Class #4159

Let's Roll

55 min - Class


Work on your strength through challenging your stability with Amy Havens' Foam Roller class. You will access more connections in your deep core muscles and boost your scapular stability and mobility. The Foam Roller will highlight which areas or sides of your body need the most work, enabling you to balance it out.
What You'll Need: Mat, Foam Roller

About This Video


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Hey, everyone. Welcome again to another live class with me here. This is Amy. Thank you all for coming again and joining my movement class and joining each other. I will say it every time, massive gratitude for us all, that we keep showing up for our own practice and to share with each other and to be here with me.

So thank you, thank you. So we have our roller. And we did, we've done some like oozy goosy roller work, that's like that actual stretching kind of approach. But today, and while you're here, of course, there's a little bit more mobility, stability, strength, and balance, which we know is, in every practice of any movement, skill of anything, but with the roller, it does expose quite a bit for us and bring to surface opportunities to find more connections in our body. Definitely right-sidedness, left-sidedness, that dominant factor.

Also front to back, top to bottom. So we've got lots of opportunity to discover ways we can connect our body. So let's go ahead and begin. And I wanna have a start with the roller in the side position. As you know, I love starting with things that are foot-related and have that relationship up the body, but we also really need our hamstrings and abdominals to join together, start to work together and connect.

So let's feel that. We're gonna use that in quite a few things. So, (sighs) legs are parallel, arches of feet are on the top of the roller. And take a peek real quick. And you can see, through your legs, you wanna see those arches really nice and straightforward, okay?

And then just settle in. What I would like everyone to do, and need us to do, is that space between our pelvis and our rib cage make it longer. So I'm actually gonna lift myself up and kinda wiggle my waist longer so that I can start right away with more elongation than I started with when I put myself on the mat. Arms, wherever they feel good for you. I'm gonna rotate my chest open and let my palms be faced up.

Let's take three breaths together, big breath. You know my style. And as we exhale, I want us to just feel like we just kinda disseminate down against our mat a little bit more. Our pelvis, our sacrum gets more anchored, our rib cage, that 12th rib area on the back of the ribs, gets anchored in our head. Not by pushing, let's take another breath.

Not by pushing ourselves down in the mat, but just letting those heavier bony landmarks, the skull, the sacrum, especially in the 12th rib area, really get down, okay? Now one more breath in, just preparing. As we down, start to continue the breathing and connecting, start to press your feet more firmly against your roller. As if you press your feet, you could unweight your sacrum a little bit. And go ahead and try that.

You're not lifting anything yet. You're just kind of unweighting that sacral plate and then inhale, set it back down. It's so minor. You won't see anything on me moving. That's okay, I'm connecting.

Feeling the work. So pressing the feet, lighten up your sacral plate on the mat. You might feel those deep core abdominal and spinal muscles working together, that co-contraction. One more time, actually two, two, two, two. Exhale.

So now why I wanna do two more is now you got your feet pressing, you've got your sacred plate a little lighter, can you start to feel the connection between hamstring buttock, right, in that little wonderful zone, okay? And then release. You don't even have to contract your glutes like a squeeze. Nothing changes really in the shape of it. You just put the weight on your feet and it should wake up that back line through your legs, okay?

Now take another breath, set your sacrum down. I need to move my roller in toward me just a skosh. Okay, now let's start to do some curling, okay? Some spine curl. So inhaling, prepare, exhale the feet.

Now I'm gonna start to do posterior tilt, which is what I love to feel, rolling up. I'm only going halfway up my spine. I'm gonna go to kinda middle thoracic spine, inhaling there, exhale, rolling down. Let's do four of these, everybody. Okay, goal is to keep the roller still.

Inhale, exhale, press the feet, posterior tilt your pelvis, you wanna keep pressing your feet right on top of the roller down. Not rolling it away. Not rolling it away. Really feel posterior tilt, inhaling, exhale, rolling down. Remember, you're elongating things as you can find them.

So it's gonna be your spine, your waistline, maybe your neck. Twice more. Inhale, press those feet, roll the pelvis. Yeah, keeping that nice posterior tilt. Think if you can kinda take the ball in right in that stomach scoop.

It'll hollow. Breathe in, exhale, upper back or middle back down all the way to the tailbone/sacrum. Inhale again. Exhale, here we go, we're gonna go up. Same place, halfway up our spine.

How's everybody doing? I think pretty good. I feel it. Okay, now I'm gonna keep my elbows on the mat. I'm raising my forearms.

My palms are facing in. I'm gonna make a little fist with my hands today. You're gonna see a lot of that little position. I'm just working on connection from my hand to my shoulder, okay? So there, we're standing on the roller.

Can we lift our arms up? Yes, we can. I need you to reach those arms up. And you're just standing there. Keep the posterior tilt.

Keeping your arms where they are, unroll your spine. Yeah, if you don't like the fist closed, that's fine. You can open and elongate your wrists. That's fine, too. Either one.

Keep your shoulders back. Let's do it again. Breathing in, anchor the feet, feel the connection, that contraction through the back line of your legs all the way. Now I am ready to go a little higher up my spine. I'm gonna try to get myself up, so between my scapula, so that on the next two roll downs I can start releasing and rolling out from my breast bone, the back of my breast bone.

