Class #4846

Dynamic Magic Circle

35 min - Class


Grab your Magic Circle and let's get moving! Tracey Mallett teaches you creative ways to use the Magic Circle, as well as creative ways to tap into your muscles and feel the burn. Next to strengthening, flexibility is a key component of this class. You will stretch your spine, hamstrings, and upper body.

"You've got to at least try. If we don't try, we will never know that we can do it." - Tracey Mallett
What You'll Need: Mat, Magic Circle

About This Video


Read Full Transcript

Hi, Tracey Mallett here. Grab your magic circle. It's pure magic. Yes, 'cause we're gonna totally tone the body today with our magic circle. So, let's get rocking and rolling.

We're gonna turn to the side and we're just gonna reach the legs, nice and long. Reach your hands forwards, holding onto the circle. And we're gonna press the circle together to initiate the lats, the serratus. Pull the scapula down into your "C Curve" position as you blow the air out. Exhale, draw those abs in.

Roll Up

So, you're looking in between your actual circle. And then, we're gonna continue that roll down, slowly, reach the hands over your head, inhale slight, pause, exhale, roll forwards into that "C Curve" and rolling down. Lifting the hands over your head, inhale here, exhale, draw those abs in, curl forwards and curling down. Arms stay straight, keep pressing the circle. Always pressing the circle to initiate your back, your obliques, rolling down.

Now, we're gonna slow it down a little bit. So, we're gonna come up, head, neck and shoulders off the floor and hold it for 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2 and one. Continue that roll forward into your "C Curve" and then, roll down. Inhale here, exhale, slight pause, hold it there. Press the ring together, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2 and one.

Continue that forwards into that "C Curve" and then, roll back down again. Reach the hands over your head and lift, hold it there, scoop out those abs for 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2 and one, reach forwards. Now, we're gonna do this on the descent now. So, go to where you feel those abs engaged, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2 and continue that roll down, reach the hands over your head and roll back up again, back into that "C Curve". So, let's see if we can go down a little bit deeper, maybe a little inch, a baby-inch, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2 and one, roll down.

And then, one more, exhale, roll all the way up into that "C Curve". Okay, let's come back just a few more inches, hold it here, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2 and one, rolling back down, hands over your head. From here, let's take the ring, gonna thread your feet, your legs through the ring, so, it's either side of your thighs. You're gonna press the thighs out, inhale here, pelvic tilt into your bridge position and really press the thighs into the ring, hold it there. And we're gonna do a little pelvic tilt.

Pelvic Lift

So, we're gonna go down and up, down and up, down and up. So, you think of going to a neutral to a tilt, neutral to a tilt, inhale, exhale, inhale, exhales. Do a five, press up, 4, 3, 2, 1, hold it there, squeeze the hips up, up onto your little tippy toes into a releve, back again, pelvic tilts. Make sure you're not on a high releve, just on the balls of your feet, ankle joint is still and you're pressing the hips back up again, inhale and exhaling. Let's do four more, just like that.

Pelvic Lift w/ Releve

Keep pressing the thighs on the ring and opening the ring for four, for three, for two and hold it there, continue that roll down vertebra by vertebra, all the way down. From here, take the ring and put the ring on the inner part. Squeeze that lovely ring. Gonna try and squeeze it tight. Hold it here, pelvic tilt, all the way up into your bridge.

Pelvic Lift w/ Butterfly Pulses

And then, we're gonna squeeze the ring, squeezing the ring, pressing the ring together. And we do eight more just like that. Get your hips up, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2 and hold it there, curl back down again, keep the ring nice and tight. Take the hands back behind the head, lift the head, neck and the shoulders off the floor. So, we go tilts and then, lift the hips up.

Chest Lift w/ Pelvic Curl

So, we lift the head, neck and shoulders off the mat, pelvic tilt and squeeze in that bridge position. Lift up and squeeze the ring. As you lift your hips off of the mat, squeeze and lift. So, its head, squeeze, exhale, head and squeeze in that chest lift, lift and squeeze the ring, one more, lift and squeeze that ring, roll that down. Let's grab this circle, turn your feet out, so, your legs are open in that diamond position, toes down, heels up.

