Class #5110

Dynamic Full-Body Class

55 min - Class


In this class, Tom McCook teaches you through a full-body experience. Using the Magic Circle and Franklin Balls you will release tension, increase mobility, and strengthen your arms and legs. Through dynamic and mobilizing sequencing you will improve your form, connect to your centerline, and encourage proper muscle function.
What You'll Need: Mat, Franklin Ball (2), Magic Circle

About This Video


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Hi, everybody, I'm Tom McCook. Great pleasure to be back here at Pilates anytime. This class today will be a combination of using the Pilates ring and the Franklin balls. And the Franklin balls will be used to release tension, improve function, and the ring will be used to improve strength and connection to our center line of our body. So I think you'll find a combination great for actually making your body function well and having a really good movement experience.

So I hope you enjoy. And the first thing you wanna do is grab your Franklin balls and we're gonna put them under our armpits 'cause we can. And then when we're there, just take a moment to bring your feet about six inches to a foot apart in parallel and just lift all 10 toes so you can start to connect in a balanced way to the front and the back of your feet and feel your three foot points on each foot, which is the ball behind your big toe, the ball behind your little toe and your heel, like a triangle on each foot. Then just lay the toes down. Just do that a few times.

I do this in most of my classes just as a way to connect, especially when you're standing to equal weight bearing, which helps your whole body function better. Now, lay the toes down. We're gonna do a movement. As you breathe in, lift the shoulders up. Imagine the balls are floating your shoulders up.

And on the exhale, let the shoulders slide down. (Tom exhales loudly) This time, as you lift the shoulders, bend the knees. And on the exhale, as you release the shoulders, lengthen the legs and see the spine getting a little longer. Each time that you drop the shoulders, lengthen the legs, and get that sense that the whole body is getting a little longer and staying connected to your foot points. (exhales loudly) Just two more times. Exhale to lengthen, (exhales loudly) inhale to lift.

Exhale to lengthen. Now, bend and hold the bend, and side bend to your right. Slide the left shoulder up. Reach through your fingertips. As you're feeling the tension in your shoulder muscles, let it drag your head back to the center.

Side bend to your left, slide the right shoulder up. Reach through your fingertips, let it drag you back to the center. You're getting that nice opening in your neck. Side bend to the first side, slide the shoulder up, reach through the fingertips and like taffy, let it pull your back to center. Side bend to the second side, slide the shoulder up.

Reach to the fingertips, let it draw you back. Now, this next time, we're gonna add a side bend. Stay, lift the shoulder up, reach to the fingertips. As you're starting to feel the stretch, stay there, feel that opposition between your head and your shoulders and slowly just turn your head down and back to center a few times just to get a little more opening in the neck muscles that tend to get tight, just from that opposition of the weight of your head, and then reach into your fingers. And then pull and come back, side bend to your second side, slide the shoulder up.

Reach as you're feeling the stretch, pause, rotate, center, jaw is relaxed, neck is easeful. One more, and then pull yourself back to center. Now, with your knees bent again, just let yourself flex a little forward, not a lot. Let the shoulders roll forward and down. And then as you lift and open the chest, slide the shoulders back and look up.

And feel how you can have a sense of leaving the arms heavy, relaxing unnecessary tension. Just get a little more in your body for fluid movement for the class to come. And one more. And then take the balls. And now, from there, we're gonna do a little tapping up the front.

So as you tap up the front of your chest, picture that your shoulder girdle falls into the center of your chest. Right where your clavicles meet your sternum is the beginning of your shoulder girdle. So as your elbows lift, imagine the arms are falling into the center. So you'll tap up the front, lift the heart and reach up. And as you bend the knees, round your back a little bit.

(Tom exhales loudly) Lengthen up the center, reach, open, curl. Just three more. Let the weight of the arms rest on the shoulder girdle. (Tom exhales loudly) And two, and one. Ah. (exhales loudly) Very nice.

Now, from there, we're gonna roll out your feet. So we'll put one ball on the floor, other ball, you can get out of your way. Put the ball under the ball of your foot with your heel on the floor, the knees bent. And just start by twisting your foot. Do this in most of my math classes because it's just a way to get your foot to be more functional, which relates to the rest of your body.

There you go. So imagine the twisting is the four foot and the rear foot countering each other to get the bones and joints in the middle of the foot more mobile. Now, from the ball of your foot to the heel, reach into the ball to get the tissue on the underside of your foot to glide. Leave your upper body easeful, fluid. Think of the moving leg as a gesture.

Your standing leg is really where you're standing on. There you go. Now from there, straighten your knee joint, touch the ground to the front, the heel to the back. Feel the glide in your ankle. Getting that nice glide and that key joint for your body for walking, posture, balance.