So we're kinda thinking of dragging the chest down away from the chin. Articulating, get that low back long, level pelvis, inhale. Let's do it again, exhale. And we press the feet, roll up, we're up on that upper back. Now let's add a little arm gesture.

Reaching the arms back overhead, letting my shoulders upward, rotate a little bit. I'm in external rotation on the arms. I wanna keep those arms there and start to roll that spine down. You know how luscious this is. This is something I do a lot often, almost every day.

Come down to level pelvis, lower the arms. One more round like that, guys. I need to move a little bit. I'm gonna run into like plant back there. Okay, same thing.

So we press up and roll to bridge. Keeping that posterior tilt, strong legs, strong connection, arms up and overhead. Yup, and if you can get your fists on the floor, keep 'em there, chin away from chest. Here we go, we're rolling down. I need you to keep reaching your waistline long toward your fist, toward your hands, come all the way to level pelvis.

How are your legs feeling? Waking up, I'm sure. Bring your arms out, straight up above your shoulders. Let's go ahead and do open hands for open/close arms, just for just a nice sense of chest expansion. Breathe in, exhale, and bring your arms up.

Now three more times. I'm gonna add that little on the exhale, press to feet, and unweight my sacrum connection when I bring my arms in as if I'm lighter on the floor by an ounce. That'd be fun, to try to measure that. Exhale. So my feet are pressing, my sacrum is getting lighter and feeling those deep core connection muscles.

One more, guys. And exhaling. Yeah, pretty easy. Let's come all the way down with the arms. Palms faced down.

Now I want us to unweight the head, roll the eyes forward, the ears forward almost, and then reach your hands on the mat toward the roller. Feel your feet continuing to press down. I'm in neutral pelvis here. I wanna mobilize that thoracic spine and get just maybe one inch higher up and then unrolled out about four times. Exhale, so head lift, roll the ears forward.

My hands are on the mat. I wanna feel my hands on that mat, reaching for the roller, reaching, curl higher, curl higher in than that spine and roll back down. Two more. Yeah, feel you're still connected. I'm still as if I'm pushing those feet down into that foam, curling higher, looking between the legs, still feeling that nice level pelvis.

And, oh, come down. Last time, inhale. And we go exhale, lift, lift, lift, lift, lift. Yeah, pretty easy. Just lift the arms.

Take them back overhead. Just a nice reach. Circle them around. Let's do that three more times. My feet are still pressing the roller.

The feeling of the feet pressing the roller continues to involve my hamstrings and my lower gluteal connection. That's why I'm doing that, guys. I want you to do that, too. That's our last one there. And then everything comes back down.

Okay, so let's just kinda roll yourself up. We're gonna turn the roller into the lengthwise setup, okay? And then I want us to climb aboard and sit on this end here. This is always fun. Okay, now before we actually roll all the way down on the roller, which I'm gonna attempt right now, this is where things could get interesting, meaning right side or left side rolling.

If you start to feel yourself veer off to the side, right yourself. You can use your hands on the floor. But notice, this is kind of, this is interesting if you're not used to doing this. Now I will preface one more thing. If you already are thinking, "Oh my gosh, "she's gonna make me roll down this roller.

"Ouch," which it's not comfortable, you could always put your mat up on the roller right now and do that, okay? But let's go ahead and go, those of us who are ready. We're gonna sit up tall on our sit bones. Now, interestingly, the roller is right between them, right there. Feel that placement of the right half of the pelvis, the left half of the pelvis, and lift up your stomach out of there, and lift your low back out of there.

Let's start to roll ourself back, okay? Now I've got my arms reaching out. I'm pressing my feet down on the floor a little bit toward this wall in front of me. I'm trying to go even, yeah? I'm gonna roll down and bring my arm straight to the ceiling.

My head made it, I'm on. Rolling up, let's see what happens. Inhale, head, neck and chest. Oh, who got stuck, anybody? You could use your hands on the floor.

Keep reaching your arms forward, keep pounding into that spine, lifting up. We'll do four of these. Breathing in. Go slow. Take your time.

This is your workout. This is your class. I'm just giving you some core, some, well, giving you some work. Roll, feel your sacrum. Some of us have an unbalanced, imbalanced sacrum.

That's me. I have to really work right through there to try ending into my spine in the elongated fashion, right down the center, right? I'm pulling my heels energetically toward me as I roll up. When I roll down, I'm pushing my heels energetically away from me as I roll backward. And that pushing away helps to kind of traction that pelvis.

It's just an image, I think. Yeah, you can even use your hands and push. Find your connections. Arms come to the ceiling. We have one more, all the way up and down.

Head, neck, and shoulders. Pull your heels energetically toward your roller. I just found my weak side today. Good, good. Inhaling, we gotta go back.

We get to go back. How about that? We roll, we're rolling. All right, it's my left abdominal wall that kinda took a breather for a second. Okay, now I need to adjust myself.

Chances are you guys do, too. So get yourself back on that roller. It may mean mainly having enough space above your head. Okay, now notice how you've set your legs. Did you set your feet apart?

Probably so. That's our easier place to balance, isn't it? I wanna challenge us right away. Bring your ankles to touch and your knees to touch so your legs are nicely adducted. And then also let's take a quick arm position.

