Class #4478

Foam Roller of Instability

55 min - Class


Bring an element of instability by using the foam roller to challenge yourself in the fifth class of Wall-to-Wall with Alexandra. She’ll take you through a fun and challenging sequence to show you how a smaller surface area means more work. Push yourself to the next level and meet us on the Mat!
What You'll Need: Mat, Foam Roller

About This Video


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Hi guys, welcome to Pilates Anytime with me, Alexandra, the wall-to-wall series. So we started on the wall and then we used the towel, the magic circle. (laughs) All sorts, and the weights. And today we're gonna use the foam roller, and a pair of weights. So my weight's very humble.

It's just two pounds, one kilo, depending on what country you're from. And that's pretty much. Maybe a towel to dry your sweat. Hopefully you'll be sweating a little there. And if you haven't done the other classes yet, welcome to join us today and go check out the other classes.

I will refer back to the other classes so I hope that's okay with you. And go back and go check out the other classes hopefully you benefit from them. So let's go ahead and lie on your back. I think of the foam roller as a great tube of instability. So the mat gives you lots of surface for you to lean on and rest.

The foam roll is very different. So you gonna sit in the front, or in the beginning of the foam roller, and then you're going to bend your knees and round your body nice and slow to go down. And then we're gonna do that again. You gonna lift your head up and come up nice and slow. So you can use your thighs to come up.

And then just one more time just to warm up your back a little bit. Nice and slow round into your roller. So you can probably already feel the instability of the roller. Make sure you have room for your neck, and if your foam roller is a bit shorter than mine just make sure your spine is on the shorter part, and then you pop some pillows behind your head. Make sure that you don't have any ponytail that's blocking your head from really going flat on that roller.

We're going to do the... We're gonna use the weights. So go ahead and grab the weights. And we're gonna think of the foam roller right now as if you were doing arm series on the Mini Barrel, or the spot with Spine Corrector. So you're gonna hold it.

Think of your pelvic position. Try not to tuck the pelvis and tighten your hip flexors, but keep the pelvis alone. Leave it nice and relaxed, and draw everything else into the roller behind you. So if my hand was underneath you you would be squeezing my hand underneath you but not moving your pelvis. So take your arms in front of you, and you're going to do the breathing first.

You're gonna bring your arms by your hips, pumps facing down. Now scoop your tummy in and bring your arms over your head, and then exhale your breath, and then bring it back down. So you're just opening up your chest muscles. You're going to inhale, and then exhale back there. Just cracked my back a little bit which was nice.

Self manipulation adjustment. Every time you bring your arms over your head you draw your ribs in and exhale the arms over the head. Let's do two more. So we aiming for five, six repetitions, and exhale. And last time, take a deep breath in with your arms by your hips, deep in the center, and move your arms from your center.

And now see if you can bring your arms all the way down to the floor. Or maybe how far your body allows you to do. Always listen to your body. Always modify for your own body. Now we're going to do the circles from there.

So you're gonna bring your arms over the head, and then circle down to the hips, and again, bring it up and over. And I always say, think of your arms moving from your waist and your back. So that's three, inhale and then exhale, or just breathe normal on this one. We don't have to emphasize the breath on this one. Make sure your feet...

Five, and this is six. Make sure your feet are apart unless you really wanna be very unstable then you bring your feet together. (laughs) But make sure you open as wide as you need to. And let's do two more. And my arms are trying to aim my peripheral vision, the corner of my eyes. I don't wanna go too far behind me so I don't harm my shoulders, and reverse.

So go down with the arms ribs are in, and bring the arms up over the head, and then by the hips again. So my palms are facing up and then palms are facing down. Palms facing up, facing each other, and then down. So your strengthening the shoulder muscles, you opening up your chest, it's great do, you know, just this little series after being in the computer for a long time, especially now with all this computer life that we live. And exhale.

let's do two more. So bring your arms long. Think of your back muscles helping you, your waist helping you. Two, let's do one more. So hopefully we did eight repetitions in each direction.

Nice, now from here we're gonna bring just the right arm over the head, and the left arm is gonna go down to the floor, and then you swap. So both arms are trying to get to the floor, depends with the flexibility of your shoulders. Listen to your body. You can push your body a little bit, but don't over push the joints. So keep it nice and happy.

It feels wonderful to go down to the floor for my body feels I need the stretch. So listen to your body. So one arm is going over the head, and the palm is facing up towards the ceiling over the head, and the other one is facing down to the floor. I'm really thinking, pressing my ribs down, so I bring all these abdominal muscles along with the ribs. And over the head.