Now, put your heel on the floor, bend your knee slightly. With your four foot, grab the ball, then lift and spread your toes. Grab, lift, and spread. There's a few more so you're getting all those muscles and joints activated in the foot. One more.

Now, roll it closer to you, put it under your heel. Put the ball of your foot on the floor. Now, as you squash the ball, shift forward and get up on top of that leg. Practice keeping your center gravity low so you don't add shoulder and arm tension as you step. (Tom exhales loudly) You can let the arm swing a little bit.

Nice and fluid. Just two more, and one. Very nice. And we'll go right onto side two. Under the ball of the foot with the heel on the floor, knee unlocked.

First, start by twisting. So for now, the movement is in your hip joint and your foot, but you're not rotating your lower back. It's nice and fluid in the ankle and foot to get all those joints muscles activated, lengthening, moving. Now, from the ball of your foot to your heel, apply pressure. Reach into it.

(Tom exhales loudly) Great to do this any time of day, especially before you're gonna put your shoes on. Do something physical. There we go. And now, straighten the knee joint, touch the ground of the front, the heel to the back, feel the glide in your ankle joint now. Fluid motion.

There we go. Now, roll it a little closer. Put the heel on the floor again. Knee is bent. With your four foot, grab the ball, then lift and spread the toes. Grab, lift and spread.

Get all those muscles and joints to move so then they're available. That's it, two more. And one. Now, straighten, now from there, roll the ball closer. We've already done that one.

Put it under your heel. Ball of the foot on the floor. Now, as you squash the ball, shift your pelvis towards that leg and stand on it. Practice posture, balance, and staying low in your body. (Tom exhales loudly) Easy and heavy in the shoulders and arms.

So you're stepping into alignment each time. Just two more, and one. Now, take the ball away. We're gonna grab the ring in a moment, but we're gonna do something for your hips first. So step your left foot forward and imagine you're gonna rotate your pelvis around that fixed leg.

So as you step your your right leg forward, form a T with your back leg, bend your knees and just hinge a little forward. Then come back up and step back and form a T the other way. So now, I have a T with my right foot and my left. My left foot's gonna stay fixed to the floor throughout the exercise. Step forward and form a T and hinge forward.

So now, what you're doing is you're rotating your pelvis around the top of your fixed left leg and you're getting the muscles in the back of the hip to slide together and slide apart, helping to improve function, let go of tension. (Tom exhales loudly) So where are we hinging from is the hip joint, which is right at the level of your pubic bone. And the foot that's on the floor stays fixed. Make sure there's no torque in the knee. Just two more.

(Tom exhales loudly) Stay vertical 'til you step, then bend the knees, and then hinge to get those muscles to lengthen more. And then step back. Now, from there, we'll go to side two. So have your right foot a little bit forward. As you step from the left to the right, form a T.

Now, bend your knees slightly. Now, do a small hinge. Now, you're getting those muscles in the back of that right hip to lengthen. Then come up and step back and form a T the other way. Step forward, hinge up, step back.

So it's gentle, but it's a great way to relieve tension in the back of the hips, which relate to sciatica, lower back discomfort, getting those muscles to glide better. Also helps with your knees and your leg alignment. And hinge. And just two more. Forward, bend the knees, hinge, step back, and one more.

(Tom exhales loudly) And there we go. Now from there, let's grab your ring, put the balls to the side. So we're gonna do pulses at several different levels. At the belly button level, chest, head, and overhead. Now, bring your heels together, small V, reach your arms out in front of you at belly button level.

Have a small bend in your elbows, and we're gonna do four pulses at several different positions. So sense your body line, press into your foot points, and on the exhale, do four pulses. (Tom exhales loudly) Chest level. Eye level. Slightly overhead.

Back to eye level. Chest level. Belly button level. One more time up, chest. Eye level.

Slightly overhead. Back to eye level. Chest. Belly button. Are we warm?

So now, take your feet shoulder width apart, turn them out slightly, we're gonna go into a squat. So the arms will stay straight. And as you sit into a squat, give the ring just a very light squeeze and reach the arms to the front. Inhale on the down, exhale back up. (Tom exhales loudly) Inhale into the reach, exhale back up.

And you just get that feeling of evenness on both sides. (Tom exhales loudly) Two more, and one. Turn the feet out wider, take your feet wider so you can get a little deeper and stay more vertical. Same action, but the knees are gonna track out over your feet. As you reach into it, the arms can go a little higher.

(Tom exhales loudly) Stay vertical until you have to lean slightly. (Tom exhales loudly) Nice and smooth. (Tom exhales loudly) And three more. (Tom exhales loudly) And two. (Tom exhales loudly) And one.

