Class #450

Beginner Series #9

60 min - Class


This is the ninth Beginner level class in a series of 10 that will be taught by Niedra Gabriel. The Beginner series is designed to lay an instrumental foundation for all your Pilates mat work. Join Niedra for each class and notice the improvement in your exercises as you progress through the series.
What You'll Need: Mat, Magic Circle

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So good evening everybody. Guess what this is. Lesson number nine, isn't this exciting? And what we'll do today is we're going to work a bit, we're going to do some slightly different things just for variety. Um, we were going to work with the magic circle. So magic circle is a traditional tool created by Joseph [inaudible]. But if you're doing this at home and you just want to improvise, you can always work with a yoga block with some kind of a block.

It's another way to work and give yourself resistance. So that's an option that you have. But if you pick your, your, um, magic circle app, it basically has two directions. You can squeeze it and also you can actually press it apart so you can move into different directions. But whenever you do it, the trick is not just to squeeze and use, you know, wherever you've got it place, whether it's between your legs or your hands, but as think of, you're taking the whole force from your energy. So 50% should be coming from initiating from your powerhouse and moving out into the extremities. So if you had an image, you know like, um, uh, I always think of a toothpaste of toothpaste, the Tuba toothpaste, when you squeeze it in the middle, it gets like longer. So you almost want to feel like that when you're working with it.

So let's just start with our heels together and the magic circle extended out in front. And you want the magic circle opposite your solar plexus with your elbows gently lifted up. But as you lift the elbows up, you want to make sure the shoulders are down so you're standing very elegantly. Now remember, you pull the powerhouse in and up and you squeeze the magic circle and squeeze the magic circle. So every time you should be taking that squeeze from your powerhouse. So initiate your belly, pulls in your linkedin and squeeze and watch that you do this at the shoulders.

Stay down, squeeze. So your whole upper body's working. Squeeze and squeeze and squeeze and make sure the elbows are lifted. If you feel the elbows are limited to Megan, even more lift in your elbows. There we go. Squeeze and squeeze. Now make sure the magic circle is long and we're going to start to pulse it in towards the chest.

So squeeze and squeeze and squeeze and make sure you're getting nice and tall as it's coming in and out, out, out, out, out, out, out in again, bring it in and keep lifting the chest up and make sure every squeezes from your powerhouse and out to three, four, 10. Pull the shoulders down. That right now, nice tall body, that long body, long waist. Lift the arms up, but the shoulders stay down to the magic circle is more or less above the crown of the head. See if can have your elbows wide, shoulders down and again and squeeze and squeeze. Every time you pull the powerhouse up. So Wendy, lift the arms a little higher. That's it. And squeeze and squeeze. And Cindy shoulders down. That's it. And squeeze. Now this is going to be fun.

You're going to start the pulse and bring the magic circle all the way down, like you're putting a crown of your head and then you're haloing your head. And now up and up and up and up and up and up, nice and tall and long and down, down to if you were working with the block. Of course, you place the crown right on top of your head and up. Two, three, four, five, six, seven and eight. Nice and tall. No. Started pulse and bring the magic circle in front of you. Make sure your shoulders are down. Pals, pulse.

Keep bringing the magic circle down, down, down, nice, tall, lifted chest all the way down to the size and up, up, up, up, up, up, up, up, up, up, up, up and down again too. [inaudible] well, make sure you're nice and tall. Remember every time you post from the center and up, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine and 10. Very good. Bring the arms down for a minute and just stand there. Working a lot more now in the upper body, we've been working up til now, mostly focusing on the powerhouse in the naval area. Sometimes we call this whole shoulder girdle area, this second powerhouse. So you have your first point of stabilization, which is a pelvic girdle.

And stomach. Second State Place of stabilization is his thumb is the shoulder girdle. So take the magic circle with your right hand and place it. So this is kind of resting on your shoulder and the head. It's right above and hand is out.

Now take the other hand and place it on your hips. You want to feel like a god or goddess in a Greek mythology with like a barrel of water here, so nice and tall and lifted tiny waist and press down. Okay, press down and remember every time you're pressing down you get longer and taller and you initiate from your powerhouse and press and press and make sure that the shoulder is down. You're not pushing up in the shoulder, but you're really using your arm muscles when they make sure that the magic circle is straight, that's it. Two going straight down press. And even if you were working at home with a block, just putting pressure into the block and work very nicely. And I know that because I've taught many classes with blocks because we didn't have magic circles and it works really well.

I'm impressed. [inaudible] okay. Change sites. So magic circle right up close to the neck, kind of between that little bone that pops up at the edge of the collarbone. Other hand is on hip. Bring the elbow slightly forward, but make sure you're nice and lifted and tall. Now just for a moment, check that the heels are light. Yes. And then pull the innercise up. Lift in the waist. That's it. And press. Yes I am. Press and Sandy makes sure that the magic circle is going straight up. That's it.

