Class #5009

Side Body Focused Flow

45 min - Class
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What do you want to walk away with after class? Set an intention and move Kristi Cooper! This is a full-body Reformer class with an emphasis on stretching and strengthening your side body. Kristi plays with tempo with creative variations to keep things fun and challenging.
What You'll Need: Reformer

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Jun 13, 2022
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Hi, everybody, welcome to class. I'm Kristi and we are gonna just be all over the reformer. Of course, covering all aspects of the body. But I am gonna focus a little bit on the side body tonight, tonight? Today, wherever you are now.

Here we go, take a deep breath in, just fill yourself up (softly inhales) and really take up some space, exhale and let go of whatever you need to. Wobble around, loosen up. Make your own commitment to yourself. What do you wanna get out of the 50 or so minutes? Inhale, lift, maybe even look up.

How much higher and longer can you get? Exhale, just let it come down. We'll do a roll down, I'll just turn sideways. Your feet are parallel. Let's take that deep breath up again, collect energy.

Bring it with you. As you exhale, just let the arms float. Your head will start to reach forward. Look forward, but it's as if you're lifting up to go over something. Go all the way down, bend your knees.

Take your spine with you. So you're rounding the back too. Exhale, straighten them. We'll bend a couple more times, bend your knees, (softly inhales) and straighten. Bend, to straight and check out your feet while you're here.

And roll up, and the point of that would be simply to level them out, make 'em even. Let's do it again, inhale, reach up, fill yourself, support yourself. Exhale and take yourself down. So this idea of the side bodies for me today is really just gonna be about making sure we support ourselves. Almost like buttress ourselves from the side of our body, bending the knees and straightening three times, bend, and straighten, here's my third one.

Hang your head, let tension go. Hold, inhale, exhale, we roll up. (softly exhales) I'm giving us one more, just leave the arms down. Inhale, and exhale, and see if you can feel the support that you can give yourself on the side of your body. Of course it's gonna round, of course it's gonna shorten.

But it's the idea that you're aware of it, and bend, to straighten, heavy head. Bend to straighten, free yourself of tension now. You will move much more efficiently. Bend to straighten and when you're ready, go ahead and roll yourself back up, finding the back of the body too. And here we are, so a little bit more with warming up and just sort of finding out where we are in space.

Take a deep breath, up, up, up, up. Let one arm come down, hold yourself, support. There's that support we're just talking about. Reach up, don't worry about the shoulders. But also reach down.

Find the length to the one side, what do you got? Oh, you wanna take the arm with you? Go ahead, and then come back up, switch sides. And so I am, I'm giving myself this sense of what I wanna walk away with at the end of class. Push in, reach up, fill our length, feel our side bodies, take yourself over, and we'll come back.

So now you know what we're doing. Anchor, what does that mean? We'll find out. So as you go over to one side, the opposite foot reaches into the floor. I just have to say, the whole back of the room is tilting with me right now, it's quite fun.

And up, other side, support, reach, lift, lengthen over, let it feel good to this long side. Press into the floor, (softly exhales) and then just shake it out. All right, let's go over to the edge of the reformer. I am on one spring. I have a, on a blue at the moment, but you could go a little heavier.

We're just gonna stretch out a tiny bit more. Feet parallel, just find the edge of your carriage. Head is down and we inhale to lengthen the spine. Lengthen the legs. Where is your head in all this?

And exhale, bring it back. I'm not gonna tell you where it should be. I'm just gonna say let's try to line up, let it feel good. Stretching, pushing the carriage out. And as you push the carriage out, reach the tailbone the opposite way, and then just curve the shape of the body and the carriage will come home, one more like that.

Take it out, tilt the tailbone up. Many of us will probably have to check in with our ribs. It feels a lot better if you hold the ribs in just a little bit, just a little, so that you can really feel the extension of the arms, really feel the extension of the upper back and we'll come back in. And I'm just gonna go right here to moving both hands to the left side of the carriage. The rest stays the same.

