Class #4191

Arms and Abs

55 min - Class


Mariska Breland's series, Pilates-ish, combines traditional Pilates with different exercise disciplines such as Barre and Gymnastics strength training, using a different focus for each class. In this workout, you will be targeting your arms and abdominals with exercises for your glutes included. She will show you how to incorporate more arm work into your Mat work.
What You'll Need: Mat

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Hi, everyone. Welcome to Pilates Anytime live. We are here in my garage, my name is Kristi, but you are in the right place, because we are heading over to Washington D.C. in a moment to be with my good friend and longtime Pilates Anytime instructor, Mariska Breland. Mariska is starting a really cool series called Pilates-ish. I'll let her tell you about that.

It'll be on Wednesdays starting next week, but today we get to take class with her. So let's head on over there. Hi, Mariska, how are you? Hi, Kristi, I am super good. Welcome to my side of AM.

Yes, welcome to my basement. So this is kind of where the magic happens in D.C. right now. I love it, I love it. Tell us what Pilates-ish is and we'll let you get to class, but tell us what you're doing in this series and. So Pilates-ish is basically how I like to teach.

So I've always liked to combine different exercise disciplines into my own workouts. So Pilates-ish is going to have regular Pilates. We're gonna do the 100. We're gonna do roll-ups. There'll be a lot of stuff that you're used to.

We're also going to mix in other things I like to do. You'll might notice some bar exercises, some gymnastic strength training. Today we're focusing on abs and arms, so there will be pushups, I like a pushup. And then each week will be a different focus. And if I know you, and I do, we're all gonna be really sore tomorrow, but that's okay.

We know what we're signing up for, and I'm really excited to be in class with you again. Thank you so much. I wish you were here, but I'm gonna just lay down on the mat, be with you and thank you very much, Mariska, take it away. Thank you everybody for being here. Thanks, Kristi.

So I'm going to crawl over here, working on my primitive movement patterns to turn on an extra camera because it is Mercury retrograde still, and I don't trust technology. And at this point I'm actually in charge of it, which we should be scared. I mean, really the people at Pilates Anytime are really in charge of it as well. And then if you have a mat, we're going to come to it. If you're just on your floor, we're gonna come to that.

So our focus today is going to be on arms and abs. So lots of biceps and triceps. So I'm gonna show you how to maybe get some bicep work into your mat work, which I think a lot of times we miss and also a lot of the abs. So we'll do some low abs and obliques, some deep transfers abs, we're gonna try to cover all of this and then we're gonna do some glutes because that's what I always want to do. So I'm gonna start seated and you wanna be kind of at the front edge of your mat, and we're gonna have to create our own resistance for some of our bicep works.

So you're gonna hold on behind your knees and then on an exhale begin to round back until your arms are straight. Now I have the wingspan of a large predatory bird, so I can have my hands like right behind my knees. And if you have short arms, you know who you are, you might need to go down a little bit closer to your glutes, but because we wanna get some abs in here as well. Think about an exhale, drawing your belly back, let your arms extend and then pull your abs in, pull forward with your arms and then extend your spine. So you wanna feel like your arms are working both eccentrically on the lower, concentrically on the up, and then you got a little extension through your spine.

Exhale to round back, and then you're gonna pull forward, sit back up, just three more like that. Exhale to round back, resisting your arms straightening, pull with your arms, imagining you're doing a pull up, sit up tall. Actually it would be more row in this position, round back, pull forward and up and round back back, pull forward and up. You can release your legs. Hold your arms forward, we're gonna round back a little bit.

Hands can be right above your knees. And again, if you have shorter arms, you have to play around with us, I'm gonna lift my knee up to tap my wrist and lower down, exhale, lift and lower. So this should not be all that hard hopefully, yet exhale, lift and lower. Lift up and lower, lift and lower, lift and lower for eight. Two, three, totally missed that, go on with that one.

Four, five, six, seven, and eight. We're gonna see if we can go down a little bit lower from there and just hold it and then maybe a little bit lower and a little bit lower. And then we'll come back up to seated, tall spine, arms forward, but make sure your arms don't escape your shoulder sockets. We're gonna draw them back. exhale as you round back, maybe go a little bit lower, and a little bit lower, just to give your abs their breaks.

