Class #5188

Sensing Support

30 min - Class


Explore your relationship to support in this restorative Mat class with Allie Greene. She starts with a pre-practice observation by providing questions for you to think about as you begin the class. She then flows through gentle movements that will allow you to feel grounded, buoyant, and supported.
What You'll Need: Mat, Blanket, Yoga Strap

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Hi, I'm Allie Greene, and welcome to my home studio in Pittsburgh, PA. I am so excited to bring you this series, Move With Ease. We are going to be exploring ourselves from the ground up and inside out. Now, before we get started, every class, we might need a few props. So for today's class, what you can go and get is a blanket like I have or a pillow.

And I'm using a yoga strap, but you can always grab a scarf or a belt. I mean, this is, you know, a little DIY 'cause we're at home. So the other thing I want to remind you of is to do you in these classes. So if anything doesn't feel good to you or it's uncomfortable, please feel free to just stop. You can watch during those sections or even just explore doing something a little bit different.

So our first class is focused on sensing support. I like to ask these two questions, where is my support and what is my relationship to it? So we're gonna do a little pre-practice observation. So I invite you to close your eyes, and ask yourself this question, how am I coming to this practice? What's my mood, my energy?

What are my thoughts? Do I have any aches and pains or physical issues going on? All of these have a relationship to support, and all of these have a relationship to each other. In this class, I want you to give yourself permission to slow down. Sometimes slowing down can be challenging for us because our nervous systems are used to kind of revving at a higher pace.

So just know that everything you feel is real and it's all okay. So we're gonna start lying on the ground. So grab your blanket or your pillow, and you're gonna put it right at the edge of your mat. And let's go ahead and lie down. Now, with your pillow or your blanket, you want to be looking straight up at the ceiling.

If you notice that your head is lifted this way, lower that pillow a little bit. If you notice that your head is tilted backwards, just lift it up a little bit. This is also talking to our nervous system. And so, when we find that balance, that right amount of support, it helps our body relax. You wanna bring it right up to your shoulders so that your shoulders can pick up on that and they will actually open and soften.

Now, our legs, we can do lots of different things. I'm going to take mine a little wider and let the knees come in just so they rest. But if that's not feeling great for you, you can lengthen the legs, you can just have them bent. So you can play around with that a little bit. See what works for your body.

Arms can just come down by your side. And if you feel supported enough, you can turn your palms to face up. Why do we start on the ground? It's where we feel the most support. So I'd like you to take your awareness to all the parts of your body that are touching the ground.

If they feel like they're still holding and lifting, see if you can give them that permission to just, ugh, soften. Sometimes that's all they need. But sometimes, tension can be really wound in there, and it might take a little breath or a little movement to get it to unwind a little bit. And that's why this series is called Move Into Ease. So we're softening into the support of the ground.

This is gravity, it's our friend. And this softening, this conscious moving towards support is called yielding. And we are creating this relationship with our fluid body. This is cellular. So just take another moment, feel where you are, see if you wanna soften anything else or notice what might need a little extra support along the way.

And then we're going to find the energy that comes out of the ground. And we could call this levity. And it moves up through the body, so that any parts of our body that are in relationship with space now get to feel light and very expansive. So we're condensing and moving down into gravity, yielding. And then we are lifting, finding our buoyancy and expansiveness through space.

We are creating balanced tone for ourselves, very fluid, very responsive. (Allie sighing) Hopefully you're starting to feel a little bit more easeful even here. And we haven't even done that much. So from our arriving, we're going to use that yoga strap. And mine is quite long, so I'm gonna fold it in half.

And we're gonna place it behind the right thigh. You can hold with your palms facing up, and it's just a little gentle grip. So we wanna also watch patterns that we have, like, oh, when I hold something, I grip really hard. See if you can just let the hand soften, shoulders soften, and we're gonna begin some hip circling. And what the yoga strap does is offer us support so we can really loosen up that hip joint.

Loosening up the hip joint is really helpful for our lower back and ease of movement. And then you can go the other way. Now we're slowing down so that we can feel ourselves. When we can actually feel ourselves, we really understand what it is that we need for support. And let's do one more circle, just nice and easy.