Oh, there you go. There's that right side of the body a little bit more. And exhale, bring it back. Two more, inhale, press. Starting to find out maybe a natural rhythm in your own body, one more like that.

Stretch, come back. Other side, both hands just shift over, make it comfy. Well, comfy enough, and we go. So there is that subtle lean to the right side now and round to bring it back for two more, inhale. Exhale, one more. (softly inhales) And we are back home.

So just level out the hands, roll yourself up. We're gonna do a little bit more of a warmup with our abs. Time to really fire things up a bit. Put on maybe one or two springs, just so you can hold the carriage down. And sitting kind of close to the front edge, I have my feet a little bit apart, still holding on.

It seems like the theme is gonna be supporting ourselves today. So hold yourself up. Sit as tall as you can in this tiny little position. And now you draw those hip bones backwards. You roll your spine backwards even as your intention is to go forward, hold, inhale.

It's okay to use your arms. Exhale, sink the abs. Notice it just happens, you don't have to try. There's no sucking in or even really tightening. If you go down and you gotta get up, it's gonna work for you, roll back.

(softly exhales) If it feels too easy, let go. Sometimes I really like the opposition. If I pull, I have something to reluctantly resist against, right? And sit tall, exhale back. (softly exhales) Inhale at the bottom there. Start the exhale, free up tension where you don't need it.

And you'll really work strongly. Let's go one more. Inhale (softly inhales) and exhaling up. (softly exhales) This time, we'll make it a little more interesting. Take it down, and if you're on those shoulder rest, it's all right to touch 'em, but you're not resting on 'em, right?

Let go the hands, take both arms up. Don't move the body. Exhale, bring 'em down. Do it again, both arms up. Bring it down. (softly exhales) Last one like that.

Scoop, scoop, scoop, what does that mean? I don't know, just inhale. I'm scooping air right now, hold, inhale. And exhale, up we go. Right, find a place where you can drop your knees out to the side.

So you might have to come closer for that to be comfortable. You might have to back way up, but it's not so much about the feet as I just wanna get a little more rotation before we go any further. Hands behind your head, lift yourself again. Let's rotate to the front, spiraling from the ribs or above the waist. Inhale and exhale center.

Again, other way, I like we're gonna inhale as we rotate. I'll change this a little bit in a second and then just come on back. Adding on ever so slightly, we inhale towards the front. The hand furthest from the front grabs onto that front leg. You push down and rotate a little more.

Keep your spine where it is, but inhale, replace the hand behind your head and exhale back to center. Other way, we inhale to rotate, kind of easily. Then the opposite hand comes to knee or thigh. Exhale, you can push down, you can pull a little but be careful with that. Ooh, how much further can you rotate?

Hold it there now, hand goes behind your head, and back to center. Couple more of those, we inhale, rotate. Hand to thigh, exhale, get tall, or maybe rotate more. Inhale behind your head, exhale back to center. And again, inhale, rotate.

Hand to thigh. (softly inhales) This would be like a daily thing, I forget it until I do it. Put the hand back, and center. All right, free your hands, scoot yourself forward. Let's see, we'll just leave the springs as they are for the moment. Let's lie down, do a little bit more rotational warmup, holding onto the pegs, or you take your arms out to a T position.

You could even put your arms by your side. But bring the knees up to ninetyish, both of them together and we go to the front. We inhale, so you're lifting that lower body up. Exhale, sink the ribs, the abs to pull back to center. Again, we try not to overthink and make our body do more than it needs to just to go from here to there.

So let's go to the front. Start an exhale and just ease your way back. Dig a little deeper if you want to, but really we're just going, "Hey, wake up. "Check out my spine, feels good." Things you can notice is you keep your shoulders down. So you're not letting the whole body come up.

The ribs will, of course. And again, over, pressing, maybe the bottom knee into the top knee to give you a little bit more of a sensation to the back. (softly inhales) (softly exhales) And again. Rotate, and sway back to center. See if you could kind of articulate your body back to center, whatever that means to you.

