Class #5314

Day 4: Strong Arms and Core

40 min - Class


Welcome to Day 4! Delia works on strengthening your upper body by using Hand Weights to intensify certain movements. She flows through fun variations of Reformer exercises as well as Mat exercises you already know to give your practice variety.
What You'll Need: Mat, Hand Weights (2)

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Hi, I'm Delia, and welcome to my five day challenge. Today is day four and we'll be using hand weights for this workout. I happen to have three pound weights, but you can use any ones you want. I highly recommend smaller weights for this class. Five pounds or more might be a little much, but it's totally up to you.

My hand weights are at the front of the mat and I'm gonna start at the back of the mat, and with a nice little roll down. So take a deep inhale breath, nod the chin, exhale, roll down, reaching the hands down towards the floor. Pause here for just a moment as you stretch the back of your legs. Allow your head to drop chin to chest and stretch the back of your neck. Start to pedal the knees from side to side and what that'll do is it'll stretch the side of your hip.

You can even grab onto opposite elbows and take a little swing. And here's a nice moment to become present. We won't be here very long, 'cause you don't want all the blood to rush to your head. But now place the hands to the floor and start to walk yourself out to your knees, and pause here for just a moment. Stretching the toes onto the mat and then driving the hips back to the heels so you could stretch the feet.

Shift the body weight forward, take it up to a plank and then walk your hands back to your feet, and then just roll yourself back up and we're gonna do that again. Nod the chin, flex forward. Hands to the floor, I'm gonna pause just like I did before. I'm going to pedal. Pedal and stretch the hips.

Take my elbows into my hands and swing. Take a deep inhale breath, release, hands to the floor, walk yourself out. Drop your knees and keep the feet curled under as you stretch. We'll do that one more time. Up to a plank, up to a pike, walk your hands back.

Roll yourself all the way up to standing. Take a deep inhale, nod the chin, exhale to flex forward. And another pause here. Don't be in such a hurry. We wanna move everything around and stretch it.

Holding onto the elbows, a little bit of a swing side to side. Hands back to the mat. This is our last one, so we're gonna stay on the mat. I'm gonna walk myself all the way out, drop to my knees, take a little stretch of the back of the heel, and then shift my body weight forward. Bring in the knees underneath the hips and the hands under the shoulders.

A little cat-cow here. So flex the spine to give yourself a little stretch and extend the spine and open up the chest. Exhale breath. And inhale breath. Just two more.

Round through the back. Extension through the back. Last one as you exhale and then release extension and then back to neutral. I'm gonna take my weights and bring them to the side of the mat so they're close by. I'll be able to grab them here in a second.

Now, without any hand weights, go ahead and take your right leg out to the, or right arm out to the side, excuse me. Reaching away and trying to keep the hips nice and square and then bring that hand down. We're gonna do that again, same side. We're reaching the arm out and then returning the arm underneath. Warming up all the stabilizing muscles of the torso.

Keep that left shoulder out of your ear and now bring it back down. I'm gonna go ahead and take that hand weight now, so it's gonna be underneath my right hand. From here, I'll take the arm out to the side and then I'll return the weight back to the middle and rest it completely. You'll need that little rest to bring the arm out and then back to center. Feel that right shoulder blade glide towards the center of your spine.

Nice and gentle, one more time. Reach it out and then return. We are gonna add the leg now. So with the hand underneath or hand holding onto the weight and your knees underneath you, let's just take the left leg back behind you and lift. And at the same time, let's take that right arm out to the side.

Lower the knee to the mat, lower the weight to the floor. Inhale as your arm and leg reach away in opposition. Exhale as you return. Two more of these, inhale breath. And then exhale, be careful how high you lift that right arm.

You don't want to strain that shoulder and maybe keep that elbow nice and soft. And then return. Release the weight to the side, sit back into your heels into a nice child's pose. And then take that right arm underneath for a little stretch. So it's a little bit of weight plus the release of the muscle, that'll feel really, really good.

Back to your all fours position. We've got the hand weight to the left hand and no hand weight to start. Just take your left arm out to the side. The hand weights are optional in this class. So if you are struggling to lift the arm with the weight or if you grabbed too heavy of a weight, go get yourself a lighter one.