Coming up. Now from there, we're gonna take the ring and put it between your ankles with your feet in parallel. Now, you want the ring to be, the feet to be as close where there's a little bit of squeeze in the ring, but it's not too difficult. Just feeling like you can straighten your legs, you've got tension, you can keep your foot points on the floor. Now, when we're here, we're gonna go through what's called roll throughs.

So when you do your plie or squat, reach your arms to the front. Now, straight and press your arms to the back, lift your heels, lower, bend, straighten, lift. Nice and smooth. (Tom exhales loudly) That's it, just feel that connection. I'm feeling in the back of my legs.

You wanna use the back of your hips to feel the lift. Lower with control and reach and just one more, (Tom exhales loudly) Control the lift. Now, from there, we're gonna go into turnout. So turn your feet out slightly. Same connections.

When you straighten, it's not too much, but it's something. So you're feeling it. Same movement, but you're gonna stay a little more vertical. As you bend, arms to the front. Do four, keeping the heels down, and then we'll add the heel lift.

(Tom exhales loudly) Feel the back of the legs. Center line your foot points. One more. Now, we're gonna add a heel lift once we straighten. Straighten, feel that connection to the back of your legs.

Lift, lower. I'm gonna reset my ring 'cause it just slid on me. It can happen. Bend, straighten, lift. Lower, bend, straighten.

Feel the squeeze as you lift. Lower, reach. Two more. There we go, one more. Lower, straight.

Nice work. Now, we're gonna take that away. And from there, we're gonna go into a lunge. So in the lunge, this is called the 90-90 lunge. We'll take one leg out in front of you and have your back leg back far enough that if you bend your knee, you could keep your knees straight underneath your shoulder and your front knee would be a little forward of the ankle, but not too far forward.

Now, we hold the ring in front of your chest and press the floor away with your back leg like you're turning on the back of your hip. Now, as you reach the arms forward, let the back knee go straight down on the exhale. (Tom exhales loudly) Inhale back up, we're gonna do four. (Tom exhales loudly) And one. (Tom exhales loudly) Now, reach the arms forward and up overhead as you go down.

(Tom exhales loudly) Four of those. (Tom exhales loudly) And two, and one. (Tom exhales loudly) And we'll switch our legs. So let the ring help you improve your form where you can sense the muscles that keep your torso vertical and keep your shoulders connected to your waistline. Let's get that feeling.

Your back knees under your shoulder when you go down anyway, push the ground to the back. Center your body, your head over your pelvis. Now, as you go down, light squeeze to the ring and reach it to the front. (Tom exhales loudly) Four reps. (Tom exhales loudly) And two more, and one.

Now, forward and up. (Tom exhales loudly) Two more, and one. Now, switch your legs again. This is called a lunge tilt. So a lunge tilt is more the whole body from your head to your back leg will tilt forward 'cause the back leg stays straight as you pour the weight into the front leg. Now, we're gonna add a rotation that's relevant to how your body moves through space.

So just take a moment and as you lean onto your front leg, reach into your back leg. That's it, as you squeeze the ring and you lean a little more forward, turn your torso towards your front knee. (exhales loudly) Shift back. Lean forward, squeeze, and twist, (exhales loudly) but imagine your back leg, the hip stays back. (Tom exhales loudly) Your gaze stays straight ahead. Just two more, and one more.

And we'll switch legs. So front knee over the ankle, back leg is long, line from your back leg to your head. Draw that hip back. Take a breath. And as you lean onto that front leg more, turn the torso towards the front knees to give the ring a little squeeze.

(Tom exhales loudly) Inhale back, nice and strong. (Tom exhales loudly) Three more. (Tom exhales loudly) And two. (Tom exhales loudly) And one. (Tom exhales loudly) As we come up, we're gonna do a standing roll down.

So have your feet six inches apart. Unlock your knees. And on the inhale, reach your arms up overhead. Now, on the exhale, spine stretch down slow. (Tom exhales loudly) Curl down.

Take a breath at the bottom. Now, from your belly wall and pelvis, roll up, Float the arms up one more time. Unlock the knees, curl down. Take a breath at the bottom. Peel up from the bottom. (exhales loudly) From there, we're gonna come into a lunging position.

So drop one knee to the mat. Now, get the feeling when you're here that your back knee's right under your shoulder. And we're gonna take it into a hip flexor stretch while we're here. So put the ring against the front of your knee and hold the sides of the ring. This will give you something to pull on as you send your tailbone forward.

So back knees under your shoulder. Tuck your toe in the back foot. If that's uncomfortable for your foot, then don't worry about it. You can untuck it. Now, just practice when you're here, taking the tailbone towards the ring.