And then you're gonna round forward, extend your spine. Let's do two more of this. Round back, go a little bit further back, and a little bit further back, and then round forward and up, last one we round back and we round further back and then lift all the way up. Go ahead and extend your legs, so they're all the way straight. We're gonna roll down towards the mat, so we're going all the way down.

Get a little, see if you're like me and try to make sure you're in the middle. You're gonna stop with your arms reaching straight up towards the ceiling, lift your head up, reach your arms forward, and then round to come all the way up, reach forward without taking your arms out of your shoulder socket, abs go backwards, and then round back. This time we're gonna change your arm position. So let's go thumbs back. You lift up and round forward, reaching forward, and then roll back and we'll do one more like this.

I'm kind of sliding back towards the back edge of my mat. Lift up, round forward. My legs wanna lift up today, which sometimes they do. I'm gonna scoot a little bit more forward and then I'll round back, just so your low back touches. So we're going to do a little bit of bridging here.

So you're gonna start with your legs. So your knees are bent, feet are flat to the floor. And then I have my hands on my hip bones, just 'cause I wanna kind of feel what neutral is. You're gonna do a couple of just little pelvic tilts. So you're gonna draw your abs and think pubic bone goes towards your ribs and then lengthen your spine.

Exhale, draw your abs in to move your pelvis. And then lengthen. Exhale, draw in and lengthen, exhale, draw in, and lengthen. Now on this next one we're gonna take it into a bridge. So you're gonna tilt, you're going to peel your back away from the mat and then slowly, think about dropping your sternum, dropping your mid back.

Keep your abs pulling in, keep your pelvis tilting towards you, lower down til your low back touches. And then you lengthen your spine away. Again, tilt your pelvis, lift up, and then slowly lengthen it back down, but make it ab work on the way down. Tilt your pelvis and lift up. And I want you to bring your elbows, so they're pressing into the mat by your side, and then use that press to see if you can get your hips up a little bit higher.

So it's not quite, it's more lats than it is triceps at this point, but we're going to do a little bit of arm work at the same time as we're doing bridging. So you're gonna lower slowly back down, untuck your pelvis, lift back up. So from this position, we're going to reach your arms up as your hips lower down. So you're gonna reach your arms away from your legs. And then you're gonna pull your arms in, almost creating a little bit of bicep work, layer spine down, reach your arms up.

Imagine you're pulling something down. So you're flexing your biceps, then you're gonna push into your elbows and then slowly lower down and then reach your arms up. Do two more of these. So you're pulling with your arms. You can make fists if that makes it feel more logical and then you lower down and with depth and last one pull, you're gonna stay there.

So right arm is going to push down straight as your left leg lifts up and then bent. Switch, left arm presses and lower down. Right arm presses and lower down. Left arm presses and lower down. This is one of those things where you can make it as much work as you're creating tension in your muscles when you're pushing your arms straight or pulling your arms in.

So I want to feel my triceps here, because that's the theme of the class. But if you want to feel more glutes then you focus, just change your focus to what you're working on. Gonna pause here. Now we're gonna take your right arm, I'm gonna unclench my fist. I'm gonna do right arm up towards the ceiling as my left leg goes up and then I'll lower it down.

So your arm is also your assistance with stabilizing, 'cause we're doing something that might not be a normal bridge for you, kind of a normal bridge for me. We'll go up and down, lift up and down, lift up and down, think about straightening your arm all the way. We'll do another, let's see, I think three would make us even. Two and three, one last push into your elbows to lift up a little bit higher and then slowly lay your spine down bone by bone. And extend your legs all the way straight.

Reach your arms towards the ceiling, float your head and chest up. We're gonna begin to pump your arms to the 100, but you're just gonna take your right leg up, so inhale and exhale, and inhale and exhale. Three, two, half this side, and half the other side. It's hard to talk while doing the 100. And then we'll switch, left leg up.

