Class #4230

Mobilizing Mat Flow

55 min - Class


Amy Havens invites you to get moving with her in this Mat workout. This satisfying flow will help you feel open and mobile in your shoulders and hips and includes some core work, a feel-good side lying series, and a bit of kneeling. She encourages you to have no judgment as your body guides you through what feels good for you today.
What You'll Need: Mat

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Hey, good morning or good day, good evening everyone who's here live with me, we have had a few weeks off as many of you know, I think, our production staff and a few of us teachers had a few weeks off. So we had those encore classes, up on the site for you to take. And I wanna say thank you to everybody who continually shows up here and who continually shows up on the site to take these classes with us. It really, for me personally lifts my spirits like you would not believe to also get those messages in the forums of how you are appreciating all of our efforts to help keep you moving through the pandemic, and we're not stopping by the way we're here for you, we're always here for you, and I appreciate you so much. Today is the first day of September and I'll say this right now, I'll also say that the end of class, but this is the last class in the Zoom format, okay?

So next week we have a new format for you to take class with that is beyond amazing, and it's a different software program that we're using to bring class to you, I'll tell you more at the end. Okay, so just know that today's the last day of Zoom, it's the first day of September, let's get moving. Okay, and let's just show up be here with yourself and move. That's all, I have no idea, what's gonna come out of my body today, so we'll see. So I'm gonna turn sideways, and I'd like you to just everybody to stand, and open up the stands between your feet, so you've got a couple of inches of space.

(clears throat) Rock your body weight forward from your ankles a little bit and rock your body, weight back from your ankles just a little bit. So it's from the ankles, excuse me, and as you're doing this gentle sway, see if you can relax a few places like the bottoms of your feet a little bit, the back of the knees a little bit, so they're not locked and tense, maybe the back of your neck, ah, the back of your eyeball sockets, just kind of settle into yourself, and then the last way forward and back, I want you to find some stillness where you feel like, yeah, that feels pretty good on my legs, I'm over my legs a little bit there, take a nice deep breath through your nose. Let's go ahead and do some rolling down from the top of this spine, the head, the neck, the shoulders, do what you need to as always in my classes, do what you need to do for you, I will cue things to help you, it's fine to bend your knees on the roll downs and the roll ups, it's fine to do anything you need to I rolled up now, to take care yourself, to take care of your body. So let's go ahead and do another roll down. So those of us that have some stiff lower backs or any regions in your back, you might feel better bending the knees a little bit as you roll down and as you roll up, I never want my body to feel pain when I move.

I never want you to feel pain when you move, that's not the point. You know, the movement is the motion is the lotion as they say, let's do a couple more. But we do wanna find the support systems in our body to move with more efficiency, of course, and more joy. Sometimes in this stand standing roll downs the hamstring muscles might be getting tugged on to one more because of, you know, stiffness or tightness, so, you know, give them a moment to warm up, especially if those of us who are moving in the morning time, so as I'm down this time, I'm gonna walk out just a little bit onto my fingertips and then flattening onto my hands, I want you all just to stand there, so you've got some weight on your hands, some weight on your feet, look at your feet alignment, your foot alignment, and then let's everyone shift our weight forward again from the ankles, so that our shinbones aren't pushing backward, we're not gonna lock our knees in this position, right? So we've got some weight on our arms, spend a moment, get a little more external rotation or a lot more in your upper arms at your shoulder girdle.

And from here everyone just starts to bend and straighten your knees, and straighten them only as much as they go, I don't want you to force perfect straight knee, it's not about that, it's about warming up those tissues when you do extend the knee, I want you to make sure your shin doesn't push backward. Three more times take a breath in, exhale, extend, inhale and bend you might wanna start thinking okay, could I see curve my back anywhere more? Stay down in the bend this time. And if you're the person who's heels lifted off the floor, that's fine, we're all going to lift her heels off the floor and lower ourself down to our knees. Walk your hands out and your knees back a little bit to get yourself in a quadruped in position, and get a nice neutral spine in your quadrupedal.

Open up those hands, feel that external rotation about your shoulder, that energy out the sit bones out the tail, out the tip of your head, and I want you to start rocking your body weight back and forth, over the wrists and back creasing at your hip joints, but you're not rounding your spine here. Let's keep that nice, clear, neutral, in certain things I'm discovering about myself, I need a little extra padding certain places in my body, and I've just put a pad underneath my right knee because I need it, okay? If you don't need any extra stuff, don't worry about that, that's from me taking care of myself. Back and forth a few more times, make it bigger if you'd like to. So I'm gonna start working with this concept of pushing my hands on the mat, and pulling my hands on the mat.