Pull with the ring a little bit and pull your waistline back. Take three or four big breaths here. (Tom exhales loudly) Feel how you're opening up the front of the thigh on the back leg. And with the knee that you have the ring against, reach it into the ring. (exhales loudly) One more breath. (Tom exhales loudly) And then nice and slow, release, short and sweet.

Take side two. Toes are tucked under, put the padded part of the ring against the front of your knee. Open the hip by pushing the ground to the back. Now, start to pull with the ring, but take your tailbone towards the ring. Pull the waistline away from the ring.

Smooth breathing. (Tom exhales loudly) Feel that nice stretch up the front of the back thigh into the hip. (Tom exhales loudly) Three more breaths. (Tom exhales loudly) And two. (Tom exhales loudly) And one.

(Tom exhales loudly) And release. Now, come to a seated position and take the Franklin balls and put them at the top of your hamstrings right below your sit bones. So it's a little rocking party. You're all invited. So you're right where the hamstring's attached.

Not on your sit bone, slightly below. Put your hands on the side so you can tip, you can prop yourself more. Up on the balls, you have that support. Now, when you're here, you're gonna rock forward and point your feet. You're gonna rock back and flex your feet.

So you rock forward and point and flex. (Tom exhales loudly) So you're not just flossing your muscles, you're flossing your nerves, and you're getting the muscles to glide a little bit better through the back chain of the body. (Tom exhales loudly) Nice and fluid. Now, you can circle the ankles into a big stir as you do that so you'll get a little rotation in the leg. One more in that direction, then reverse.

Two more. Now, take the balls and put them halfway down your thighs. So you're halfway between the knee and the hip. So now, you're in the belly of the muscle. Same feeling.

Prop yourself up. Your butt will still probably be on the floor. Now, point and flex here. Now, you're affecting more of the belly of the muscle with the pressure of the balls. (Tom exhales loudly) Then add the circle and reverse.

This gets all that tissue that tends to get a little tight and sticky to glide better. Now, take the balls and put them just above the knee joint. Not on the knee joint, but a little bit above it. That's the lower part of the hamstring. Tip yourself up again.

Now, point in flex. So it's not super intense, but it gives you good feedback. (Tome exhales loudly) That's it. Then add the circle and reverse. (Tom exhales loudly) There we go.

Okay, now from there, we're gonna come onto our back and put the Franklin balls just above your sit bones on the back of your pelvis. So right on the back of your pelvis, sit bone width. Like in the center of your butt, not up by your lower back, just a little bit above the sit bones. And just get a sense that you want it to feel even on each side. Have your feet flat on the floor, and just take a moment to arrive in this position with gravity where you take a few big breaths.

On the exhale, just deflate. (exhales loudly) Let the chest soften. (Tom exhales loudly) Let the belly wall move, let the ribs move. Notice if you feel even on the balls. Now, we're gonna go through arch curl of the pelvis. So as you exhale, curl the tail towards the back of your knees and feel like you're sinking your front low ribs down to get your lower back to lengthen.

And then tip the pelvis forward, go nice and slow. And notice, can you do that without adding shoulder, neck, and arm tension? (Tom exhales loudly) Feel as you curl, the bones of the bottom of the pelvis narrow. As you arch the bottom of the pelvis opens, that's happening, literally happening. That's not just an image.

That's how the pelvis absorbs and transfers force. (Tom exhales loudly) Just a few more. (Tom exhales loudly) And one. (Tom exhales loudly) Now, bring the knees up in the air right over your hips and put your hands on your end seams with your palms facing away from each other. So this is gonna be directly for your pelvic floor.

Pelvic floor is the muscles between your tailbone and your pubic bone and your sit bones. It's like a diamond shape on the bottom of your pelvis. And the focus on this is the front of the pelvic floor. So think of like a triangle. Sit bone to sit bone to the back of your pubic bone.

And these muscles are relevant to leg alignment, core activation, and even the alignment of your spine. So as you breathe in, let the knees open away from each other. Now, add a little outward pressure with your hands, but let the legs win as you close. (Tom exhales loudly) Inhale the open, exhale the close with that little bit of outward pressure, but not a ton. You're not tryna be in a big tug of war.

You just wanna get those muscles to fire a little bit more. Picture as you're opening your sit bones, widen a little bit more to lead the muscles, and then those muscles slide together to close the legs. Two more. (Tom exhales loudly) And one. (Tom exhales loudly) Now, bring your arms down, take your legs up, and have your legs a little bit bent.

And as you open, turn the feet in. And as you close, turn your heels in. So now, focus more on the back triangle. Sit bone to sit bone to your tail 'cause these muscles relate more to the back of the pelvis and the hip rotator muscles that tie into your pelvic muscles. (Tom exhales loudly) Inhale to open.