(Mariska exhaling) Two more breaths. Last one and then we can lower everything all the way down. Now I wanna do one little extra kind of 100-ish thing to keep with my ish theme. So you're gonna lift your head and chest up, right leg goes up and you're just gonna switch and switch and switch and switch for eight. Two, three, four, five, six, seven, and eight.

And then you can lower all the way back down. Now, your triceps, the long head of your triceps and your lats work when you're doing any kind of rollover exercise. So we're gonna start with knees bent, press into your arms. We're gonna take your legs over and then slowly lay that shape back down. Again, exhale over, and slowly back down.

Let's do three more. Over, and control down, over and control down. Last one, over. If you want to extend your legs, you may and then just make sure that you feel warmed up enough if you're gonna try to touch the floor. I feel like I'm not quite there right now.

And just try to have your legs go straight. If they were like mine, they want to bend. And then again, you use your arms when you're pressing your legs straighter, and then we're gonna fold your legs back some. And press and full back. Nothing really looks quite as insane as your stomach when you're looking at it from this angle.

Really makes you question whether a crop top was a good choice or not. So you're gonna keep your legs up, and then just gonna slowly lower them down, which I guess I wasn't keeping them up, keeping them straight. Now, bend your knees. And we're just gonna rock yourself up to a seated position. And your goal is that your feet don't touch the floor.

I should probably have told you that before we started doing it. But you're holding on behind your legs. Sort of like rolling like a ball, which is essentially where we're going with this, but just not quite yet. So we're gonna start by making this a bicep exercise. So from there, you're gonna try to extend your arms and leave your feet where they were.

And maybe they don't go all the way straight if you have extremely long arms. And then you're gonna pull yourself back here, extend your arms. So you're rolling back away from your feet and then pull yourself back towards your feet, extend away and then pull to come back in. Let's do like three more like that. So we reach away and pull to come back in, reach away and pull to come back in.

And again, you should be feeling your arms here. I'm already feeling my arms, 'cause I started this sore because I was doing pull ups, not yesterday, but the day before yesterday, and they've kind of stuck with me. Now we're gonna do the same thing, actually we're going to do a single arm. So you're gonna reach your left arm forward. You're gonna reach back with your right arm, try not to fall over.

And then you're gonna pull yourself back in. We're just gonna do three each side, reach back and pull to come in, reach back and pull to come in. Switch sides, so you're still balancing. Reach your right arm forward, extend your left and then pull to come back in, extend back and pull to come back in. We've got one more like this, extend back and pull to come back in.

Grab hold of your ankles so we're coming into more of our rolling, like a ball position. Look down at your abs, shoulders back. We're going to inhale back a little bit and exhale forward a little bit, inhale back a little bit and exhale forward a little bit. Couple more like that, inhale back. And you're trying not to accidentally roll.

If you accidentally roll, I didn't see it, so we'll just call that completely fine. Inhale back, and exhale. Now on this next one, we're gonna try and do it for real. Inhale back and exhale up. The first one doesn't count, that felt very flat to me.

I'm gonna try to do a better job, inhale back, and exhale, inhale back, and exhale up, and inhale back, and exhale up, and inhale back and exhale up. Bring your left hand to the top of your right knee, right hand to your right ankle, pull your leg in. See if you can get it to your chest, and this is a bicep exercise. So pull with your arms and switch, pull with your arms and switch, pull and switch, pull and switch, pull and switch. Pull last four, two.

Not really last 'cause we're gonna do something else. And four, we're gonna go to the other side, so pull in. You're gonna take your left leg lower and lift eight times. Two, three, four, five, six, seven, and eight, switch, lower lift eight. Two three, four, five, six, seven, and eight.

Hands behind your legs. We're gonna do that rock to come up to seated, this time your feet can touch and you're gonna bring your hands behind you, probably right by your hips. Again, arm length is gonna kind of play a little bit of a role here, but you're gonna lower back. You'll take your legs with you and you're gonna drop to your forearms. So your lower back, triceps push you back up.

Lower back, push to come back up, lower back, push to come back up, lower back, push to come back up. Now walk my hands back a teensy bit more, I just want a little bit more range. Gonna lower back, gonna say three quarters of the way. Switch your legs for eight. Two, three, four, five, six, seven, and eight.