Roll Up Variation

From here, we're gonna roll all the way up to a head, neck and shoulders, come up, inhale and come back. Exhale, lift up. Now, take the hands all the way back. We're gonna try and roll all the way up, toes down, heels up as we roll up into a straight spine, nice and tall, sitting up on your hips and then curling down and reach the hands over your head. Inhale here, exhale slowly, keep pressing the heels together, if you can, lift up to a straight spine and then, curling back down again and rolling up, we're gonna add a twist.

Twist, twist, down, curl back, roll up, twist, twist, twist, twist, center, curl down. One more time, roll up, twist, twist, back to center, curl all the way down, hands over your head. Now, from here, we're going to bend the knees. We're gonna roll back up again. Take the ring in between your legs and you're in a diamond position.

Roll Up w/ Rotation in Flat Back

Reach your hands forwards, curl back, forearms down on your mat. Now, we're gonna squeeze that ring. So, your knees are coming together, kinda like a little butterfly. Now, we're gonna add a little lift. So, we go chest, down, squeeze, chest, using your abs to lift your legs towards your chest.

Double Leg Lift and Lower w/Bent Knees

Up and down, squeeze the ring, up and down, squeeze the ring. Let's do four more like that. Four, down, squeeze, three, down, squeeze, two, down, squeeze, one more, one, down, squeeze. Now, put your feet parallel, squeeze that ring, lift your hips up in that squeezed position here and pause, 10, 9, 8, 7, hamstring, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2 and one, lower your butt down, shift and lift all the way up, grab hold of that ring and from here, we're gonna put your ring down, take that right, your opposite leg, so, I'm gonna put my left leg there and then, I'm putting the right leg on top. We're gonna bend the knees just slightly, reaching the hands forwards.


Now, we're gonna roll down, extending the legs as we roll down, reaching the hands over your head. We're gonna roll all the way up, press that foot down, feel that hamstring as you press down. Okay, you got that? So, you're pressing down. Curl back down, rolling down, reach the hand over your head.

Roll Back w/Single Leg Extension

Now, press down and curl, lift all the way up, straight spine. One more, we're gonna hold ourself down there, rolling down, reaching the hands over your head. Now, lift that leg up, bring the hands down by the side of your body, flex that foot. Now, we're gonna do our circles, circle to the midline of your body. You're drawing a circle with your heel.

Single Leg Circle Variation

Now, you're pressing that leg down into the circle, so that hamstrings are engaged. Reverse it to the opposite direction. Press the opposite leg down into the circle and try and keep it stable, two and one, hold it there, point the toe, bring that leg back down and then, roll all the way up, (exhales) and up. We're gonna switch legs, take the opposite leg in. There we go, put the other leg on top and then, press down so that hamstring's engaged.

Roll Back w/Single Leg Extension

Reach forwards, okay, slowly curl down, curl down, reach the hands over your head and curl all the way up, press, press, press, press, press, up and curl down slowly and exhale. Press, press, press, press down, lift up. This time we're gonna roll down, stay down there, circle the hands back to the side of the body, press down onto that, your left leg, your hamstring is pressing down. Now, reach the opposite leg up, flex the front and we're gonna start to circle. Doesn't matter what direction you go in as long as you go in this two different directions.

Single Leg Circle Variation

So, you're flexing the energy out through the heel and trying to keep the circle still. Inhaling and exhaling. Okay, let's go to the other side, inhale and exhaling. Femur's moving around in that hip and the opposite leg is pressing down into that ring, that hamstring is on fire. And one more, hold it there, point the toe, thread that leg back, reach the hands over your head and let's see if we can transition, roll all the way up.

(exhales) Hold onto that ring and lift up. Now, grabbing that ring here, thread that foot up, so, you're in that nice little teaser position. From here, we're gonna roll down, reach the leg over your head and pull. So, you're in that stretch. Now, we're gonna curl up, roll up and press down, come back, roll down.

Roll Back w/Arm Row

So, think of this as active flexibility, pull, drawing those abs in and pull forwards. Just a couple more. Stretching out, curling, stretching forwards. One more, reach, pull the leg towards your chest and pull and press. Switch with the other side.

Thread that leg up, you ready, curl one vertebra at a time. Pull, pull, pull, roll up. Now, pull, pull your scapula together. Your chest is reaching forwards. There we go.

So, look out on the horizon. I have a beautiful horizon to look at right here. Pull back (air hissing) and press, pull the (indistinct) to the side of the body, one more and back. (air hissing) And then, roll all the way up and press forwards, beautiful. From here, we're gonna turn to your side.