Elbows on the mat, forearms just straight up. Okay, becoming one with this roller in a way. Take a breath. Single leg tabletop. Okay, now with your feet, just keep moving through it, we're going to alternate, guys.

With your feet and knees all the way together, you might already be feeling that, "Oh, crud. "I am not staying balanced." That's okay. That's so normal. And if you'd rather do these tabletop movements with your feet apart right down at the mat, that is fine, okay? But if you want that challenge and discovery kinda unwrap a little bit more about yourself, try it, bring your ankles and knees together and just keep moving and moving that nice slow hip joint motion, okay?

My elbows are helping. I'm pressing my elbows a little bit down on the mat. I'm not lying. Pressing a little bit. Not a lot, but a little.

Okay, one more. And then I wanna start laying in some more thinking, more connection. So let's go to the first leg, whichever leg you'd put up first. That leg knows the tabletop. The other foot, the other leg, let's use it.

I'm gonna refer to it as our standing leg, because it is, the one we're standing on. That foot needs to push down on the mat, just like it did when we were starting with the foot on the roller, right? So as you push down in the mat, do you feel your hamstring and your glute connection maybe even wrapping up into that inner thigh, which is pretty lovely. That allows us to do other gestures, if you call it, with the other leg. So I'm taking my tabletop leg and moving into knee extension.

Just real light, little four times knee extension, knee flexion. Watch your rib cage, guys. Keep rib number 12 down on that roller, okay? Right, so do you see how the stabilizing of standing foot really plays a significant role in mobility on the other side? I think I heard yes.

Okay, good. Step that foot down. And here we go. Bring the other leg to tabletop. It could be wobbly.

So I'm gonna say, if you feel a little wobble, let's put some focus on different places, abdominals for sure, both the right side/left side, how your back rib cage is down on the roller, and guess what, standing leg. Foot is firm. Inner thigh has an energetic leaning into it. Hamstring and glute are nice and kinda tidied up there, if you know what I mean. And then you are free, hopefully, and stable to do some mobility on the other side of your body, your knee extension.

Focus more on your standing leg, the one that's not moving. That cool? Feels kinda nice, I think, strong. Okay, so we'll be adding to that in a moment. Bring that leg down.

Breathe in. Let's exhale. Anchor your ribs and lift your head neck and shoulders. Chest lift on the roller, what? Okay, it's not comfortable, but it's interesting.

Okay, four times. I want you to exhale prior to lifting. Don't lift that head yet. Take a breath. Exhale, stomach down.

Get that anchor, then you should feel freer, more stable to lift. I need you to press your legs together, if you have your knees together. Twice more. Get that exhale, get those ribs down, get your back rib cage against the roller. See, I wanna get you to a place where you feel like you could let go.

I'm in a chest lift. My hands are in the air. Try it. I'm gonna wait for you. I can't see you.

I can feel you. Yeah, there you go, right? Hey, if you're moving a little, that's normal. Your body is writing itself. Try one more without your hands.

And again, if you fall, if you wiggle, so what? That's okay. That's part of this nervous system training we've got right there. Now, guess what I'm gonna try doing? Maybe 50 pumps.

They're little. In two, three, four, five and X, I'm pressing my feet on my mat. That is helping me stay connected to the back of my legs so that I can engage my core, my front body. Two, three, I have lost count. 42, three, four, five, exhale.

Two, three, four, five, just 52, three, four, five, and exhale. Two, three, four, five, oh my gosh, bring everything down, rest. (breathes deeply) So great. Okay, elbows again on the mat, hands up, bring a knee to tabletop. I don't have a preference, because it's about the other leg.

Remember, it's the stable standing leg. Let's take this knee, whichever one you have in the air right now, and I want you to use a little bit, very small movement, you guys, try to take your thigh out abduction a little bit and then bring it right back into tabletop, okay? And I mean, we're talking very small thigh lateral movement at the hip joint. And as you do that tiny little movement, deeply concentrate on what you feel in the opposite abdomen area and maybe opposite leg. Hopefully connection.

Okay, one more. And pause when you get out there. So I have, my right leg is in the air, it's out, abducted, about, I don't know, four inches out from center. That is gonna be as wide as I wanna take my leg for single leg circle in a minute, okay? I need you to feel that with yourself, to try not to take that leg any further than that.

But let's bring it to center and lower the foot for a minute, okay? Other side to connect that. Let's breathe. Abdominals contract, 12th rib comes to the roller-ish, as much as you can, bring that other leg to tabletop. How's your standing leg connection?

Yes, it's there for you. Okay, your tabletop leg, you're just simply gliding it to the outside line a wee bit and then in to tabletop. Again you can't see me, don't turn, don't look my way because that hurt, not good for your neck. It's really not about how much movement we're doing. It's the stability to allow a little bit of movement on this silly little roller, okay?

One more, we might need a rib check. Yeah, I thought so. Okay, yeah, and then you'll set that foot down. We'll get to leg circle in a minute. As your feet are on the mat, bring both arms straight up to the ceiling.

Oh, how's that go? Scissor your arms just real quick. Let's get some shoulder movement. So one arm down by your hip, one arm by your ear. Inhale the transition through center.