I'd like you to try that, push your hands on the mat like you're stretching your sticky mat forward, and then pull like you're pulling your hands back to your knees, let's go one more time, push and pull. Yay, and then stop in your neutral shoulders right above your wrist, shift your body weight from left to right, so I'm shifting my body over my left arm, a little more than my right, my right arm a little more than my left, okay? Now circle that, so here I go I'ma slow down I'm gonna go back toward my hips, up and around my right over my right arm, my left arm, back around my left tip. Find some breath, I'm just gonna breathe in and out as I need. (breathing) So as you come forward over your hands, feel how the palm of your hand kind of expands on the mat.

I want you to concentrate on the pinky finger side of your arm and your hand really imprint down and also actually all the finger pads, reverse your direction, yeah. So I'm still in neutral on this, we're gonna do this about three or four times in this direction, and then we'll do this also in a cat back shape, okay? Just kind of warming things up right now, here I go. I'm gonna go up over my right and round into my cat and see if I can get a cat back, while I do the circular movement. And just hopefully that's feeling good for you if not, you can go more into your neutral, right?

One more around this way, let's go the other way. So you can drop your head everybody. Yeah, squirming up those tissues. Good, one more big round the world and then we'll stop in our quadruped. Warm up some rotation of the shoulder and the mobility works, so I'd like you to take one hand, I'm gonna take my right one because that's closest to you, and I'm gonna put that on my shoulder, my fingertips on my shoulder, so working thoracic rotation, you know I've been working on this a lot with us on these classes, so if you're the person right now where this feels limited, join the party that's me too, that's fine, this is what I've got right now, you can also take your arm to the ceiling.

It's not about the arm, it's about our thoracic spine, right? So we're warming that tissue up, from here now we're gonna rotate the other way. I like to aim the elbow toward the wrist of my other arm and the other arm doesn't bend, it's very solid and straight, I'm standing on that arm. The breath moves me open, inhale, and exhale, roll rotate the other way, two more times. We are in neutral spine, we're trying to rotate around the central axis of our line and our spine or the center column of our spine.

No judgment ever in yourself, some of us have more mobility than others, and that was makes us all our snowflakes everyone's different, so the other side, hand on your shoulder, support yourself with that beautiful arm, it's rotated nicely at your shoulder girdle, you've got good support in the scapular muscles, here we go. Inhale, open toward the side, exhale, rotate, try to get elbow toward wrist if you can, inhale open, sometimes it helps to push the support arm down to leverage a little more rotation open, you're gonna do two more inhaling, trying to go stay balanced on your knees, I bet some of you snuck it, didn't you? Any kind of shifting from one side to the next, it's really easy to do that and shift what I mean there. If I'm opening my left elbow is very tempting to rock the weight to the left knee, try to keep your knees balanced the weight of your knee is balanced and see if that makes a difference, okay? I'm sure that kind of got a couple of us right there.

Our bodies are smart and they find ways through sticky situations, don't they? Come around and have a seat. So again, I'm using my pad just because I need it. I'm gonna put it right behind my sacrum but right now the guys let's just use our hands for support. Put those hands underneath your knees, and I want you to sit tall, right?

Not forcefully, but levity, I love the word levity, I love the image of levity, the lift, what if your whole torso was full of helium? No, not just the head, but the whole torso, so you're really light, let's breathe. And then take the top of the pelvis and rotate back taking the whole pelvis back and then rotate back up. We'll do about four of those and we can exhale. Now, maybe you kind of work with the feet and much like we were doing with the hands pushing and pulling, when you rotate back maybe you feel your feet push forward a little bit, like I'm kind of thinking of stretching the mat forward to help leverage pulling me backward with my pelvis, and conversely when I come up, I'm pulling my heels toward my sit bones, one more layer.

Sometimes that can help, okay? And then up all the way, so we'll go all the way down now everyone rolling down, I'm gonna move a little bit on my mat here, and take yourself down and then we'll go into some bridging and stand your feet just flat, bring your heels close to your sit bones, and I'd like you to take your arms wide today out to a tee position, with your palm still facing up, so you have your external rotation of your shoulder, breathing in here, so you've got a lot of expansion across your chest, here we go for some pelvic curl, Yeah, mobilization still, beautiful combination, mobility and strength in our Pilates practice, inhaling at the top, now as you roll down and really think of the sternum starting, pulling that sternum down the front of the body or the back of the sternum onto the mat, roll all the way through until you're at your level pelvis, when you get there I want you to lighten your feet just a little bit, don't take them up, but just lighten your feet so that bam you're right on your sacrum there, okay? Now place your feet down as they will, and roll through that spine, rolling through. And again if you're feeling good and you wanna go higher up your back, and that feels good to go higher, if you need to stay a little lower, kind of the base of your rib cage, you can also do that too depending on how your back is feeling, okay? And then roll all the way down, and I'll clarify that.