I'm press and press and press and press. I'm press present. Tim, get the elbow to the side so the both elbows are going out so he want a sense of breaths in the elbows. Lengths in the trunk and support in the center press. I'm pressed, I'm press on press press. Very good. Now take the magic circle with your right hand again and place it on your hip.

So this is a interesting, you want to lift your elbow up but make sure the shoulder is down. So you start with the shoulders down in the sternum lifted and the shoulders wide, and then you lift the elbow up as much as you can. There you go, Sandy. Good. So it starts to lift your triceps up. Good, Wendy. Good. And now pressing. Well I'm pressed. Remember tiny waist. That's very good. Tip.

Press and press. I am press and press, press, press. Then press and press and press and press and press. Press, press and press. Very good. Change sides.

So hand on your hip. Other hand. The elbow is lifted. Good. Wendy shoulder is down. So you take your shoulder blade, you glided down your back, and then lift the elbow up again against that. So the two opposing movements going on here, press squeeze that circle and make sure the powerhouses lifting. I am. Press and press. I am. Press and press and press and press.

I am press and press and press and press and press. Okay, good. Now take the magic circle behind so it's almost as you could say, you're framing your bottom so the elbows are very slightly bent. Again, lift the powerhouse up. Now this is tricky because the shoulders want to roll forward here. You need to lift the sternum and broaden the shoulders and squeeze and eat.

This is hard to do. So sometimes thinking about squeezing, get those muscles to start to rake up. It really doesn't matter how much you actually squeeze. It just is starting to work those muscles and get you keeping the collarbones broad and squeeze and squeeze. Now take the circle. We had it up, down.

Take it this way so the hands are a little bit further back. You have to broaden the chest even more. And let's just think about squeezing. So think about squeezing I think and think and think and squeeze. Now that you've been practicing thinking and squeeze and squeeze and squeeze and squeeze.

Oh okay, good. No the shoulders. It's a lot of work now in the shoulder girdle. Lot of work into the arms and come and sit down on the mat. So sitting cross legged. You want the magic circle in your right hand. So if you sitting, you have this angle of the size and you know what?

Let's do this for you Perry. Just a minute. Um, I'm not mean for you, Tim. I'm going to give you a block because you'll be much more comfortable, you know, back. Here we go. I think you can sit much more comfortably now. That's it. That's it. Good. That's exactly, that's excellent. Because what some of us have really tight hips and tight, lower back, and then we kind of sitting here and that's like wasting our time. It's so much more valuable to get the hips up enough that his pelvis can go straight down. Then you start to deal with your spine, and that looked so much better.

So having a look at the angles of your own size, take the magic circle with your right hand and place it so it continues the line of your own leg. But you want your shoulders right over your own hips and the other hand on the knee. So the chest, your chest is facing straight forward and you're nice and tall. Now pull the powerhouse, sit up, lift the chest and press down and press on. Remember, work from the powerhouse so you don't want to lean forward. You want to get taller. Every time that magic circle goes down, your head should get a little bit higher up. So you use it to lift the body and you should be feeling underneath the armpit, down the sides of the ribs.

That's where you take the movement from and press and press and press and press and press and press. OK, change sites. And you place it in such a way that the arm is long for older, is pulled into the side of the body and down. So before you even start, feel the lifted spine. Feel the powerhouse. Feel the length and openness in the chest. And now here we go. You press down and get taller.

Press down and get taller and keep feeling that side of the ribs pressing press am press. I am press, I'm press, I'm press am. Press and press and press and press. Very, very good. Take the magic circle now and place it right to the side of your own body. So if you look at the line of your own hips, there's a and your chest is straight and you're sitting straight above your own hips. It goes right to the side and you wanted just that, the distance that you can reach without leaning intuit in any way, and you have the arm relatively long. Now pull the powerhouse in and up. Check that your shoulders are back and down. Very good. Wendy.

I would take the magic circle a little further out so the elbow was long and then press down and lift. So you take the pressure down from the power house. You actually start in the powerhouse and get taller and send that energy out into the arm. So you start from the center going out instead of from the hand coming in, you go out into the hand. I'm press and press and press.

So every time you're getting taller and longer and press and you're getting beautifully toned arms at the same time and fresh and press and press. I'm pressed, very good chain sites, so long arm lifted sternum check that the shoulders are rolled slightly back and down to get the collarbones wide long elegant neck and press down and lift as you press and lifted, you press that. So good tip. Every time the stomach lifts, I'm press, I'm press m press. Are you really working your whole trunk? As you're doing this, you're really lengthening and creating a lot of space in the spine and you creating a pulsing action of a really tractioning the body, elongating the body and stimulating it. Press and press and press and press and press and press. Very good. Now next one will be individual. For each of you, you take it further back, but how far back you go will depend upon how open your shoulder is. If you go too far back, the cuff is going to roll in and you don't want that.

You want this open position. It's still the cuff is rolling out, so some of you may only go an inch back and some of you might go really far back. It just depends. So check that the chest is lifted, your broad, the shoulders are wide. I'm press down and lift. I'm press am press, I'm press and press and press and press and press and press and press and press and press. Very good change sides, so be lifted. Chest, sternum, broad collar bones. Beautiful.