And then two more, seven. And then try to keep the show this over away from your ears. Let's do one more on each arm, eight. So you decide how low to the floor you wanna go. And bring everything up to the ceiling.

Let's do the hugs. So you're gonna open the arms palms facing up, arms facing down to the floor, and then you bring it up again. So we're gonna do two more like this. You're gonna inhale and then you exhale. Let's do one more like this palms facing up and exhale.

The next one, you're going to actually hug yourself. So when you come up, pass your arms and then hug yourself and open the back of the shoulders. And then you open up again. So this is a nice little workout to do when you feel really tight. I'm always alternating my arms.

I inhale, open the arms. I bring the left arm now over the right arm. I'm gonna do that again. Big open. Now I'm gonna hug with my right arm over the left.

I'm always alternating. And now last time, left over the right. Now, hold that there. Let the weight kinda pull you down to the floor to open the back of your shoulders as your still active in your center, and then you bring your arms out. We're gonna do the helicopter.

So you get to bring your right arm over the head, the left one down, and then you're gonna swing them around swapping with where your hand is facing. So you bring your right arm over the head, the left down, and then you do a circular movement to bring it up. So they're going two different directions. Three, and around. And I'm still trying to be nice with my joint, keeping it peripheral vision not be on that.

Four. Last time. So I'm going the same direction, and five. And I'm going to reverse now. So I'm going to go left arm over the head now, right arm down and then I circle out. So this is to help you to find a connection between your back muscles, your waist, your center ultimately moving arms for you.

So that's three, scoop it around, four. So your arms and your center is really controlling how your arms are moving. So your arms are branches attached to your trunk. And rest. Very nice.

Good, now from here, we're gonna bring your arms along by your side to help us to do the hundred. So, but before that, we're going to keep the hands down to the floor. See if you can lift your head off the floor, just, you know, very little so maybe a card can go underneath your head, and then you bring it back down. Now you're gonna lift the head, then your gonna look to your belly button. And now lift your sternum off along with your abdominal muscles, and then down.

Lets so that again. So head, sternum, abdominal muscles, and then down. Let's do two more times. So head, looked at your belly button, it's sternum come up, engage your abdominal muscles and stay there, and come back down. Let's do one more time.

And this time we stay. So head lifting off the floor, head looking in, lift the sternum, engage the dominant muscles and stay there. You're going to pick up your weights again, and pump your arms, and breathe in with the air, (inhales deeply), and exhale. (exhales heavily) And breathe in, two, three, four, five, and exhale. Two, three, four, five, three more. So we're just gonna do 50, exhale.

Let's do two more. Keep your pelvis nice and relaxed, and draw the belly button in, exhale. Let's do one more. Breathe in, two, three, four, five, and exhale. Two, three, four, and five.

Place the weights down. Place the hands pushing the floor, bend your knees into your chest. Keep them in the air. From there touch your floor with your foot. One foot at a time.

Now your attention should be, can I keep the roller nice and stable. Can I feel every vertebrae into this roller? So none of my back, none of the bones are coming off. I'm not arching. I'm pulling in.

I'm becoming one with this unstable little thing. Now that you did that, you can maybe go a little further and further. So your creating a little bit more angle between your heel and your seat. And let's do two more touching the mat. One more touching the mat with the right foot, left foot.

Now, pick it back up, and then see if you can go together with your legs. Now, your attention still on how much can I draw my spine, my abdominal muscles into the roller. And maybe some of us won't go all the way down. And maybe you'll go just halfway. Maybe a quarter of the way.

But keep drawing your belly button in. Another thing is we have three more of those, and is you can you keep your hands really by your hips for a lasting stability. For more stability, you can really bring your arms out. And this is gonna be the last one. Very nice.

So we have 50 more to finish the hundred. So you're going to lift your head and then decide, do I want my hands by my hips or out? Pick your head up, pick your abdominal muscles up, press the legs out, and do little beats with you heels. So this is really anchoring. You're gonna breathe in, two, three, four, five, and exhale.

Two, three, four, five. Breathing in, two, three, four, five, and exhale. Two, three, four, five. In with the air, (inhales deeply), out with the air. Push the floor if you need to.

Let's do one more. For more stability, breathe in, two, three, four, five and exhale. Two, three, four and five. Bend in. Place your feet on the floor.

Open the feet a little bit wider just in line with your hips, and let's do your roll up. So bring your hands behind your thighs, head in, and roll up. And you may wanna... You know, the side where you wanna keep your feet. The closer your feet are to you the harder it's gonna be.

So play around a little bit on, and then come down with control. And again, pick the head, the shoulders, inhale and exhale. And you can probably feel what's happening in your body. What is the roller telling me? What side is a bit more unstable?

