Class #4212

Mobility Mat

50 min - Class


Explore your mobility in this Mat class with Kristi Cooper. You will begin by assessing your body before building fundamental exercises, focusing on gently mobilizing the hips and spine. She offers modifications throughout the class so that you can access your best positions and movements to get the greatest benefits.
What You'll Need: Mat

About This Video

Aug 27, 2020
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Hey, everybody, welcome. Good morning, good day, whatever it is for you. As always, I'm really happy you're here. Mobility mat, let's get moving, let's get mobile. I'll explore some of the fundamentals.

And mostly, I just wanna go into this. I already kinda feel good, but I'm gonna come out of it feeling better. And I hope that's true for you too. So, let's stand up. Face whichever way you want.

I'm gonna turn sideways. Just maybe make a couple of points. Look down at your feet, pay attention to you. We're gonna cut it, not cut it short. We're gonna go for it for about 40 minutes, 45, something like that.

So take that time for yourself. Feel where your feet are on the ground. Stand on your feet, and then just sort of see what you feel after that. I like to kinda work my way up the body. Ankles over feet, of course, knees over ankles.

Take a moment to check out your pelvis, what's it doing? Is it just hanging out in a tight position? It's cool if it is, we'll try and loosen that up as we go, but you can even bend your knees a little now, and just sort of rock your pelvis back and forth. Sort of know where you are. And then, when you can straighten up your knees, imagine the pelvis is a bowl.

Get it right up over those knees, carry on, let's move up the body, rib cage over hips. And you might as well create a space you think you can right now, just by like (inhales) rising up, let the arms be heavy as they sit there, shoulders over ribs, et cetera. Top of your head, right over your shoulders. And just sit with that. What does that mean?

Nothing, rock forward, and you can kinda tell if you've made it, in other words, there's no break in the chain. Just kinda rocking back and forth. When I have to grip my toes, I know I've gone too far or not far enough, I should say. Okay, find what feels like centered, where you feel the earth, theoretically, the sky. And here we are, we're rolling down, inhale, just inhale.

Let your head lift and roll forward. Rolling forward, you can bend your knees at any time. Aim to get to the ground, no matter how you have to. Again, bend those knees, let's everybody bend your knees. Pull 'em towards your forehead, but take your spine with you.

Aim towards straight, just go to where it works right now. Bend again, inhale. Aimed toward straightness, heavy head is maybe a little more important, one more time. Bend the knees a bit or not if you're super flexible, but maybe even then draw the abdominals up away from the thighs, roll yourself up again. Arms are heavy though they're still on your body.

They're not just hanging off like nothing. Collarbones are wide, you're tall, inhale, exhale. Rolling down, rolling down, rolling down. Do what you need to do. I'll bend the knees three times.

I'm inhaling as I bend the knees and round the spine. Exhale, straighten, and then I'm trying to get a little closer, it's gone slow for me today. Inhale, bend, exhale, straighten one more. This is about mobility today. Inhale, exhale, roll up and kinda maybe start it from the sense of pushing the feet into the ground.

So it's not so tough to just pick yourself up. We can pick ourselves up again. Finding more space in your body, finding more room, taking care of yourself today, taking care of yourself now, even as you work out, that's the same thing to me. Bend, exhale, straighten, bend, exhale, straighten, or just bend and straighten, don't worry about the breath. Get to the straightest point.

Hang for a second and then check in with your head. Can it be heavier? It's a lot of weight. Can you let it go a little with your hands on the ground, even if the knees are bent? It's surprising, the traction you can get just by doing this.

All right, enough fun. Bend your knees, roll yourself up. Be glad you're here, hopefully. And let's move, sit down, sitting down. Hold on behind the thighs.

I'm just gonna play with it a little bit more, see where we are action. So, I'm holding my legs, my elbows are wide. I'm actually even pulling apart on the legs. Not to actually separate them, but to go, oh right, I can use my inner thighs to help create some stability. Here we go.

Start the exhale, roll the pelvis back just a little, and come back up, inhale, exhale. Actually, you can push your feet into the ground a little bit. You get to use what you have and you don't need to use what you don't need. Sit up tall, inhale, exhale, subtle press into the ground. The hip bones roll back.

I'm not getting even to straight arms. I'm just trying to move my pelvis. And sit up, exhale, and come back up. It's not a huge move, it's okay. We just gotta free up some tension so it can move more efficiently.

I'm gonna go a little further this time. Exhale, roll back. See if you can get closer to straight arms, but the only way you'll be able to do that is by rounding your spine. So if you're not there yet, you're not there yet. Inhale, exhale, and come forward.