Lift in the base of the pelvis and in the stomachs of powerhouses long. The trunk is long. I am press and press. Make sure the shoulders are down. So you working into the shoulder blade pressing down and the co, the chest 50 am press and press and press.

Sandy, this is so good. What you doing? Very nice. Press and press and press and press and press and press and press and press. Very, very good. Okay. Now on your backs with the magic circle between your knees lying down on your backs and you want your feet bent up so your feet will be slightly closer than your knees, right? The arms are by your sides. Very good.

Same thing like when we do our normal warm up length in the shoulders. Lynch. Lengthen the fingers down, pull the stomach muscles in and up. And now squeeze that magic circle. So squeeze it and pull the powerhouse up and release. Now squeeze again and hold for a minute and focus on the adductors muscle from the inner middle of the thigh up to the groin. Make that bring the knees together and release.

Now squeeze again. Make the adductor and the outer thigh as well and the sit bones as well. Squeeze and release and squeeze through the whole upper side is doing the work. Now it's easy to add, squeeze and release and squeeze and release and squeeze and release and squeeze and release. To take a break. We're going to do this again just to review. It's very easy to squeeze with the muscles around the knees.

This is a very strong place, but we looking to activate here, inner thigh, outer sigh and these little sip bone area just below the sit bone. So you really creating that girdle of the upper side. So have a go stomach in long back. Long arms and squeeze again. Squeeze. Oh yes, very good. And squeeze and keep the stomach pulling up and squeeze and squeeze.

Very good. Squeeze and squeeze. Don't lift the hips up, Megan. Keep your back flat and squeeze. That's you not to over tilting. You're working the side. Keep going. Squeeze until you get into this weeds. That's it. And squeeze and squeeze and squeeze. Very good and squeeze. All right, now take the circle and flip it around.

So the legs are inside the circle and the thighs are against that handle and the feet are down, the arms are by your side. Again, pull your stomach muscles in and up. And now widen the knees and pressed against the magic circle and press out and press out. So as you do this, focus on the muscle from the outer thigh up to the buttock and press sandy feet a little bit wider. Yes, Cindy, I should say. And press and press and press and press and press and press and press. Very good and press. Very, very nice. And Press Oh k. Um, get the magic circle out from behind your legs and hold the circle in your hands.

Have your knees and feet together now and just place the hands above your own shoulders for a minute. So with the arms, so make sure that you're right, the arms have right above the shoulders and the shoulders are down. And why? So just to practice that, bringing the shoulders off the mat and reach the circle to the ceiling. So let the arms come off. Reach that as the shoulders come forward. And then take the shoulder blades down and melt them into the mat as though you're taking your armpits to the mat and you feel the whiteness in the shoulders and in the collarbones. And one more time reach up so you feel the shoulder blades getting wide on your back. And now Paul the shoulder cuff into the mat, the armpit into the mat.

So the collarbones are wide. Now check in this position that the shoulders are also away from the ears just a little bit longer. Now keep the shoulders there, have your elbow soft and take the arms over your head without letting the shoulders change alignment. So you take the arms back, keeping the arms long right. That's good Tim and come back up. This is excellent for people that have frozen shoulder because it starts to isolate the cuff and isolate the armpit and again, move the arm back without letting the shoulder come up. Very nice and back. Now keep the arms and long here Sandy. As you go back. Shoulders wide children's. Why? That's it. That's it. So you, you may or may not be able to get all the way back, but you go as far as you can. If you feel the shoulder coming up, you stop.

That's your range. This is just a really learn to move the arm without it affecting the whole shoulder girl. And again, take the arms back. Nice Megan, and bring the arms back up. Now in that position, just above your chest. Pulse and pulse and pulse and pulse. Take the arms back again. Bring the arms up and now lift your head and chest.

Squeeze a circle and just reach slot on a long diagonal in front of you a little bit. Roll back, take the arms back, bring the arms up, squeeze the circle and lift your head and chest and shoulders just a bit. Reaching Long. Good. Roll back down. Take the arms back, bring the arms up, squeeze and lift on a diagonal. Very nice and lower back down, keeping the shoulders away from your ears. Reach the arms back, bring the arms up, squeeze the circle and lift the shoulders and head. Reaching Long, shoulders down, temperate. Otherwise very good. Lower down and last one, reach the arms back up, squeeze the circle, lift up and reach and notice where you're contracting. That is so good.

All of you. And lower back down and rest. Excellent. Excellent work. Oh, okay. Now we will play around with some of them. Um, the math exercise we've been doing using the magic circle. So we'll start with hundreds. So your line here, bend your needs and place the magic circle between your ankles and just straighten the legs. Huh? Now see if you can gently squeeze a circle, but also tighten the sit bones. You're working inner thighs and wrapping the buttocks around just so you feel. And then release. Now lift the arms to the ceiling.