But when you're down to level pelvis is do that thing again, lighten your feet, so by the attempt of lifting your feet you probably feel a good top quality come through your lower abdomen, that's what I want you to feel. Place your feet, curl again, so like today my back is feeling a little stiff and it's just what it is. I know I could go higher, but I'm all gonna feel like I can just maybe say halfway down on the base of my rib cage, so that I can work on my lumbar flection rather than pushing myself up into extension, okay? So but if you feel like you wanna go higher please go, right now you're gonna see this teacher, stay down here taking care of herself. And then rolling down to neutral, and we'll do that one more time lifting the feet, barely off the mat and lower, okay.

Raise your arms to the ceiling palms facing in, let's warm up our shoulders a little more. So scapula protraction, retraction, inhale arms to the ceiling, exhale to the mat, gliding those scapula on the back of your ribs. Of course they can't glide as far as they would because you're gonna meet the floor there, but glide, glide, glide, keep them level and let's scissor arms one by your hip one by your ear. Now the one up by your ear, I'd like everyone to stay in the scissor arm for a moment, and the arm that's up by your ear, let's say for today you're not going to pull your shoulder blade down your back. Just don't right now, do the opposite, let that shoulder blade go up, up, up up, up, like you're reaching for something behind you here, if I had my mole pup with me, right?

I'm gonna tickle her, you've gotta reach that arm up. Now, when you transition the arms, you can bring your shoulder blade back into position, you'll be able to see it better here, if you even need to look at the monitor, but I don't really necessarily wanna keep the shoulder blade, so glued down here on my back. I need to reach it up this way sometimes, so do you reach? It's a stretch, that's really important in our lifetime, we need to do that, okay? So let's do each side a couple more times more fluidly reach switch those arms, and transition.

And you're stretching, you're reaching, you're elongating, you're opening one more each arm, and reach, creates some space in other words, right? One more time, when we do weight bearing, that's a whole nother story, of course we will change the directive of that connection but for now we didn't need to keep the shoulder blades down the back, okay. I do want us to put the hands behind the head. Lift the elbow points up off the ceiling, lock your ankles together, knees together, let's level that pelvis and breathe in. Chest lift time, curl up round that spine forward.

Hook your scapula on your rims, reach the elbow points to the ceiling and roll yourself back down. Three more today, exhale does a nice clean chest lift position, mobilizing into flection. (breathing) Inhaling down one more time, we're gonna stay up this time, stay there breathing and now lift one leg to tabletop, and inhale set it down. Alternate to the other side and lower, so you're alternating the leg lift up and lower and up, four more should go everybody keep lifting those elbow points up, remember you've kind of filled with helium you're lifted, you're not dropping back. You're strengthening the abdominal muscles that flex the spine forward, right?

One more on the second leg, and then as you step your feet down, go ahead and let your head come down, from here open the elbows as wide as comfortable to open your chest, right now we're open in the chest, we're not popping the ribs, two different things. Check your rib cage, just say, Oh my gosh, I was popping my ribs out, it's okay. See if you can get the back of your ribs, all of them, even down at that 12th rib, well, not all, most of them in the mid back to the mat. Can you press your elbows really wide without pain? Okay, that's because we want our chest open now, lift the elbow points up off the floor just so you can see them under the peripheral vision, we don't want the chest so wide but we do want it kind of wide let's chest lift again, hold your chest lift, hold that chest lift, okay?

Details matter for me, how are your scapula on your back? They should not be close together, they should be wide back there. Good adjustment you guys, so open the scapula, rotate toward one side down, I'm gonna go toward you, which is my right side, and I'm going through center and to go to my other side. So we need wide shoulder blades on our backs so that we can roll slash rotate across the scapula easily. If your shoulder blade points are sticking on the mat you're not really gonna get the rotation is effectively efficiently, one more each direction, okay?

Yeah and center, and then we'll take the chest down, we're gonna repeat the opening of the elbows, this you could bring your shoulder blades close together. Now, go for it, walk the scapula together on your back. Contract the muscles to help you do that. Hopefully your chest is a little more open now with ease, some of us I'd like to try this, can you press the elbows and the back of the shoulders, more onto the floor without pushing your ribs up, because that's a lot of posts here, your shoulder and back connection. Okay, we're done with that, let go of it and one more chest lift series, breathe in, curl up forward flection of your spine, take a leg to tabletop I've chosen my right one, and I'd like to rotate toward that side.

I'm just gonna have you hold that, just hold it. Feel the other foot on the floor nice and solid, now take your arms and reach them one on the inside of the leg, one on the outside of the leg and let's do five pulses and four, and three, I'm reaching to that corner of my room, two and one hands return behind your head, curl back to face, front and roll yourself down as you put your leg down. Other side, breathing in chest, lift goes first, I'm doing my left leg now, you can rotate to your left or if your opposite, do the opposite, okay? Reach your hands, one's inside the knee, one's outside the knee, and we're posing up and the shoulders are wide, and three solid foot on the floor on the other side. And there is five come back to center, lower the foot, lower the head, okay.