Keep the curve until you get shoulders over hips again, and sit up tall. Keep those knees parallel. Hold, inhale, exhale, sink the belly to come forward. Again, it's not a problem to use your arms. It's kinda a good idea, opposition helps, exhale.

Roll back, let your arm slide, touch yourself, whatever. Inhale, I say that way too much in these classes, but it's kinda like how I know where I'm at. Sit up tall, one more, inhale, exhale, come up. This time, we'll go all the way down. Hold on or not, exhale, roll back, all the way down, but milk it, enjoy it.

Oh, there's another vertebra, there's another one, there is another one, oh my goodness. There is so much to me that I want to feel good and happy at the end of this, so let's find all those parts. For right now, separate your feet wide. Just say if you had the mat, if you're not on one, at least the width of your mat, let's just lower the legs toward the screen or toward the front, I'll call it, whatever happens. And then just pick 'em up, and go the other way.

Let's just loosen up those joints a bit in the hips. Just keep kinda going back and forth. A little sort of downward pressure of that upper leg kinda feels good. You could keep the shoulders on the mat and that might feel even more like a little bit of a stretch. Just do a few more, just loosening up through the hips.

Feeling good about it or not. You might hate it, but anyway, do it. Just loosening up, that's the point today. All right, do one maybe more, and come back to the center, level out your feet, level out parallel in my brain. Parallel feet, arms are down.

Just inhale, open up those collarbones, exhale and start to peel up. Let's just go to the base of the rib cage, hold. What is your neck and shoulder? What are your neck and shoulders doing? Have you reached your shoulders forward?

If so, put 'em back, the backside of your shoulder on the mat and come down. Try to keep your shoulders down on the mat like that, do it again, exhale. And down, and a little more mobility, hopefully. Rolling up part way and coming down. Notice what the knees wanna do, keep 'em straight up.

It's not a whole lot, I get it. But sometimes those subtleties can free up the body and the energy a lot. So, I'm aiming for that right now. And I'm gonna spend time here, so hang on. All right, let's get crazy.

Let's go to the shoulder blades, inhale, exhale. Use what you need, but not what you don't. Up we go, up, up, up. Sorry, I just talked to you like you're my dog. I'm sorry about that.

At the top here, check yourself out. Hips, hopefully, are straight, flat in front. If not, just notice it, you can come down. Inhale, exhale, come on down, everybody. Roll down, roll down.

Here at the bottom, inhale, start that exhale. Notice how the exhale actually assists the movement. Roll up to those shoulder blades again, basically a slant board, right? You get to use the back of your arms. You could step into your feet.

You can start to feel the back of your body, inhale, and then exhale as you roll down. And I always think of it as a melting down, but really there's some energy into it, isn't there? Release, inhale, exhale up. Stand on both feet equally. Think about that.

A time where you get to just focus on yourself, come on down. Again, the breath only matters in that you need to do it, but it doesn't matter when, except for often. Exhale, you come up, up, up, up, up, up, up. Hang out here when you get there, hang out there, check out the collarbones, press into the back of the shoulders. What happens to your wrists?

Just notice what happens to your body, is that hard? Could be, try to flatten out your wrists while the shoulders are down. Stay up here, it's all right. It's kind of really good for us, right? Press into the feet more, not the toes, not necessarily the heels, but somewhere evenly distributed so that you feel that long line.

From there, inhale, exhale, lift one heel, doesn't matter which, put it down. Other heel lifts up, put it down. When you lift the heel, are you evenly distributed between your five toes? Do what you can without moving anything else. I know it's about mobility, but let's get some stability first.

One more, both feet are down flat, your body's up. We're coming down though, inhale, and make it feel good. Can you set your tail? Come on down, set your tailbone down further than where you picked it up in your mind. Right, all right, up to you.

You can leave your feet on the ground. So, the next one is just knees side to side for the basket kids, pull the knees up, arms, let's just take 'em out to the side and stretch 'em long. Yours would be on the floor. Mine, I'm just leaving off a little bit because I'm slightly raised towards the front. We keep the knees together as if they are one.

We inhale over to one side, again, your toes can be on the ground. Exhale center, other side, inhaling over, but take a look at your knees. They are lined up exactly side by side as if it was one leg. Again, inhale, the opposite hip does come up, and then you feel the heaviness of the ribs before the leg come back. It's truly like the legs are the weight against the rib cage or the torso or the core, I mean the powerhouse, whatever you wanna think.

And back to the front, inhale, rotate. Eyes are straight up for the moment, exhale. Other side, inhale over. And exhale, I might be slowing the pace down, 'cause I'm getting a little more flexible. I hope you are too, so keep going.

