back. Let's do two more. Exhale. Inhale, lengthen and exhale and inhale, lengthen. Let's stack the feet. Let's turn out and go up. Down, up and lower. So we're gonna point and flex point and flex point and flex once more. Point and flex.

Let's take that top foot and plant it in front of the bottom knee and let's lower the hands and the head and we're going to do some small circles. Eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two, one, reverse it. Eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two, one. We're going to bend both knees in and now we're going to slowly transition to the other side by elegantly and gracefully lifting our feet and find the balance as you lower yourself over to side too so that our hips are stacked at the back of the mat and her feet are at the frontier. Then we lift ourselves up so that we have our hands behind the head. We lift that top foot and we kick forward twice and we reached back. Exhale, forward. Inhale, lengthen. Exhale forward.

Inhale, lengthen. Exhale forward. And in case you haven't noticed, I can't count, so I'm hoping that I'm kind of on the same number and let's do one more and the length and back. We're going to stack the feet. Turn out and point and flex and point and flex so we're still lifted through the bottom waistline throughout finding that integrity throughout our bodies even though we're also finding integrity throughout the movement and lower down and then we lower our heads. If you have more than one head and you're going to take that off when it plays in front of the bottom thigh and we're going to do small circles, eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two, one reverse. I like to feel this connection through the bottom foot as well cause that helps me organize the rest of my body and three, two, one. Now we make it interesting because we're going to bend those knees.

We're going to elegantly like before help ourselves lift up and slowly go to the other side and then lift up and slowly to the other set. I'm starting to fall off my mat in case you're noticing and the second side, and now pause here. I'm going to scoot forward just a little bit pretending that it didn't happen. We're going to extend the legs and we're slowly going to lower ourselves down like a roll down. Here's our teaser. Are you ready, Lisa? So the arms come up over ahead. We're going to do, our teas are slightly differently because we're going to bring our arms out to the sides. It's a roll up. It's a roll up. It's a roll up.

The leg still stay. It's a roll up. Pause right here. So my sacrum is, or I should say, the lower part of my sacrum is still on the ground and I'm going to roll back. Now we're going to add to the next element and arms come out to the sides. We roll up. Remember that hammock sensation with our head. Now pause right here. Reach out through the feet and we start to lift through the feet. Good. And then we lower through the feet and we started to roll down through the spine from here. And this takes us completely out of our backs.

Bring the arms up by the head and again, arms by the sides. Hammock. Start to roll up. Now. Reach out through the feet, reach out, reach out. And then we don't have any gripping going on through our upper backs and lowering ourselves all the way back down. Let's try one more like that. And the arms come to the sides. We lengthen. Here's our connection. Extract all the juice out of the movement.

Now hold it here. Let's see if we could lift one arm. Let's see if we could lift the other arm. Let's see if we could stay out over backs. Inhale and exhale. Bring the hands down and start rolling through your back. Lengthening through the feet. Ah, lifting the arms all the way overhead. Now one last time, dropped the chin, reaching out through the feet.

We're going to do a little set of hip circles here and circling one and two and 30 whooo in reverse and one and two. I'm dying. And three and up. And now lowering through the feet and rolling down through the spy. Ah, let's do a roll up right here. Drop your chin, lift your arms up. Finally, for a traditional roll up and rolling all the way up and sitting tall here, let's now come back into a plank. So we're going to lift our feet without the hands and then I promise you it's not a handless plank. It's a plank. With the hands down. We're going to do a set of pushups ready for a Palladio's pushups.

You can do it with your knees straight or you could be down on your knees, whatever you'd like and push one and two and three. Let's walk back, roll up through the spine, extract every ounce of juice from the movement. Inhale, lift the arms all the way up and exhale. Let's roll right back down. Feeling the connection through every single one of our movements and savoring every moment of it. Coming back into our second set of plank, pushups and push one and two and three and walking back and rolling up. Feel the release through your back. Lifting the arms. The arms are connection of our trunk. Lifting the hands, opening the hands, the arms lower. The trunk starts to move. As a result. As a result of that, we find the connection all the way down through the lower spine.

We feel it through the legs, we crawl forward. We're almost done. Last time and elbows by the sides push one and two and Oh gosh, and we walk back all the way up and we savor it because every part of this is important. It's not just the end pose. How did we get from one post to another? How did we arrive at this point? All of it is part of that journey. Thank you. Lisa.

Intermediate Mat Workouts: 20-Minute Classes


Eva T
15 people like this.
Hi Rebecca, great class but I was surprised you do roll ups. As I believe you have osteoporosis I thought this is a no go exercise for you. Did this change, is this move now allowed for people with e.g. osteopenia but strong Core and body awareness? 
Pauline C
Lovely transitions!  Thank you! 
Lina S
2 people like this.
I've really enjoyed the teaser. It seemed easier while the abs were still challenged. I've liked the idea to prepare the body to get used to curl up with the use of the mat. Thank you!
1 person likes this.
I loved this!  Thank you
Could I ask the same question about osteoporosis as Eva.I teach Pilates,have osteoporosis and really miss the roll up etc Judith
Could I ask the same question as Eva about osteoporosis.I teach Pilates but have osteoporosis .I really miss flexion. Judith
6 people like this.
What a flow....loved it....esp the side leg series transitions and the spirals...but did I miss the other side for the twisted mermaid/swan?
Paula H
yes, I too would like to know the answer to Eva's question regarding osteoporosis. Thank you
Fantastic class! what a beautiful flow thanks to transitions and breath. Thank you, Rebecca! 
Fantastic class! what a beautiful flow thanks to transitions and breath. Thank you, Rebecca! 

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