Squeeze a circle and lift up and reach the arms long. Just the width of the arms of biocides for your hundreds and start pumping with the arms. Breathing in for five. Squeeze that circle in your bottom in two, three, four, five. Work the inner size to gather. Three, two, three, four, five. Exhale. Three, four, five, four, three, four, five. Exhale. Three, four, five, five, two, three, four, five. X, sail. Very good. Six two, three, four, five x say are very seven two, three, four, five that's right. Five, eight, two, three, four, five legs in these legs. That's right. Nine two oh five exhale. Three, four, five. Last set, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, 10.

Bend your knees, grab the circle with your hand. Put your head down and rest. That was so good. Very, very nice. Oh, a whole other dimension of work coming in now. Yes. What? Actually, from what I understand, those [inaudible] created the magic circle with the idea of taking some of the work you did and kind of adding a whole dimension of engaging the muscles. And he was, I think the original one was made from a beer like the, the, the wooden circles around a beer keg. That's what I've heard.

Something like that. So it didn't even have give, it was just a circle and you pushed on it. So anyhow, take your circle, take your arms over your head. Have your knees either bent or straight because you are going to roll up to a sitting position to bring the arms up and roll up to a sitting position. And good Tim. Yes. Okay. Now Bend your knees and bring the circle between your side. So it's usually just above the knee, not in the bony section, but where the thighs are. So usually if you squeeze, you should, it should feel, you know, like you're working, but not, it should not be painful. If you can, you bring your feet a little bit closer then, um, that you want to make sure your feet are nice and flat so you're not like falling off onto the side right now.

School stretch arms in front of you. Squeeze a circle, pull the stomach in and see if you can roll down to the mat this way. So you roll down, roll down, make sure this, the circle is engaged. Lift the arms up, take the arms back and relaxed your knees. Then bring the arms up, engage a circle and see if you can roll up [inaudible]. Oh, okay. Grab your size, Kim. That's it. And release your knees, squeeze the knees and roll down and engage in your stomach as you roll back.

Roll back, roll back. Very good. Take your arms back, bring the arms up, squeeze that circle as you lift your head and chest and grab your size if you need two. Good, good, good. And come up. Release your knees. Squeeze and ease again, and roll down. Roll down, roll down, roll down, roll down. Good. Stretch the arms back and release your knees. And last one, lift up. Squeeze and roll. Roll, roll. Very, very good. Okay. Take the magic circle in your hands.

Bring your feet and knees together and slowly roll down a squeeze a circle as you go down to make you work in your arms as well. Very good. Now take your right foot and place it on the inside edge of that, of the circle on that handle area. And for first of all, bend your knee, bend the knee of the right leg and feel how the right hip is pushing into the mat. And think of lengths in the right hip, slightly towards the left heel. Keep pressing down with the right hip and stretch the right leg and bend it and stretching as you stretch it. Pull the right shoulder into the mat so the shoulders are pushing down.

The leg is pushing up and bit and right shoulders. Both shoulders should be going into the mat as you stretch. Good there, Cindy, and bend and stretch and bend and stretch. Very, very good. And Ben Changed Bikes so you play some late in. Take your left hip and lengthen it down. Good. That's excellent. Here. And stretch the like up and the shoulders go down.

So you're putting down with the shoulders down with the hip and up with the foot and bend and press the foot up in the hip down. Stretch this knee in. Turn that like, that's better. Stretch all the way there, Wendy. Yes. And then, and stretch. See if you can turn this out a little bit and bend right? So this goes down and stretch. Good. And Bend and stretch.

This is down. Tighten your buttocks. There you go. And Bend and stretch and [inaudible] Bend. Oh, okay. Take the circle with your hands. You have a choice of either working with your legs straight or bed. First of all, extend the circle above your shoulders and move it just a little bit down and bend your right knee into your chest and lift it up and stretch your left leg down. So you're going to do your circles, but your arms are in the air. Gently squeeze a circle, draw a circle with the right leg. Circle enough, circle and up.

Circle and circle and up. Circle and up. Reverse it and circle and up. Circling up, circling up, circling up, circling up. Lower the leg to the mat and reach the circle over your head to just lengthen backwards. [inaudible] shoulders down. Bring the circle back up and lift your left leg up.

Make sure the shoulders are wide and again, draw a circle. Going to the right's circle and up. Circling up, circling up. Circle it up, circle and up. Reverse it. Circle circling up, circling up, circling up, circling up, circling up as the Legos to the floor. Extend your arms over your head. The legs go down, the arms go back, the back is long. And then bring the arms to the ceiling and roll up to a sitting position. Pull the powerhouse in and up and roll up.

Oh, okay. All right. Now Bend your legs and take the magic circle and place it between your knees just above the knees, actually just above. So again, you can squeeze that circle without it kind of feeling like you're pushing the bones into it. Yes. So now we'll be playing with rolling like a ball with the circle. It's fun and games basically. So first of all, just squeeze the circle, pull the shoulders down, roll slightly back so you get into your seeker and see if you can lift your feet up and still keep a slight squeeze here.