And then roll lap. So you can keep doing this with your knees bend and your hands behind your thighs, or you can pop your arms forward, and come up without the hands touching the thighs, and then go down. You can stay here, or we can straighten your legs. Let's see if we can do with your legs straight. Round and reach forward, and then roll back into the roller, one little bone at a time.

Again pick the head, the shoulders, rolling to yourself, push into the roller that's moving, and go forward with your arms. See if you can give yourself a nice little stretch, your arms are active by your ears, and then you roll down with control. And last time. Roll nice and slow into yourself, and reach forward, long arms by your ears, energy going different directions, and roll down with control. Very nice.

Now, make sure that you haven't moved, that your head can still feel supported on the roller. You're going to press your arms down on the mat like chest expansion, pick up your knees, and we're going to either lift your hips off, and bring it back down. Almost like the prep for your roll over and then down. Once again the side where your arms need to be out or in, maybe half way, and then lift the hips and down. Let's do two more.

And lift the hips, and control the way down. Last time, really feel each little bone coming back into the roller. Now, keep your leg straight and see if you can go over nice line. So you're looking between your knees, and then you come back in with the leg straight the whole time. Or go back to that knee bend variation.

And over. And roll down with control. And again, scoop nice and honest movement as we have been talking about in this little series. So we don't wanna just jump and get there, but we wanna enjoy how we get there, and we wanna enjoy how we come back. Let's do one more.

And over, legs are nice and high. You're nice and scooped into your center, and come back one little bone at a time. Beautiful. Let's keep your left leg down. Right leg is gonna come up. You may wanna open your arms a little bit out.

You going to do your single leg circles. So, ribs in, pull everything into the roller. And we go across, around and up. You may wanna slow down your circle today just so you can feel that connections being made the whole time into the roller. So you get to do five reps.

This is four, and five. Reverse, go away from the body across the butt, and one. Now, think of the other leg on the floor, two, anchoring, around and three, around and four, bend the knee if you need to. That bottom, that leg. And last time, and five.

Hold it there, let's just sit there a few times. So swap legs and hold. Swap legs and hold. Swap legs and hold, and stay. And we go, cross the body around and up.

How anchored are you into the roller? How anchored is the other leg to support you? How much can you use your hands to push into the mat, into the floor? And around, last time, and reverse. Scoop to bring that leg up.

The center is drawing that leg up. Make it a smaller circle if you need to, or bend the bottom knee. Let's do one more, and bring it down. Very nice. You're gonna roll up, so you decide how your roll up is gonna be.

Bring your arms over the head, give yourself a nice chest stretch, pulling the ribs in, and roll up. And now we're going to flip the roller for our feet to go in. And we're gonna do a little stomach massage type of exercise. It will feel like the stomach massage. So your hands are full.

Your lifting up tall. Your hands are in front giving a little lift. So you rounded, but you lift. And you press out and you scoop in. So you can still rest your feet a little bit on the roller but your center is really ultimately drawing this, and you can make that as hard or as easy as you want to.

Draw it in like is the the hardest thing you're gonna do today. Pull in. And two more as you're lifting from your center. And last time. And now we're going to add the little weights, reach forward.

You're going to straighten your legs as you twist and smile. And forward, and twist. And now try to keep your body forward reaching the arms long. Think of your back muscles helping you to use the weight. So your arms are attached to your muscles back there, your waist.

Let's do one more on each side. Twist, as you reach bent in. Straighten the legs as you twist and stay. Bend the knees and stroke with the arms around, one. Each repetition you grow from your waist, lengthen through the ears, and reverse.

Around and lift, your ears are being suspended through the ceiling. Three, four, one more, and five. Very nice. Let's bring this down. We don't need the weights for now.

You're going to do you're rolling like a ball. And I think the stomach massage is a great exercise to think of before you're rolling like a ball. Your gonna place your roller in between your knees, but you're gonna decide how close to your forehead you're gonna make your foam roller be. So the further away from you, the harder it is to keep the shape of the ball. So maybe let's start a little nicer, squeeze the foam roller, hold on to your ankles, and go back.

Now, when you come up can you keep your forehead glue to this thing? Inhale, exhale. Now, can I ask you to challenge yourself, and push this, the foam roller, a little bit away from you. See if he can still keep your head on that roller the whole time like a fulcrum it's glue on, don't let it come off. So you decide how you want to do this.

Keep that shape of the stomach massage you just did, the previous exercise. See if your body's going right or left. Let's do one more. Inhale and exhale. Very nice. Beautiful.

(exhales heavily) Good work. Now we're gonna go on top of it again. Make sure you have plenty of space to lie with your head. And we going to do the Five Stomach Series. Yay! So your arms are gonna go forward, maybe just variation of it, very different 'cause we're on the roller. Pick your right leg up.