If you're there, just milk it, and again. Looking for ways to make your body feel good and looking for ways to make your body feel strong. We know ways, let's just get there easily today. Come back to the center, put both feet down. They can stay together.

Actually, let's go from here, stretch your legs out. And yes, they're still together, stretch 'em out. Your arms can actually be wherever, I'm kinda cozy where I'm at. Pick up your right knee, just slide the foot along the leg. When it gets to the point where you can pull it, you've pulled it as close as you can, just drop it or lower it to the side, open it to the side, and slide it back down, come back to parallel.

Same leg, draw up, open the knee out and down. Now, if you're arching your back, you might want your arms down by your side, bend your knee, open it out, slide it down. Basically staying in contact foot to other leg, open it out and down, hang out there. We're back in neutral, if you will. Same leg though, we just opened the knee out as the foot slides up the leg, bring it back to center.

So, for a nice hip opener, again, open knee to the ceiling. And down, open, knee to ceiling and down, two more. Just, again, there's nothing right or wrong. You can even relax elsewhere, but really work it. All right, and by work, I mean be easy with it.

Other leg, you bend the knee, you open it out. You slide it down. It's just a stirring up of the hip joint. And I'm just keeping, I'm still going, number three, pull it up, open, and down. When you get to the bottom, both kneecaps are up.

We're just gonna reverse that same action. So, I rotate the leg out, bend the knee and bring it back up. You're just stirring up the hip joint. If your foot's sliding on your mat, you can slightly lift it, just make it, I'm just trying to make it go, oh, there's my hip, mobility, loosening up the back, hopefully, eventually, one more. And down, from here, back to the first leg, bend the knee.

You may need to bend the lower leg on this one. That's fine, and just stretch your leg up to the extended canon, reach it down same side. You're just giant step in the sand, reached out, three out of five, just up, inhale, seeing where you're at. It could be low, last two. Oh, that might've have been it, here we go.

And down other leg, just pull it up, reach it. Oh, that's a different leg, pull it up. Reach, I've noticed it, I'm flexing my foot as I go down, just 'cause it feels like I get further, I don't know why. Two more, one more, and there we are, bend both knees, I'm gonna say feet together, knees together. Take the arms out to the side.

Lace the fingers behind your head. And either that or you could just go hand over hand, but commit to one or the other. So it's not just like fingertip over fingertip and it's not sort of laced, pick one and commit. From here, elbows slightly off the mat. Let's take a moment to just press the back of the head into your hands or into the floor, exhaling, and then lift your head, neck and shoulders up.

Look towards perhaps your knees or maybe toward your mid thigh. Take an inhale, exhale and stretch your neck. You can actually almost pull lightly on your head to come down, let's do it again. Inhale, exhale, curl yourself up again. Having that control, just come up, and come on down.

Inhale, start that exhale, notice how that release actually can let you come higher than when you get up there if you got over ambitious. Did you lift your head outta your hands? Try to push it back into your hands and still lift, and come on down, inhale. I start that exhale, up we come, up, up, up. Inhale, hold, maybe check your neck.

Exhale, come down, stretch yourself down too. You get a little traction there and up. Inhale and exhale down. Subtle change here, we inhale. We same start, curl up.

Stay up here, take another inhale. And when you start the exhale, you know your abs are gonna kick in eventually. So, then you get to tuck your pelvis, round your pelvis, or try to bring your pubic bone closer to your chest, and then release it back down and your upper body down too. So, we're just adding in a little pelvic stilt curl at the end there, exhale, curl up. Hold, inhale, exhale, squeeze the belly down as you let the pelvis rise a little, it's a tuck, it's a roll.

Let it come back down, and the upper body too. For those of you who need a breath pattern, inhale, exhale, upper body, inhale for nothing. Not really, inhale for everything. Exhale, lower body tucks, inhale, release the tuck, exhale, come down, let's do it again. Upper body, hold it, can you be any higher?

I don't know, I can't, I'm good. Exhale, scoop the belly, tuck the pelvis. Inhale, you can put it right back down and upper body down. Leaving the pelvis out of it this time, exhale curl up when you're ready. A lot of us do this for a lot of different reasons, but right now it's for mobility.

Inhale, reach to the back of your legs. Exhale, pull yourself toward your thighs, and then check out your tension in your upper body. You don't need it, you don't need it. It will take away from your ab contraction. So just try to relax there.

Then let go, keeping your height, put your hands behind your head and come on down. Oh boy, here it comes, three more, that's it. Exhale, curl up, your hands are behind your head, you curl up, we're just looking for more flexibility in the spine at the moment and a little ab work for sure. Reach to the back of the legs. Pull yourself forward on that exhale, cement the middle of your body so that it's sort of easy to let go of the hands, theoretically, put 'em behind your head and come on down.