I usually make that mistake. One more time, and lift the left arm to the side and then return. Let's grab the hand weight, bring it underneath your shoulders. Same thing here. Arm out to the side, inhale breath, exhale to return.

I am keeping a soft elbow on the arm that is holding the weight. Two more times. Slide that shoulder blade to the center. Last one, inhale and return. And don't be discouraged if you can't lift that arm very high.

It's not about that. It's about whether or not it's throwing you off balance here a bit. So let's take that right leg back, lift it up into hip extension, and then bring that left arm out to the side. And then everything is gonna come back, completely rest and pause. Inhale to lift.

Exhale as you lower. Make any adjustments you need to to your arm if it's not quite in the right position. Add one more and then return. Take that weight to the side, enjoy a little child's pose. And then take the arm that was holding the hand weight, bring it underneath and thread it.

Let your head completely stretch and drop to the mat. And then return. Leaving the hand weights where they are and we're gonna lie on our back. Once you're on your back, you want them to be close by for the next few exercises. Make sure that they're pretty convenient here.

I'm gonna bring 'em down towards my hip. All right. From here, taking your arms overhead with no weights. Arms are at a hover. I wanna keep them in my peripheral vision.

We're gonna do a little ab prep or ab curl with the arms straight. So arms to the ceiling, chin to chest. Flex up, bring the hands towards your hips. Bring the arms up towards the ceiling and then lower yourself back down to the mat. This is a nice opportunity to check the flexibility of your back, warm up your neck muscles.

It is important to strengthen the muscles at the front of the neck. So I know that for some people that don't do these exercises very often, there could be a lot of tension in there. But you do wanna use those muscles, they're meant for flexion. And we'll do that one more time. Arms forward and up and then to the hips and then you're going to return.

Take it back down. I'm gonna grab onto just the right hand weight so it's in my hand. I am gonna take my left hand, my free hand and bring it behind my head. So now I have a little support from my head plus the hand weight. This time I'm gonna take my arm straight up towards the ceiling.

It's a little bit too much weight for me to keep it back here, so I want my shoulder to be comfortable. Inhale, breath, nod the chin. Exhale, let's bring the hand weight towards the hip. Now, because I have weight just on one arm, there's a tendency to shift to that side. So I'm gonna work really hard to keep myself centered.

Lower yourself back to the mat, arm back up. Inhale, breath. Exhale as you lift, looking towards the center of your thighs and then lower yourself back to the mat. And I could feel my right side almost working harder, so I'm trying to really center myself here and use my hand to lift my head up. Don't be afraid to gently pull on the head.

One more time, as you exhale breath and then lower yourself right back down. We're gonna go into obliques using the weight. My left elbow will drop towards the floor of the mat and I'll start to pivot as I come up bringing the hand away to the outside of my left thigh. So I'm going at a diagonal and then returning back and relaxing back onto the mat completely. Inhale breath, nod the chin.

Dropping that left elbow. Exhale to a diagonal. Think about that right ribcage getting closer to the left hip. And then you lower back down. Two more times and lift and exhale.

What you might notice, the weights are actually making it a little bit easier. It's pulling you up a little bit higher. I really enjoy it so I can get that little extra stretch. And then return. Let's drop the right hand weight and go to the left hand weight.

So the left arm now towards the ceiling. Interlace or just not interlace, but just one hand behind your head. We're gonna come straight up. You're gonna bring the arm forward. Exhale, try to stay centered.

Whatever grip you have on that hand weight, it doesn't matter to me. It's whatever feels comfortable on your shoulder. You could be in a neutral position like I am right now. You could turn the hand weight up. You can turn the hand weight down.

This is comfortable for me however. Exhale, breath. Inhale. Exhale to lower. Let's do that one more time.

And you're gonna lift up through the center of your spine, check out your thighs, eyes to your thighs, and then lower down. Let's go into your obliques. Dropping the right elbow and then rotate over to the other side. So let that left shoulder blade move further away from your right shoulder blade, and then return. Thinking about the back body is helpful, because then you can get a little bit extra, but one of the most important pieces to this exercise is that your right elbow stays on the mat.

So that way you're using it almost like a little pivot. And then back, and I'm gonna do one more, 'cause I lost count. So arms back up towards the ceiling and then nice rotation here. And then return. Now, the weights will be close to your hips, so they should be side by side.