Pick your left leg up, balance. And from here, you just gonna reach one leg out as you scoop deeper, swap. So, if someone is watching they think, oh, that's easy. But if you try, you will know it's not that easy. So my foam roller is moving a little bit right and left, can you keep it quiet, and nice, and still.

So as I move my legs now I'm paying attention of, what is the roller of doing? I can bring my arms out a little bit more to give me more stability. Now, go ahead and do your bicycle version. So you're gonna go down to the mat, scrape the mat, clean the mud off your feet, and scrape the floor. Now, can we add the upper abdominal muscles.

Lift your head, your sternum, and engage your core, your center. So your entire abdominal muscles are working together. So you scrape the floor, and you stay nice and high. Your neck is up because your centers work you very hard. Last time, and lower your head, bend your knees in.

Now both legs. Scoop to go out, and bend your knees in. So the goal... This is two, and bring it in. The goal is every time you go out with your legs they should feel light, because your center is working so hard and deep.

And five. Now, can we lift the head and go, five. So every time you lift your head, your core, your center, your abdominal muscles need to be fired in. And two more, out and in. Last time, out and in.

Rest your head, right leg up, left leg down. And we're gonna scissor, one and one, and two, and two, three. Now lift your head, and four. Can you feel the spine into the mat, into the foam roller? Do you need more or less the stability with your hands?

Can we go very close to the hips? And 9, and 10. Rest your head. Maybe you wanna move your hands again for this one. And we go double leg.

So pull everything in. Don't let any little bone come off of that roller, and then come back up. And down, down, down, and up, one. Down, down, down, and up. Now, can we lift the head, and down, down, down, and five.

Push the floor. So the more you push the floor, the more you pull into yourself like we did for the wall. We push the floor to pull into the center. Last time, and 10. Beautiful. Well done.

Hopefully your warmed up now. Bring your hands behind your head. Now come up, twist, and down. Now your head is gonna give you a false idea that you're going really high because the head is very flexible. So see if you can keep your head with your spine and then twist.

And ask yourself can I lift my shoulders, my wings off the floor before I twist, versus just sticking the head out. So the neck is very flexible, and we could take it really far. But that doesn't mean that you coming that far off the floor. Hopefully it's making sense. Lift up, twist.

So a little variation of the criss-cross, and again, come up, twist, center and down. Let's do one more time. Lift up, twist one direction, and then come down. Last time, control the head, and twist. So you wanna come up as a unit, and down, beautiful.

And then roll up with your legs straight, or bend, hands on your thighs, arms up. Maybe a little harder to come up now because you just did your stomach series. Very nice. Let's bring your foam roller in front of you. You're gonna have to open the legs really wide depending on the size of your roller.

And you just gonna do a nice lift and stretchy spine stretch forward today. So sit up nice and tall, inhale. Imagine that wall behind you, keep touching your lower back into the wall pulling your abdominal muscles all the way back there, and roll your foam roller all the way down as far as you feel comfortable. Head to the floor if you want to. Now, pull this roll into yourself and stack one bone at a time as you come up.

Think of your head also gently pressing into that imaginary wall. Inhale. Your feet are flex, the dorsiflex. And scoop to go forward. See how far your body wants to take you, and then pull yourself back into that wall. Again, inhale lift, exhale forward.

Inhale down there, scoop deeper, exhale. Last time, inhale and exhale, exhale, exhale, go as far as you wish, keep those arms nice and active, and roll to come up. Nice. Now let's do your Open Leg Rocker. So you're gonna come forward a little bit depending on what you feel that you need the space. You're going to bring your legs up.

I'm gonna show you a few variations actually. Your feet are gonna hold your roller and you're gonna squeeze the roller with your feet. You're gonna hold your ankles, and you're gonna go out and forward. Now, I really wanted to keep your elbows from moving. So go out, and come up.

And think of that core, or your lower abdominal muscle is really scooped in, a little empty bowl of soup, and it stays empty. Don't wanna feel up, poaching the belly out. Last time, and I'm gonna show you another version. This version you just gonna keep the legs maybe a little closer, touch your toes with your roller. Now your holding the roller with your hands.

And now keep touching your toes the whole time. Inhale, go back, exhale, go forward, don't let it come off. One more with this variation and in. Now the hardest ones for me I think you're gonna hug you roller, and your chest and your thighs can't let this move around. You have to hold it in, and go back.

Now when you come up, are you still hugging, or are you letting it move away from you? Can your body feel nice and together as a unit? And don't let that roller move. It's very hard. Very humbling. Last one, so you have three different variations you can practice.