Pulling the stomach in and up. Roll back and come back up again. Roll back and come back up and squeeze in balance. Yes, very good. Roll. And come back up and roll back and come back up and roll back and come back up and roll back and come back up. And one more time. Roll and come back up. Very good. Take the magic circle out. Put it down.

Nice work. Stretch your arms out. And the next set we're just going to do free form without the circle. Just roll down onto your backs for single leg stretches. So your hands are by your sides. Pull the powerhouse in and up and bring both legs to your chest.

Curl your head and chest up and hold your ankles so you remember you're holding quite close to the ankles. The shoulders are away from the ears. The stomach is in left-hand to right knee and left leg extends out. Elbows are wide. Switch your legs and squeeze. Switch your legs and squeeze. Switch, squeeze and switch and switch and switch and switch and switch and switch and switch. When both knees in, put your head on the Mat, put your feet on the mat, check that the shoulders are now away from the ears and roll your head to the right and roll your head to the left and roll your head to the right and roll your head to the left and back to the center. Double leg stretches at the one where we do the arms in a big circle.

So squeezing the hips and the knees together. Your inner thighs should be more active now because you've been working with the circles to see if you can really get that midline being hugged. Bring both knees to your chest, using your powerhouse. Curl your head and chest up and hold your ankles. Hold your ankles. Check that the shoulders are down. T, that's it. Now, arms and legs.

Stretch away. Reach. Circle the arms and hug and stretch. Circle and hug. Keeping that head and chest up. Now keep the head and chest up. Don't move. And Bob there and in and quiet body, much better beer. Get and in our pull the stomach way in. As you reach out, circle and in last one and reach circling in. Put your head down, put your feet down and just take a moment.

Take a deep breath in and breathe out and roll your head to the right and roll your head to the left and back to the center. Now in scissors, another thing to focus on when you're doing the scissor movement, we have this central line of the body that runs all the way down. So when the legs are scissoring, you want those legs tracking that same central line. So for just about everybody, the hips are a little bit wider than the feet. So the line of the feet is going to be a little. Again, tracking with the naval, it's very common to go wide.

So I see this all the time with the legs of splaying sideways, but they're not stay in central. When you work the central line, you're strengthening the center part of the powerhouse. You're strengthening the inner part of the legs. And we are designed when we stand, have the legs under us. But this line gets weakened. Most all the all human beings. So in time people stand wide because they feel safer cause the outer part of the leg is usually stronger than the inner sigh, the central line.

So we're working to rebuild, regain that ability within the body. So today when you do your scissors, really notice if you're tracking your legs this way. So arms along, shoulders are down, stomach is in, knees and feet are together. Bring both knees to your chest, curl your head and chest up and straighten both legs to the ceiling and have a look at your own midline and hug it tight. Now take your right leg and hold it with both hands and take your left leg away. Tracking that midline and double pulse. Sweet scissor, the legs, double pulse, scissor the legs, double pulse switch, double pulse switch, double pulse. Keep quiet, be a good with the body.

Switch. Double pots. We don't Bob Double Potty. Really? They're better. That's it. So this is stable. Just the legs float, double pulse, double pulse, much better. Double pulse, double pulse, double pulse, double pulse. Both legs come up. Excellent work. Bend your knees, hadn't feet to the mat and rest. Take a moment, take a breath and roll your head to the right and roll your head to the left and back to the centers. So the interesting with all of this work is, especially when you get confidence and you want to go deeper, what happens is the trunk starts to flow and we're looking to keep that. The whole point of creating stability and anchoring ourselves with the center of our body. And then the limbs work without disengaging the middle part of your body.

So it's almost like these are the roots and the limbs are the leaves and the trees. If you want to think of it in that way. Now lower lifted just for the fun of it. You'll take your magic circle, bend the knees, and place the magic circle between your legs and stretch your legs up. And again, very slightly turn. Rotate the legs out just enough to find the sit bone muscles and narrow in the hips. Take the hands behind your head with the elbows. Why? Pull the powerhouse in and up. Squeeze the circle and curlier head in, chest up so the hands are behind your head, Tim. There we go. Now lower the legs 12 inches away.

Bring the legs up and squeeze them and lower the legs and lift up and squeeze and lower the legs. Lift up and squeeze. Lower the legs. Lift up and squeeze. Lower the legs. Lift up and squeeze. And last one, lift up and squeeze. Bend your knees. Grab the circle with one hand, get it out, lower your feet to the mat. Lawyer had to the math. That was very, very good. Okay. Put the magic circle on one side, stretch arms over your head and either roll up or rock up or sit up. Four spine, stretch forward and take your circle again and open the legs out the way we normally do and place the magic circle in front between the legs. So now the shoulders are down, right? The spine is long to remember. Every time you press that, it's just practice for a minute. Pushing down and lifting the belly and pressing down and lifting the belly so your waist, as you push down, it helps you get a lift into the waist.