Inhale, exhale, up, what's your head doing? Is it coming out of your hands? Push it back, and curl forward. Reach to your legs, exhale, pull. If you're pulling hard, let those elbows pop out to the side, inhale, arms up.

Put 'em behind your head and down. Are you gonna kill me if I'm off count here? But I am doing one more, curl up. Reach for legs, pull forward, arms up, put 'em behind your head and come on down. All right, take the hands out.

We're going hand over hand. Okay, so I'm doing my best to line up my fingers here. So, and they're not gonna slide a lot. I doubt you can see that, but if you were looking at my hands, and you have one over the other, it's we're gonna avoid sliding the hands. Okay, so reach forward, one hand over the other.

Exhale, curl up, you're pointing right to your knee. Can you get any higher? Try, inhale towards the front or the screen. Keep those hands lined up. Stay that high, exhale back to center.

Weird breath, no, it's not. Inhale out to the side. Just getting that sense of right, exhale, center, inhaling to rotate, to give us more mobility, exhale center. Switch the hands so the other one's on top. Inhale to rotate, keep reaching just outside that leg, and exhale, so we're gonna do about let's say two more each way.

You're not going as far as you can. You're going past that knee, and center. Pass that knee, and center, one more each way. Pass that knee, and finally pass that knee, come back to the center, separate the hands. Reach them overhead as you lower your head down.

If your feet are not apart, put 'em apart now so they're parallel, so just straight off your hips, theoretically, in your mind's eye. Make sure or try to keep the back of the ribs on the ground without forcing it through the butt just because you did it. You just put 'em down. If you need to raise your arms, you can, inhale. We are peeling up one more time through the spine.

Exhale as you peel up, bringing the arms with you so that they come over the top, down to the mat as you get there, inhale. We're just doing a few of these. As you roll down and you slide those arms forward, you're reaching for your ankle, you roll down, you take your arms overhead. Again, exhale up, peeling up, spine is coming up off that mat. Arms end up on the mat.

Inhale, and exhale down, reaching the arms up and overhead. So, those two are just this, almost like a, what is that at? Swiss army knife, and up we come. Oh my God, the biggest Daddy Long Legs I've ever seen in the corner, hey baby, and down, last one, we roll up. Better than some of the other things I've seen in here, my garage, here we are.

All right, here we are, right? So, we're at the top, you're still with me, I'm back. Inhale, hips are level. You know that, pick up one leg, just the knee, just pick it up, put it down, other side, pick it up, put it down. Now, check yourself, are you dropping your hips when you pick up the leg?

Don't do that if you are, keep it all as is. It's just freedom of movement, looking for places that we need to work. One more, put it down. When you're ready, recommit to the position you were in if you're not in that slam board position, and start to roll, roll, roll down. Both knees come into your chest.

We're gonna hold on behind the knees. Pick your head, neck and shoulders up. You can do one little kick just to get a little bit of a rock going, but now you wanna keep the shape. In other words, the thighs aren't coming any closer to you, the feet aren't kicking. Your just like, "I'm rolling, I'm rolling." I'm gonna be rolling if I'm not rolling now.

It's a smooth ride, I'm not going in a circle. These are things we can aspire to. Come up, four, we'll come up on the fourth one, three. I'm inhaling back, two, this'll be the next one will be the one we stay up on. Voila, okay, so far so good.

So from here, we're gonna extend the left leg, pull the right leg in. Actually, hold on behind. I think that's gonna be a better idea. And again, you can do the hand over hand or lace the fingers. Pull that knee in as close as you can.

Really, however that lands, do that, then try to pull the hipbone back a little bit more. So you really are rounded, but you didn't fall over yet. Push the back of the leg into the hand, not to change the position, but to help yourself. And we're gonna slowly start to roll back and let the other leg float, come back up. Oh, that was a trick.

We're gonna do it again, now you know it's coming. So you've pulled in, you've drawn back, shoulders, blah, blah blah, here we go. Roll back, keep rocking it, let's do three from here. Roll back, try to keep the shape, nothing changes. One more coming up.

When you get to the top, set the foot down, you might need to bend it on this to try to straighten the other leg. It doesn't matter if it gets straight, you try. If you think you're close, bend the other leg. Two, three, hold it there. Just walk your hands up wherever you can.

And just try to draw closer to you. Again, if you need to bend a knee, let's make it the lower knee to pull that leg up. Yes, help yourself down with that leg. Other leg in, bent, holding on behind, laced or hand over hand. You're with me, come on, here we go.