And as you can see, I've got a different grip here. My palms are down. I'm gonna use the weights almost like a little roller. So this time, I'll lift my head and shoulders up, roll myself up to this position here and then I'm gonna hold. So I did roll them away.

So now that my shoulders came up and rolled a little bit more forward, I'll bring my right leg to the tabletop and then my left. So pause here for a moment. Almost like a hundred position. I'm gonna rest back down now that I have the correct body position. I'll rest, nod the chin.

Exhale, I'm going to lift back up and I am gonna use the weights for the hundred. I'm starting to pump the arms. Inhale, two, three, four, five and for variation, I'm gonna turn the palms up, two, three, four, five. It's inhale, two, three, four, five. And exhale, two, three, four, five.

Inhale, two, three, four, five. Exhale, two, three, four, 30. Try to be quiet with the movement of your torso. And this is 40, and then option to extend the legs. And exhale, two, three, four, 50.

Inhale, two, three, four, five. Exhale, two, three, four, 70. Am I actually keeping count here? This is pretty good. Exhale, two, three, four, 80.

Inhale, two, three, four, five. Exhale, two, three, four, 90. This is your last set. And look at the control. I've even shocked myself here.

Hold on just a second. Bend the knees, pause. Extend the legs. Hold and roll all the way back up. Let's rest the weights forward and then sit up nice and tall.

Again, we'll use the weights for a little movement on the mat here. Let's just stretch forward. So I'm gonna hold the weights into my hands. Palms face down. Pointing or flexing of the feet is up to you.

That's totally preference to how you want your feet and legs to feel, but do play around with the movement of the feet flexion and then pointing, because it does change muscle emphasis. So I'm just gonna stretch forward, rolling the weights forward and then I'm gonna pull those weights back. And again, nod the chin. A little stretch. It is helpful to have the weight right on the mat and not on the floor.

And then back up. If your weights don't roll, just eliminate that part. If you have toning weights, like weights that look like balls, those roll a little bit better. One more time, nod the chin. Roll it forward.

And then we're gonna sit up nice and tall. We are gonna go into the roll up, so I will point my feet here. I'll take my weights out in front. Roll yourself all the way down, and what you'll find is the weights forward are actually quite helpful and less challenging, because it keeps you from just falling onto the mat. But when I get here, I'm just gonna bend my elbows and drop them to the mat so I'm not stretching and straining my shoulder and bringing the arms overhead.

I'll punch my arms gently to the ceiling as I nod my chin and then roll myself up, which makes it actually a lot easier to get up to the top. And I'll do it again. Roll down. Holding the weights forward, scooping the abs in, dropping the elbow. It's almost like a little anchor support.

Nod the chin and push that weight forward to assist you up. We'll do three more for a total of five. Exhale breath. Elbows down. And again and lift.

And then up. And two more, flexion of the spine. The slower actually, the more you'll feel that back stretching and the more control you have for your hips. Don't try to press the lower back down. If you've got a round rump or you don't have that shape of your spine, then you're not gonna be able to get that lower back down.

It's not as important as you might think. Just make sure you're not straining your back. And now we're gonna come all the way up. Nod the chin. Exhale, flex yourself up and sit up nice and tall.

And if you know, you know. You kinda have to pull your pants up after the roll up. So I'm gonna fix that up. And we're gonna go into some back rowing actually, back rowing, arms out in front. So on the reformer, if you're sitting on the carriage, you'll be facing the back of the reformer and you'll hold onto straps, but we have weights, so we can sort of do some of the exercises here on the mat together.

Arms go out in front, palms face up, elbows are soft. I'm gonna roll back and bring my fists together and align my elbow to elbow here, scooping my abs in. And I want you to pause here, because I want you to really feel the scoop in your abdominals. You don't wanna just rock into your pelvis. And then sit up nice and tall.

One of the cues I use is you're pulling heavy weighted blankets up, but you look confident and not scared. You wanna just look forward, nice and strong with the arms and then reach them forward. Exhale, breath as you flex. Pause. Inhale breath as your reach up.

Two more. Rolling it back down. Strong through the shoulders, chin comes down, your eyes lead your spine. So if you're flexed in your spine here, you wanna make sure your gaze is forward, because your cervical spine is synonymous with your upper back. So whatever your upper back is doing, excuse me, your neck has to do the same thing.