I'm gonna do one more to each side. (softly inhales) (softly exhales) And here it is, last one. And center, reach forward, grab onto your knees. Push your knees into your hands. Bring your head, neck and shoulders up and you're in a nice, lifted, strong position for a double leg stretch.

We reach both arms back, legs forward and scoop in, bring it all back in. Inhale out, exhale in. And open to close. Reach away, come back. Strong body, still body with exception, of course, the arms and legs.

Let's do three more, one, pull it in. You can really squeeze in (softly exhales) and hold it. Take onto the right leg, left leg reaches long. Check out your alignment. This is worth always checking back in.

Trying to line up the tops of the feet, so you don't have one leg higher. Trying to line that up like I could set a tray right on top, switch, check that out too. The knee's not floating in or out, it's kind of straight ahead, let's go. It's inhale, inhale. Exhale, exhale, might as well pull in.

Use the thigh to squeeze air out. Out and in, in, out, out. Let's go, press, reach, whatever the word is. How about both legs in again? Head goes down, this time, curl yourself right back up, extend the right leg up, left leg out, and down to the footbar.

So you push on that. It actually allows you to free up this upper leg a little bit and we pull, pull, switch. Pull, pull, switch. Pull, pull. (softly exhales) Ooh, can you get both legs all the way down? Meaning one at a time, but interesting how different that feels.

Let's go pull, pull, pull a little quicker now. Just reach, reach, reach, reach, reach, both legs up. Head goes down, bring it right back up. Hands behind your head. Are you curled up nice and high like you're gonna get up?

Reach the legs away, exhale, scoop and bring it back. Inhale, we'll just do five, here's two. Try not to fall back, here's three. In fact, try to go with your legs. Two more. (softly exhales) Ane more, stay up there when you get there.

Bend your knees, rotate towards the right, one, switch. One, two, two, (softly inhales) (softly exhales) Two more sets. (softly exhales) Last set. (softly inhales) (softly exhales) Both legs in, hug them to your chest and let your head go down. Okay, I talked a little bit about supporting ourselves with the side body, right?

So let's lighten the spring. One will probably be good for a lot of people. I'm gonna go lighter, meaning a blue or a half. So if you're coming with me, be careful. All right, so headrest is down and we're just gonna lie here on our side.

Kinda situating yourself. You may find you wanna bend the lower knee, that's okay. For now, just put your hand where you can support yourself and we lift both legs up, and we lower. And we lift. And so now the legs are just the weight against the middle in this direction, right?

It's all about how many ways can we confuse the abdominal section, almost. And lift, and down. And lift, and down. Let's go two more, lift, and down. And lift and pretty much down.

We're gonna grab onto this strap. I have the double loops here. I'm gonna go for the shorter one. And I'm gonna do it slow, but because we automatically are gonna have to lift the lower legs, right? In order, we are gonna move.

You're just gonna pull, and bring it back. Finding the side body, reaching from underneath. I'm gonna adjust 'cause I'm rocking way forward. So I'm just gonna adjust a little bit. So I'm a little more on my greater trochanter, there we go.

There we go. (softly exhales) Just connecting and balancing and doing all these things just for fun. It's nice to kind of trick our bodies a little, just one more. Ain't no big thing. Voila, so bring it back. You can rerack it.

Turn around, other side. So I am taking my arm all the way down, but you could support your head. You could hold the pegs differently if you like. Finding that long line, keep this strap down for a second. And we just lift both legs up, and down.

Keep going, up, and down. This is where you kinda decide whether or not you think you're gonna be able to balance when you take the arm up with the strap. We've got about five to go, lift and lower. Again, pressing that bottom leg into the top leg, giving ourselves two more. (softly inhales) Okay, now here we go.

It's time for that strap again. You may even find you wanna hold higher. For me, this smaller loop is doing the job. Arm is up, it's straight and it's as if somehow they armpit is what I'm standing on. And I pull. (softly exhales) And I notice when I over tighten the legs, it makes it really hard to balance.