Exhale, reverse that. I'm still pressing my feet on the mat. I'm still adducting my legs and switching arm to arm. Find a breath pattern that works for you. Every exhale, your 12th rib on your back body gets that roller.

It's like a little kiss. Not smashing your ribs down. 'Cause we don't want flexion in there so much, but we want a little kiss with the ribs on the roller. Okay, one more on this arm. I felt like that made some of you smile.

And then the other arm. Yeah, okay? Now I am gonna keep my arms up. Please do that, too. Separate your feet.

Oh, wow, doesn't that feel different? Bring 'em back a little closer. Just navigate that. Now set your elbows back down on the floor, bring a knee to table top. I don't have a preference.

Whatever leg you lifted up, keep it there. The opposite arm reaches straight up to the ceiling and then do knee extension on the leg that you tabletopped. Okay, so we've got some opposition potential here, absolutely. Check into your standing leg, please. Standing leg.

Here we go. This arm is gonna go back along my ear. The leg that's out is gonna go down toward the floor, any amount. I'm focusing on my standing leg and my 12th ribs. Let's bring the arm and leg up.

I'm gonna do straight leg. Four times. Exhale as we reach. Inhaling coming up. Three more.

Exhale as you reach. Standing leg, standing leg, standing leg. Inhale up. And one more time, exhale. Wait, stay there.

Reach more, reach more. We've all got a little more. And then bring it up. Bend the knee to tabletop, set the foot down low with that arm. Time for the other side.

How's everybody doing? Okay, second leg to tabletop. Standing leg is up and ready. It's really ready. Other arms straight up, knee extension.

We've got two beautiful limbs up. We got two other beautiful limbs anchored onto the floor. Breathe in here. Here we go. Exhale, arm goes back.

Leg goes out. Check your 12th ribs. Inhale, arm and leg up. I keep checking, kinda queuing that today. I have a dear friend named Nacho, who I met in Spain a few years ago, and I had, in one of my workshops, keep going, was 12th rib connection.

And because so many of us hinge right there, I am probably the biggest violator of that, but when we really get the lowest rib on our back connected to our surface and back, wow, it's just a really great queuing for anchoring that back body line so we don't hinge there at that thoracic, lower thoracic lumbar. Okay, and then bring your limbs down, everybody. All right, breathe in through the nose, just take an exhale. We might want one more of those. It's time for a single leg circle.

So I want us to, need us to bring our ankles together and knees together. Elbows are still on the mat. Take a gesture leg up to the ceiling. Okay, whichever one is up. No big deal, great.

My right one is up. I do wanna cross my midline so that that inner thigh kisses the other one. I slide that leg down just to knee-to-knee. Here comes the fun. That leg externally rotates.

Remember, you're not going wide. You're just going slightly out into abduction line. Four circles. Check into your places, your standing leg, your rib cage anchor. Talk about core work.

One more this way. Four the other way. So it goes very slightly out to the side down, any amount, brush inner thigh against inner thigh and back around. Inhale and exhale when you need the support. I encourage you all to check in how much pushing you have on your head.

Try to do less head pressing on that roller, okay? Yeah, sometimes we get going and the core work is so intense that you pushed your head back and that is not fun at all. Okay, and then bend this knee and we're done with that. Step that foot down. Yeah, okay.

Now other side. Ready, here we go. Knee and then leg. Before you circle, step down with your standing leg, long neck and shoulders are low on your back. Inhale, cross the midline, brush inner thigh against inner thigh.

Start to take it down. Okay, now you're gonna need a little contraction in your buttocks. I'm not gonna lie. You're going to need that hip extension. So you know, that's your hamstring, your glute.

Keep a little tone, if you will, in that flesh there, on your booty. You're gonna need it. It's fine, it's healthy. One more, this direction. Standing leg and 12th ribs.

Ready to go the other way. (breathes deeply) Nothing like the roller that work to really kinda self-examine, "Boy, have I been doing "large range of movement and not feeling "the depth of these core integration muscles?" That would be sometimes a good thing to check in on. Okay, that was your four circle. Your four circle, guys. Put your feet down.

I guess we've been there a long time. Roll off the roller. You all know how delicious this feels. Just lie there. Again I sense that many of you took a very large smile.

It feels like we're underground, doesn't it? Just really allow those places to just settle down. It's so lovely. Okay, well, we have more work to do. Come on up.

I want us to sit, oh gosh, you're gonna hate me. Sit on top of your roller, hold on a sec, like this. You're gonna sit on it. Get myself so you can kinda see. All right, so I'm sitting on it.

And then once again, why I'm doing this, is this half of the pelvis is this way, this one's over there, take a moment and feel, are your sit bones even underneath there or is the pelvic floor, I don't talk about it a lot but we know we have one, men and women, it's there, right there, what does it feel like to sit here? Sometimes we're actually tight in one side. That's a whole another class. But sit, okay, relax there. Now take your arms forward.

I am going to externally rotate my arms. I'm going to lift my arms up. I'm gonna do that little fist again, and I really want to encourage that outward rotation and then scapular upward rotation. And that effort is allowing me to really lift up my waistline. You too, probably.