Exhale to close. Just two more (Tom exhales loudly) And one. (Tom exhales loudly) Now, relax your lower legs and imagine you're gonna hinge in your hip joints. Let one knee come closer to your chest as one knee goes towards the floor. But notice, can I even relax my belly?

Just let the movement of the hips be very fluid. Relax your neck, your jaw. Knees tracking right over your hip joints and the femur is rolling in the socket. Rolling back, rolling forward. Now, going a little slower.

As one foot hits the ground, let it slide out and reach the up leg up. Bend them both back to the start and switch. Take it slow. (Tom exhales loudly) On the leg that's going towards the floor, get heavier on that side of the pelvis 'cause your pelvis is slightly rotating in the direction of the down leg. That's just the way it works.

Like when you're walking, your pelvis is slightly rotating towards the leg that's going behind you. (Tom exhales loudly) One more each side. (Tom exhales loudly) And then Ben, place the feet on the floor, take the balls away. Now, put the balls in between your shoulder blades. But just take a moment to notice, wow my back feels nice and long and fluid right now.

Now, as you come up, put the balls in between your shoulder blades in the middle of your upper back or right next to your spine. And now, when you're there, interlace the fingers behind your head. Now, the balls just gives you more range of motion through your torso. So as you inhale the go to the back, reach out the crown of your head, draw the shoulder blades back, and open the chest. As you curl forward, imagine you're creating a hammock shape from your head to your tail.

Inhale to the back, exhale to the front. (Tom exhales loudly) Nice and fluid. (Tom exhales loudly) Two more. (Tom exhales loudly) Feel the muscles in the back sliding together as you go back. Feel the muscles in the front sliding together as you go to the front.

One more. (Tom exhales loudly) Now, this next time, as you go to the back, extend then rotate and look towards one of your elbows, and then curl back to the middle. Just three each side. (Tom exhales loudly) Slow, fluid. One more.

Last one. And then carefully help yourself off. Take the balls to the side and grab your ring. Now, with your ring, put the ring, put your legs through it and put it just above your knee joint with the pads on your thighs just above the knee joint. Now, what the ring will help you do is turn on your hip muscles, your lateral hip muscles as you move into a bridge.

So let's keep our feet foot points on the floor, take a breath. Now, exhale, start to push out into the ring, and then curl your tail towards the back of your knees, and peel the hips off the floor. At the top of the bridge, set the shoulders back. On the exhale, roll back down. Release the press out at the bottom.

And again, press lateral curl. (Tom exhales loudly) Take a breath at the top. Sequence back down, use your abdomen and your hips. Release the press. And again, press out, curl, and bridge.

Take a breath, peel back down. (Tom exhales loudly) One more. (Tom exhales loudly) This time, hold. If you can take it a step further, push out into the ring and on the exhale, reach one leg straight out in line with the other knee. Three each side.

(Tom exhales loudly) Keep the pelvis level. (Tom exhales loudly) Feel your foot points. (Tom exhales loudly) One more each side. (Tom exhales loudly) Lower, take a breath. Exhale, roll back down.

Now, take the ring off of your legs and put it between your legs. Now, hold it just below the knee joint, just at the top of your shins and put the feet on the floor. Now, have your feet a little narrower than the ring if the ring isn't squeezed. When you squeeze the ring, your legs will come into parallel, but you keep your foot points on the floor, but not too close that it's too difficult. Now, same movement, but we're gonna focus more on the center line.

So on the exhale, squeeze, and as you squeeze, curl and peel off the mat like your pelvis is moving towards the back of your knees. This time, inhale the arms to the back overhead, high V. Now, traction down away from your fingertips. Once the tail is all the way dropped, floats your arms to your side and release the squeeze. And again, squeeze, curl into the bridge.

Inhale into the reach. Exhale, traction down. Float the tail down, float the arms, release the squeeze. Just two more. Reach.

Lengthen down one section at a time. And last one. (Tom exhales loudly) Really nice way to open up your spine and connect to your hips. Reach, lengthen down. Now, take the ring and put the inside padded part behind your head.

Right at the base of your skull. Now, have your hands in front where your palms are facing your face, but your elbows and hands are about shoulder width apart. So you're gonna use the ring as an assist in your ab curl, but it's really just to create better function in the way that you do your ab curl. So set your shoulders low and feel like you're reaching your shoulder blades into your elbows, and start to bring the back of your waist at your belly button level in towards the ground. Now, breathe into your width.

And on the exhale, as you start to reach up through your elbows, let your head float. Now, keep curling by taking the waistline up your back. Inhale back down. So the next stay is long. Nice fluid motion where you get that nice connection of shoulder blades to abdomen, to your pelvis.

Three more. (Tom exhales loudly) Relax the jaw. One more. Now, we're gonna add oblique turn. But before you do it, imagine you're turning from your low ribs.