So actually creating space between the ribs and the hips. Yes. Now as you do that this time, also tighten the hips a little bit to the legs. I get active so you squeeze and lift, squeeze and lift, squeeze and lift and squeeze and lift. Now when we go into spine stretch forward, the magic trick would be just to hear further forward. You'll do imagine a big beach ball and you're going to lift and then bend over.

The elbows will bend a bit. As you curl over, pulling the stomach back and then roll back up. The shoulders glide down and you get nice and tall. Take a deep breath in. Pull the stomach in, bend the elbow sideways and squeeze. As you crawl forward, pressing down. You're pressing down from the powerhouse first into the arms. Come back up, shoulders down and nice and tall. Lift the stomach, bend the elbows. Impressed our lifting, filling up the back ribs and come back up nice and tall. And again, pull the stomach way up. Bend the elbows, press down, press down, press down, lift in the stomach and come back up.

Very, very good. Bring the legs together. Take your arms out in front of you, squeezes, circle and slowly roll down, squeezing the circle, squeezing the circle, squeezing the circle till you lie down on your back. Very, very good. And courts will move yourselves down if you, um, so, uh, sandy moved down right now for corkscrew. We'll have the circle between the legs again. Okay, so very tight hips, long arms, long legs, stomach is n and draw a small circle.

Go right down to the left and up in. Squeeze tight with your bottom and reverse it left down, around, up and squeeze and right down around, up. Squeeze and left down, around, up. Squeeze and right down around, up. Squeeze and left, down, around, up. Squeeze.

Very good. Bend your knees in. Grab the circle with your hands. Stretch your legs out and roll onto your stomachs and have a look before you go onto your stomachs is what is going to happen next. We've been working on preparation for swan dive, who you been pulling in and lifting up? This will be just being in this position where you squeeze a circle length in the chest, lift the stomach up and release. So you squeeze. So you just get this ability to connect the pex and the back and this beautiful lifted to the body. So I'm doing a stomachs [inaudible] by those little handles. Good that.

Make sure you're looking forward instead of down. Have your legs long and now very gently squeeze a circle and pull the stomach up in the shoulders. Down. Yes. And release and squeeze and release and squeeze and release. Good. So very long way. Squeeze and release and squeeze and release and squeeze and release and squeeze and release. Don't squeeze so much Tim, that the hips lift doc. Squeeze.

Just a chest works. That's it. And squeeze and squeeze and squeeze. Very nice and squeeze. Very good. Now just staying in this position, the magic circle ZF for single leg kicks, you're nice and tall. The shoulders are down, the hips and narrow. The stomach is lifted. Bend your right foot and kick your bottom twice. Kick, kick and long left kick, kick and long right kick, kick and down and kick. Kick and from hips and kick, kick and long and kick, kick and long and kick, kick and lung and kick. Kick and long and kick, kick and long and kick. Kick. Very good and excellent.

Now Bend your right foot. Take the magic circle with your right hand and bring the left hand a little bit further in and see if you can get the circle around your foot and lift your chest. And all you're going to do is stretch back with the foot. So you pull backwards to as are you tried to take the foot to the mat and pull the stomach up and relax me. [inaudible] hold back. This is not working, is it?

So you want it right here. Now lift up. It's in the bend the elbow a little bit. Yes. No, pull this back and pull this, this way they're there and relax and pull the foot back so it should engage into the, into the, that's it. Into your hamstring. You feel that and release. Only thing is you need this here. Bend your elbow a bit, get your knees together right bottom type poor and stretches away so it gets end release and poor. Tighten the hamstring. Good.

Yeah, it's gonna make the hamstring and the buttock work a lot. Good. What's that you? That's the next level of it. You if you could for you, you could lift up. Absolutely. Yes. So you pull the foot away and if you want to go to the next level, you lift up a little bit. Yeah. So Ben, this elbow were bed good and up. Paul, we have to get you. Yeah, that's it. Yes, that's it. And okay, have a go with the other foot. This is going to get your hamstrings and your buttocks.

No, you are working much more intensively right now. The whole back part of the body. It's just like activating muscles at a whole other level. So get your knees together. So now pat to bend the elbow bit. Wendy's. Yes. Keep your chest lifting. Good and pull.

Good. And pull that. See if we can get Tim, I'm going to move this up here. Okay, now Paul, that's it. That's it. Ample pull the foot. You want to pull the foot away from you as you pull it and put there it is. There it is. Ample. Ah. Oh, okay. Okay. This is just a little bit of playing around.

Get rid of the magic circle for a minute and sit back into child's pose just to stretch out and then just have a quick look how you'll be approaching double leg kicks. The magic circle will be around your bottom, so we will be it. You know, normally we have our hands a little higher for this stretch, so a little bit less intense because a hands a wider, it'll give you more chance, especially if the shoulders are tight to work. The opening of the inward rotation of the arms. So you're going to go click, click, click, and just stretch back so it's a slightly different angle into the arms. So lying down on your stomach knows to the right hand, the magic circle is around your bottom so the elbows are bent and draping. Bend the elbows, beer, get a little bit higher like that.