Take a breath. How about spine twist from here? Exhale, tiny, tiny exhale. A little spinal twist. And once your pulse says one, two, inhale center.

It's not how far, I want you to stay balanced. Exhale one, two; inhale center. Upwardly rotate scapula, externally rotate arms. You should feel your mid traps on your back working beautifully, inhale. Other side, exhale.

One more of these each way. Who feels their obliques? Yeah, we're gonna add to that in just a second. Exhaling. Hopefully you're balanced, right?

I have my feet pretty wide. I'm gonna go through it again. Exhale to the first side. Now I'm gonna stay here. I wanna lower the arms and lift them up.

Staying in the rotation form, four times total. So we inhaling down and exhaling up. Inhaling down, exhaling up, lift. And one more lower. How does this feel, guys?

Lift even more. Keep lifting. Think of your lower back long up, lower back long? Oh, they kinda help, turn the other way, propping up that lumbar spine, propping up the thoracic spine. Let's do arms down, inhale, exhaling lift.

Try to really keep those upper arms in external rotation, please. Right, and upward lift of the scapula. It's fine, you've got two more. Hopefully you're still seated evenly and you have that rolled to one sit bone more than the other. If you have, just right that, correct it.

Okay, center, everybody. Inhale, rotate forward, and then lower your arms and just rest. I'm not gonna do saw. Feel free if you wanna just do it real quick and say, "Hmm, that feels interesting." I don't really want to do it, but you could, okay? But what I want to do now is come onto and get off of that wonderful pelvic floor.

Let's go prone. Now prone, let me just face you just quick. So take your arms out, I'm just gonna use this hand, onto this humerus, rotate that humerus. Really get that, okay? And then from your wrist to hand, flat.

Practice some scapula glide like that, okay? Just like that. So scapula, scapula, scapula. But what if you let the spiral come all the way through your palm, just like we were when we were seated a minute ago? So when we're prone here, and if I say scapula up, you're gonna see me also rotate my forearms to my hand.

And then when I put scapula down my back, I'm actually gonna rotate the hands inward, okay? I think you've seen me do this before. It's not new, for sure. It's a beautiful connection, okay? Now as you're prone, make sure you've got the longest abdomen stretch that you can feel here, right, we don't wanna settle into that lumbar, and then I'm gonna start, everybody, with my forearms on top of the roller and my face is just hovered.

I don't wanna rest my forehead because it'll, for me, it puts my head kinda forward head posture. Definitely don't want that. So I'm actually feeling some deep neck flexor engagement and elongation in my neck extensors, okay? Anatomy, yeah. Inhale, elevate your scapula.

Externally rotate the humerus. Stretch that lateral line of your body. And then as we go the other way, scapula down your back, think a little internal rotation of your wrist. I know it's palm face out, okay, an internal wrist rotation of your upper arm. I know it feels weird.

We'll do the other way, too. Scapula up your back, externally rotate, and then do the reverse, okay? So just feel that, and then we're gonna feel the opposite. I'm gonna do one more like that. So as I'm doing upward rotation of scapula right now, I am also externally rotating my humerus.

My palms end up rotating up. Just feel it and then do the other way. So as I do scapula down, I'm actually internally rotating. Now try the reverse of it. Stay internally rotated, as you elevate your scapula up.

Notice you might feel some different stretch right there. That's nice. And then do the opposite. Externally rotate as we do scapular depression. Yeah, and two more.

Inhale, scapula up. I'm internally rotating my humerus there. And then exhale, rotate outwardly and bring your scapula down. And do both. It's good to do both.

One's not better than the other, okay? Because what I want all of us to feel now is where we are individually in our own bodies with good shoulder sensation, scapula stable on her upper back ribs, and if we just now float our head up, I do have more accentuation of external rotation, of course, I don't wanna lift my head so high or my ribs so high, I'm basically just coming to that little head lift and upper back extension, okay? And hold there, breathing in, and then exhale, everybody, just come down. All right, only one more like that. Pretty basic.

So I do have myself biased with external rotation, scapula down, I'm not coming any higher than the base of my ribs because what I wanna have us do now, engaging your leg extensors, hip extensors, raise your legs up off of the floor, knees are straight. Feel your pelvis, okay? I need to come down off my ribs a little. I want you to get more weight on your pubic bone, if you can, and, everyone, start to flutter your legs. So just tiny little flutters.

Keep your buttock muscles engaged a little. You're not gripping there, okay? Now, can you take one arm off the roller and look at it, that hand, I'm gonna take this hand all the way back and touch that hand onto my thigh. So this really challenges this sightedness here. Oh, only feeling that left low back of mine contract.

This is nice. And then take that hand around, replace it on top of that roller the other time, now the other side weights. Yeah, keep weight even on your pelvis, okay? That might be what you need to study. Let's bring the hand back around.

Everyone, rest the legs and come down for a moment, okay? Now let's go at this one more time. Raise your head and chest, get a little mini swan, arms in the external rotation, your mid back is nicely contracted, holding those scapula in place. Raise those legs again, get the weight on the pubic bone, and let's just practice taking one arm out to the side and then back on the roller. But before you move the arm, place that pelvis, right, you really keep alternating it, guys.