Stretch the leg out, hug it in, we slowly roll back. And I promise you, I am pushing the leg into the hands. It's harder to see that, but now I know where I wanna stay. The other leg eventually just wants to come up. I help myself back up, and now I know where I wanna be.

Here we go for four, we roll back one, rock, two. Three, what's your shoulders and neck doing? What are your shoulders and neck doing? Four, here we go, stay up on this one. Set it down, both knees in, both hands, one hand behind each leg, roll down, down.

And when you get to that spot and it feels right, pull the legs with you, and you're there in position. All we're doing here, we're gonna let go, reach the arms forward, inhale to start to lower the feet toward the floor without letting your spine move, exhale, scoop, and bring it back. Inhale, it's almost like you're pushing the feet down. Exhale, scoop up. I'm stopping just before my spine changes.

So, it might be an inch, it might be more, or whatever that is in kilometers, and down, and up. Not kilometers, you know what I mean. Keep your eyes forward. I'm still going double leg stretch. Hug the knees in, lower your head.

Curl back up, head, neck and shoulders. This time, we're gonna extend the legs in the high diagonal, inhale, same role with the back. Exhale, hug it in, put your head down. Inhale, shoot everything forward. See what you can do there.

Exhale, bring it back down. And again, reach forward, and pull it back down, reach forward, and pull it back down. This time, when you go up, stay up there for a second. Inhale, reach forward. From here, imagine your feet are stuck on the far wall from you, and now pull them, pull, pull the wall in and rest.

Two more with that sense of I am in charge. Two more, inhale, forward, now drag the legs back in so you create some resistance so we don't have to do so many, one more. And pull in, and lower it down. Right, from here, I'm gonna say left and right here. And it's the left leg down, right leg straight, left leg is down and bent.

Right leg is straight up, hips are down. If you're not sure, just kinda lift and drop, lift and drop. All right, from here, we're gonna cross the leg over the body, watch your other knee. Try not to move it so far out of the way it's over there. Lower down, circle, come back up, over, cross down around it, up.

So, you're trying to kinda use the lower leg to keep you still, over, down, around, up. It's only three, other way, out to the other side, but don't fall over, down, around, up. Same side, sorry, one more time. Okay, now grab on anywhere except for behind the knee maybe. And just take the stretch, okay?

You can hold behind the thigh, you can hold behind the upper calf or the ankle. When you do, you can reach the tailbone in opposition. So, opposition helps us with mobility as well. Take the stretch, and then just bend that knee, put it on the ground, maybe a little bit away from where you would do a pelvic curl. Other leg is up, check yourself, hips level.

Here we go, cross over, take it down around, and stop. There's gonna be movement, right? We have to adjust to ourselves, but one more, try to control it, other way, control it, right. Up, down, around, and up one, down and around, up, two. One more, this is where the fun part comes, grab on.

I'm grabbing lower on the side, making sure my hips are level. And drawing the leg closer to me, even as I imagine my spine is reaching the other way, or my tailbone is heavier than it really is. All right, so bend both knees, hang onto 'em. Curl your head, neck and shoulders up. Extend your right leg up, left leg out on the diagonal.

Tailbone is down, heavy like we just talked about, and you pull, pull, switch, pull, pull, switch, pull, pull, switch. It's like a series of exercises that just try to challenge your middle, right? Let's go pull, pull, switch, pull, pull switch. Next one is the last one. Both legs are up and that's cool enough for me.

Bend your knees, hold on behind them. Get that rocking going again. Keep your shape, keep your shape. We'll do two more, and we'll stay up. Here it is, up, here we are, cool.

Right, so from here, we are into the spine stretch. Knees bent is absolutely fine. In fact, I'm gonna do it that way today. Hands behind your head, you know the deal with that. Do your best to find that imaginary flat wall behind you, so if you're flexible, not forward.

So on, we are just going to, I'm actually using this mat to hold. If your legs are straight, imagine you had a giant magic circle. If your legs are bent, and you don't have a lower level, keep your knees straight up to the ceiling. Exhale, we round forward, forward, forward. Like you're gonna get your head on the ground, but really it's about breath here.

Then just sit back up, inhale. So, really try to exhale all your air simply by using the shape, exhale, go, go. Top of the head to the floor, right between your knees, theoretically and actually sometimes. Come back up, doesn't the inhale just bring you up? Really get it out, get out the bad air, in with the good, right?

You can do whatever you want with your elbows. Just don't leave them too high. And up, we move on, again straighten your legs at any point. Exhale, round forward. From here, start to straighten your back, but from the tailbone up.