You're in your forearm, you're gonna put your ring in between your legs. Again, you're in that lovely diamond position that we love so much. So, you're in that diamond position, feet together, hands behind the head. Now, from here, we're going to lift, squeeze and come back down again. And we're gonna try and side bend with the upper body.

Side Bend Lift and Squeeze

So, it goes, side bend, squeeze, back, side bend, squeeze, back. And if you don't wanna do that little extra squeeze, you don't have to. So, we go up, squeeze and down exhale, oblique, squeeze and down, squeeze and down, you got it, squeeze and down. Three more, feel those obliques and inner thighs. (exhales) One more, hold it here, squeeze, squeeze, squeeze like a clam, 4, 3, 2 and one.


And then, come back down, hold it there. Grab hold of your lovely ring and lift that leg up into that nice stretch. From here, take that opposite leg out, diagonally forwards. So, in that stretch, we're gonna lift up that leg and down, lift it up, lift. So, what do you think you're working now, is your inner thigh, inner thigh and your oblique.

Hamstring Stretch

Lift up and down, up and down four more, 4, 3, 2 and one more. Let's turn to the other side. So, place the ring in between your legs, in that diamond position, put your feet forwards. There we go, forearm down, hands on your head. Now, we do side oblique, squeeze and back, side oblique, squeeze and back.

Side Lying Single Leg w/External Rotation

So, you can see I'm side-bending, squeezing the ring and then, I lower the legs. A lift, oblique, side and back. So, it's all in the obliques and the inner thigh. There we go, squeeze it and back. So, you're shortening the distance from your lowest rib to your hip, up, squeeze, couple more, up, squeeze.

Side Bend Lift and Squeeze

Last time, hold it here, now, pause, 8, 7, 6, 5, like a clam, 4, 3, 2 and one and down, threading, grab hold of your circle, take that top leg, there we go, extend it in that lovely stretch. Now, bring that leg diagonally forwards and we're gonna lift that leg up. Ooh! You don't have to touch it, the leg. Just lift it up, work that inner thigh. Here we go, inner thigh and four more here, 4, 3, 2 and one and come back down.


From here, we're gonna turn onto your tummy and you're gonna put your circle right in the middle here, okay, right where your sternum is and we're gonna place it down, hands on either side of the ring and from here, we're gonna bend the elbows and we're gonna lift the right leg up. Reach the hands a little bit further forwards. We're gonna press down, lift that leg up and then, come up to a straight arm position. Bend the elbows, pitch the body forwards and lift that leg up and then, come back up again. Let's do eight more of those, okay, we go 8, 7, 6, so, in your tricep, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1.

Hamstring Stretch

Come up, bend the knees and switch with the other side. So, take the opposite leg, elbows bent. So, we press down to the floor, lift up, press downs, you're squeezing that ring, leg lifts and it lowers, (exhales) elbows behind your body, so, you are working those triceps. Let's do four more of these, three, two, let's do one more guys, just one more, lift up, bend your knees. Now, feet, hip width apart.

Side Lying Single Leg w/External Rotation

From here, we're going to extend the legs, so, we're gonna curl the toes underneath. We're gonna go into a plank position. So, lift up in your harvest, step out, step out, you're in your plank position and we're gonna press down, lift up, press down, lift up. Let's do a few more. Keep your scapula still, lift up, scoop out through those abs, inhale, bend, exhale, up.

Push Up Variation

Just two more, inhale, bend, exhale, up. Last time, inhale, bend, lift up, bend your knees, grab hold of that circle and just reach forwards in that stretch. And then, slowly roll yourself all the way up. We're gonna turn onto your side for some side planks here. You're gonna grab your little circle and you're pressing down with a circle to engage your lats.

Push Up

So, you're gonna bring your forearm down here, press, feel that lat, feel your serratus, step out, step out with that top leg crossed in front and you're here in this position. And all I want you to do is press and press. So, every time you press, you're gonna feel your lats, you're gonna feel your obliques working here and you're just pressing down, pressing down and holding that fabulous plank. Press down, five and four and three, keep pressing down, two and one, lift the hips up. Now, hold that position, low and lift, low and lift, keep pressing that ring, four, connect the arms to the back, three, two, hold it there, lower the hips down, open the legs in like a Z-position, we call this, bring the hands forwards, stretch in that diagonal position.