Both legs down, arms press. If you have a squishy mat and you want to not be on the squishy mat for your wrists, you can go ahead and move back. If you have wrist pain, I would say you probably need to do wrist stretches and restrengthening, but that's the theme for a different day. So go ahead and tuck your pelvis. Lift your hips up, but drop your butt down a little bit.

Take your shoulders and just move them back. So your shoulder blades are on your back, bend, push, two, three, four, I'm counting without telling you how many we're doing. Let's do eight more. One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, and eight. Sit your butt back.

So we're basically coming into the same position we were previously. We're gonna bend your elbows, drop back to your forearms with your feet on the floor and then push up. Lower down and push up, lower down and push up, we'll do two more. Lower down, push to lift and lower down and push to lift. Hands behind your legs, sitting up tall to start.

Exhale, we're gonna round back. So we did this when we did a rolling like a ball, it's gonna be similar, except you get to keep your feet on the floor and you're gonna take your, so your right hand is holding on. Start with a bent elbow, left hand behind your head. When you extend your arm, you're gonna do a little twist and then lift yourself back up, little twist. And if I went as straight as my arms go, I'm not sure I would get back up, so long armed people problems.

Lift back up, lower back and up, we'll do four more. One and up, two, three, and last one four. You bring your left hand behind your left thigh, right hand behind your head. When you go back, you do a little twist, and then sit up. Try not to take your foot off the floor, which is what I did.

Reach back and up, reach back and up. We'll do I think three more, two and three. Coming back to center. Go ahead and reach your arms forward. We're gonna round back till you're about again this far back.

So I would say like maybe halfway back, or quarter, three quarters of the way back at the most, but you want your hands to be able to be on your legs, especially if you have velvet pants on, because then they're nice and slippery. You're gonna slide back a little bit, lift up. So I'm basically taking the heel of my hand down a little bit, lift back up, lower down and lift, lower down and lift, lower and lift, last eight. And two, three, four, five, six, seven, and last one, eight. We're gonna go ahead and extend your legs.

And then you're just gonna hold on to wherever feels reasonable to hold onto for your legs. So you can hold onto your feet. You can also hold onto your ankles, but we're gonna do sort of a spine stretch forward, except a little bit different, because we're gonna use our arms a little bit. So I want you to think about moving your spine backwards by pulling your abs deeper, without letting your shoulders really come forward. And then a little pull with your arms to extend your chest some.

Hold back with your abs, pull forward with your arms, back with your abs, forward with your arms, pull back, reach forward, pull back, reach forward, and do another three. Back one, and forward, back two, and forward and back three and all the way forward. Go ahead and you're gonna go from there and we're gonna make your way to a quadruped. So we've come to hands and knees. To start adjust any wardrobe or ponytail situation that you have going on.

And we're just gonna be in this quadruped position. And you wanna make sure you're not really pushing the floor away here. You're gonna draw your shoulders onto your back. And you're gonna move your low back with your abs. So only with your abs, you're gonna think about drawing your abs in, you get a little bit of movement, it's not gonna be a huge amount of movement in your lumbar spine and then release.

Exhale as you pull in and release, exhale pull in, inhale to release, exhale, pull, and release. And it's not sort of as satisfying as like a big cat stretch, but it's way more abs than just moving your back with your back. It's moving your back with your absolutely. Pull in and back, pull in and back, pull in and back, pull in and back. But we're just gonna add onto that, that when your abs move your lower back, your knee of one side will come in as well.

So we'll start with your right knee coming in. So you're drawing your abs in, your knee is basically weight and then lower back. So we're gonna do six. Two, three, four, five, and six. And then the other side, hold in, two, three, four, five, and six.

You can go ahead and press back for a second, just to take a little bit of the weight off your hands. So we're gonna do push ups that we're gonna come back to. But we're gonna kind of pace them. So if you want to do them on your knees, you can. You can start on your toes and decide you made a bad choice and come back to your knees.

You can kind of play around with each of them. We're gonna do six total reps in multiple sets. So we're gonna come back to them between different exercises. So what I want you to do is you're gonna lower down for a four count and up for a count of one. So it's down, two, three, four up.