Do you like how I'm balancing that ring with my head right now? (chuckles) So imagine you're gonna turn from here. So take a breath. So I'm not turning from my elbows, I'm turning from my waistline. So take a breath. Now, come into that ab curl.

Now, turn from your front low ribs to the opposite side. Inhale to the center and switch. (Tom exhales loudly) Imagine the hip you're turning away from getting more weighted. (Tom exhales loudly) One more each side. Now, as you come down, take your head away.

Now, put the ring with your legs in the air between your ankles. And this is for the hundred prep. So the back of your legs for a moment. Just take a moment to melt your ribs, sink your back lower ribs closer to the floor. And practice on the exhale, giving the ring a light squeeze, and following your belly while in.

Just a connect. Now, take your arms up to the ceiling, take a breath. As you squeeze, do your ab curl and reach your legs out to a high 45. (Tom exhales loudly) Inhale to return. And again.

(Tom exhales loudly) We'll do four more. And three, and two, and one. Lengthen down. Now, place your feet on the floor. We're gonna take it into the roll up series.

So for the roll up series, put the ring over your left foot, hold it on the ball of your foot and just practice for a few moments, pointing and flexing. Give the ring a little pull where you point and flex. And in that stretch phase, feel that you're still pushing away to get those deep calf muscles to lengthen. (Tom exhales loudly) Just one more. Now, lengthen the down leg.

Take a breath. Okay, now press into the ring, and then curl off the floor sequentially. As you keep reaching into it, sit up tall at the top. Now, as you press into the ring from your pelvis, curl back to control the descent. And then take it into a hamstring stretch.

Let it move away. Peel off the floor, keep the shoulders low, lengthen up, reach into it. Feel that opposition through your pelvis. This next time up, we'll switch legs. So peel off the ground, (Tom exhales loudly) lengthen up, and we'll switch from the top.

Put it over your second foot, press away, set your shoulders from your pelvis. Curl down slow (Tom exhales loudly) into the stretch. Curl off the floor. Lengthen up. And again, keep the down leg actively pressing down, reaching through it.

(Tom exhales loudly) And again, push away. Feel that moment, that moment I was just having. There we go. And feel through. (Tom exhales loudly) You get to see how each side of your body's a little different.

Great opportunity. (Tom exhales loudly) And lengthen up. Now, from there, we'll do the regular roll down with the ring in our hands. So reach the arms to the front, small V with your feet, and just practice setting your shoulders low. And as you squeeze the ring, slightly squeeze your upper inner thighs.

Now, curl down about a quarter and a halfway. Short breath. Exhale, curl over your center, reach towards your feet. Inhale up tall, squeeze legs and arms, curl. Short breath, exhale up and over.

(Tom exhales loudly) Now, we'll do a few full movements. Exhale down. As the arms go to the back, keep the lower back long. Arms forward, head comes off the floor. Reach.

Two more. (Tom exhales loudly) Nice and fluid all the way through. (Tom exhales loudly) Lengthen up, and last time. (Tom exhales loudly) Feel that control and connection to the back of your legs, your inseams, the bottom of your shoulders. Now, we're gonna bend the legs a little bit and add an oblique twist.

So sitting up tall, just curl back about a quarter of the way. As you squeeze the ring, slowly turn to your right. (Tom exhales loudly) Inhale center, exhale left. (Tom exhales loudly) Center right, center left. One more each way.

(Tom exhales loudly) Back to the center, take a breath. Reach forward. Lengthen up tall. Now, we're gonna take it into the spine stretch. So for spine stretch, take your legs as least as wide as your mat, a little wider than your shoulders.

Put the ring out in front of you so you can put your hands on top of each other with the ring on the floor. Now, as you press your legs down, if you need to bend your knees a little bit, that's fine. But press down with your legs and get up nice and tall. Take an inhale to grow even taller. Now, exhale, push down, pull the waistline back to curl forward.

The ring will move slightly forward. Inhale, restack the spine. And again. (Tom exhales loudly) Waistline back for the head to go forward. Inhale up tall.

Just two more. (Tom exhales loudly) Energy out your legs, out the crown of your head, waistline to the back. One more. (Tom exhales loudly) Inhale up tall. Now, bring your legs together for the spine twist, sitting up tall.

So grow tall, reach your arms to the front. Inhale to grow tall. Now, exhale, turn to the right. (Tom exhales loudly) Inhale center, exhale left. (Tom exhales loudly) As you're turning, activate your inseams and push your legs down.

(Tom exhales loudly) Grow tall to the middle. One more each way. And we finish this position with the saw. So we come back to that first position like spine stretch. Now, take the ring on the inside of your right foot.

