Class #5380

Arms, Arms, and More Arms

30 min - Class


Your arms will feel so strong after this Mat workout by Mychele Sims. She uses the Magic Circle and Hand Weights to stay connected to your arms, shoulders, and back. She keeps you moving the entire class, flowing from one exercise to the next with a fusion of Mat work, fitness, and exercises you know from other pieces of apparatus.
What You'll Need: Mat, Hand Weights (2), Magic Circle

About This Video


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Arms, arms, and more arms. I know, I know. We're gonna get into it. What is this thing again? It's a magic circle.

Why? Because it's magical. So we're gonna start with a nice stance. Your hip level, hip width a little wider, whatever you choose. That's not the magic here. The magic is in the circle.

Take your arms out right before your chest, a little bit lower than your shoulders, and we're gonna start to pulse into the magic circle to warm our arms up. So push in, resist out. So don't just let it pop out. Resist it in and out. We're doing about eight to 10 of these as we talk, so if you wanna go faster than me please feel free to go ahead, but I am pressing and opening that chest, getting that resistance, and waking up the back and the front of my torso.

Still pulling in, the belly button still squeezing at the glutes. This is my last one. Whew, and that is our front. Let's take it to the hips. So the handle will go into our hip, we're gonna let our wrists go right over that handle, and we're gonna hold onto it, and press into the hip.

So we press, press in and out, see that? And keep going. So again, about eight to 10 of these, working through the wrist. If you need to move up on your arm, please do so. This is getting this, all this bicep work, we're getting some love in our forearms and opening up that shoulder girdle.

So if you're like, "Mychele, it's sneaky." All my exercises are sneaky. Alright, (laughs) and then a couple more. Like I said, eight to 10 on the honor system. I'm not counting, not really. Other side, you have two hips.

Right there above your hip crease. Rest that wrist on it. This is your superhero pose. Long arm, pull that belly in, and press, press. This is my wonky arm.

(Mychele laughing) So if you have an arm that's like killing it, and the other one's like not killing it so much, keep practicing. Alright, we're going, and we're going. And I'm feeling my bra strap moving, it's good. If you don't have a bra strap, guys, it's okay. Or whoever wants to wear a bra, wear it.

Okay, let's go in one more, and we're done. Let's take it over our head. Hips are done, right over our head, are we good here? So that same press is happening. We're gonna press into the magic circle and resist it out.

Pull the belly button in, tall spine, ears away from shoulders, and press in. Yes, you feel that chest opening up a little bit differently than it did before, right? Keep going. Press, and really challenge yourself here. It's an advanced arm workout, so it's only gonna advance as much as you advance, remember that.

Keep pressing. I'm thinking about those exercise in PE class where we try to increase our bust, I think I overdid it. Keep going. (laughs) And one more. And then rest your arm for 2.2 seconds. We're gonna take it up and down in pulses.

So a little bit, frame your face, press into the magic circle. We're gonna press down. Keep pressing. Press, press, press, and bring it up, pulse it. Good, you see me?

It's the magic circle. She's hiding inside. Oh my goodness. This is gonna help you later. Is it framing my face?

Let's go, keep going, keep going. Almost one pass more, up and down, woo. OMG, and I'm done with that. Let's take it to the back. I'm gonna flip around so you can see me.

I want you to see. This way is the ocean, Mychele. So when we're back here, both hands are still gonna be in the handles if you see that. So think about the tallest spine, zip everything up from the side, get those arms reaching back, roll your shoulders back here. Yes, tall spine.

Pressing into the magic circle. It's not going to move a lot, but I still want you to press with that same intensity, okay? So press in, we'll do, ooh. Whew, this is three for me. Four, five, I'm counting this one.

Six, seven, eight, nine, and really hold that 10, squeeze it, squeeze it, squeeze it. Whew, and shake it off. I am already feeling all of that. Now, last one. Beautiful little rainbow that we're gonna make for ourselves.

We're gonna test ourselves out, keeping our shoulders rounded. So I want you to think about a rainbow, so take it up, catch it, round down. So if you're a dancer, this is almost like a port de bra. Yes, and we're really getting into that shoulder joint. The ball and socket are moving.

We'll go one more in this direction, 'cause this is your warmup. Yes, hold it there. Go the other way. Take it around. Catch it.

And when you're catching it with that grip, your wrist is getting a little workout, and all those tendons in your arms and ligaments in your arms are connecting to your shoulders and your back. Squeeze those back shoulder blades, your rhomboids, all those wonderful exercises that are helping. We'll do one more in this direction. Yeah, uh-huh, and we're done with that. Go ahead and bring your legs back a little closer.

Parallel stance, go ahead and hold onto both sides of your magic circle. The chin will tuck into the chest, tall spine, chin tucks in, let the arms hang, hang and forward fold, holding that magic circle. Maybe the magic circle touches the ground, maybe it kind of hovers off the floor, but let your arms really extend and let them be heavy from your shoulders. Bend at the knees if you need to, if your hamstrings are tight, bend the knees ever so slightly, and then come up halfway, press your heels into the floor. come up halfway, flatten that back.

I want you to see it from the side. So I'm here, lower down, and when I'm lifting up, I'm using my back body to pull myself up. Halfway tabletop, bring those shoulders back. Head is away from the shoulder. And then do it one more time, forward fold, let the head go on this one.

Full stretch. And then we're come halfway up, Knees stay soft. Give me that tabletop back. Let those arms kind of swing and hang. You see that?

I love it. Good, and then roll down again, and then bring it all the way up. Stack the spine, whew, you're warm, let's go back to the floor. So come to the floor, however comfortable you want to get. And I have my weights nearby.