Kind of soften up there and put the energy a little more in the middle. (softly exhales) Couple more still. And voila, all right, bring yourself in for a landing. Put your strap away, sit up and set up your springs for foot and leg work. I am putting 'em on three, red and a blue, or just added that three to the blue I already had.

Footbar is up, headrest where you like it. Go big, all right, lying down, heels on the bar. Settle in, hopefully you already have a sense of the side support of your body. Keep that if you do, if not, keep looking for it. Off we go, we press all the way out, we pull back in, let's go.

(softly exhales) (softly inhales) (softly exhales) The arms are straight, but not overly tense. Kind of standing on 'em a little bit in the upper arms. So you keep those shoulders down, going for four, pull in, for three. (softly inhales) (softly exhales) Come all the way in, but stay kind of ready. You don't just start over each time you change exercises. Toes are on the bar, we push out, we pull in.

All the way out, all the way in. (softly exhales) Going for five more here, long body, reluctantly bringing yourself back in so you're working in both directions, two to go. Come down, from here, from high in the hip, turn the legs out. It's not significant turn-out, but the sense that it came from way highs is an important one, I think. Here we go, we press all the way out.

The heels are together, prove it. And then take some reps now and focus on not moving your ankle, right? Or I think that's the right way to say it. Don't let the heel go up and down. That's really what I'm trying to say.

So the ankle will indeed flex. (softly exhales) (softly inhales) Long, just kind of heating up even more. We'll do five from here, go one, pull in. Here's two, (softly inhales) breathing with it. (softly exhales) Last one, come home, heels to the far side, edges of the bar, off you go.

And this is always the easy one for me to remember to squeeze, not just out, but in with those inner thighs. (softly exhales) A sense of connection to the back of the body. Can you do that, do you have that sense? What would you need to do to find it? I'm gonna keep going here.

For me, it's like a subtle drag downwards of the heels a little bit sometimes to remind me, all right, my glutes are working a bit, one more. You get another shot at that but let's go to the toes. Still slightly turned out, watch those ankles again, and in. Out, (softly inhales) (softly exhales) (softly inhales) (softly exhales) (softly inhales) (softly exhales) Ah, settling into your rhythm. Starting to feel the support you're giving yourself, hopefully.

I'm doing just one more from here, out and in. Feet come back toward the center. Sits bones distance apart, push out, lower the heels. Oh, come on, doesn't that feel good? Push to the top, bend your knees, come home.

Go out again, lower the heels twice. This time it goes down, it goes up, it goes down, it goes up, and you draw yourself in number three, three lowers and lifts, two. Three, and in, kind of soft on the actual toes if you can. They'll move around. Just try to not to grip too much.

Three outta four, here we go, bring it home. And let's just go to five, one and down and two and down. Watching those knees And we're going to six, I'll stop after that, kinda. One, down straight, two, find the whole foot in this, three, four, five, and, six, come home. Brief moment, get yourself back out there.

Lower one heel as the other knee goes straight up. So I've got my left heel down, the right knee's pointed straight up, checking for not hyperextending the knee. Push with that lower leg to get both legs up to straight and switch. And play with where you put weight on the foot. Most likely you'll have chosen the path of least resistance.

So look for some evenness there. Push up, we'll do that same thing, but without the hold of the stretch. We go down, up, down, up, alternating, down, up, down, and up. Can you feel longer in your spine even as you do this? (softly exhales) (softly inhales) Breathing however you like.

I tend to inhale for two of the movements, exhale for two of the movements. I'm gonna do two more rounds of that. (softly inhales) (softly exhales) (softly inhales) (softly exhales) All right, come on home. Right, and let's just sit yourself up. Take your springs down to one and a half, or two, for a little bit of ab work.

Again, hold where you like. I am going with a shorter strap today, or at least for now. Both knees are up or straight out for coordination. We are curling up, we reach out, open, close, drag those knees right in, and then come all the way down with straight arms. So you curl up like you're gonna do the Hundred but aren't I nice?