So you're gonna roll it forward like a wheel. Now, have your left hand on the ring and open your right arm out. Your right arm, your thumb is up right now. Your right arm's gonna have the thumb rotate down and go to the back 'cause you go through the movement. So grow tall with the inhale.

Start to press down. As you roll the ring forward, reach to the back. Roll it back to that start. Keep the hip weighted (Tom exhales loudly) on the side that you're moving away from. Feel that little bit of downward pressure to connect to the underside of your shoulders and waistline.

One more. Lengthen back up and we'll switch. So now, the right hand is on the ring on the inside of your left foot. Left arm out to the side with the thumb up. Inhale, grow tall.

Now, as you exhale, press forward, rotate forward, reach into the ring. (Tom exhales loudly) Inhale, float it back up. And again. Float it back up, and just two more. Inhale up and one more.

And lengthen up. Now, from there, we're gonna come on to our belly. So grab your Franklin balls, come on to your abdomen, and take the balls overhead with your hands a little wider than your shoulders. You're gonna use the balls the similar way you'd use a roller. So they'll give you a little better glide.

Now, have your hands a little wider than your shoulders and lift your nose about two to three inches off the floor, but still looking down. Reach back through your legs. Now, just practice gliding your shoulders towards the balls, and then down your back a few times. See if you can do it with very little work from the arms. Let it be with your shoulder girdle and the muscles in your middle upper back.

Muscles under the armpits. Now, glide them down. Keep reaching through your legs and slide your heart forward to come up. Lead with your spine back down. And again, set the shoulders, slide your heart forward and up.

Keep the legs toned and active. One more, then we're gonna add. So set the shoulders, come up. Now, grab the balls, reach them out to the side, pull the hands towards your feet, and slide the heart forward and up. Sweep them back forward.

Bring them to the floor and lower. Set the shoulders, slide the heart forward and up, pick them up, reach to the back, pull your chest more forward and up, reach forward to the side, and lower. Just two more times. Set the shoulders, slide into extension, reach to the back, pull the shoulders back and down, reach to the front, and lower. One more.

(Tom exhales loudly) Reach to the back, forward and up. Reach to the front, and lower. Now, take the balls to your side. Take your ring. This one's a little more interesting to get your ring set 'cause you gotta put your ring between your ankles.

So hold the ring between both your ankles, it's an adventure in itself. Now, while you're here, rest the back of your hands on the back of your pelvis and turn your head to one side. Double leg kicks. First, anchor the front of your hips. Let your shoulders draw down and let the elbows roll towards the floor.

Now, do three pulses of squeezing the ring towards the center line. (Tom exhales loudly) Now inhale, reach your legs back, reach your arms back, and open your chest to the front. Turn your head to the second side, three pulses. (Tom exhales loudly) Reach and open. First side.

Kick, kick, kick. Reach and open. Second side. Kick, kick, kick. Reach an open and lower.

Take the ring away. From there, press back to a Child's Pose. Grab your glasses if you need them. Take your knees a little wider and just rest for a couple breaths. And then nice and slow.

Roll up through the spine. Okay, now from there, we're gonna come into a side position for side leg series. So come on to your side, cradle your head with the bottom arm. Let your head come down, but take the ring out in front of you at mid chest level so you have something to press into. Now, from here, extend your legs out just a few inches in front of you.

Set your shoulder down on the weight-bearing arm and bring your head back and lie with your spine. Add that little downward pressure. Now, float the top leg up about six inches and do tight circles of the leg, keeping the rest of the body relatively still. Two more in that direction, and reverse. (Tom exhales loudly) Now inhale, kick a leg to the front with a flex foot, point and press to the back.

Take it slow. It might seem stable, but it's work to hold this body position. (Tom exhales loudly) Two more, and one. Now, lower the leg, flex your feet, and lift both legs. Now, just lower and lift the bottom leg.

Work your inseam. (Tom exhales loudly) Three more, and one. And lower. And we'll turn to side two. Short and sweet.

So cradle your head with the bottom arm. Put the ring out in front of you at mid chest level. Set your shoulder, feet a little bit in front of you. Bring your head back in line with the spine. Now, just practice pushing down.

Lift the top leg up about six inches. Now, tight circles, keeping the rest of the body relatively still. (Tom exhales loudly) One more in that direction, and reverse. Now, hold, flex the foot. Inhale, kick to the front.

Exhale, point and press to the back. (Tom exhales loudly) And two more, and one Lower the leg, flex both feet. Now, lift both legs. Now, lower and lift just the bottom leg. Work from your pelvis to your inner knee.