You can even do with your legs straight. Very nice. Let's go ahead and turn around for your extension work. Oh no, sorry. Never mind. Let's see your start from there.

So, you just finished with your foam Open Leg Rocker, sit up nice and tall. Your leg's a little wider than you hips. And you're going to inhale twist to the right, exhale, and go as far as you want, and come center. Inhale, exhale as hard as you want. Will tell you a little story about why I was turning around.

So I always question a little bit Joseph Pilates' idea of doing all this tummy stuff, right? This Stomach Series. And then he makes you around into a Spine Stretch Forward. And then he makes you round into an Open Leg Rocker. And I just wanna do extension after that.

So that's when my body tells me. That's why I wanted to quickly turn around and do my test. Now, twist to the right, and pass your toes, exhale all your air, and then roll back up. So you get to think of your Spine Stretch Forward exercise you did previous, and then go forward. So it feels nice to extend after you flex so much, but that's now what he decided.

And up. But sometimes I cheat and I go right into extension. Don't tell the pilates police. And sit up tall, one more on each side. Inhale, twist nice and tall.

Exhale, empty your lungs and keep reaching endlessly with your arms as your head is going down and your abdominal muscle is going back. So all this different energy going different directions. Inhale twist, exhale go forward. Long arms, lift your center, and then come back up. Beautiful. Now let's extend.

'Cause my muscles are saying, please stretch my abdominal muscles. So once again, there's a little variation that we gonna do here. It's very similar to what we did with the towel. So, hands are on the roller, and your head is long. You're going to scoop your tummy off the floor first so your lower back is nice and long.

And then draw your shoulders into the waist. Press the ceiling with the back of your head. And then slide, slowly bring your foam roller in. And then you dive down again. So I don't know if you've ever done the Flying Eagle on the Wunda Chair.

That's what I think of here. Scoop the tummy, shoulders into the waist. Head at the back pushing the ceiling away, and then you slide and you come up, and you smile, and then you scoop to go down. So I say you smile just so you don't tense your facial muscles. Again, scoop, shoulders, head, come up, lift.

And then head. Slowly keep scooping, keep scooping, keep scooping to go down. Last one, scoop the tummy, shoulders to the waist, head pushing the ceiling, and slide. We're gonna stay here a little bit, bring your hands a little closer together into the midline, and take your right arm up and down, and left. So I'm showing you different ways that you can work on your extension work, so we can do the SuperHero class in the end of this series.

So, work on all of these things. Lift up and down. Last time with your other hand or arm, and go down. Good, sit back and round your body. So you wanna round like a little ball.

And then you going to go back forward. And this time your roller is right on your hip. So your legs feel like they can move. So find that sweet spot for you. And from there, we're going to draw the legs together, come up, and do your neck roll, bringing the chin across the chest, reverse.

Chin to the left, shoulder across the chest all the way, look behind you, and then look forward. Good, let's bring your elbows down, and do your single leg kicks. So you're going to lift that right leg, kick, kick, and bring it down. Lift, kick, kick, and bring it down. So you have energy pushing your hand into the floor to lift, kick, kick.

Lift your abdominal muscles, so you're not going into your lower back. And what I'm adding is a lift and reaching. I'm reaching that leg to the back wall there. So I'm lifting and reaching my legs out of my head hips. So I'm adding length and it's a lot more hard work when you add length to your muscles.

Rest. Good. Let's go into your double leg kick. So we're just gonna stay here. Lift both legs, kick, kick, and release. And again, kick, kick, and release.

Kick, kick and release. And kick, kick, and release. Now we're gonna push the floor, and open your chest. And we're gonna combine the two now. Elbows down, lift the legs, kick, kick, kick, stretch the legs, push the floor, come up nice and proud.

And last time. Elbows down, kick, kick, kick, straighten the legs, glue them together, push the floor. And energy from your feet to your neck, from your neck to your feet, to your hands, and rest. Sit back on your heels and round your body a little bit. So for some of you maybe this is a lot extension.

So then you need to go to the floor, and just keep your head down more. So this time you hopefully will feel the back of your thighs and your bum. Your elbows are gonna stay in the same level that you just did right in line with your shoulders. Draw the legs together, and just lift both legs up. So this is the prep for your grasshopper.

So if you wanna bring your hands together and rest your head, and just let your bum suffer, your hamstrings suffer, the back of the thighs, you can do that. Make sure your pulling your tummy in. Let's do one more, and release. Now let's combine and with your grasshopper. So your hands are gonna be very similar to what we were before.