Turn your nose to the right. Oh wait, now in this position, see you can get your elbows draping down. Other right elbows going. That's it. That is who you really widen the shoulder blades. Some of you are just flopping out here, but for some of you, this is a very healthy little stretch to increase range of movement in the shoulders. Okay, now tighten the buttocks in narrow inner thigh. Stomach is long. Bend the knees and kick three times. Kick, kick, kick.

And then just pull the shoulders back and lift and lengthen the magic circle towards your knees and lower down other side. And kick two three and pull back. Squeeze and lift. And for a side again, kick two, three and pull back and lift and other side and kick two, three and stretch your elbows and slide the hands back. Go. That's it. And first side, kick to three and pull back and long elbow straight, Tim and La. That's it as one. And kick two, three and pull back and lengthen and squeezy elbow. Stretch your arms. Stretch your arms. That's it. Okay.

Put the magic circle to one side. Put your hands under your shoulders and pull the stomach in and stretch all the way back. All the way back, pulling the stomach way, way, way, way in. All right, so let's have all of you starting up facing this way, lying on your left side, left side. So you, you three will be this way. And take the magic circle and place it between your ankles. And that's gone. That's it. Now the bottom leg, you want quite flexed and re and you want to lift the legs up and bring them to the front of your mat with the foot flex. Now yes, and support your head with your hands. That's it.

Or be down here. If that's the way you normally do. Now pull the powerhouse in and up. Lengths and through the legs and squeeze like magic. Circle and squeeze a magic circle and squeeze and squeeze. Remember, you're initiating from your powerhouse, lengthening through both legs to make this happen.

Squeeze and squeeze and squeeze and squeeze and squeeze and squeeze. Very good and squeeze. Now reach up and bring the magic circle in front of your chest. So the front arm is long and make sure that it's not up by your shoulder, but lower down to the circle itself is like opposite your own heart and pull the right shoe, the top shoulder, slightly back and gentle pressure into the circle. Take your top leg and turn it out for the high sidekicks. As you lift up, you push the circle and flex down.

Squeeze and flex down. Squeeze and flex down. Squeeze. That's it. And flex down. Good. And squeeze and flex down. Keep the shoulders down. Squeeze and flex down. Squeeze and flex down and squeeze and flex down.

Now we have the legs together. Pull the inner thighs up and lift and down. Squeeze and lift and down. Squeeze in, lift and down. Squeeze and lift and down. Squeeze and lift and down.

Squeeze and lift and down. Two more times. Squeeze and lift and down. One more time. Squeeze in there and down. Good. Okay. Swing around to the other side. So let's have you actually roll over to face. This way. If you just roll over, place a magic circle between your thighs again, right. Support your head with your hands.

If your feet on the back part of the mat, lift them up and bring them forward. Very Good Megan. Now pull the stomach muscles up and squeeze a circle and release squeezes, circle and release squeezes, circle and release. Squeeze and pull that powerhouse up and squeeze and release and squeeze and release and squeeze like do not Unis and squeezing. Work into there and squeeze and release. One more time.

Squeeze and release. Very good. Take the magic circle with your hands. Place it in front of your chest so the circle is literally FAPE. Pacing your chest, the elbows very slightly bent so you can pull the shoulders down. Point the top leg and squeeze as you lift your leg and flex and squeeze and lift and flex and squeeze and lift and flex and squeeze and lift and flex. Good and lift and down and Lyft and Uber and Lyft and down. One more time and lift and down.

Now make sure your hips are still stack. Pull the powerhouse up, have the midline with the legs and lift them both up. I'm dumb. I'm lift and down and lift and down and lift and down and lift on down. I lift very good and down. Okay, a roll onto your back just facing exactly the way you are for preparation for Teaser, just so we get that. And we always do that with the magic circle to one side.

Bend your knees on the Mat, bend the knees on the Mat with your arms by your side. Have the midline with your knees and extend the right leg into the air. So right leg is up and if your head and chest and see if you can roll up knees together. Wendy, roll up with your body. Ah Ha. And roll down. Good. Squeeze the knees together Wendy and roll up. Good and roll down and one more time and roll up and roll that change legs.

Other leg is our pants up by your sides and I sit and long and row up, row up and curl down with control and roll up. Use that powers up, up, up, up and roll down. And one more time. Row app. Oh and row that very good. Stretch your arms, your head. Give yourselves a good stretch.

Stretch your legs out now. Just reach the right arm and reach the last time you've been doing a lot of work to contract the muscles. You just want to pull everything out. Now stretch the right leg in the left leg away as well to just kind of lengthening the body and getting all the kinks out because contraction and stretch are like important for healthy muscles. And then gather, organize a body, gather into the powerhouse, lift the arms up and roll up to the sitting position. So roll up, roll up, roll up. Very, very good. And your three turnaround to join the middle. We're going for our seal. So hands together, make sure you're sitting a little further forward, Tim.