(Tom exhales loudly) And two more, and one, and lower. Great work. Now, from there, help yourself back onto your back. And as you come onto your back, we're gonna do single straight leg or single leg and single straight leg stretch, and then we'll finish kneeling for pushup. So in this position, take the ring in your heel of your hands, set your shoulders low, and bring up one knee at a time into a tabletop.

Take a breath. Now, do your ab curl and reach past your knees. (Tom exhales loudly) Look towards your belly. Now, pull one knee in, reach one leg out, and switch. (Tom exhales loudly) Keep the lower back long, shoulders low.

(Tom exhales loudly) I play around with flexing my feet and pointing 'cause I can feel it differently in my hips. (Tom exhales loudly) Back to the center, lower for a second. Now, we're gonna do stray legs. So get a sense of going a little slower and anchor the lower back. Take a breath, exhale, curl, reach one leg up, one leg out, and switch.

(Tom exhales loudly) One more each side and lower, place the feet on the floor. Lower your ring, help yourself onto all fours. Now, as you come onto all fours, have your hands directly under your shoulders. Now, you have a couple options. You can do a kneeling pushup.

Let me show you that version first. So the first version, if you're gonna do a kneeling pushup, would be to take your hands, one hand placement further out in front of you instead of directly under your shoulders. Now, from your pelvis curl forward. Then as you shift your pelvis forward, open your chest once your shoulders are over your wrists. And then shift back again.

So curl, open the hips, open the chest. One more. (Tom exhales loudly) Then from there, you'd lower elbows to the back. (Tom exhales loudly) If that's enough, you stay there. Otherwise, with your hands under your shoulders, take one leg back into a full plank, heels together, zip up your center line.

Shift a little forward, lower elbows in close, and straighten. Three reps. (Tom exhales loudly) Lift back to a Downward Dog, walk your feet a little wider, smooth out your breathing, and just practice bending and straightening both your legs a few times. (Tom exhales loudly) And then walking in place. Let your pelvis shift in the direction of the straightening leg.

(Tom exhales loudly) Now, nice and slow, walk your hands to your feet. Roll up through the spine, grab your ring one more time. We'll finish with the ring standing, feeling good about everything that just happened. So have your legs about six inches apart. Now as you reach the ring forward, you're gonna round your spine so it look like this.

(Tom exhales loudly) Inhale back up, we'll do that three times. So on the exhale, curl the tail forward, pull the waistline back. (exhales loudly) Inhale up And one. Now, do it on a diagonal. Reach to your left, still curling the tail forward, pulling the waistline back. You'll feel that opening of your lower back on the other side.

And then this decide, two, and one. Now, sweep the ring around to the back, hold it with your hands. Now, what you're gonna do here is you're gonna pull the shoulder blades back, but you don't wanna just arch your lower back. It says you pull them back, just give a light squeeze to the ring and send your heart forward and up. Do that four times, and that on the inhale.

Relax on the exhale. Use your middle back, press into your feet. This next time, reach into it and hold it. And as you hold it, feel like you're opening the top of your chest, you're reaching into the ground, relax your neck. One more, big breath.

And then just release and take a moment to notice alignment, breathing, posture. Thank you for joining, I hope you enjoyed the class. Let me know how it goes for you. Great to see you, and thank you, Pilates Anytime. Be well.


Taghrid K
2 people like this.
 Woww  thank you so much Tom for a fabulous class. My body felt released, energised and aligned. I love all your classes, your energy, always feel I'm meditating in action. 
1 person likes this.
Thank you Tom! Love the way you put the balls and the ring in the workout. Restoring and strengthening the whole body. Your cues are so helpful.
Taghrid K , Hung F, Thank you for your inspiring feedback with this new class! Enjoy and all the best!😊🙏
Nannette B
Thank you so much for this very peaceful and creative workout :) I feel so good in my body now.
Nannette B, You’re so welcome!! Thank you for your feedback, it’s great to hear you the benefits!!😊🙏
Amy S
I love the combination of The Franklin Method and Pilates:)
In the sidelying position , I was curious if you kept your slight jackknife position when you lifted  the 2 legs for the abd/add  work? 
And, how does the bone rhythm of the pelvic halves relate to the single kicks forward and back?
Katie M
Do you recommend a certain Franklin ball? Really enjoy your classes.
Amy S & Katie M , Thank you for your feedback! Amy the legs slightly forward is to support maintaining position of the lower back and the pelvic half acts as a “wheel” when kicking forward and back like walking. The sit one goes forward with the leg and backward with the leg. The tailbone moves opposite. This is the dynamic stability of the pelvis. Katie, I recommend the orange 4 inch Franklin balls, you can get the at  Enjoy and all the best!😊🙏
Such a great class! Love the side bends and gentle neck stretches with the Franklin Balls! 
Mona S, Thank you, glad to hear you enjoyed!! All the best🙏
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