Two, two three, four, up. Three, two, three, four up. Four, two, three, four, up. Five, two, three, four up. And six, two, three, four up.

Go ahead and you'll come back to your quadruped position. We're gonna end up doing a little bit of a rotation, 'cause you're gonna drop down to one elbow. So it's like a tricep bend on one side, you drop down, push to lift, drops the other side, push to lift. So your arm that is bending, is bending. Your arm that is straight, your goal is to keep it straight.

But if you need to put a little bend in it, you can. I'm gonna go down and up, down and up, down and up and down and up. Now when we go down to the right, you're gonna lift your left leg out. So going down left leg goes out, push it comes back in. We're gonna stay on that side, go down, push to come back, down, push to come back.

We're doing six, three more, two. On the last one we're gonna stay down on your right form. So your left leg is up. You're gonna lift it up like you're just trying to lift it a little bit higher. So it's up, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, eight more.

One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight. Extend your leg long. And now we're just gonna turn. So your hip comes square and then you push. It's really a push into your right leg.

So you're down leg and then you return. Push, twist and return. and you should be feeling a little bit of obliques here and a little bit of outer hip, probably on the right. And lower down, push lift, and lower down a couple more times, push lift, and lower, push lift and hold. Gonna take your leg that's up, gonna do little tiny circles.

Five, six, seven, eight, switch, eight. Two, three, four, five, six, seven and eight. Now we're gonna go range of motion, down, lift back up, down, lift back up and try not to sink too much into your right leg. Feel like in this position, you kind of have to sink a little bit. And I just walked my right hand a little bit more forward 'cause I felt like that was better for balance.

Let's do three more. Down, lift it up, two, up, three and then we'll lift it up. Hold it up, see if you can reach your opposite arm up so everything's kind of open and just hold and breathe. And then we'll go ahead and lower your hand back down, push up, lower your leg back down, and then we'll repeat on the other side. So when you bend your left arm, your right leg lifts up and out, and then you push.

Two, three, four, five. We're gonna stay there on six. We're just gonna kind of look towards the right and just gonna do little lifts. Up and up and up, we're gonna do the last eight. Two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight.

Go ahead and extend your leg so you're open with your hip and then you're gonna drop your hip back down. Push to open, turn to drop, push to open, turn to drop, push to open, turn to drop, last four, two, three and four. So your leg stays up. We're gonna do eight circles each direction. Two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight.

switch for eight. Two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, full range of motion down and up. Two, three, four, five, six, seven, and eight. We'll lift it up. Lift your opposite or your right arm.

So your right arm, right leg. Open your chest if you can, don't forget to breathe. Try not to fall over. If you fall over, I can't see you, so it's fine. You can go ahead and bring your hand back, push back up, drop to your knee.

And we're gonna come back for a little bit of a break, just gonna do a second set of those pushups. Now, I'm gonna do them on my knees because I wanna try to get a greater range of motion. So I wanna go maybe chin to the mat. We'll see how it works. Maybe I could do these on my toes, but I also know we have more sets.

So if you're on your knees, you can just cross your legs or do it however you want. It's down four, up one, down for six. Down, two, three, four, up. Down, two, three, four, up. Actually wanna move my hands back a little bit.

Down, two, three, four, up. Down, two, three, four up. You got two more, down two, three, four, up. And last one, down, two, three, four, up. Let's go ahead and come lying down on your stomach.

So I'm going to do sort of a swimming variation, but it's gonna be a tricep focus variation. So instead of your arms being forward, they're gonna be back so you can rest your forehead on the mat rouge, down on that. I have studied this anatomically, and I don't think my forehead can be down, based on the size of my nose and chin and forehead. So to me it always seems chin down feels more comfortable, forehead down feels weird. So I'm gonna be chin down, arms by my side, and then think about how your, the back of your arms can lift your arms up.

So we're just gonna start by lifting your arms up and down, lift up and down, eight more. One and two, three, four, five, six, seven, on the eight, hold it up. Now we're gonna bend. So your fist touches the mat, keep your elbows where they are, push, bend, two, three, four, five, six, seven, and eight. You can release your arms down, you're gonna lift your right arm, left leg, and lower.