Hold here, inhale and then exhale. Let's try that full back rowing using the weights. Again, drop the weights if they're too heavy, but this might be the time where if you got some heavier weights, you might regret that. And then roll it back and hold. Now stay here, we'll take our arms down almost to make like an A position with the arms.

As you dive your body forward, bring the weights behind you and tap them. Circle them around and then roll yourself back up. Turn your palms up. If you can't tap behind you, 'cause your shoulders are tight, that's fine. You don't have to.

Exhale to roll back. You don't wanna put your shoulders into too much strain. Bring your arms back. Let's tap. Bring 'em around and then back up.

There's always the question of when do you roll up? And that's different for all modalities of Pilates, however, I like to think about when I can see it in my peripheral vision, then it's okay to sit up if I don't wanna stay flexed. We'll do this one more time. Exhale, breath one. Inhale, breath out, two.

Exhale, breath back and three. Circle the arms around in four. And then sit up nice and tall. We're gonna go on to the second of the back rowing series. Take your arms out in front.

Let's try a little hinge with a bicep curl. So as I hinge at the hips, it's not a roll. My back and abs work as a team and I'm gonna do a little bicep curl while I'm here. And then I'll sit up nice and tall and extend my arms forward. And inhale breath.

And I'll do the inhale breath over the exhale breath like I did with the last one. That inhale helps me support my back a little bit more, expands my ribs a bit. And again, inhale breath. And exhale. And back up.

Let's go to the second portion. So we'll inhale to bend the elbows and hinge. I want you to imagine a huge hat on your head, a big cowboy hat. Reach the arms up to the ceiling and take that cowboy hat off. Now, we'll have to modify since we're not on a high reformer.

You'll take your upper body forward with the arms, then circle them around, tap, then circle 'em back around, and then sit up nice and tall. We'll do that again. Inhale to hinge. Exhale up. Inhale forward, exhale around.

Arms come forward and you sit up. Palms face up. Here we go, two more. Inhale. Exhale.

Forward stretch. Watch the circle of the arms, make sure that you're not hurting that shoulder. And then up and last one. And reach and dive and circle and around and sit up and then drop those weights. I'm gonna do a little shoulder stretch here.

So I'm gonna sit cross-legged and if you can't sit cross-legged, sit however you want to sit. I'll take my right arm around, give it a little stretch here and then take it behind and open up that shoulder, and then the other side. There's nothing wrong with a little rest in between sets of exercises. And take it back. You're not gonna work any less, that's for sure.

I'm gonna keep the weights here now and turn onto my back. So once I'm on my back, we'll do some extension exercises or my belly, excuse me. Some extension exercises. Arms are gonna be by your side. And if you've taken any of my classes that are on the mat, I do this one a lot.

Just a little press up just to prep the back. I'm gonna relax everything. So everything is un-Pilates, okay? Lift the head up and just stretch. Stretch the front of the body, work your lumbar spine and then lower down.

When I say, "Work your lumbar spine," your lumbar spine is already in a slight extended position. Most people's are. So you're just moving into where the muscle, actually, the back feels comfortable, but you're doing it in a stretchy way. And as long as there's not a weird nerve tension or too much pain in the joint, if it's just feeling like your muscles are working, just make sure that they're working pretty evenly on both sides, that you're not favoring one side, and then lower yourself back down. All right, now I'm gonna go ahead and take the weights, turn them forward.

And then I have kind of a W position with my arms. So I see my hands in my peripheral, but I am gonna engage the lower half of my body for support. And how to do that is, you press the pubic bone into the mat and you'll watch if you'll see my knees kind of come up here a little bit, and then I anchor my feet. I want the quads to work. They're the largest muscle group in my body, so I need their support.

I'll draw the navel to the spine. Elbows are elevated about the height of the wrist and then I'll push into the weight to lift up to that extension. I happen to have a decent amount of extension, so if you can't get up this high, it's totally fine. Go only as high as you can go. Watch the neck though.

Lift the eyes like you're moving a huge marble away from your nose and move that marble away. Eyes forward. Try not to bring that head back and open up too much in the neck. I'm really conscious of that. I've gotten whiplash before and I'm a snowboarder and I was told by a chiropractor that my front of my neck muscles are weak.