I skipped it, and come on down. You exhale, curl up the legs. They open, they close, they bend. You keep reaching forward and then straight arms come down. So it's a long exhale. (softly exhales) Start inhaling here and come on down, exhale back up.

(softly exhales) (softly inhales) And again. (softly exhales) Long in the torso, even as we curl it, right? One more time. (softly exhales) And little change on that theme, curl up again, turn the arms and the legs out, open both. Close both, reach almost under your legs. Squeeze out that air, fill it up and then let it out. (softly inhales) (softly exhales) (softly inhales) (softly exhales) I'm gonna flex the feet as I come in just to get more of that stretch point going out, we'll do three more.

(softly exhales) (softly inhales) (softly exhales) Alrighty, last one. (softly inhales) Right on, bend the knees. Come on down, feet on the bar just so you can step into your straps. I'm gonna go with the long one on this one. Either one works. For the Frog, bend your knees, the heels are together, body long, extend and reach and draw it in.

(softly exhales) And so, if you practice Pilates, you do the same exercises, but what you get to do is just think of them differently. Can you make the Frog about the side of your body? I bet you can. For me, it's just a sense of as my legs go one way, I'm imagining my head and spine and going the opposite. (softly exhales) (softly inhales) (softly exhales) And it just feels good.

All right, into Down Circle, so we'll start here at the top. I'm gonna keep the tailbone down as best I can. I hope you will too, we lower. You can go wide if you want, just keep it under control. Get to the top, touch and pull down, let's go.

(softly inhales) (softly exhales) (softly inhales) (softly exhales) (softly inhales) (softly exhales) I'm gonna get one more full circle all the way up, all the way down and around, stop at the bottom and reverse it. Pick it up, open, exhale, down and around. Nice connected movements. (softly inhales) (softly exhales) Finding some flow in it for yourself, controlling it for yourself. (softly exhales) (softly inhales) One more time.

And then where are we? We're in the down position, but I'm gonna raise it up to about 45. Open wide, trying to keep the feet on the same level. And close, it's not as easy as it sounds. It's a tendency is to pull downwards using more hamstring, but really try to isolate so it's inner thigh.

It's like your legs just slide towards each other, but also away far, far side of the room. (softly exhales) (softly inhales) Yeah, and here's another thing, just do as little as you possibly can to get from here to there. See what happens. See if you start to feel those inner thighs a little bit more. Okay, let's go ahead and go wide again.

Make sure you are at a place you can hang out in 'cause that's what we're gonna do, hang out. So you could either support yourself by holding under the straps or you could, ah, give yourself a really nice stretch by putting your hands on top of the straps. It's just okay to feel good, even as we're working out, right? Okay, let's help ourselves out of this. So I lift the straps and bring myself back to the bar, taking the straps off, put 'em away.

Okay, let's do some semicircle. I'm just gonna leave the spring I have. Let your legs over the bar, shimmy down just a little bit. And then when you can, actually push the carriage out from underneath you until your arms are completely straight. Not kind of straight, really straight.

You want that sort of opposition. Putting your feet on the bar, on the balls of the feet turned out, heels together, starting in a nice up position. Okay, so your heels are kind of gently pressing down, situating yourself, you're lifted, you're feeling that luscious stretch of the thighs. Start to roll yourself down into the well. Do your best not to move the carriage.

When you get there, you'll probably feel those springs. Stay low like that, push out, not quite to straight legs, but near it, and peel yourself up, holding that carriage still. Strong, straight arm, bring it all the way back to the start nice and high. Exhale, doll down, undulating into the springs. Push yourself out not quite to straight but close.

Peel up, that's the, either the really great part or the hard part, and come on in. Let's go this way again, roll down. Down, down, touch, take it out. Peel yourself up. Get more stretch, more stretch, more stretch, and reverse it, push out.