Arms out to T, okay this is kind of fun. Take one arm, I'll use the one that's forward to you, this is my right arm, and I'd like to internally rotate the whole arm, elbow and hand, okay I didn't say shoulder I said arm, right? So your shoulder head, the deltoid muscle or clavicle here, I don't want you to thrust it forward, it's not that, the collarbone stays the same, it's the arm bone humerus, that's rolled in, okay? The other side is rolled out, so you've got internal rotation and external rotation. All right, can you press the shoulders back?

Feel that connection all right, let's do the other side. So this one goes external, this one goes internal. You might be learning something about your shoulders here hopefully, collarbone doesn't need to curl forward, I want you to feel the string holding the shoulders back, okay? And it happens to be in the back of the shoulder girdle and your upper back, let's do one more each side. One is going into internal, one is going into external, take a nice deep breath back of the ribs especially rib 12 is still on the mat, and then switch it out, internal, external, yeah okay, that's enough of that.

Bring your knees to your chest, hands behind your knees, bring yourself up into a little ball, and just start a little gentle rocking, I'm pressing my thighs back onto my hands, and what do you know in about three more, we're gonna find our well self all the way up. One, two, three, here we go, okay. Hey, we're up, extend your legs. Now is your legs are in front of you, I would love you to flex your ankles. Yup, and notice how you flex your ankles, I really want all parts of the foot, sometimes the pinky foot, the side of the foot, kind of everts it's forwarding kind of rolls.

So we want that pinky toe side, also pulling up toward our hips, make fists with your hands please, or put on your fingertips, and I'm gonna have you put your right here by your hips, push your arms straight to lift your pelvis up off of the floor. And I want this to be, not so much about an arm experience but that you're elongating your torso, and you're creating space in your trunk, set your hips down lightly, you're still filled with helium balloon or helium. I'm gonna put this behind my back, because I know I need it. Reach your arms forward and now flex your spine, okay? As you're flexing your spine, keep those heels also flexed, okay?

So let's find some opposition out the heels, back with the hips and the stomach, let's go first and roll back and roll up, okay? Yeah, and rolling up, do what you need to do, keep those feet flex today though guys, really energy out the back line of your legs down at your heels if you have a foot strap, I am so envious of you, but if I don't have a foot strap I have to make the tension on my ankles myself, so I have to really flex the ankles, two more times. It's okay if you need to bend your knees a little bit to get up, yup, one more time, we are gonna go back and forth and then back again, back and up and then we'll go back again, and we'll stay back, we'll stay back and lengthen your arms all the way down on the mat. Okay, press the back of your shoulders back let's work on the hips a little bit. Okay, in some hip circles.

So I'd like you to bicycle one leg up toward the ceiling, it doesn't matter to me which leg you go, I've done my right leg, okay. That pelvis should stay level, okay? So if you're on your right leg, let's try something before leg circles, bend the knee to tabletop, I think you guys will like this. Take the hand, so I'm gonna use my right side, my right hand, right by my hip, like a little wedge, okay? Open your thigh to the side, abduction and stop when you feel that your flexure of your hip has met your hand and contract your butt muscles.

Hello, contract there, okay? Bring your leg back to center, I'm gonna do it twice more. So this hand is acting like a, kind of a speed bump, so you can't let the leg go all the way over, but I do want you to feel like when you're open that far you're contracted in your hip, okay? And I'll bring your leg to center, do it one more time. That is what I want us to feel when we do leg circles, when you go open, okay?

Bring the leg to center and then lower it down, just shake it out, let's do that on the other side, just quick, so left leg or other leg to tabletop. As you take your thigh out to abduction away from your midline, that arm should be there, and stop the movement by contracting your buttocks on that lateral side, the other hip hasn't moved and then center, here we go twice more. So, you know, arms are important for lots of things. Yeah, right now they're helping hold your leg in a range of movement where you can actually the hip your lateral glutes, and then center your lateral hip. And over and of course that's what we're gonna feel when we do our legs circles in a moment, okay?

And then center, some of you were saying, well, what about the inner thigh? I haven't forgotten, bringing it back up to tabletop the first leg, okay? Now, instead of the same arm, use the opposite arm, place the palm of that hand right on the inside of your thigh, okay. Now the arm is acting as a little speed bump, try to add doctor leg and use your hand to resist it, okay? And bring it back to tabletop right all over your hip, cross the midline, so we want muscle connection of course, right?