I'm gonna do four more. Right, left, right, left. I want you to say, okay, gosh, my pelvis is really stable on one side. But, gosh, when I move it to the other side, what the heck happens? Do you tilt around?

So if you're experiencing that, don't really move your arm. It's that act as if you're going to move the arm, which sets that nervous system switchboard operator, right, and you're trying to brain to body. If you're really wiggly, don't actually move the arm. Your body might not be truly ready for it. And come on down, okay?

I mean, it's ready for it, but we don't, we just don't want so much pelvic on those kinds of things. So sometimes it's like, think about moving it before you actually move it, which is the exercise. Love that stuff. On our knees. Let's stretch our back, shall we?

Let's stretch out into some cat. So what I want us to do, come up on the knees, try to bring these together all the way, okay, and take your fingertips up on the roller. And let's just dial that pelvis into posterior tilt, not so much thoracic spine, but pelvis and lumbar spine, which you know, for me, is my fun area to work, okay? Now I'm gonna take my feet and change the angle. So I tuck my toes down.

For me, that can actually help me dial that pelvis more into posterior, which then, of course, the result is more flexion in my lumbar. Some days it's this way. Today it feels like this way. I don't know. You know, it's a new dawn, it's a new day, just like the song said.

Okay, so as you go out, we're gonna go into a little cat and I'm going to change my feet. Interesting. Okay, so as we're going out, I'm rolling on the roller, I'm gonna have to keep adjusting this, but what I wanna start doing now is bringing my pelvis forward a little bit more above my thighs and parking it there so that I can now just really accentuate my lumbar flexion, okay? And then hold right there. You might want to change your feet if you're cramping, golly.

And then let's try to move from here, guys, into more of a swan-like thing, okay? So I'm extending my sacrum and tailbone, I'm extending my thoracic spine toward the roller. How about experimenting with those arms? You might need to take more external rotation here, okay? I'm aiming my nose and my breast bone for that roller.

I'm trying to stretch those lateral lines, right? Inhale, coming back with initiates, head down, tail down, stomach scoops, shins press, roll back up to cat. Can we do it two more times? (breathes deeply) Okay. So in a cat, until the cat decides to go from its rounds, spine into more of this kind of puppy pulling, right, chest down, reach, extend, inhale and exhale, tail and head, mid body curls up.

We've got one more. Breathing in, exhale. Standing in cat, the flexion of your cat as long as you can. And then when you go to extend into the extension, enjoy that stretch. Try not just to plop the ribs down.

Just feel long rather than low, right? And then return, exhale, round. Okay, yeah. I'm gonna come on my roller, or my mat just a little bit more, everybody. Okay, so let's start doing some opposition from here.

I'm gonna quadruped. So I'm gonna now put my hands flat on the roller. And notice I've got my arm in a little bit of an angle, meaning I'm not directly over my wrist this way. You can be. I'm liking to be a little bit back here so that I can again get that feeling of my like serratus really connecting my scapula here, my scapula, in just little bit on the way to an upward rotation.

And quite honestly, it's less flexion in my wrists, which I'm needing these days. Something about really getting right on my wrist is kind of starting to hurt me a little. I'm working on it. Here I go, okay? Knees are together, take a breath.

Let's take an arm forward. Yup, and then bring it back down. Now I do have my knees together, which provides an interesting connection into the oblique muscles. Keep going, inhale. So let's pretend the hand is the foot from earlier in this session.

I've got my stabilizing hand really pressing down on the roller, much like I had in my foot on the roller at the beginning of the class, right? So that this stabilizing hand really presses the heel of the hand. Let's do one more each side. I'm gonna get myself a little more over. Here we go.

And exhale and inhale. Check your rib cage. So now where's the 12th rib here, right? You can think about the 12th rib and the front of you also not dropping down or the 12th room in the back not dropping down. So you wanna keep it as if the roller is still against you, okay?

Stabilize your shoulders. Now extend a leg back into hip extension. I've got my foot on the floor first, okay, and then bring it back in. Just alternate. So think about again as little movement in your body, meaning side to side, swaying or shifting as possible.

One leg back to hip extension and back in to knee the floor, inhale. Exhale, second leg back. (breathes deeply) And first leg again, second leg in, first one out. Excuse me, I got my words wrong. Okay, one leg out.

Now the knee that you're kneeling on, can you lift that shin up, balance on the tip of that knee, contract your buttocks on that, and then, everybody, lift the other leg just barely, barely off the floor, okay? If all is going well, take your opposite bird-dog arm out. So you could take many things here we could challenge you. You could take, "No way, Amy. "I'm not gonna take a hand off a roller," or, "Hey, I wanna try the knee, the hand off the roller, "but I need to put my base foot down here, "or this foot down." What if you go to bird-dog?

Okay, nothing wrong with that. And keep your hips square and your ribs in, and then maybe your leg elevates off the floor. Remember, it's not the performance of it. It's your connection, okay? I'm just offering some things here.

Bring that knee down and the hand down. Do the other side. So we're going to hip extension on one leg. All is well there. What you could try adding is lifting the shin of the knee on the floor so you're balancing on your knee, and then raise that thigh off of the floor, okay?