So, that's your low back, your middle back. Eventually your upper back, and oh, there's my neck right in line with my thoracic spine. Extend the arms, exhaling. Inhale as we rebend the arms behind our head, we get longer. Exhale, round forward and start to roll back up.

Inhaling when you are ready. A lot of words, a lot of movements. Here we go again, exhale, round forward. My hands are behind my head at the moment. Inhale from the tailbone through the top of the head, you grow longer on a bit of a diagonal.

So yes, there's a hamstring stretch even if your knees are bent sometimes. Extend the arms right alongside your ears, but as if someone were pulling you forward. Inhale, rebend, stay long. Exhale, round forward and roll back up. I'm doing a few more, it's my favorite.

Exhale, round over. It's a variation of course, on the spine stretch. Inhale, sometimes I think back of the legs to the ground, grow long on that diagonal, find it. If you have a mirror, you ought to use it, extend your arms, right alongside your ears. And sometimes we think they're there.

So, what I do is to say, "Oh yeah, I can look under it." And if I can't, I sit taller. Anyway, exhale, rebend and round forward and roll up. Inhale, exhale, forward, more inhale. Inhale, go long with your spine. Exhale, ground your legs as you extend your arms, there's the mobility, one does the other.

Inhale, rebend and exhale, fold to roll up. This I'm gonna say will be the last one. Exhale round forward, inhale to lift long, long, long, extend your arms. Stay there, rotate the entire arm, not just the wrist. Someone's pulling your ankles and your whole body forward.

You're being assisted by something. And exhale, pull the upper arms back, one, or the shoulder blades, two, 10, three. Come on, lean into it, four. Find your upper back, up, five, check out your neck. Six, seven, and eight.

Oh my gosh, just doesn't get easier, nine, here's 10, hold. Get longer, refold the arms, round forward and roll yourself up. Close the feet, hands are back. If you can, place your fingers towards your heel. This doesn't work for a lot of people.

So, you can turn sideways. If you have to turn it back, you can do that too. But, and for some, you'll be on a fist based on your wrists. All right, all we're gonna here, not all, there's harder things, is first of all, get your arms back as far as you can, or as far as you think you can, and see what you can do when you straighten 'em. If you can't straighten 'em, move 'em in a little bit.

All right, bend your knees. Separate 'em just comfortably. And now all we're doing, keeping those exact straight arms, you draw the hips toward the heels, lift up. It's like a table, right? Is it?

I could do more table, how about you? Look straight up, not behind you, please. And then just sit down, but stay ready, lift again. Sit down, so it's almost like you're dragging your heels towards your butt, lift up. Collarbones are open.

If you're way down here, you're gonna just, you know, not doing well, and by down here, I mean totally collapsed in your collarbones. So, let's think proud, that one was for you, Johnny. Lift up, step into your feet, open your heart, open your chest, feel the stretch on the front of those shoulders and be gentle to yourself. It's all I want to say, isn't it? Up we go, oh, and down.

One more time, lift. And down, once you sit down, stretch your legs out or put 'em where it's comfortable. Diamond's gonna work for me today, an open leg position, just round forward. Just turn to face front, figure four or mermaid position. We go nice and tall, reach out.

So, so yeah, reach out, land, softly if you can. Now from here, you're anchored in your lower body. The mobility comes when you have some stability on one end, right? So from there, if your anchored at the bottom, you should easily turn your spine. Wherever it lands, just notice it, reopen, as if someone pulled you by the other arm, you lift up, let's go again, just reach out.

And I do use my foot against the leg. I don't find that to be a cheat. I find that to be incredibly helpful, exhale, turn. Reopen and lift, just one more, and reach out, down, rotate, stay here while we're here. You might have to back your hands up ever so slightly, gently bend the elbows.

But as you now send the chest through your arms, don't forget about that anchoring, right? You have to keep that really sense of I'm heavy on that other end so I can move on this top end. Find yourself back to what I guess I'm gonna call neutral, reopen, lift up, reach the arm up and over, over, over, or more up, maybe, but something like that. Okay, switch sides so you're in that figure four. Use what you can to make everything else sufficient.

Seems like a good idea. So, I've got my foot in my knee, my thigh. I'm upright as much as I can be, reaching out, even though I have an anchor down rotate. So, I feel that backside, meaning my foot, I feel that other end, open, lift up. That's like, oh, if that's all solid, I can be anything out here.

Reopen, and we get to do one more. And out, anchor, soft planting, turn. Stay here, yeah, you caught me thinking it, right? Stay here if you have to back your hands up a tiny bit. Ever so softly bend the elbows, anchor the back or the lower end and draw the chest down.