As you can imagine, as a Pilates instructor, I was a little offended, so I was like, oh, but it makes sense. So I'm like this all the time, looking up at clients, looking at my phone, looking at the computer, so I don't need to exaggerate that position anymore than I already do. We'll do that just two more times. Lift your head up and extend, and I do a lot of these. And what's great about them, is it gives you a good tricep workout too.

One more time. Eyes up. Go ahead and push away and then you're going to lower. Now weights back. Okay, palms face down.

Am I good here? All right. So now from here, I'm gonna relax my lower back for a second and then get back into position. So press the pubic bone down again. Watch those quads.

Ideally you want your legs pretty close together, but if they don't do that, then you open them up and turn them out if you need to. Just don't over squeeze your bottom, it hinders extension. So I'm gonna lift my head and shoulders up and I'm gonna bring the arm weights back. So I'm still holding onto them, but I have a little bit less of an extension and more, almost like I'm gonna shoot out of a cannon feeling here and then lower my nose down. And let's do that again.

Shoulder blades come together. Launch yourself forward, and then back to the mat. Two more, lift it up. And lower. Last one.

These are pretty gentle extension exercises for the most part. Unless you've got something going on with your back, they shouldn't be too challenging. So just make sure you're not going past your limits. Let's do this one more time and lift it up. Let's challenge you here if you'd like.

Take the weights off the floor, bend your elbows, bringing the fist towards your face. Bring your arms back and then rest everything down. It's gonna be hard to avoid making noise with this one, so I'm gonna lift it up, float. Bend. Bring it back, and then gently, I place part of it on the mat to quiet it down.

Inhale. Exhale. Inhale. It's almost like half of your breaststroke. And lower, two more times.

Lift it up, arms lift, elbows bend, arms extend. Lower the nose. One more, lift it up. Bend, reach, and then lower it back down. I'm gonna keep the weights back there.

Release them, hands to the floor. Let's give that lower back a well-deserved stretch. Bottom to the heels, arms forward. Oh, that feels good. Forehead to the floor.

Deep inhale. And exhale. All right, coming up to tall knees now. On the mat, I'm about fist distance apart, which is about the width of my hips. We are gonna be doing some thigh stretch and leaning on the knees, so if it helps you to curl your toes under, that's great, just do that.

The other things too, when we're leaning back, if you're feeling something at the front of your knee, that's fine. It might be just a really tight quad, but if you feel something underneath the knee, then we're gonna have to modify that, okay? So hands are by your side. I'm gonna start by bringing the arms forward and back. So just forward and then back.

Almost like a chest expansion. Inhale. And then exhale or whatever breath works for you. Now, with the weights forward and back, it throws me off a bit, so I'm trying to stay really balanced and I'm thinking about my tailbone reaching all the way down to the floor like an anchor, which is disguised as your inner thighs. So get those inner thighs engaged.

One more time. And then bring the arms back. And then we add some little pulses here. Go eight, seven, watch your neck. Make sure you stay tall in your spine.

Four, three, two, one, reach the arms forward. I am tightening my glutes a little bit for support, but I'm not over-squeezing them. Bring the arms back behind the hips. Let's check that cervical spine to the right, to the left, to the center. And then arms back up.

One more on the other side. Take it back, to the left, to the right, to the center, and then up. Now, let's go ahead and add the thigh stretch. I'm gonna start with my hands to my hips. As I hinge at my knees as though there's an imaginary line to the knee, from the knee all the way to the head, I'm gonna try to form one long line as my arms come forward for counterbalance.

And then I'll come up with control. The arms come behind the hips. Inhale as I lean back. Exhale as I come back up to tall knees. Just two more for four, inhale.

Exhale, open up the chest. You know you've gone too far if you come out of that open hip and try to have a seat on your heels, okay? So one more time, inhale breath. And exhale. Now let's add some movement.

So I want you to imagine that your hands are not holding weights, but they're holding spring. So right here in front of me, there's a wall with a spring and it's not gonna allow me to fall too far backwards. So if you can keep that in your head. Arms are gonna reach forward as I hinge back. Now, take those weights, bring your elbows back as you squeeze your shoulder blades together and do a little extension and gaze towards the ceiling.