It's like your stirring soup. Now we're gonna move into a little expanding. And you are probably gonna hit into some tension, but instead of trying to turn it into a stretch, see if you can relax your back body. (sighing) Yield, soften the hands. And when that leg feels that little extra support, it just might expand a little bit more.

(sighing) And then you just let that leg bend in. And we're just gonna do that a few more times. So expanding out into space. Anything in relationship with space is that expanding, buoyant, light, anything in relationship with the ground is gravity. We find our rootedness, our groundedness.

And then we just bring that leg down. And let's do that on the other side. Don't worry about reps. This class is really more about sensing what you're feeling rather than worrying about what you look like or, you know, counting the same amount on each side. I promise you we won't do like 2 on one side and 50 on the other.

So now just circling that hip. So we have two pelvic calves, two legs, two feet, so one side might feel really different than the other. And remember what I said, everything you feel is real and it's all okay. Softening. And we can circle the other way.

So we're just really getting a nice soupy hip. Soft and soupy. There's a lot of strength in being soft. And then let's bring that leg up, and here we go with that expanding. Softening when you feel any kind of tension or, you know, we call it the edge.

And then returning. So one of my images that I like to use is a puffer fish. So as this leg goes up, (Allie exhales heavily) it just expands in every direction. And let's do one more. Light, buoyant leg, grounded, yielding back body.

And then we'll bring the leg down. And you can just take your yoga strap or whatever prop you were using and just put it off to the side. We're gonna move into windshield wipers. This is one of my favorite exercises for unwinding tension in the body. So I invite you to take your arms out to the sides.

And the legs can go wide. I'm gonna take mine right to the edge of my mat, but that might be a little too much, you know, for you, and so you just bring them in. We do not have to look like each other. So starting very softly, just a little sway. If we move quickly, chances are we're gonna move right into our habits, our habitual motor patterns, our go-tos.

So when we slow down, we actually create a lot of choice for ourselves. Now, I invite you to feel how you are rolling from one side of the body to the other. You're like a little sandbag. And your feet can be like little rudders, so they're just rotating a little bit. Legs can be soft, they're in that space.

Now, the next time we take our windshield wiper legs to the right, we're gonna do something a little different. So we're gonna go over, and I'd like for you to plant your left foot down. And then give it a little push, see what happens. And then yield, let that foot release. And so, we're just gonna do a little yield and push.

(Allie sighing) Just a little yield and push. And following that tone, this is tone we're creating up the body. Now, the next time we do a little rock, let's keep going. So we're gonna push with that foot. And the more we push, the more we roll.

Our underside becomes our support. And this arm can just continue and reach overhead. And you're gonna continue to roll onto your right side. When you get there, I want you to yield. Soften, soften, soften into the ground.

Pause, feel where you are. We've wound ourselves up a little bit, so see if you can soften even more. And now we're going to unwind. So we can just follow the path back. Follow the back body softening into the support of the ground, like a little sandbag. (sighing) And then the front of you just becomes so light.

Pause in the middle. (sighing) And then let's take that to the other side. So taking the legs over, and now it's a push with the right foot, and then let it yield. (sighing) And a push. (exhales heavily) And a yield. Tone, so when we push, it's a condensing, and when we yield, it's a expand. Next one, here we go, we're gonna follow it through. And take your time.

I will wait for you. You take your time and just feel your way through this, softening the underside of your body. And are you noticing, it changes. You moved from back body to the side body rolling. When you get there, (sighing) pause and see if you can soften even more, yield.

(Allie sighing) Okay, here we go, we're gonna retrace our steps, just hand finds that little pathway up and over. Softening the back body. You become your own support again and again and again and again. Returning all the way back up. And just take a pause there.

What if we valued being as much as we value doing? (Allie sighing) Giving ourselves time to just feel ourselves. So from here, we're going to roll onto our right side, and take your time. So let's have all of our transitions in this series just be a continuation of what we're doing. So we're not in any hurry, just feeling all that support.

You can rock and roll into it. Now, your blanket can be right under your head again. And you can just take this arm and just fold it in, and just take a little rest. Now, we wanna rest the head on the pillow. I'm just keeping mine up a little bit 'cause I do have a microphone on and I want you to just be able to hear me, but you're gonna let your head completely rest.