You're going to dive with your neck long. Your nose is gonna go poke into the floor, lift the legs and come up. So let's do that a few times. And bend the elbows, dive down, lift the legs, and I'll push the hand, straighten the arms, and look forward. Now we going to go do the same thing.

Lift the legs. Now bend the knees, straight the legs, and clap, clap, clap, clap, as your body's coming up. And again, lift the leg straight, drop the head long. Bend the knees straight, clap, clap, clap, clap, clap, come up and rest. Sit back on you heels and turn yourself into a little bowl.

If you wanna move your arms from the roller to your feet, make sure you roller doesn't go anywhere. Round, round, round. Good. So after all that extension work, let's pretend you're doing the Spine Correcter for the legs now. So you're gonna reach out one leg, hold on, round, or just go down to the floor to keep the roller behind you. But this is a nice transition and then get there.

Bend you knees, so now we're gonna flex and round the spine from all that opening that we did with our chest. Pull your tummy in, hold the roller either here or in the front. I like the sides, it drops your shoulders, scoop your tummy in, and press the legs out and in. And so once again, you decide how high you wanna go or how low. And think of, as my legs are going out, my centrum pulling all these cords that are attached to my legs.

So my legs are just falling and pulling my lower back. And pulling everything in. And press out. Let's do four more. Scoop to go out, wrap the thighs, three, open the hips, two.

Now let's stay there, and do your circles. So that's... I mean, we already did. We thought of the Mini Barrel, the Spine Corrector with them arms. We thought of the Wunda chair, to do the extension with your chest.

And now we're on the Mini Barrel again, and reverse. So let's do eight. Down around an up. Add a little extra resistance. Pretend you have ankle weights, even though you don't have, or maybe you do have. (chuckles) And four, three, two, so I could do faster but I wanted to feel what you're doing.

And one. Bend your knees in. (exhales heavily) Take a deep breath. Go out again. And you're going to do your little beats. Your gonna clap with your heels 20 times as you drawing your legs in.

10, nine, eight, seven, six, five. Now hold your heels together for one, two, three. Scoop to lower legs, and go again. So think of your outside muscles clapping your heels and not so much the inner thighs which we want, but not too many. Five, four, three, two, hold, two, three, lower the legs, draw into your center and we go, one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, 10.

10, nine, eight, (inhales deeply), and hold, two, three, and bend in. (exhales loudly) And then from here, we going to do your split. So, your right leg over the head, left leg down to the floor, and swap. Now this one is over your... (exhales loudly) Sometimes I think (indistinct). Over your nose. (chuckles) I was going to say, (indistinct).

And over the nose the right leg, swap over the nose the left leg. And the other leg is growing long towards that wall. So it's nice and alive. It's not just going down, but it's also always reaching a way to go down, reaching away to go down like growing branches from a trunk of a tree. Always energy, never just getting there.

It's always, how am I gonna get there? Reach and rest. Bend the knees in. Let's do your little bicycle from here. So really open that hip, it's really nice to stretch your hip flexors here.

And swap. Really stretch the hip flexors there. And swap. But I wanted to get a nice little stretch in front of the hips as you get the scraping from the floor with your foot so you can feel the back of the legs. So you wanna clean off that muddy boot on the grass.

So really feel like your foot is dragging on a grass, and it's really pulling in. And reverse. Push it away and clean on that grass. Point your toes if you want to. I want you to feel the drag more than anything.

Feel that those legs are attached to your upper ribs here, and they're pulling in to control them. And let's do one more on each leg. Last time. And bend both in. Good. We gonna reach the legs out.

Hopefully the ladies are enjoying this. We gonna walk down for eight counts. Keep holding those legs like horses, isn't it? You've gotta hold those horses from your center and come back up for eight. So you got to hold the string pulling, and the center.

Pull, pull, pull, pull, pull, pull, and then come back up. And again, one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, and up. Don't let it go in your lower back. And then you know we're going too low, pull in and then come up. You wanna pass the other foot.

And last time, seven, six, five, four, three, two, one, come up, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, bend in. Nice little stretch you can do this every day is, you're gonna bring your knee to one shoulder then round to the other shoulder, and then away to the ceiling and reverse. So the first exercise as we started on this class it's wonderful to do your arms, or after being in the computer for so long. And this one too, 'cause it really opens up your lower back if you stand for a long time. And around.

Let's do one more time. Knee to the left shoulder, going to the right shoulder, and rest. Nice. So, lift your hips and push it away from you. And go ahead and turn around. So now you're going to turn around, bring your hands on the roller.

You're going to do your long stretch type of thing, or plank, slash plank. So make sure you have a nice and strong. By the way, if you roll is very hard, depends with the firmity, how firm your foam roller is, you can put a towel, or something like that. Now push the roller with your back, and go forward over your toes, and over your heels. So it's a nice little stretch for your calves, for your tendon.