And then center and then one more, try to add duct the leg and then take it center, and of course we'll do the second leg, so my left leg comes to tabletop, my right hand comes in and says stop, so I'm gonna add duct, the left thigh, check that your rib cage hasn't lifted up, and you're not pushing those ribs out. And again, press over and center, one more left leg crosses midline, right-hand is saying nope, I'm resisting you, because that's helping keep your pelvis. Okay rest, from rocking back and forth and doing some of that extraneous movement that we say, don't move your pelvis, right? In leg circles, so let's see if we can get those muscles to help us, when we do it without our hands. One leg comes up, I'm taking my right one, cross your midline, here we go, feel that muscle connection, take your circle, feel that muscle work and up.

I want it to remember what it felt like when your hands were helping you, but now they're on the mat, 'cause they're helping stabilize your upper body as well. Told you those arms have lots of things to do, okay? Other way, so five and five, going out there's that connection, that contraction there's that contraction there. Open you can even sneak your hand, this one in close to your hip if you need to, might feel nice, and then one more time open down around up. And let's just do a quick switch, oop, so my left leg is up my left arm is quite close to my body, here we go.

Cross the midline first down around trying to feel that hip contraction, every time the leg is away from center. (exhaling) Muscle support joints. (exhaling) One more this direction, and reverse it out to the side down over your midline and up contract. Rather than just move the leg out, move it with muscle work. Right, and two more open, down around and up, and open down, around and up, okay?

And then bring both knees in, let's do the hands behind the thighs, bring your chest up again, staying round in your upper body position in your flection, just do a little baby rocking, let's go for double leg stretch, single leg and a scissor, just those three, so out and circle. Out, yep, your hands could go on top of your shins, three, two, then we'll go into single leg stretch. One leg comes in, one leg goes out, you choose it does not matter we change, and let's do our pull pull, pull, pull, leg reaches straight in front of hip joint. Four more here, one, two, tuck that chin down if you're feeling your neck a little, okay whatever leg is in, extended to your straight leg position, try to pick your leg up to the ceiling, which gets you up off your back a little bit, and now pull, pull, and pull, pull. (exhaling) Right, we want the tissues of the hamstrings to be supple and flexible, we're not tearing and overachieving, we want supple, (laughing) Supple for one more, one and two, three, four, tuck your knees and roll one up.

We've been down for a long time, I'm gonna turn to face you now, you can do whatever you need to do, posture wise on your mat, bring the soles of your feet together. Sit right up on your sit bones, perfect, okay? Hands, open up your hands, place your fingertips down on the mat, pull them out apart. I'm gonna kind of feel like I'm trying to pull them out apart and unweight my sit bones, and sit back down, do it again. So hands press help you lift your sit bones up and down.

One more to go, and that's also helping you achieve that nice high elongated spine that I'm looking for, and then roll it down, take your arms out, palms face up and external rotation of your upper arms, just like they were on the mat earlier. All right, I'm doing a little pulsing of my arms to the wall behind me, it's my arms not my ribs, meaning I'm not pushing my ribs forward to you, that container's really connected, I'm moving my arms back to get my upper back contracted, eight, seven, opening the chest, good and four, three, two, and one hold, now palms face down, upper arm can slightly internally rotate just for a little different sense here for a moment, but then go back to external rotation of the upper arm, all the way through the hand, bring one arm up by your ear, here we go again, I want this shoulder blade to not be yanked down, just play with it today. What does it feel like to let this shoulder blade really reach up and this whole arm to externally rotate even more? It should feel pretty yummy, did anyone get their arm closer to their head? You know how we've said that in Pilates, get your arm by your head, well, you have to let the shoulder blade move sometimes.

Okay, now I want you to take that into a side reach, a side reach, you can say bend if you want, I'm also reaching, okay? Yes, let's try to keep the pelvis level and down on the mat, bend your supporting elbow, keep reaching this arm up and over you, and then back up to center, change arms. So we're gonna go through it slowly again, so the scapula here, not yanking down, we're pulling down, we're gonna let it, just lift it a little bit that's all, externally rotate this beautiful arm that you have, you have to be diced to yourself, sometimes right? Yup, and notice it might get closer to your head and you might feel like you've got more reach to go over I'm reaching. I'm not gonna bend so much, I wanna think of reaching, I'm continuing to externally rotate this arm, and bend the supporting elbow a little bit, which is allowing me to go farther, feels nice, so let's take that into some alternating side reach as ready to go, up and over inhale.

Let's exhale over, stay for another breath, and over, what the heck? One more breath in, exhale go and all the way up to the other side. (exhaling) Yes, and over, so you're continually working the rotation of the arm at the shoulder, warming up increasing range of movement, one more each side and up. (breathing) I like to bend my supporting elbow, it is allowing and feeling the K it's inviting me to come on over a little further, come on over. Actually, we'll do one more each side.