Make it feel good, all right, that's what we came here to do. And then, find that neutral place, reopen, lift yourself up, arm up, and take that stretch up and over, up and over. Cool, we're just gonna stay on this side. Come on down to that elbow. Stack the feet, but maybe let them be a little bit in front of you, or maybe not, you don't have to.

You might even bend the lower leg for what it's worth. Lift the top leg. And we're gonna kick forward, kick, kick, sweep back. Kick, kick, sweep back. Try to go from one forward.

If you're gonna kick twice, make the second one further than the first. Kick, kick, and back, kick, kick, and back. Or make the first one really big. Next one, stay behind you, way back there. Check yourself out, that lower leg is your anchor.

Upper body's lifted, we're just gonna lift the back leg now since we're all solid, two, three, four, and five, six, seven, eight, I guess 10, nine, somebody remind me 10. Just bring it in, we're gonna sweep around to the other side. Here we are. Legs are stacked, nice and long, top leg up, bend the lower one if you need a little more support, it's not a big deal. In fact, I almost always do it that way, but here we go.

Kick forward, kick, kick, and back, kick, kick, and back. Once again, I know it's about mobility, but sometimes the stability actually makes the mobility. So, if you're solid elsewhere, the leg can be free. You can swing that baby around. Let's do a few more here, kick, kick.

It's just about being in charge of it, I suppose. One thing we can be, one more and then that was it. Take it back, check yourself out. You're not rolled back, you're not rolled way forward. You're where you were, and lift 10.

Two, three, four, eight, whoa, we're there. And we probably deserve a stretch, but not just yet. Coming forward, your hands by your shoulders, your feet straight off your hips, meaning down. If you can get 'em together, cool. I'm not so worried about that.

Draw your shoulders down, you're just looking at the mat. What's up? Draw the belly up, so maybe you feel a little bit of a posterior tilt or a tuck of the pelvis. From here, it's as if you're trying to slide yourself forward. So that means draw the elbows toward your hips, just in energy and kind of actually look forward.

My feet are still down, they're still parallel. I'm looking, I'm trying to get up off my spine, but I go down, I did not use my arms other than trying to traction 'em backwards. It's just a helpful thing. So again, palms are down, shoulders are down. The sense of the forearms drawing towards your hips, you start to look forward and you are lifting your spine without any other assistance.

It doesn't matter how high, it's not gonna be high. Our spines are capable of a lot, but, range of motion in certain directions have their limits. Here we go, we are gonna add to that though with the arms. Draw them down, the arms down, look forward, start to lift your spine. When you know you cannot lift your spine any more, you can add a little pressure into the hands or forearms.

Maybe the elbows will come off. Maybe you're that flexible to lift the whole body into a straight arm, and then draw yourself forward to come back down. And again, upper body committed abdominals in as much as they need to be, which is not a lot, by the way, start to lift up. When you need a little extra pressure, take it. If you wanna stop just with the elbows hovering or even lower, that's cool.

Otherwise you can go all the way up, and then draw yourself forward, really stretch out the front of your abs or front of your body. One more like that, shoulder are down, you start to almost get curious is the word I kinda have in my head, what's over there, what's up there? I'm gonna keep following that, I'm gonna keep going. And then, I'm gonna keep looking, and lift with my arms. When I come back down, I'll start to free up the tension in the arms and make my back work a tiny bit more.

Once you're there, you can relax a little, maybe shake out side the side, use your hands to push up, round back. And then, come back onto your side on your elbow. So, elbow right under shoulder, hopefully wrists straight off the elbow. If that doesn't work, you can adjust that. But try for that.

From here, top leg in front, let's say for now, top arm also in front. You're gonna use some help. You can bend your knees all you want to get into what we're doing, a side plank. All we do is lift up and we put the arm on our side, and we check ourselves out even if it's only in our mind, are we lifted, is our head long or are we kinda tilting it? Kinda keep it long, reach the arm.

Sometimes that's a good marker, reach it way up, like something's holding you, right? And then, just bend your knees and tap down. We'll go up two more times. Lift up, you're long, you're like a dart. Squeeze those inner thighs.

You're not doing it all in your shoulder and your elbow, and bend down. You're already to go in the middle, lift up and down. This is it, up, and down. Draw the knees in, just swing around. We'll do the other side.

Top leg in front, they're pretty close together. And you do use your feet. Again, if you draw all the way to the front, it's not that efficient, it's just not fun. Here we go, shoulders down, lift up. We did the first one with your arm down.

Check your head, I keep looking at you. So I gotta watch myself, take the arm up. You can push into that lower leg almost to where you could lift the top leg, right? She goes off the mat, and then come down, and lift up, take the arm with you. 'Cause it really does kinda help to think, I'm going that way, not to arch, but just to have some help.