Left and right, and lower. Right and left, and lower. Left and right, right and left, left and right. Hold it there, lift up. Now this is sort of just feels very weird because it's different.

So you're just working on a swim. I don't even know what surf this is, but I don't think you would get very far. But you're just gonna reach opposite arm and leg. And then, go like I have to like think about making sure that I have my opposite going, 'cause it's very weird kind of position. And then go ahead and lower down.

Hopefully you're feeling the back of your arms some, but hopefully you still have a little bit of juice left. And then because we're gonna do or third set of this, push up, so it's down four up one for six reps. I liked my range of motion better when I was on my knees. So I'm gonna go back to my knees. Important thing here is not to sag in your back.

So think about stiffening your upper body, we're going to go down, two, three, four, powerful up. Down, two, three, four, up. Three, two, three, four, up. Four, two, three, four, up. Five, two, three, four, up.

And six, two, three, four, and up. We give your arms a little break, do a little bit of sideline. So let's go ahead and come to a side position. So come down to a long arm and we're gonna start, try not to fall off your mat and backwards, which is what's happening here. Start with your knees bent.

They could be bent, sort of like you're sitting in a chair and you're just going to take your top knee, lift it up, and down. So I have actually really terrible external rotation in this leg. So if I was gonna try to open my knee more, I would have to roll myself backwards, which wouldn't really be working my external hip rotators. And I want to be working my external hip rotators. So we do another four.

Two, three, hold it up on the four little presses for eight. Two, three, four, five, six, seven, and eight. You're gonna take this leg and extend it. So it's in a slight external rotation still and just going to do circles. So I would say they're the size of a basketball or a volleyball, or any ball roughly of that size.

Let's do another four, two, three, and four, switch directions. Eight, two, three, four, five, six, seven, and eight. Now you bring your legs back together. This time you're gonna take your foot and lift it up and down. So you're doing internal rotation of your hip for eight counts, four, five, six, seven, and eight.

Now in this internal rotation, you're gonna send your leg back. So try not to roll your hip forward. The internal rotation is happening in your hip joint, gonna do circles, again, roughly basketball size, eight each direction. And I want you to finish one direction, we switch. Last four, two, three, and four.

Re-bend your knees, I'm actually gonna come up. So you're sort of like if you're going into a side plank, we're not exactly going into a side plank, we're gonna be on your knees and your knees can be not necessarily straight back. I would say this is 38 degree angle. So roughly a 38 degree angle of your legs. And then we're gonna start by doing a little bend of your elbow and push, bend and push.

We'll do four total. Here's four. Now you're gonna lift your hips up four times. Two, three, and four, and then we get to combine them. So in the up you're gonna bend four times, two, three, and four, and then you can go ahead and sit down.

I'm just gonna spin around to do the second side. You can turn on your mat if you would like, and then you're gonna lie down on long arm, bend your knees, sort of like you're sitting in a chair, maybe not quite a 90 degrees, but roughly. Top like lifts, we're doing eight. Two, three, four, five, six, seven. Now we lift it up, we're gonna do little lifts, eight.

Two, three, four, five, six, seven, and eight. From that position, extend your legs straight. We're still trying to keep it not slight, external rotation, if any of you do external rotation, I'm jealous, but go ahead and do that. We're gonna do eight circles each way. Two, three, four, five, six, seven, and eight, switch it.

Eight, two, three, four, five, six, seven, and eight. You're gonna re-bend your knee. So this time we're doing internal rotation eight times. One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, and eight. So your knees are together, you push your leg out.

You're gonna do eight circles of internal rotation. Two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, switch it. Eight, two, three, four, five, six, seven, and eight. Re-bend your knee. We're gonna go ahead and we're gonna prop up.

Again, your legs are gonna be in your 38 degree angle or so, and then we're gonna do little baby pushups with your left elbow, four of them, one, two, three, and four. Then we're gonna do hip lifts. We'll do four of those. Up one, two, three, and four. Then while staying up, we've got four more little baby pushups.