From your chest, melt downwards into the springs and bring it on in. Get as close as you can and then peel yourself up. Let those knees go over the bar, push out, roll down. Do you feel longer yet? Think about that.

The side bodies stretching the waist, upper back, middle back, lower back. Enjoy that, that was it. Come all the way in, roll yourself up again. See if you can grab onto that bar. Really tuck the pelvis, push the hips up, enjoy the stretch, you deserve it.

And then as gracefully as possible, shimmy yourself back. And we will get ourselves up, taking off one spring, so just down to a red, for a stretch. We're gonna just go into sort of the Eve's Lunge. So I've got my right knee on, left foot is forward near that front leg of the reformer, and sort of even without the arms, think of drawing the pelvis underneath you a little bit. So already you feel the hamstrings.

Not that that's the point, but it kind of is 'cause I'm gonna stretch the front. So you're gonna tighten the back, stretch the front, you know the deal. Pushing that carriage back, you can hold on, for sure. In fact, do, and sink into it. I'm pushing the carriage back even as I try to take my pelvis forward and up.

And breathe. (softly inhales) (softly exhales) Keep breathing, sink into it, milk it. Then just with firmer hands on the bar, start to straighten that leg that's on the ground. Tilting forward, reach the tailbone back. Look for the long spine, you can go further, but you probably don't have to to get the hamstring stretch. And then just bend the knee, come on in, and go around to the other side, same thing.

So yeah, I just like to kind of find the stretch without even getting into a deep position yet. Once you feel like you have that, literally push the carriage back. Then hold on and you can find that long, it's almost like the spine, you're stretching the spine in the front side. (softly exhales) Breathing into it. (softly inhales) Finding the opposition or the joy in it even.

And then when you're ready, start to straighten that front leg. I did lift the toes on the other side, I forgot to tell you that, but to add to the calf stretch, you don't have to. Squaring off the hips, looking for a pretty straight spine here. And it's really almost, just pull that tailbone up. And then when you're ready, soften the knee, come on back, and let's grab the box for some Short Box.

I place it in front of the shoulder rest and it's partly 'cause of where I'm gonna put my feet too. I'm gonna use the strap, but this will work better. And I encourage you to try it if you never have. Add some springs just to hold the carriage still again, just putting on a couple. Climb aboard, find your strap.

You could put the footbar down. You could not, too. Sitting forward on the box. So you really have this connection of your feet to the platform, your sits bones into the box. You're as tall as you can be, arm over arm for this one.

Forearm into forearm, you're sitting tall, we just inhale. And on the exhale, we draw those sits bones back, curl ourselves back, very, very similar to the beginning. Inhale, start exhaling and hold yourself back at the waist as you curl forward. And when shoulders are over hips, you sit up tall. Exhale, roll back. (softly exhales) Inhale, exhale forward.

And there's a subtle pressure of forearm into forearm that really kind of helps keep me lifted. (softly inhales) (softly exhales) You could go all the way back if you want. I'm gonna hang out here today. Exhale forward, and tall, (softly inhales) two to go. (softly exhales) Inhale, start that exhale, come forward, come forward, and up we go.

This is it, make it fun. (softly exhales) Easy head neck, shoulders, hold, inhale, and exhale, sink it to come on up. Okay, with or without the pole, I have one, so I'm gonna use it, reach the arms straight up overhead. And as far as where I'm holding it, I'm going a little wider than my own shoulders. That's about right, and I do kind of pull apart. It just helps me to stay taller.

At least I hope it will. Lean ever so slightly forward just to get our setup. Draw the pelvis ever so slightly back. So you have this nice long flat back and then simply hinge the whole piece back. Exhale, come up.

Inhale, (softly inhales) add up. (softly exhales) Inhale, the legs can help you here. How can I say that differently? You just wanna keep 'em together, for one, but if you can keep a downward pressure, either with the hamstrings or the feet, it really helps, it frees you up. And we'll come all the way up. Speaking of side bodies again, we're gonna just slide the whole body and then do a little tilt, and come back up.