Yes, that's my shoulder clicking, it just doesn't hurt, but it clicks and over, and then let's do the same thing on the first side, but we'll add trunk rotation. Okay, some of you probably knew I was going there. So reach up, up and over one, two more cycles of breath, up and over two, and up and over three, stay where you're at, are you sit bones even I think they probably are, this one, especially really rooted, now rotate over your left thigh, I'm on my left side because my right arm is up, and if you're opposite, you're opposite, okay? Stay there, rotate toward me, we're gonna inhale, exhale, rotate forward. (breathing) Inhale, exhale, de-rotate, a couple more times.

Play with the hand, that's on the mat everybody, use it in push your hand away from your hip, I'm energetically pushing it that way, and that's really assisting, and it'll help me to get into trunk rotation one more time, a little more, okay? Yay, and all the way up, interesting my shoulder didn't click that time, I don't know why, there we go up, more movement, three breath cycles, moving, motion is lotion, remember? Okay, ready? Breathe in, exhale, over rotate over this thigh, do what you can, the other hand is pushing on the mat, inhale, exhale reach arm, three more times. Steady your sit bones and sit bones on the mat.

Sitting bones base of pelvis should be level, make adjustments as you need to. One more to go, the opposite hand on the floor is helping as I'm pushing it, and trying to stretch my mat, it's helping me get a little more space all the way around. Good, and then center, now last bit, we're just going from side to side and it's bigger and it's over, and I do want you to allow your supporting elbow to bend and soften your energy right now, meaning your effort. Just four more times, right? Over kind of like you're tossing and you're tossing, and then one more, and we're here on the side, crawl over, lean down onto your elbow everybody.

And I want you to get your legs together in parallel, the elbow is right down underneath your shoulder and for right now allow the bend, hopefully you can see this bend in my spine. And if you need this hand behind your head for support, please take that, but what I'd like to do is just be here for a moment or two, I'm not gripping down on this waistline, I am bending. I'm feel the contraction but I'm also breathing in and trying to expand this side, how does that feel to do that for you, okay? The elbow we're on, you still need to press into the mat that creates lift here, but also you're opening these the tissue, okay? I hope that feels good, now reach your hand, your arm long, and I want you to lift and lower your leg eight times, if you'd rather have this hand behind your head for support, I would understand, you can do that.

Let's take four, three, two, and one, you know how to count there is one and hold, okay? Now this'll be interesting, we'll come up and open our legs to a Z sit think mermaid, my front knee which is my right knee is gonna open up and I'm gonna come up to the sitting position, this arm is still reaching out, okay? We're gonna do that and go back down to the mat, here we go. Down extend your legs out, and up to Z-sit, can anyone take this arm up? So ideally we're not gonna need to really push off this arm too much, that's some core work, that's mobile bleak work, right?

And I'm having memories from my dance life, some of the dance training up and over, four more. we're gonna take it, here we go, four. I'm sliding on my mat and three, and some nice hip work too. Can you feel how your hips are getting some exercise? One more time in, up and down, down, and now we can rest.

Okay, what I'd like you to do to rest, is take your bottom arm out, ah, hello? Let your neck relax, we need some abduction on the bottom leg, okay, so what I want you to do with your top leg is just put it down on the mat like this, I've just draped my top leg and knee down or, and that might not be the most advisable, because it's kind of dragging me forward, that's just me for right now, I'm gonna do the good old fashioned more classical position, yep, it's to step my foot flat, open up the knee and then be here for a moment, okay. So if you're the person who wants to prop up on the foot here, that's fine, and if you can grab your ankle, go for it. I can't do that, I'm a little limited in length here. I do want my pelvis open, I do, I do, I do.

And I want this waist really long and for you too. so choices with this arm. You could put it here, or you could put it here. I love this one today, lift and lower the bottom leg. Let's go with those inner thighs strength, length and strength, now if you have your arm overhead like I do, might be a nice time to check the rib cage placement.

Some of us might have said, Oh good, I can arch, nope, we don't wanna arch the back. Overload, some of those joints back there, right? We want length, let's take four, and three and two, one, hold it up there, hold it up there, little pulses 10, nine, eight, six, five, four, and two and one and lower. Okay, that's plenty, come on up, you can come up and we'll just sweep ourself over to the other side. Yeah, make clothing adjustments as you need, and you're on your elbow.