And let's actually, I'm gonna change my mind, let's actually take this arm out. Let's take it out and let's take this arm on top. So imagine you're like this little vine in the forest, and you are crawling towards a little patch of sunlight over there. So you're just gonna begin to slide forward. And it's fingers through your wrist, it goes all the way through your arm, through your shoulder, to your ribs, to your spine, and then you just return back.

And we can do this a few more times. And your right side is now that condensing side in relationship to gravity and just rolls under you. And it's the left side that gets to be nice and light. And we have all this relationship of support from fingers all the way into the center of the body. And then return.

Now we're gonna take this top arm up into space. I invite you to feel the space in between your arms and your hands, and like the tide was coming in, and that was just gonna lift that arm up. So anything that's in relationship to space, soft, buoyant, almost like your arm is hollow. So that's a very different sense of support. Now we're gonna begin some spiraling.

So we can take this arm that's out here, and you can bring it underneath, you could fold it in, and again, you can rest your head on your pillow. I'm just gonna bring mine here. So we're gonna begin some spirals. We could start with the thumb, spiraling around. So our fingers have a relationship to our shoulder.

And we could get really specific with it, but we're just gonna enjoy the sensation of the spiraling today. Maybe we'll save that for another time. So from the thumb down through the arm to your shoulder joints. You might even feel it further than that. And then what about the pointer finger?

As we're doing this spiraling, we're winding and unwinding our tissues, so we're helping them get a little bit more hydrated. We're getting some nice nerve gliding here. We're clearing the pathways so energy can just flow. And that's helping us find more easefulness, less effort. And just moving through, we can go to middle finger.

That's got a direct line right into the middle of your shoulder joint. We could go to the ring finger. And what about that little pinky finger? Those fingers actually have a relationship to the back of the shoulder. Spiral, spiral, spiral.

And then you're just gonna let that palm open up. And then that arm can travel down to your hip completely supported by space. Maybe it's feeling really, really light by now. And then let it rest, yield. We're gonna make one more change to our bottom arm.

We're gonna bring it under the blanket, nice and long, and just rest. We can take this arm back up, and then it's gonna flow overhead. And the bottom hand can hold the wrist. So we're putting some tensioning into the body. So once we do that, see if you can just soften. (exhales) And now we're gonna lengthen our legs out.

This might get a little tricky. So we're gonna see if we can stay soft, we're gonna see if we can stay in relationship with the ground and space. So here's a nice long side-lying position. When we lie on our side, we balance our fronts and our back. Underside of your body softens.

This whole upper side can expand. Now, the bottoms of the feet are reaching, but it's not hard. So see if you can soften your ankles and soften your knees. And then we'll flow that arm back up. Take a little pause there.

Now, (sighing) what if we take the top leg, this is where we might wanna start to try to control things. So you're gonna find that support. We're gonna see if we can lift the bottom leg, and you're just gonna flow that support right down into the lowest point. And can you balance? And whoa, and it's okay if we wiggle and wobble.

This isn't a performance. This is just beautiful practice for ourselves. It's nobody's business but ours. And then just let everything flow back down. Take a pause.

Now, I'm going to completely get up and go to the other side so that I'm still facing you. You could simply roll to the other side, so we've got choices. Whichever way you decide to go, keep moving into that support, so yield and push. Up into space, nice and light, over to the other side. Take your time, I'm giving you permission.

Take your time. Down we go. And we can bring both arms forward again, just a nice little rest. And feel where you are. We really can't go where we wanna go if we don't know where we are.

So just take a moment, feel that support of the ground, softening into it. And now we're gonna move back into our little vine on the forest floor. So here we go, just rolling forwards. And you just keep noticing, like, where do I hold tension? Can I soften it?

There also might be places in our body that feel heavy or offline. So when we don't feel things, that's still noticing and sensing something. So we can always find more expansion in those places, more connection into space, more buoyancy. (sighing) And let's do one more. So you're just rolling underneath yourself, beautiful fluid body.

You are your own support over and over and over. And then just returning back up. Now we're going to move into those arm spirals. So what if, again, we felt the space between our hands as they come apart, and it's actually the space underneath the arm that lifts it. You can adjust your bottom arm.

It can either, you know, come up to you, it could go under your head, so just take a moment and find what feels comfortable for you. And know that you can always change your mind. You're never stuck. Now we're gonna begin this spiraling starting with the thumb. So our thumb has this relationship down this arm all the way to the front of the shoulder.