And back, and forward, and back, and forward. Now see if you can do the same thing with one leg. So let's lift your right leg, and go forward and back, and forward and back, and swap. Lift the other leg, scoop deeper into your lower back, one, two, strong back, three. Now, I don't know if you can see what I'm doing, but I'm gonna move the of forward and back a little bit with my upper body.

It's not very entertaining. You can see very much, there's not a lot of movement, but I really want you to feel this whole back muscles coming in to the waist, and abdominal muscles. So lets do the three more. Three, long neck, two, one, sit back, round your lower back. Well done.

And then from there you're gonna come right to your kneely sidekicks. Ta-da! So you have few options. You're straight foot in line with your knee, hand on the hip, or behind your head. You're gonna low in the leg and bring it up, one, nice and tall. So you wanna bring your hands right underneath your sculp.

And four, scoop five. Let's do two more for eight. Press your head into your hands. Now hold it there, go forward, and then back. And forward, and then back.

And forward. Try to not move your hip. So my hip does not move. If it moves, I'm going to kinda cheat my body. I'm not really doing anything, I'm just flexing.

I'm just rounding from my hip. So you can have your hands there to kinda keep your head from going anywhere. Last time. And eight. You can keep your hand there, whatever you want.

You're gonna circle around. Five, four, ribs in, three. Pull those legs in still, it's not because you're not on your side that you're not pulling in. Reverse, five, four, head into the hand. Two, the other hand is on the mat, on the rollers pushing from there.

One. Let's do a bicycle. Bend, go back. Bend forward, go back two. Keep those legs nice and high.

And last time, reverse. Go straight forward. Bend and go back, forward, and back. Last time. And now swap to the other side.

Hopefully your feeling that. It's almost like you're doing a side sit ups as well. So you should be feeling your waist. I want your hands should be pushing from the roller so you can feel your back. Lift up, and down.

Lift up, two. So this hand is active because your back is working. So when you're doing upside down stuff like a handstand, your hands are gonna be strong connected to your back, and waist. Now hold, go forward. Pick your hand position, back. Four.

If you have wrist that's sensitive you can do the same thing, down, yeah, so you can get your hips a nice workout, and let's do one more. Keep that leg nice and high. It's gonna feel different one side from the other. And we circle, round, two. Pull it in, everything.

Three, reaching the leg, four, five. Reverse, one, and two, and three. Nice and tall. Four, one more, five. Let's do you bicycle.

Bend, kick, go back. Keep it nice and high. Keep the hips from helping you out. Keep the hip nice and quiet so you truly have to use your muscles instead of just the joints moving around, and then just bring moving joints. So keep it reverse.

Go straight forward, bend, three, two. Let's do one more nice and high, and one. Very nice. Let's bring your roller facing down for us to do a little variation of the knee stretch, 'cause it's gonna round your whole body. So you're going to start on your toes.

Push the hands to connect with your back, and your center, and go out, and draw your knees to your center. And you get to find the best distance for you. So where your hands should be. But roughly your hands should be right underneath your shoulders. Let's do four more.

Pull your knees in, four. How much can you draw your belly button in to draw your legs in. Let's do one more, and rest. (exhales loudly) Well done. Now we'll go ahead and turn around and let's do the killer bridge.

That's how I call it. You're going to bring your feet on the roller, hands long by yourself side, lift the hips, stay up there. Let's reach your right leg out, kick and bring it down. So that right leg stays straight the whole time. Kick and bring it back.

Kick, three, kick, two, one more, and swap foot, reach. One, two, breath, three, if you need to oxygen to the muscles. Last time, and I'll keep it there. Do another set if you need to. But we are gonna try to move your feet.

So you're gonna roll the roller from your heels to your toes, or metatarsal, the ball of your foot. And you should feel the hamstrings in the seat big time. Move around, find the sweet spot for your feet. Three more, hips high, two, one. Take one leg out and you can try to do the same thing.

One more, just three reps. Otherwise you will cramp. (laughs) One, two, feel free to do more, (laughs), three, and bring it back round from your sternum to your ribs, to your waist, and rest your heels just for a second. And then come up into a teaser. So you're gonna bring your right leg up, and then you're gonna bring your roller into you, so bending one knee, keeping the other leg straight, and then go back down. Again, head up, bend that left knee, reach with the other leg.

Two, one more, and three. Go ahead and swap. And we go, bent in as you come up. One, and again, two. Nice and control.

One more, three. Pick up your roller, reach forward, just the torso goes down. So hold your roller. Go down smoothly with control and honesty, and come forward, and roll down again. Draw those heels together so you can feel very centered.