You're in a side bend, both legs are extended, beautifully long, this side is not dropping to the mat, you're lifted and you're actually allowing some visualizing this, you can see it kind of opening the ribs spaces, all those tissues getting some stretch, arm is here, point your toes, eight lifts, one, two, three the arm is strong, four and five, elbow and the mat is strong, six, seven, and eight. Okay, ready to come up for the Z-sit, so we started the first one, pushing the elbow a little bit. You open the legs, friendly bends you come up and you try to get right on top of that pelvis, rather than staying shifted, this is tough, okay? Over and down, up again. Over and down, and hopefully feeling like you don't need to push off the bottom arm as much, please make it work for you though, get yourself on your pelvis as much as you can.

I'd like to do four more, come with me, and one, trying to get my sit bones as even on the floor as possible. My rib container right over my pelvic container, two more. (exhaling) Good, I'm saying to myself, good feels good today. And over, hope that feels good for you and down and down and let's give it a rest, we'll come down. Okay, inner thigh time, make it be the same leg configuration you did before of course enjoy the arm overhead if you went there, bottom leg, parallel lift and lift, and three and do a little rib cage check and five, six, how did I know?

Well, because I just know, hold your leg up eight pulses guys up, and two three and four, five and six, seven and eight and lower, okay Wonderful come on up, I feel like I left a sequence out if I did I apologize, sometimes it happens, come up on your knees, the high kneeling position. Okay, you know I'm a bit of a fan of stretching out the quadriceps, we also need to strengthen those quads and hamstrings. So if we work a thigh stretch, okay? I'm turning sideways because it's just easier for me to demonstrate it, hands on thighs, one of two foot positions, you could keep your feet, the top of your feet flat, that's fine, I'm gonna show it this way today, if you dig your toes down, and heels pinched together, so you kind of have a Pilates V-stands there like that with your feet, I don't know check it out, it might feel like you get a little different leverage from your posterior hip, all right. And then when you want how far you'd like to go, you were hinging back, now your rib containers don't lose integrity, you know what I mean there?

We don't open the front ribs, you know, if you know yourself to be a rib archer hug yourself, hug yourself and just give yourself the embrace you need, that you're not gonna stress those ribs out 'cause you're busy doing this beautiful thigh stretch. That helps me, how did it go for you? And I know some of you are archers, because you're telling me, right? So this last rib on our back body loves to hinge, and we lose a nice deep core stability connection in there. And it can start to bother your back, how are we doing on thigh stretch?

I'm going four more times, come along if you want, back and up, squeezing the hamstrings, yes, contracting the glutes absolutely. Last two, I'm just looking straight forward my gaze goes up just a little bit, yeah, I have two little pictures here, one says health and one says prosperity. I really like those two pieces of artwork right there. Lovely messages come onto quadruped please. Okay, let's do some tricep work and we're gonna bend your elbows and extend your elbows.

Let's just start doing that, I'll feed in your comments and your cues. Okay, as you lower your elbows, I want you to keep those upper arms beautifully externally rotated, right? Which narrows the distance between your elbows, your back is in extension, not flection. All right, couple more, this is a fairly easy tricep load, right? We're not doing anything too crazy, what if you took your legs back one leg to hip extension and do a few there, hmm, slightly different story.

They're starting to build because you have more load that you're managing, all right, one more with that leg behind you yes, you should have a square pelvis, all right, change legs. And you say even waited on the knee, like we weren't in the warmup, I don't want you to rock your weight out to the side, okay? And one more, and then I want all of us to just stand in a nice, beautiful plank position, okay? Now, if you would like to do some pushups, you can I'm gonna choose not to, I'm working through something in my neck today, and shoulders you could do your knees down and do some pushups, or you can just stay with me for plank. I'm gonna take three breaths here.

(exhaling) That's it, and then come on down, and relax. Okay, we need to do something down on our tummy, we really do, something proud, so come all the way down. And I want you to stack your hands, place your forehead down, assess something real quick. You feel long, a long body, could you elongate someplace else? I often have to pause and do that and think, gosh, I really could get more space between my ribbon pelvis in my front body.

So if I lift my chest a little and walk my ribs up toward my hands, there we go, that's just my little work through single leg hip extension, everybody lift long leg, lower long leg, alternate lift the other long leg and lower it, keep alternating, we're gonna lift and hold two, three and lower. Opposite leg up two, three, keep going cues, knee stays straight, pelvis stays as imprinted as you can, study that, when you lift a leg, do you tend to shift off of the pelvic points, make the adjustments to your body it matters really matters, and second leg, one more single leg, nice fundamental hip extension. Second leg, okay, gets more exciting, two legs, exhale, both legs up and hold, I'm in parallel two, three and down. You can open the legs if you need to, here we go up, two, three and down and up two, three and down. Keep going, remember as you lift both legs up, we want the low lumbar area also long.