One, two, three, and four. We're gonna have a little seat all the way down and let's go ahead and come with your feet facing forward. This will be our break before we do more tricep related things. So let's go ahead and you're going to take your legs so they're up, for what I'm gonna call like a big boat, little boat. So this is little bit.

Big boat is you lower down onto your low back. Big boat is you lift back up. Now, if you wanna take this into a full teaser, knock yourself out. Lower down, lift back up, lower down, lift back up, we'll do three more. One, two, if you get stuck, cheat, that's what I'm gonna do.

And last one, lower down, and lift back up. And if you got stuck, we're gonna pretend that didn't happen, pretend you didn't see me get stuck. So from here, let's go ahead and roll down onto your back. We're gonna do a couple more rollover variations, because they are very, very good for working the back of your arms. So you can go ahead, reach your legs up towards the ceiling.

We're gonna roll over and we're gonna reach your legs up. I want you to take your right knee, bend it and lift, left knee bend in and lift, right in bend and lift, left knee and lift. I actually did a variation of this on my last chair workout, but bend your knee in. You're gonna push more forward. Touch your knee to your head.

Push more forward. Touch your knee to your head. Three more times, one, two, three, switch legs. So you bend, push. When you're pushing, it's really a little bit glutes and back extensors moving your leg away from you.

And if it feels too heavy on your neck, just reduce your range of motion. Last one, both legs, lift up. We're gonna go ahead and reach your hands behind your back and then reach your legs more kind of up towards the ceiling. So we're not really gonna do scissors because I don't want to, but we're gonna take your legs and kind of straddle them out, squeeze them back in, straddle them out, squeeze them back in. And if you want your feet to touch the floor, you can do that.

I physically don't know if I can do that, so I will not be doing that. Reach and lift, last three, and two and three. Now gonna take your legs back a little bit, just for your balance. Bring your arms to the floor, reach your legs, maybe a little bit more up. And we're gonna slowly lay your spine down and use your legs for your balance and then hug your knees in.

You're just gonna rock a little bit from side to side. If you felt that in your neck at all, I want you to just to turn your head a little bit to the right and a little bit to the left. Go ahead and rock yourself up. Promised you at least one more tricep exercise, or maybe I didn't, but that's what we were doing that, so we would have the energy to do it. So we're gonna do something that my trainer has me do in hopes that one day I will be able to do a handstand pushups, which is never gonna happen.

Because doing a handstand pushup is insane, but this is like a prep exercise for handstand pushups. Now this is called a Pike press negative. The positive would be pushing back up, which is crazy hard, especially when we've already done a lot of triceps. So what we're gonna be focusing on is getting the right angle of your elbow and touching your head down to the floor smoothly without crashing it down. So you start kind of back in what I'm gonna call like a shorts downward facing dog.

So this is our short downward facing dog. You're gonna come forward. You're gonna bend your elbows, you're kind of have to really grip with your fingertips. Lower down so your head touches, drop to your knees, push yourself back up. So my goal when I bend my elbows is that it's basically a 90 degree bend.

And if I were so inclined or able, I could then lift my legs, not gonna happen, but let's pretend. Then I would lift my legs up into a headstand, which would be super impressive. That's not happening. So what we're gonna do is just the negative. So we're gonna go for four.

I already did one, but maybe I'll totally, maybe I'll do five. So you come forward and you bend. And again, you're trying to touch the top of your head to the floor, but you're lowering down super slow. Come back to your downward facing dog. That's again a short downward facing dog and get a little chest stretch there, because why not?

Then when you come forward, you basically shift over your fingertips, which I feel like always wants to grip the floor, which makes sense, because if you're doing a handstand, you're also gripping the floor and then come back, we've got two more. So you're coming forward, bend. So you're slowly going now and then push back. It's really good to have a squishy mat here if you go down a little bit faster than you wanna go down. And last one, so let's enjoy the stretch part, 'cause it's really the only enjoyable part.

And then we'll come forward slowly, lower, and then take a child's pose. So reach your arms forward and let's actually lift your fingertips. I like the fingertip lift on a child's pose because it gets a little bit more stretch through your chest and shoulders and then make your way up to seated. So from a seated position, you're gonna grab your hands behind your back, push down, begin to lift your arms behind you. And then we can take this into a forward fold.