Extend your arms out in front to reconnect the spine in neutral. And then come to tall spine. Four of those. Inhale to lean back. Exhale, extend, or you can switch that breath of course.

And then forward. Two more, let's try the exhale back. The inhale, extend. The exhale, arms forward. And then the arms behind, last one.

Go ahead and reach. Support your back here, don't go too far. Look forward. And then all the way back down. All right, that felt good to me.

So I'm gonna turn sideways now. We'll just stay on our knees a little bit longer and I'm gonna bring the weights towards the front. We are gonna go into some side leg work and we're gonna use the weight in the hand and stay on our knees. All right, so arms are out to a T and just do a little airplane here. I like to do this first because I think, I find balance here.

Warms up my shoulders and it gives me a little stretch before I start to shorten this side of my body. Now I'm gonna grab the weight into my right hand and then lean over, place my hand on the floor, and then my leg is gonna be out to the side. I'm gonna start with the weight at my thighs and then I'll lift my leg up and I'll lower my leg down. It's not gonna stay there unless you hold it and it's not gonna give you that much more resistance, but what it could do is bring awareness to the part of your body you're supposed to be working. Your muscles will fire in pattern.

So if they fire here first, that's a good thing. And then here second. And then lastly here. That's where you want it to fire. Now, I'm gonna take that leg up and I'm gonna bring the arm out in front and take the right leg forward into flexion and then bring it back, but I'm gonna try to hold my right arm nice and steady, and it's almost giving me a little gauge as to where my leg needs to be parallel to it.

Exhale forward. Inhale and back. And again. And reach. So strong through that shoulder.

You'd be surprised how hard it is to hold this weight up, but maybe you are feeling that with me right now. One more time. And then return, drop the leg, bring the arm to the ceiling, and then give me a few tricep presses towards the ceiling. One. Exhale, two.

You probably know what's coming, that could be slightly predictable. We're gonna add the leg, bend and reach, one. And exhale, two. Three, last one. And four, hold.

Drop the knee, bring the arm around. Feel a great stretch here. All right, we're gonna add some pulses with that right leg. You're gonna come around. Pulse, one, two, three, bring the arm around, stretch the weight.

Be really careful if you're holding a weight, because you don't wanna use momentum on that shoulder. And then reach, we'll do just one more set. I actually hear a little clicking in there, so I'm gonna slow that roll there. One, two, three and then reach. And hold and then just release and come back up to tall knees.

Other side. Holding onto the weight and then taking your right hand down, bringing your left leg up. And we'll start with a little lower and lift. One and lift, two, we'll go to eight here. And again, remember that fire pattern.

Another thing too is, this arm needs to be slightly forward. I could see my fingers in my peripheral vision. And reach. Two. Last one.

Arm stays long. Flex, exhale. Inhale and back. And exhale, I'm eliminating the pulse to make it a little bit easier for me. Exhale, flex forward.

There's a lot to deal with right now. This feels like a golf swing. Keep this steady, move this, don't move this. That's what this feels like. Exhale, forward and then inhale, back.

Let's do that just a couple more and back. Last one. And return. Lower the foot, bring the arm up and reach it up. Some tricep presses.

And we have three more for six, three, two. We're gonna add the leg bend and reach, one. And exhale, two. We'll go to six. Three.

Two. One. And rest. And pause. Now we'll add those pulses.

Go ahead and shift the weight forward. Arm comes around, you go one, two, three and reach. And again. And lift, one, two, three. We'll do just one more set.

And up, one, two, three. And stretch, you can leave the weight where it is. Give yourself a nice little stretch here. And then we'll go into a little abs before we finish. So feet forward in any direction obviously.

I'm gonna take the weight into my hands and lie onto my back. Once I'm on my back, we'll go right into some of the ab series. So right leg to tabletop, left leg to tabletop. I'm gonna take just one weight into my hands and hold it sideways. Be really careful, you don't wanna drop this on your face of course.

So now I'm holding. Arms extend to the ceiling. Head and shoulders come up to flexion. Hold the weight right over the legs and single leg stretch, one and two. Three.

Four. Two more sets. Last set, obliques, you ready? Rotate, one. Two.