If you like that, you could try adding the arm. If that doesn't feel great, you might wanna lower your shin, but keep the leg up in hip extension and go for your bird-dog, okay? Let's do one more of each. You choose what you're going to need. Inhale.

Here we go. I'm gonna go right to bird-dog. (breathes deeply) And inhaling in. Try not to be so heavy on the wrist that's on the roller. Exhale, second knee, second arm.

Try to square those hips. Not so high in the air with the limbs, but think long from that spine center, okay? And in. Okay, we're gonna amp it up a little bit now. Okay, so I want you to, need you to bring your roller underneath your shins.

This is a great little anterior tibialis massage. Feels kinda nice. I'm going on my fist again. Like this. It just feels like what I need right now, as I just mentioned, okay?

Now can you all balance? So I've got my feet off of the floor, neutral spine. Just feel how powerful your arm position is here, okay? Sternum isn't dropping to the floor. I'm not doing scapula push-ups here.

And I'm also connecting those ribs, my 12th ribs, front and back. Okay, think reformer, knee stretches round back. Let's take a breath to prepare for that. I want us to exhale into lumbar flexion, a little bit of thoracic flexion. Now I do have my knees together.

You could certainly open yours apart, if you'd like. Breathing in, let's go with a little bit of rolling the roller underneath us. One, exhale, two exhale three, and four. This is so good. Let's do four more.

And five. Rounding that lumbar, six, and seven, and eight. Okay, rest for a minute. Doing well, ain't that fun? Yeah, let's try something else.

Come on to your hands again. Neutral spine, no flexion. Try neutral. It's very easy to roll the roller from neutral. So let's try it with a leg back and hip extension.

Take a breath. Now keeping neutral spine, flex your hip joint to pull that roller even a half an inch. Try not to lose the integrity of your back extension, the line in your back. Just four of these, because you've got two, two sides of your body, right, so we're gonna do four each leg. Here's four.

Set that chin down, okay? Lift that other leg, try to square those hips, lift yourself high off the floor with your torso. You're not dragging down. Push the floor away with your hands. Ready, breathe.

Exhale. It's like you're bringing your knee toward your hands. Hopefully you're centered, you're not veering right or left. Last two, exhale. The leg that's in hip extension, your buttocks is a little contracted, right?

Okay, good. And then set your knee down, come off your hands. We're gonna do one more little layer with that. You probably know where we are going. Opposition.

Brings a lot of potential of cool things here. So you're kneeling. If at any point you feel like you're gonna lose it, you guys, you can just set your feet down. Again it's okay to do. Take a leg back, whichever one.

Okay, you've got your connection. Take the other arm forward. Hold, hold, hold, yeah, and bring it in. Wobbles are allowed. Second leg back, square the hips, feel that leg contracted in the glute.

You're not that high. You don't need to bring it very high. Take your other hand off of the floor. Hold, hold, hold, and lower down. Let's give it one more and go, okay?

Inhale and exhale. First leg, hip extension. You can even put your foot on the floor and your hand out like this, and then attempt to lift the leg. It's really fine. (breathes deeply) Yeah.

When you find your balance, you might feel like, "Oh my gosh, "I can stay there for a while." It's there. You just gotta wait and find it, right? So there's your leg back, hips are square, you're gonna take your opposite arm forward, leg is an extension, supporting arm is pushing down, supporting me as pushing down, smile, might make it feel better, okay, and then let's come off of that. Oh my God. Shake your hands out.

That's a lot. So, guys, we need to enjoy something little bit more here, and it's going to be our sacrum up on top. (breathes deeply) It's gonna feel really nice to get this in you and let you be with your spine down on the mat again. Back of your head down, shoulders are back. Got that roller just right underneath my sacrum and feet are anchored.

I've got that same connection on my feet pressing down into the floor. Now just take a few moments. And then I want us to feel this part right here. I'm touching my, the end of my sternum where my rib cage kind of veers off right and left, that xiphoid process, and I really don't want any part of that breast bone area to be so rigid in extension right now. We just did so much extension on the quadruped and the prone, why don't we allow, I've got my fingertips, they're right there at the breast bone, and I'm just gonna, ah, and just relax that.

Didn't that feel good? Try that again. Take a breath. (breathes deeply) And just let that breast bone part of our spine go into a little bit of spinal flexion. Okay, now once again ankles together, knees together, sacrum stays level, take one leg to tabletop and then the other one.

And then I'm actually gonna say, not tabletop. Let's let the thighs come quite close to our chest. I'm holding onto the roller so that my lumbar like a warm, I don't know, I just thought of caramel, gosh, like it's nice, long kind of, the muscles in my lower back getting a stretch. The image for me of caramel, like warm caramel, I don't know why, okay? Legs to ceiling, externally rotate the legs.

Let's go for a scissor. Yay, some normal stuff. The leg that goes down to the floors is the accentuating leg. Now pelvis shouldn't go lateral and twist, though, right? You've got it nice and level, bring it up and then switch sides.

And inhale, bring it up, and exhale, switch sides. I'm not really focusing on the top leg, hip extend, or hip flexion. I really wanna focus on the leg that goes down. Four more, exhale. Now you don't have to hold the roller.