So it's like your knuckles skim across the ceiling and at the last moment you take a little arch. You can lean forward a little so that you don't lean back. This one's pretty much meant to be sideways, but you can go forward a little. It gives you a little bit more of a ability to contract the one side over the other. And over, ooh, keep those hips down.

Last one each way. (softly exhales) Finally. (softly exhales) All right, take a tiny break with the arms, put 'em back. We rotate to the front. Hinge back, we're going on a bit of a diagonal here.

Come up, and center, rotate the other way. Leaning back into it. Almost like you're gonna go over the back corner of the reformer, and center. Rotate and reach. Look where you're going, you might get further, rotate.

And up, one more each way. If you don't have a pole, I usually do this with my hands behind my head. It works well too. And up we go, now put the pole away, take one leg out. You can scoot go back a little bit.

Again for the way we're doing it, it's really nice to anchor the foot and the leg down. Hug the leg in three times, just sit tall. One, two, three, stretch that leg up. Roll back so it's about 90 and then the leg may come up here. You're gonna hook that leg, right?

It's hooked, so you're safe, take it down. Roll right back up. Get right up to that leg. And then when you're ready, rebend it, sit right up on the sits bones again and pull one, pull two, pull three. Try to keep your back straight here as you extend the leg.

Tilt everything back. This is where you use that other leg. Push into the box, I promise you, it just makes it so much more fun. And if you wanna go further, you can, you can arch back over. Press that opposite hamstring so that it just feels super easy to get up when you climb back up the tree.

Let's do one more like that, we bend and pulse. Three, stretch it up, hinge it back. Walk down the leg or the tree, so to speak. Hold the box or swing the arms around, whichever you like. Bring yourself back up, up, up, get closer, closer, closer, and then sit tall, change legs.

I don't think I'll ever get tired of this exercise. So I am kind of just sliding the shin bone upwards. It's a sensation I get that my spine likes to match. So everything's going up and we just hug it in three, two, one, keep the spine, straighten the leg if you can. Hinge the whole piece back, walk down two, three, and up two, three.

Sit up on those sits bones and refold the leg. We go one, two, three, stretch the leg. Rock the position back. As I walk down, it's almost like I'm pulling my leg up out of the hip socket. We went further the second time, I think.

Arch back if you want to. Feel that hamstring, walk up, two, three. Get up top and then bend and fold. Last one, one and two and three, stretch. Getting a little more out of each rep.

Walk down two, three. Unfurl, use that other hamstring, and walk up. Get even closer, even closer, even closer. Refold the leg, and now we're going to side overs. So we're just going to, I switched legs just so I could see you.

Turn sideways, you could do this with or without the pole. I think I will go for it, I'm just gonna have it nearby 'cause I like to set it up specifically. I'm on the side of my hip and I'm gonna stay out on this diagonal, that's my goal anyway. The other leg is already airborne. I'm using it, I'm lifting up, but also reaching through.

Again, you can put your hands behind your head or you can stretch them out. We go down. And up, just five, Two, now notice we're not going all the way to the top. It's just hanging out in that hard spot, two to go. (softly inhales) (softly exhales) My goodness.

Oh goody, it's over. Put the pole down and you can either just rest your elbow on the headrest or the floor. Maybe not your elbow on the floor, but whatever you need to. Again, open up the side body. Reach the leg, this is a wonderful stretch.

And then one hand to the frame, other hand to the other side of the frame, keep reaching the leg and then see about arching or pulling your chest through the arms for again a rotational stretch of the sides. Right, help yourself up by using your hands. Switch to the other side. So I will grab the pole in a moment, but do yourself that favor of checking out your posture before you go. You already wanna be able to support yourself so much so that you don't move around a lot and you can just grab the pole and off we go.

We go down, we come up, (softly exhales) one. Try to keep your head in between the arms the same distance, three already. (softly exhales) Four. (softly exhales) We did five, come on. (softly exhales) Put the pole down.