Good. So you have room to roll back, lift your feet, wrap your hands underneath your ankles and pulling that. Now we're going to clap at the back as well as at the front. So here we go. Clap your feet. Three times, clap, clap, clap, roll back and balance and clap, clap, clap, roll up and balance, clap, clap, clap, roll back and balance, clap, clap, clap. Roll. Up and balance. Clap, snap, clap, clap, clap, clap. One more time. [inaudible] and roll up. Okay. You did it. Oh right. Okay.

Come to what? Standing Position and take your magic circle. Mine got drifted. It drifted over here. All right. Take your circle. Stand with your heels together in Pilati stance. Reach the arms forward and check that the shoulders are down now. Now that we're holding the circle slightly, lift the elbows up.

Yes. And then lift the arms a little bit further out. But don't let the shoulders go down. Go Up. What am I saying? Keep the shoulders down. Pull the powerhouse up and then pull the stomach in as you start to roll down. Roll down, rounding through the spine, lifting the stomach rolling down to the circle is hovering about ankle length or a little higher. And then squeeze three times. Squeeze.

Squeeze, squeeze. Right roll app. Roll app. Roll Up. Float the arms forward. Lift the arms up, but the shoulders are down, the neck is long, the spine is long. Take a breath in here and one more time. Bring the arms forward. Round through the spine. Rolling down. Rolling down, rolling down, and squeeze. Three times. Squeeze, squeeze, squeeze. And yeah, roll back up. Roll back, cop. Roll back up. [inaudible] float the arms up. Keep the shoulders down and take a moment to feel the length in the stomach.

Length in back. Lift through the chest. Take the magic circle with one arm and bring it down. Very good. And just take a moment to stand and feel the breadth. You've worked a lot in the upper body. Worked a lot in the legs, powerhouses. Always been active. Take a deep breath in and breathing out. Let it go. So thank you very much.

You did very well today. Hard work.


Could you please teach a level 2/3 magic circle class?
Great intro to the magic circle.
Loved this class. Using the magic circle is fun and provides great resistance to upper & lower body as well as core. Great overall workout. Will repeat it often for sure!
2 people like this.
I had a lot of fun with this one. I don't have a magic circle, so I took Niedra's advice and substituted, well, not a yoga block, but a box with a game in it that was still wrapped up in plastic - about 12x12x3. It had some weight to it and a little give. I was laughing trying to hold it up between my ankles and not let it fall on my face. It worked fine, and I can feel some shoulder muscles today, so I know it worked!

Laughing is good for the powerhouse too, right? :)
I think you are the perfect Pilates client pegggggy! When will you be teaching it?
Can't get this class to download past halfway. Not sure why as all other classes are fine.

I have been following the series and today feel like I "graduated" to the magic circle, which is a new old friend for me. Question, (in case a teacher or experienced person reads this and wants to reply) : I was once very adept at Pilates, over 10 years ago when as a dancer we used it for rehab and conditioning. At that time I don't remember having much of a problem with rollups. After going through the 9 classes, I still need alot of help.... do I just keep trying? Thanks for reading, and I am so glad to have found Pilates Anytime!
Niedra Gabriel
Nancy, I will try to help but need a little more info to help me understand what you are dealing with. Are you simply not able to get up so you ' get stuck " with your head up? and yo jerk through the coming up part? on the way down do you "fall down"? ody ou work with bent or straight legs in roll up? if you send me more details about what happens in your body I may be able to give you some suggestions and insight about what to take in to consideration, and hopefully this will assist you. By they way - what sort of dancer were you? ballet? modern? jazz? alll this can help in lieu of seeing you live...
lets see if long distance coaching can work...
Thank you ao much for your reply Niedra
The answer is yes. I get stuck and need to either hook my feet under the couch or roll up. I have a very tight low back and am fighting a thickening middle, and wonder if that is why I get stuck. I am happy to just keep trying, but I compared myself to Tim in the series and he is coming up on his own by class # 9. and I am not.

I wonder if I should be worried I don't mind if it takes a long time, just don't want to hurt myself in the long run. I really need a private teacher but have a hard time getting to a studio lately and can't find anyone to come to the house when I am available . I'll keep looking meanwhile, do you do privates by Skype? You could watch me and give me some pointers. Don't want to take up so much of your time unless you are getting paid.

Thank you again Niedra for all the work you have done which you share with others. You are a great teacher!

Be well,
Niedra Gabriel
Hi Nancy, you may not be using your lower back efficiently, or, you may not be using your lower ribs properly.
There is also the overall element of the whole body needing to release and relax to allow for easier flow of movement.
Try closing your upper ribs and widening the back floating ribs, it is common to miss this part and just do 50 % when the body has much more ability that is not being tapped.
Another area to check is if you are really scooping to full capacity, so your hips bones and lower ribs move closer in the front body.
Try these.
I don't expect you can hurt yourself (per your voiced concerns) where you are, but each body is different and without seeing you live I cannot really have a definite perception of what you are dealing with.
Lets communicate via email to sort out your questions about live class or skype lesson. I can be reached at
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