See if you can lift your arms higher and then lift yourself back up, shake that off. And then we're gonna come into a tricep stretch child face. So you're gonna be on your elbows and you're gonna bring your hands to your upper back and try to drop down til you feel a tricep stretch. So my shoulders are really crazy tight as are my triceps. So if I wanna get more of a stretch, I might take one arm away so I can really push into a single arm.

So my right arm is over to this side. And then opposite side. So you're pressing down getting a stretch through your tricep and then make your way back up from there. I'm just gonna come to line down my stomach. So I wanna stretch my abs out a little bit.

So from here, fingertips are in towards your side, shoulders back, begin to lead with your chest. I'm not pushing into my hands at all, sort of your Swan and then press up to the position that feels okay for your back. So if it feels in any way that it's compressing your lower back, lower down somewhere, bring your arms more forward. Gonna turn your head, look over your right shoulder. And I'm gonna put a little bend in my arms so I can get more of a twist and then lift back up, twist to the other side and back up and do a couple more like that.

A little twist and back up, a little twist and back up, little twist and back up. And last one, go ahead and press yourself up to a quadruped. I'm just gonna turn so that you can see how I'm doing this arm stretch and also see whatever the condition of the ponytail is, feels like a little crazy. I'm just gonna turn this side. So you're gonna take your right hand behind you.

Grab your right wrist with your left hand, and you're gonna pull it towards the side. So now this side of your arm, your right arm, you're gonna feel your shoulder stretch a little bit. You're gonna drop your left ear to your left shoulder, and then you can turn and look down at the floor. Come back, turn and look up towards the ceiling and come back. And then you're gonna go ahead and grab your left wrist with your right hand, pull your arm across.

So you make this like chicken wing looking thing to the right, drop your right ear to your right shoulder. Look down at the floor and then turn and look up towards the ceiling. And then go ahead and come all the way back. Let's just come into a downward facing dog, which is not an upstart. So upstart, downward facing dog.

Downward facing dog is more of a stretch, which is weird because it doesn't have stretch in the name, but you can go ahead and peddle out your legs. I just love this stretch because I feel like it kind of gets everything. And if you wanna stay with one knee bent and one leg straight, you can. And then from there you go ahead and come to your knees. If there's any other stretches your body wants, I am a big believer in do exactly what your body is asking you to do.

My body is currently asking me to take a nap and eat a pizza. Maybe not in that order, but that's roughly where I'm going to be. I will be here next Wednesday, same time, same basement. Next Wednesday we're gonna work on shoulders and side body. So clearly I like to work arms, but then we have other things coming up.

So there'll be like whole light days as well. And I hope to see you at each of them. And if you have any thoughts or comments, please let me know. And if you have any requests, please let me know as well. I'll just be laying down over here.


1 person likes this.
Thanks Mariska, great to get some new ideas for tricep focus, am sure I will feel it later!
Angela S
2 people like this.
Excellent class!  Loved the focus on the arms. Your humour and sarcasm are also appreciated.  Thanks!
1 person likes this.
Love your classes Marisa! I always look for them, the touch of humor is the icing on the cupcake for me!
Thank you! Jill  - I was sore the next day! and to Angela  and Vicky - I love that you think I'm funny. Sometimes my husband doesn't. But he's wrong... ;) 
Lina S
2 people like this.
What a great idea to work arms with abs! I find there are not enough arm work in Pilates mat classes. I've enjoyed the variations of the bridge as well as the glutei work. Thank you! I'm so glad I can watch the recording as I couldn't attend it live.
1 person likes this.
Love your classes Mariska!
1 person likes this.
I appreciated  the push-ups and tricep work.  I took this particular class because P.A. showed up on my Facebook Page today and told me to. It was was a good recommendation. Thanks Mariska:) 
Corinna S
1 person likes this.
Thanks Mariska, it was a lovely class.. some variations were really challenging!

Gary - gotta love Facebook marketing when it works out! Not sure why it thinks I want to buy some of the things it recommends for me! ;) 
Kristen G
1 person likes this.
Great class! More please :)
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