Elbow to headrest or the hand to the floor, whatever you feel better with. Reach the other arm over, stretch the leg. And then one hand on the frame, other hand on the frame. Find the stretch that just feels really good as you reach your chest through and your leg through the strap. Okay, help yourself up.

We are gonna go into some back extension or Long Box position. So I'll just move the pole out of the way now. And turn your box. I do, I am gonna leave the footbar up because it's a nice reminder for me when my legs are over that I don't forget about 'em, they don't, if I do, I'll hit the bar. So climb aboard, we are going to one spring.

Lying over the box, oh, see that? Right where I needed it. So again, just a point of leaving the footbar is not just 'cause I'm lazy. But as I draw the pelvis up off the box, I just barely skim the footbar. And when I get lazy or if I get too high in my upper back and my legs drop, it's my reminder.

So I really like having it at there. All right, reaching up. I grab the shrink wrap, I guess is what it is, and turn those arm bones out. You're basically level to start and we'll stay that way for the first few. Draw those shoulders down your back.

Just thinking nice and long until the arms get right up by your hips. Hug those upper arms in and return to the start position. And again, so see, Kristi, you kicked that bar. I gotta think about my whole body as I do this, and down. And again, it starts really underneath the shoulders, the lats, let that be the work, not so much in the hands.

Although they do have to hang on, don't they? Okay, if you've been staying level, go ahead and as you start to pull, look forward, start to arch your back like a reverse chest, lift, look forward, and then bring it back to level. Pull, look forward. It's not so much about the height. Although some of you'll be able to get really high.

That's, okay, so long as you keep it throughout the whole back, not just the low back. And down. Unwrap your hands if they're wrapped and/or slide your hands down lower. Take your arms out to a T position. Palms face the floor, same idea, but pull back.

Same idea, but a little harder, a nice long T. You don't have to lift on this. You do have to reach along, three to go. (softly exhales) (softly inhales) Try not to turn those palms over anymore, keeping everything level, especially back here. All right, I think that was three.

I'm calling that three. You can put your straps away. Come off the box, put your box away. Let's do one more thing. Little bit, last little push on the side.

Hand on the bar, I have it a little forward of center. One leg, one spring is still on. You might need another one. The top leg or is in front. This is one of those times where you're gonna be ready.

We're not gonna do a lot, but we're gonna just come up into a side plank. Yeah, just go out and come in just a little bit, only three. Just kind of seeing how much you trust yourself, huh? One more time, you got this, and back. And then just come on down.

Walk around to the other side. Again, we're going to have the arms forward to center. Top leg is on, you're already ready to go so there's not a whole lot of movement of the carriage. And off we go. And two, try not to sink.

Doesn't have to be big. It can be, but doesn't have to be. We come in, lower yourself down to the knees, just put your feet at the shoulder blocks, round yourself back, then lift your pelvis up, keep the curve. Start to unfurl yourself forward into a down stretch position. Reround, just move them back and forth through these.

Hover your hips up, start to press 'em forward. You undulate into an arched back and then just reverse and go back down, and again, sort of Cat-Cow almost. And back. And with that, step off, let's finish like we started. Finding your center, your ground, see how you feel now, take an inhale.

One arm down, support yourself. We just did this, right? You go up to go over, can you get any further? Does it feel any different? Do you feel taller, something?

Other side, whatever you feel, now is a chance to decide what you're gonna do next, how you're gonna use your energy, how you'll get it back. And let's just take both arms up, exhale. (softly exhales) Last one altogether for the day. (softly inhales) And (softly exhales) let it go. Thank you very much for joining me. See you next time.

Spring to Life with Kristi - Playlist 2: Reformer Workouts

Comments

1 person likes this.
Great focus on side body (sneaking obliques!) - and lovely way to start the day.  Thanks.
1 person likes this.
Always so many things to learn and explorer! Thank you very much Kristi
Excellent!  Thank you!
Thank you Kristi - the step-by-step side plank cueing was so good! I did it, finally! thanks again

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