Three. We're going for three sets. Last one or six sets, not quite sure. And then last one here, hold and then release. I'll take a little break.

Nod the chin, exhale, flex up. Double legs, try to reach, one. And two. We are gonna go to six, three. Five, last one.

Six, right leg to ceiling. Shin to the bar, one, or to the weight. And two, touch gently. You don't wanna bang that weight into your shin. One more set.

Back to the center. Bend, release feet to the mat, arms overhead. Let's go ahead and just lift into a nice little bridge to stretch. And I do feel a little shoulder stretch here holding onto the weight. I am gonna bring my arms up though, right above my chest.

And pause here. Some hip lift to stretch the thigh. I know this is a butt workout, but it is supposed to be a really great stretch also for the front of your hip. So drop the bottom down, lift the bottom up. And I want you to feel the thigh area, the hamstring where it meets the glute.

Lower. And lift. Now, you're gonna lower the hips, bring the arms up overhead, but at a hover and then bring the bar or the weight towards your thighs. Inhale. And exhale.

And again. Three more. Three. Two. Last one, hold.

And let's lift the right heel up and the left heel up. So now the heels are lifted, so you're gonna get a little extra here. From here, bring the weight towards your chest, pushing the hands into the side of the weight to fire a little bit of the pec muscle and stabilize the shoulders. And from here, you'll lower and lift up, one. We'll go to eight.

Two, you'll get a little extra. Here's where I allow you to squeeze the butt if you want. Squeeze and lift. You've got four more. Four.

Three. Two. Last one. Lower the spine down, extend the legs, reach the arms over your head, bring the arms to the ceiling. Roll yourself all the way up and let's place the weights back where we started so that we can go into an active cool down.

It'll feel a little bit like a workout. I have a hard time with stretching as you might know, if you've taken my classes. This feels like a stretch, feels like a workout, nobody knows. All right, we're gonna bring the right foot forward, opening up through the hip. Let's curl the back toe under and then take the weights into your hands.

I'm hinged forward here. And what I'm gonna do, is while I'm getting a little stretch, I'm going to work my back muscles and extend my spine. If it's too much on that forward leg for you, just lift the upper body up, but from physics' standpoint, you have to be hinged forward for you to be able to get those back muscles to work. And if you're like me and don't stretch very well, go ahead and lift the back knee up and then you're gonna pull here, one. And two.

Draw those shoulder blade together. Two more. Last one. Knees will come down, weights will stay forward. Forward leg stretches.

And then you switch. Let's take the left leg forward. And we'll start here. You are hinged forward and you're gonna pull. I have my back toe curled under so that I'm ready to come up here in a second.

Three. Four, two more. Last one. Lifting those knees up. Let's do that again.

We go eight. Seven, shoulders wide. Four more. Four. Three.

Two. One, knee comes down. Forward leg comes into a nice stretch. Shift the weight forward. Let's go ahead and keep the weights in our hands as we stand to the top of the mat.

We're ending where the weights started. And then roll yourself up taking the weights with you and I'm gonna stand center mat and face you here. Let's do a little elevation and depression. Elevate and depress. Using hand weights or using anything with our arms might cause a little extra tension to the shoulder.

It's important to make sure that you work the shoulder for endurance and also for range of motion, instead of just putting heavy weight on those shoulders. Be really careful. Last one. And then I'm gonna slowly roll myself down, drop the weights. Roll myself back up, taking my hands above my head and interlacing the fingers for a little stretch and a little side stretch here.

And stretching those wrists out that I just worked. And then the hands behind the back. A little movement with the cervical spine. And now one more, reach up to the sky. Hands to prayer, hands to heart center.

Congratulations on day four and we will see you again tomorrow for day five.


Patricia C
Great class to start the week ! Thank you Delia🌻

1 person likes this.
Thank you Delia always love the clarity of your classes
Anne M
Great class!! Fun trying new variations using the weights.
Great class and went by quickly!!
2nd time is even better than the first :)
1 person likes this.
^^ agree Yaara ! Just took this one again - so much fun. Hope to see more from you,  Delia, in 2024!!
Saphira B
Really nice class with great cues and creativity in integrating the weights into a strengthening workout. Feels great afterwards as well!
Lauren B
Perfect start to my day. Cues were great, thanks Delia!

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