And down, and again, lift, pushing in, and down. I am doing one more, lift, and down. Right, from there, turn once more back onto your belly, stretch your arms out overhead. Let your feet come apart. Maybe a little more than hip distance.

And as far as the arms go, your shoulders are pretty much gonna dictate where you can handle 'em being straight. So, you can go wide, you can go quite wide. Here's what we're doing. We're playing Spider Man, tops of the feet are on the ground. Palms are on the ground.

We press both, all four of those places into the ground to draw the belly up, then relax. In other words, you're Spider Man on the wall, you're suction to it. So, you don't really need the abs touching the window of the building you're pointing is what was going through my head. Okay, relax, and now we do it again. Once more, abs are in, feet are down.

Now, we're gonna lift the right arm and left leg. Put 'em down but the stay ready for the other side. Lift and your long, and if you think your knee's not bent, you might wanna check. Took me a long time to figure that out. 'Cause you'll still feel your hamstring even if it's bad.

So, try for straight, I think reach first and then lift. And then relax the foot itself. Give you a few more of those so you can feel what I'm trying to say. And one more. Even yourself out.

If I didn't just, if you want more, you're gonna take off both the arms and legs. It will feel like you just got pushed into the ground. That's okay, here we go. Right arm, left leg, left arm, right leg. You're going in opposition.

You can go as fast as you want, but your arms and legs are straight. And hopefully you'll pick your head up out of the water a little bit. See if that shark is coming right at ya. Reach, reach, reach, reach, reach, reach, reach. How about a breath, a long inhale and a long exhale?

And then just long altogether body, set yourself down. Breathe, when you're ready, bring your hands back by your side. Help yourself back into a rest position or something comfy for your back. Roll yourself up to a position where you can move into something comfortable, where you can sit, where you can hopefully feel a little more mobile. And I'm gonna suggest this, just lift your right hip and set it down, lift your, once you're down, lift your left hip, and set it down, hold it there, hang onto something on your shins or knees or thighs.

And then, just reach your chest forward, open up the heart. You can use your help, right? And that's what it's for, help you get through things. And then exhale, round back. Inhale, sitting up, pull yourself just, either just straight up and into extension, which might even be the better idea or sort of forward, just to feel that hip stretch and then round back.

Inhale, sitting up, rolling forward. Make it a little more rolling for just a couple more. And up, pelvis too, everything move. Nothing is right or wrong here ever really. Just feel your body hopefully moving more easily.

And then, once you get to the top, next time, straight up, let's come forward. Come to me, go to one side. I'll say left, roll back to the other side. And then you're back in the middle, go the other way. And this is it, over, roll back, over, and center.

Find your way back to center, shimmy out, whatever you need to shimmy out. I hope you'll take time to shake out whatever you need to so that you can move more easily through whatever comes next, even if it's sleep. You're tall, you're rooted into the ground, and you just get to breathe, inhale. Hopefully being grateful for the time you took for yourself. I'm certainly grateful you showed up again, do that again.

Feel the fullness of yourself. One more all together and you are on your own, here we go. Thank you for being here. I hope to see you next week, thanks so much.

Spring to Life with Kristi - Playlist 11: Garage Sessions

Mobility, Feel-Good, Lengthening, Fundamentals

Aug 27, 2020
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Mobility Mat
Kristi Cooper
50 min
BASI Pilates®
Ease, Flow, Efficiency, Technique

Sep 17, 2020
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Tension Release Mat
Kristi Cooper
50 min
BASI Pilates®
Connection, Length, Expansion, Breath

Sep 24, 2020
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Reformer on the Mat
Kristi Cooper
50 min
BASI Pilates®


2 people like this.
Lovely energising workout x always good to revisit the basics and check that I am saying authentic to the method.  Thank you :D
1 person likes this.
This is a beautiful class, I enjoyed it a lot! Thanks so much Kristi. I feel energized and strong after this class x
1 person likes this.
I love the class a lot; I feel stronger, lengthen and happier ;thank you so much for all that great cueing Kristi 
1 person likes this.
Loved this c;ass, thank you Kristi. Feel much stronger and longer. 
2 people like this.
Really nice class Thank you Kirsti :)
Loved your class - thank you!
Thank you all for joining me in class and for your feedback too! I hope you will join me in some of my live classes too (Thursdays at 8:30 am PST). 
That was just what I needed this morning, thank you Kristi, and I do feel much better 😃
Great class! Felt so good and was a great way to start my day. Feel looser. Thanks Kristi! 
Great mobility and stretch in this thank you 
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