Child's Pose Stretch

Reach the hand out, circle back, look to your back foot, rotate around and really stretch out that lower back. Now, curl, watch the hand, open it out. Now, use your abs, curl and hold it there, right into that QL, the lower back in that stretch. And then, come back up again. Twist the legs around.

Side Plank Variation

Yes, we've got the other side to go, forearm down. So, let's press down first, depress your scapula, your lats, so you can feel those obliques. Now, we take the top leg, cross it in front, underneath the leg, press down, lift your hips up as you press down with the ring. So, you're pressing down, lifting your hips up, right? Now, press the ring, press it, press it.

Hip Dips

Keep the hips lifted up. That's it, keep pressing, pressing, 6, 5, 4, keep those hips up, three, two, hold it there, don't we feel good? Now, drop the hips down and up, down and up. Keep pressing in that ring, pressing down the ring and lifting the hips in opposition for four, hop, three, hop, two, hop, one. Hold it there and then come back down, separate the legs in that Z-position, reach the hands diagonally forwards, drop the head down, ears by your biceps and we lift up, circle the hand, look to that back foot, watch the hand, now, reach, reach, reach, reach, that awesome stretch.

Hip Stretch

Lift up, follow the hand, look to that back foot in that rotation, lift up, reach forwards and curl. Hold it there. Hold it, fantastic, in that stretch. And then, curl all the way up. Grab your ring, turn around.

Side Plank Variation

Now, we're gonna have some fun now. All fun, (laughs) but even more fun. Okay, so, we tap in the toes here. We're gonna lift, thread them through the ring. All righty, okay.

Hip Dips

So, from here, we're gonna roll back, extend the legs, roll up, thread and lift. So, we go in, thread knees, curl, extend, roll up, thread, teaser. Let's do that again. Thread it through, chair position, roll, pike and up. This is the hard part, we thread it through.

Hip Stretch

Ready, reach up in that teaser. Let's do one more, 'cause you're having so much fun. Thread it through, chair position, curl, pike, back into your chair position. Guess what? One more teaser to finish off.

Roll Over Variation

Hold it here for 4, 3, 2 and one, bend the knees, lower the leg, take that right leg, roll down, bend the knee, oh, sorry, bend the elbows, keep the knees straight, extend that left leg, lift your head, neck and shoulders off the floor. We're gonna lift that bottom leg up and down, up and down, work in those abs, up and down. (exhales) Let's do four more here, 4, 3, 2 and one, lower the head, bring the opposite leg, switch, switch, switch, take it down, lift the head up and bottom leg, up and down. Yeah, lovely straight leg here. (exhales) Let's do four more just like that, four and three and two and one, lower the leg, put both feet in here.

Scissors Variation

Now, we're gonna press the arms out straight, bend the elbows, rock, stretch out and bend. So, that's, kind of, the motion that we're doing, for we're gonna roll, okay, into a teaser. So, we're gonna roll, teaser, bend the elbows, over, roll, teaser, so that arms can bend, it can help you a little bit. Roll over, bend, teaser and roll. Obviously, you can go a little bit more into that stretch and back.

Roll Over into Teaser

(exhales) Here, if you wanna stretch, it can go up a little bit higher, depending on your flexibility. It's all about flexibility. The fun factor of pilate is we can rock and roll, we love it and roll, bend and lift up a little bit more, see if you can get the chest towards your thighs. Let's do one more for good luck, I'm all about good luck and press all the way up, beautiful. And then, come back down, awesome work.

From here, open your feet, hip width apart, curling back down into that nice "C Curve" position. We're gonna do our lovely figure eight here. Just figuring eight, working back into that core, back and we rotate for eight, for seven, for six, for five, for four, for three, we're gonna add the knee, we go knee and knee and knee and knee and eight and seven and six and five, in that rotation, 4, 3, 2 and one. Hold it there, little bit deeper, look through that circle, curl all the way up, extend, press the heels out and stretch. Bend your knees.

Figure Eight

We're gonna turn back to your side to finish off with some sideline work. So, we're gonna grab our lovely ring. The ring of fire. I call this the ring of fire. Take the leg out.

Now, reach the hand out. We're gonna press down. Take that leg out to the side. Now, because I'm lifted, I'm not gonna lift that leg very high. So, I'm gonna go, lift and press and press.