Now hold it there, just the legs. Come up, one, come up, two, come up, three. Hold that and enjoy, and everything goes down, and everything comes up. So we don't rest very much. Keep your cardio going as you moving, as you strengthening, as you stretching.

Last time. The harder is if you keep the form right above your head, like a halo, hold, bring the roller down, and swap. Can you keep your legs from moving when you do that? And swap. One more on each side.

Now I'm gonna show you what I learned with Romana. You're going to circle the roller one way and the legs the other way. And then reverse. Whee! It's a little bit like rubbing your tummy and your head at the same time. (laughs) It's like the hip circle here too, isn't it? And rest.

Yay! Don't throw your foam roller out of the windows it's your friend, it's gonna help you to get stronger. So just put it down. (chuckles) Come forward. Do your sieve and enjoy. So really use your hips to stretch. Head in, go back, one, two, three, come up.

You guys are rockstars. One, two, three. Back, one, two, three. Come up, one, two, three, and back. Three more.

I treat everyone like you guys are superstars and superheroes. I see lots of patients with all kinds of stuff. And I always make them feel like they're superstars because we are. And then come up. Ta-da! And we're gonna go to the wall because I know we did a lot of movement things.

And if you felt your hip flexors, this is going a feel yummy. So you're gonna come against the wall. Make sure you're wall is clear nothing is dangerous. And you're going to walk your feet a little bit forward, pull everything into the wall, reach your arms up, and then round into the wall. And then itsy-bitsy spider your hands all the way to the floor, to your feet.

And what you're gonna do is you're gonna bring your left foot in towards the wall a little bit. And your right leg is going to be bend into a split or a half a split. See every time my hands are on the floor, I'm using my back. So I'm pushing the floor to be able to go into the wall. Now you can do your half split, or your full split.

So you can go all the way to the wall, and if you want more stretch you can bring the heel more towards the wall, and stretch. Push the floor, use your back, pushing to the... Hug the wall, and then come back down, and then swap. You can do your half. Yay! Just maybe a little bit of stretch for your hamstring.

And then you're going to reach all the way. So half or full indulge yourself here. Hug the wall with your legs, and come back down. Beautiful. Bend your knees, make sure your hips are on the wall, and round.

Itsy-bitsy spider your fingers, knees are steel bend, round, pushed your lower back, your middle back, your upper back. (exhales loudly) Hopefully you enjoy that. (laughs) And bring your heels into the wall, push and walk away nice and proud. Thanks for joining me today, Pilates Anytime. Thanks for sweating with me. See you next week.

Wall to Wall: with Alexandra Bohlinger


2 people like this.
Alexandra is now on my dais of challenging teachers. She shares that dais with other P. A. Teachers like Courtney Miller, Tracey Mallet, & Tash Barnard.  I always like a fun, challenging, lengthening class and this one did it for me:) I used 3 lb weights (because I don't have the 2 lbs she used). I added 5 lb leg weights for most, but not all, of the class. i normally wear the weights for a whole class but this class was a little too hard to keep them on the whole time.  One cool thing  about Alexandra, besides her amazing classes, is that she and my daughter in law look like they could be sisters.  Thanks Again Alexandra:) 
Jennifer E
2 people like this.
Love this class! Fun use of the foam roller! Thank you so much!
2 people like this.
Wow such fun thank you!!
3 people like this.
Loved it!!
Laura B
2 people like this.
creative and inspirational. thank you Alexandra.
Kimberley D
Wow, that was a challenge after 10 days off my mat, but I loved it. Great use of foam roller and lots of new stuff that i've not tried on the roller. Great instruction, which is needed so you don't twist your neck too much. Thank-you. 
Lina S
2 people like this.
I've really enjoyed that class. It was fun!
2 people like this.
Grabbed my weights on one of the  roll ups and surprise surprise it  was smoother than using my hands to hold my thighs!!    I had a double  cervical laminectomy after  accident in 1995 and my affected vertebrae are joined together into a single unit via a bone graft (from my hip) and a titanium rod and screws. I had a bionic recovery and no residual problems except for one.  My neck fatiques SOOOO quickly when we are asked to elevate our head!  When on the mat I simply use my hands behind my head but that is hardly practical on the foam roller!  Suggestions?
2 people like this.
Really enjoyable.  Thank you!
Laurie C
2 people like this.
Wow wonderful and challenging! Thank you so much for incorporating the foam roller. Made it so much more challenging with the element of balance control! I can’t imagine what the level 3 looks like. Hope you will be a level 3 to PA. Thank you!,🙌🌈💕
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