What if you wanted to take your arms up in the air? That challenges your balance on top of this roller, right, yup. And one more time. I'm gonna keep my arms up there and then bring my legs to the ceiling, externally rotated. I've got my Pilates stance.

And then I'm gonna do some (mumbles). And as I (mumbles), I'm also gonna lower my legs down a little bit on that angle. Talk about some core muscles here. And then back up. So you have to really know where your sacrum is on the roller to stay there, if you don't wanna hold on with your hands.

So let's go eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two, one. Come up, two, three, four, five six, seven, eight. And down, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight. Come up, two, three, four, five, six, one more set. Down, two, three four, five, six, seven, eight.

And up, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight. At the top, lower your hands to the roller, open your legs up to a straddle, okay, and then we're gonna do this, we're gonna flex the feet and come up and beat the legs cross, cross point the legs, go open. Flex up, up, point, open, and again. Up and up, point, open. Flex the ankles, cross the legs, cross the legs, point.

Four more. Cross, cross and down. Cross and cross and down. Cross and cross and down. One more, and cross and cross, down.

Bend your knees to your chest. Make sure your sacrum is on your roller, everyone. Again I want your thighs to come nice and close to your chest. Extend your legs over your face like a, you've done a rollover, okay, and then bring your legs right back up to the ceiling. We're gonna do that twice more.

Bend your knees first, thighs rolled toward your chest, the lumbar is getting a nice luscious stretch, legs extend over your chest, I'm trying to reach my feet for the plant back there, and then legs to the ceiling. Just one more there. We're kinda cooling down. I'm gonna give us a nice hip flexor stretch. You probably know what's comin', I hope.

If not, here it is. Legs go up, bend one knee to your chest. It's your choice. The other, one leg comes way out over that roller. Oh, so delicious.

I'm gonna take both arms back. As both arms and back overhead, again I don't want to just pop up the ribs into that extension. Keep the xiphoid down. Keep the sternum down. Let's take three breaths here, everyone.

(breathes deeply) Yeah. Okay, bring the other knee in and exchange the legs. So I hope this class gave you some new connection or rediscovered connection in sightedness or at least the new choreography. You know, these live classes are so wonderful that we get to come and move together. And because we can't see, I'm gonna come off of there now, because we can't see you, as teachers, we're leading you and we're helping move together, let's come up to sit, right, plenty to study with all of the roller work, but the queuing that I'm giving you, I really hope is transitioning or transferring clearly enough.

I would say just to leave it this way. The roller work for me is always very humbling because it puts me back into, if I was moving too big, large range of movement and not feeling all of that deep core muscular connection that sometimes is so apparent when I'm on an unlevel surface. And so then, of course, that muscle memory, that neuromuscular work, is can my body and mind stay connected like that without always having to be on something on level to feel that, when needed, like on the Cadillac or chair when we're off balance a little bit. But life is not balanced, nor are we. We do our best.

Stay tuned all week, because you know where our live programming is just continuing to just get richer and richer. Mary is tomorrow. I have a wonderful webinar tomorrow with Kevin Bowen at noon, California time. We're talking lots of juicy things about Pilates initiative, which is his platform, as well as just what's happening in the industry right now. So it's great.

Christie's on Thursday, Leah Stewart is on Friday, Brett Howard is coming on Monday, soon, so we're so happy that you're all with us. Thank you so much. Love all your messages that you leave me at the end of the class. It's something I really look forward to. So you guys just have an amazing week, okay?

You be good to yourself and just smile at strangers when you see them, 'cause it really does make a difference. Okay, bye.

Pilates with Amy Havens: Move with Amy


2 people like this.
Great class, thanks Amy!
1 person likes this.
Great creativity and flow! I loved the attention to detailed cues. Definitely some wobbling going on!
1 person likes this.
Thanks for this class, Amy! It balanced me out - been feeling misaligned lately cause of all the desk work. I also love the way you teach - your spirit is calming. Thanks!!!
Sam L
1 person likes this.
I really loved this class and it gave me a lot of relief from my lower back pain. Thank you 
1 person likes this.
Fabulous class - LOVE your teaching, modifications, options, kind and gentle manner of instruction - just the best. Thank you!!!
2 people like this.
oh em gee, Amy! After blankety-blank years involved in the ‘moving arts’ you just facilitated a new epiphany! — I actually connected to my 12th rib! It was just a rumour before today! And after blankety blank years of thinking my right hip is rotated fwd it’s really (or also) my right ribs! *mind blown* 😆
1 person likes this.
I cannot do with the live cast, but so appreciate the classes. This one was fabulous. I am a dental hygienist..lost of back concerns if I am not careful. And Pilates is the best to help with the issues. Your cueing is fab as is your energy. Thank you very much 🤩💪
Lina S
1 person likes this.
Great cues! I've enjoyed the foam roller class. Thank you Amy!
1 person likes this.
Thanks Amy
Loved this live and ended up splitting this in two due to my schedule yesterday....did the last twenty minutes rolling out of bed and it felt great!
Anna E
1 person likes this.
Thank you so much, Amy! This was revelatory. My neck feels like 20 cm longer than before class - I may have found my inner swan?! I knew I had the bad temper, but here came the neck too... Wow, what a way to start a day!
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