Kneeling Side Leg Lift

Can you see, I'm just doing a little press and a little lift, a little press and a little lift. So, really lifting up into that underneath oblique and yes, my glut medius, right here, is gonna be on fire. And little press, little lift, little shaky. It's not supposed to be perfect. We are working hard and we're pressing down.

Let's do four more. Exhale, four, exhale, three and two, one more, hold it here, press down, hold it. Can we do circles? Ooh, test our balance, circles. Keep the leg low towards the floor and then, circles, little balance going on here.

Kneeling Leg Circles

Your glutes are firing up. Hold it and lower that leg, reach the hand over into that stretch. Awesome. And then, reach up and then, switch to the other side. So, get your ring down, press down, initiate with those obliques, take the leg out to the side, put the hand on the hip, just to stabilize, push that hip away.

Side Bend Stretch

Now, lift that leg and press down. There we go. So, you gotta really think about what you are doing. So, don't let your mind wonder, that way you're gonna fall over. Wee! Just like that, ready, down and up.

Kneeling Side Leg Lift

Press, focus on what we are trying to achieve which is oblique stability, glut stability, right here. (exhales) Are we breathing? (exhales) Go press down. Let's do four more, 4, 3, 2, now one more, hold it, press down, find your balance. Now, circle.

Kneeling Leg Circles

Woohoo! This is a little challenging, but you guys are gonna at least try. 'Cause if you don't try, you're never gonna be able to do it now. Now, reverse it. There we go. And then, hold it.

Are we there? And then, down. Woohoo! Good job. Reach over into that stretch, fantastic, into that stretch. Lift up.

Side Bend Stretch

We're gonna finish off. As we turn around to this direction, we're gonna curl our toes down, come back onto our toes and then, from here, we're going to reach forwards into a stretch. So, we're gonna lift the hips up into a stretch. So, press down. Enjoy that stretch.

Now, I want you to thread the back hand through, put your hand down and press down on that ring. Switch to the other side, press down, hand on the floor. That's it, make sure that ring is nice and firm into the mat. Bring your hands back on top. Now, look out, feet and hip width apart, look out on the horizon, press down.

Send your tailbone back, but still looking forwards on the horizon. Bend back, keep still looking forwards. Extend, just two more, extend, one more. Stick the hips out, that's it, curl like a cat, scoop out, reach out. One more time, curl like a cat, extend, keep pressing down on that ring.

Down Dog Variation

And from here, draw the knees down onto the floor and just put the ring down. Just reach overhead if you can and then, release all the way out. Come back into your center. We're just gonna take your head over to the right side as I'm doing. Take your hand over to your head and just finish off with a few couple of stretches.

Chest Opening

Stretch out the head, neck and shoulders and then, switch to the other side. I know you're itching to leave and go onto your next activity. I feel it. Take two minutes for yourself in that lovely stretch. Hands behind your head.

Neck Stretch

Don't go yet, stay with me. Extend up. We all need this, we're stuck on computers, phones, we gotta open up our chest. One more time. Curl, curl, curl, extend, extend, extend and open.

Back Extension w/ Arms

Doesn't that feel so much better? Enjoy, go on to your next activity and feel fantastic after that fun, fun, fun class. I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did, rocking and rolling on this mat. Have a great day, see you soon. Take care, bye.

Mix it Up: On the Mat


Jennifer E
1 person likes this.
Super fun class! Thank you, Tracey!!!
Federica A
3 people like this.
Thank you Tracey, great class as always! These classes of yours have just one fault: they're too short ;)
Tina L
2 people like this.
Tracey never disappoints. Great class! Fabulous choreography, always challenging, with a fun and energetic personality!
1 person likes this.
great class and just the right length! Thanks.
2 people like this.
Thanks so much for this amazing class, Tracey! Really appreciate these knee-friendly mat classes. Hope you can make more. I always want to take your classes cause I just love your energy and joy, but my bum knee prevents me from taking most of your classes. So this class and others like it are gem!!! 
2 people like this.
Love this class, great quick workout and creative magic circle variations, thanks Tracey!
Jacquie W
1 person likes this.
Loved the class, those were some fun moves with the Magic Circle!
Lina S
1 person likes this.
Creative variations. Nice balance of strength and flexibility. Thank you!
1 person likes this.
Great class! You surprised me. I could do it!
Jodie W
1 person likes this.
Great class, challenging and fun.  Love your classes Tracey! 
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