So those of us who work on the archie like me, you guys know my body type, I actually have to almost think of lumbar flexion. That's right, lumbar flexion, I'm thinking it as I lift my legs, the results for me is it makes my back feel better. It actually lets me get my pubic bone imprinted more, and I don't feel that extraneous overload in my lower back. I hold it, hold it now, I feel my butt and my hamstrings, begin to flutter your legs please, flutter, flutter, hover your head off of your hands, and let's just park it here today, this is plenty if you really are craving swimming, go for it. (exhaling) Two more breaths. (breathing)

One more breath, excellent job, everybody and lower down. Okay, what I'd like to do is go flip yourself over onto your back, hug your knees in should feel pretty nice, place your feet down on the floor, any position that you'd like with your arms is fine. Okay, so you've got two feet on the mat, now choose one leg to straighten down on the mat. I've chosen my left leg is down on the mat, my right leg is still bent here, what I'd like to do is push this foot so from on the floor and I'm reaching my thigh and my knee toward that wall right there. And it's actually bringing me into a little bit of spinal rotation, starting in the pelvis and lumbar, I'm trying to keep my shoulders evenly back.

Yes, I'm feeling some glue contraction, but I'm also feeling a really wonderful kind of abdomen stretch, and like visceral stretch and release one more on this side, so I press the foot, I reach my knee and my thigh toward that wall in front of me and trying to keep the shoulders back, okay? Twice on the other side, switch those legs, here we go. Press your foot, reach the knee in the thigh, you are coming into a little bit of pelvic rotation, quite a bit actually shoulders stay back. Should feel like you get a good stretch in your tummy and your viscera and then release one more time, press the foot, ah, wonderful okay. Release that, hug your knees rock a little bit, and you know what?

We're gonna finish up on our feet, so turn yourself around. Come back the way we started, so meaning I want your hands on the mat, your feet on the mat, your body weight is sharing, you're sharing it between your hands and your feet. Look back at your feet, hopefully of course this feels like your body is in a much happier place, bend and straighten the knees a few times, you're not forcing your knees straight, even if they don't feel like they get completely straight, I want your shinbones not to push back. Okay, and now from here, just walk your body hands to feet, I want everyone to very slowly with those knees bent, let your arms really be dangly, like cooked spaghetti noodles from your shoulders and just wiggle those and slowly stop the wiggle and roll your body up to standing so slow, you're just unraveling, you're rolling yourself up. And as you come all the way up to standing, don't fidget yet just kind of stay looking forward, oh, I happened to see my health and prosperity, artwork again, beautiful, just close your eyes for a moment everyone.

Thank you for coming to class, thank you for letting me guide you. If you're not here, I'm not here basically, right? So thank you and you could open your eyes if you haven't already don't leave quite yet. Again, just a reminder, especially if you weren't here right at the beginning of class, this is exciting for us. Today is our last for me, my last Zoom class, that doesn't mean my last live class.

We have new software that we're starting to roll out next week, so what does that mean for you? It's a much easier member process, so you'll go to the Pilates Anytime site and you'll you'll push play right from the site, rather than get a Zoom link or Zoom entry, okay? So more to be set on that when you go into classes next week and there's a little bit of a gap timeline, so you can get to class about 10 minutes early, we would suggest that any way, get yourself set up have any extra props that you might need, depending on what the class asks for, but we know you'll have a wonderful time, like we're going to with this new software, it's amazing, great quality, and for members, it's a much easier experience for you, okay? No more Zoom link, go to the site, you'll push play, it's gonna be super easy, have a great week, you know me, I could keep talking, but I want everyone just to have a really joyful joyful week and thank you so much till next week, bye, bye.

Pilates with Amy Havens: Move with Amy

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2 people like this.
Thank you Amy! Really enjoyed his video today was what my body needed. Love that we can access the live classes from the PA site directly but I miss being able to comment or thank you on the live chat as then I can’t remember when I see the video come out if I took it live 😊 
1 person likes this.
I really liked and enjoyed your class. Thank you Amy for guiding us through this uncertain times! :)
Lina S
1 person likes this.
A good combination of stretch and strength. Thank you Amy!
Thanks so much Amy, really enjoyed it - just what I needed today!
1 person likes this.
Wow those leg circles were quite the thing today!  Also enjoyed the side bends.  Thanks:) 
Angela S
1 person likes this.
Great class
1 person likes this.
I get so much inspiration from your classes. I love your cueing and your honesty. I am so grateful for PilatesAnytime even more than ever during these challenging times. Thank you 🙏🏽
1 person likes this.
What a treat for the mind and body; your classes are an education in movement. I love the idea of allowing the shoulder blade to lift in the beginning of class; it helped me feel how to settle it where it should be but also felt like a really great stretch. Thank you 😊
Julie Lloyd
1 person likes this.
Beautiful and really quite innovative class Amy. Thanks as always, you are a gem!

1 person likes this.
Beautiful class. Thank  you Amy x
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