So we're sponging the tissue. It's like we're squeezing and then we're letting it go, (exhales heavily) creating a lot of nice hydration. Pointer finger. Pointer finger has a relationship to the front of the shoulder. (sighing) Soft arm, you might even feel the space between the fingers.

Middle finger has a relationship right into the middle of your shoulder joint. What about your ring finger? It goes to the back of the body. And then what about that pinky finger? That's also to the back body, the bottom of your shoulder blade.

(sighing) And then we're gonna turn that palm to face forward. And let's go ahead and let that arm come down. Let it rest. One more transition with that bottom arm. Underneath it goes, nice and long.

Take a little rest, flow that arm back up. Overhead, shoulder blade gliding and sliding. We can hold the wrist. And here we go, let's lengthen those legs out, finding the side-lying position. Softening the underside.

And there's energy out the feet, that soft ankles. Gonna flow that arm back up. If you'd like to try the legs, you could lift a leg up. Here we go, we're gonna flow down into the center of the body, flow the other leg up. Soft.

Floating. And then let everything flow back down. We're gonna roll onto the belly. I like to call this adult belly downtime. So it never stops being important.

So if we can, we should. So just allow the legs to rotate open. And you can overlap your hands and rest your forehead on your hands. (sighing) Now all of your organs are getting that feedback, that support. They get to yield.

So a lot of times we think about our muscles and bones in movement, but we have all of these other beautiful systems in the body that have an impact on how we move, our sense of ease. So we're just letting our organs breathe here. And once again, by slowing down and moving out of the head and into the body, (exhales heavily) we can notice how we feel. We can notice where we're holding tension and let it go. (Allie sighing) So we're gonna transition into a little lizard.

So let's reach our arms forwards. And we'll start by turning our head to the right. Let it rest. And your right leg, you're gonna just bring it up. (Allie sighing) And your right arm, you're gonna bring it down.

So we've rolled a little bit onto the left. This is the very beginning of learning how to balance. (sighing) Support. And let's see what that feels like on the other side. So we just take the left leg up, feel that little roll.

Slide that left arm down and just turn the head. And one side might feel really different than the other. Whatever's in relationship with the ground yields. (sighing) Whatever's in relationship to space can expand and be soft. And when we return back, we'll slide the arm and the leg nice and straight. (Allie sighing) And then let's just take a little roll.

And we're gonna bring ourselves up to sitting. (exhales heavily) You can sit however you would like. You wanna feel supported. (Allie sighing) So I invite you again, just closing your eyes. Notice how you feel after doing this practice. And you don't have to have words for this.

It can just be a sensation in the body. (Allie sighing) I'll go ahead and come up with some words for us. So I hope, after this practice, you feel more grounded, but also more buoyance, and therefore supported. Thank you so much for joining me of class one in our Move Into Ease series.


Cynthia G
That was interesting and helpful, thanks.  I came to class feeling heavy and unmotivated and I do feel lighter now.  I am so glad your class was available to me this morning. Thanks PA for caring for all of me by making these classes available to us on the days that the thought of doing a roll up etc. is just too much.
Cynthia G  I’m so happy you enjoyed the class and feel better after doing it. This is part of a series too! All the classes stand alone but can also build on each other. They are designed to take you on a movement journey from the ground up. I look forward to hearing what you find in the rest of them. Thanks for taking the time to comment. It means so much! I hope you have a great day! 
Ow, Gosh, that was lovely. Great after a hard days work. Thank you very much for your calmness. Loved it.
1 person likes this.
Lisette-Anne V I'm so happy you enjoyed it! I would love your feedback on the rest of the series! 
Allie Greene bring hm on

That was great! I am also a somatic movement therapist and these little “recess” for our bodies is amazing.  Loved it, really appreciated your words. Will continue them they are delicious :)
Jacqueline T Hi! Thanks for your beautiful comments! Love that you are a somatic therapist! 
Thank you for this session, so relaxing and so beautifully explained/worded. Iam absorbing it like a sponge :) Definitely passing it onto my own classes 🙏
This has helped me return to movement as I’m slowly healing from surgery.
Ilja I'm so glad you enjoyed it. It makes me so happy to know you will be sharing your experiences with your classes! 
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