We're gonna have a little fun here. So in we're our first exercise, we're gonna do crunches with our magic circle. Keep your feet flat on the floor. Bring the knees together as close or as wide as you need to. And we're gonna hold that magic circle in front of us.

Now you pick your adventure. I'm gonna try to go all the way to the floor and see what happens, I'm gonna crunch it up. So take yourself back, the arms are hovering, and crunch it up. I'm inhaling here. And then exhale, keep those arms in front of you as your lever.

If you want extra credit, push into the magic circle. We'll do two more. It's getting real in the field, y'all. Last one. On this last one, come up halfway, hold it there, and pulse into the magic circle here.

We're gonna do five. Five, four, three, two, one, hold it there. Pulse up towards the feet. Five, four, three, two, one, and roll everything down. Reach the arms back behind you.

Reaching long, I'm gonna leave the magic circle right there. I'm gonna curl up really quickly, set up to grab my magic circle, I'm sorry. Grab these things, (laughs) Grab my weights. I already did the magic circle. So I have my no more than three-pound, one, two, or three-pound weights here.

So, the exercise that I'm gonna do here is coming from our Cadillac. So from the Cadillac, we do a little exercise called the sit-ups. And normally we're holding on to the push-through bar back here. But today, we have push-through weights. So our legs will stay long, I want you to roll down on your mat, and we'll simulate that push-through bar here.

Bring your arms up to the ceiling, weights are holding, nice grip on the weights. leave the legs where they are. Use yourself to come up, and press up with the arm staying where they are. And roll up. Pushing through for your sit-up, and come down.

Take the arms back behind the head, ride it up to the top. Good, and then come down, reach it back. Last one, take it up. Reach, hold it there. Now if we're on the Cadillac, we're gonna do some overhead presses, right?

So go ahead and bring the arms to a goalpost at the side. And then come up, keep that pitch in your spine. Two more. Last one. And roll everything down, and weights to the side, 2.2 seconds, y'all.

My hip flexors are talking to me. So I'm going to go ahead and come into some windshield wipers, bringing my knees up to the ceiling, and just let my legs rock to either side of my body, to kind of turn off my hip flexors. Not kind of, to actually turn off my hip flexors because we have more exercises to do, y'all. One more each side. Good, good, good.

And come back to center. Alright, this is where it gets real again, y'all. So we are still simulating something that we do on the Cadillac. Grab those weights, they're really close by. We're gonna go into a teaser.

Stay with me. So to walk you through this, you've done this before, but maybe it's a little different. Palms are gonna come up. So palms are up, weights are in hand. Now you have the option here.

Take one leg, two legs, tabletop or two legs at a 90 or 45-degree angle. Alright, let's see. Into our teaser, use your hands like you're pulling straps on the reformer, and come up into your teaser. Hold it there. Good, pull the arms back towards the hips, and out, and back, and out, one more.

Back, and out, and lower everything to the floor. Hello, yeah? Okay, maybe this next one that we do, we use one leg. Maybe the next one that we do, we keep a toe on the floor. I don't know, let's see.

Let's do it again. (Mychele laughing) And we're taking it up. You ready, Mychele? Yes, let's go. I'm keeping a toe on the floor. (laughs) Left leg is gonna come up, and bring it up.

Oh, fight for it, Fight for it, hold it there. Bring the arms back, pull back. tall spine, and pull back, serve the platter, and come back, and then let it all out. If we did one leg, we have to do the other. I don't make the rules, y'all.

I don't make the rules, alright. Almost out of this. But there's kind of one more thing to do. Alright, you ready? Let's go.

One, two, you know what to do. Let's do it, actually do it. Okay, let's go up. I did it. And pull back, three, two, one, hold it there.

Now, extra credit. Tabletop, full teaser. Let your back down. Pick it back up. (Mychele laughing) Leave it right there, leave it right there.

'Cause you know what? You tried it and so did I. Alright, (laughs) let's put those waist down to the side. I was feeling excited. Yep, I was feeling great.

I'll try again another day, maybe not today. So tricep dips, fingertips. Fingertips can face you. Fingertips can face out. Fingertips can face back.

You pick your poison. The feet will come onto the mat. I like it facing me. So find a wide stance with your hands. So you can have full purchase of your shoulders.

Fingertips are pressing towards me. I'm gonna pull my hips up to the ceiling, come into my table. Long neck, look at something on the ceiling. You're amazing. Your triceps are at the back of your arms with all your arms are working.

We're gonna do some tricep dips here. So I want you to bend the elbows back towards the wall, and come up. You got four more of these to do, let's go. Burn it out. You got this, last one.

Best one, hold it there. Is it okay to hold it? Is it okay to bring the hips up a little bit more? Let's do that. Three, two, sit your bottom down.

Whew, it's hot in here. So take off all your, no, don't do that. Alright, let's go into kneeling. We are going to be kneeling. So I wanna get into our obliques, the sides of our body.

So this is my right leg, I'm gonna take it out to the side, point it away, or have it flush with the mat, up to you. Alright, side body's here. This leg is working. Arms come out to the side. Strong arms, yes?

And then reach for the mat. Stretching through your obliques, there we go. Hold it there. Hold it there. Extra credit if you'd like to reach further, hello.

Reach, reach, reach, reach, reach. Good, and then come back to the center. Thread through the center. Push down, twisting at the waistline. And then come back up to the center.

Extra-extra credit. Leave that top foot where it is. Maybe move your arm out a little bit further. And then take that bottom leg and cross under or over, holding that side plank. Hold it there.

Three, two, one, Bring that arm down, bend, and come up. Good stuff. Let's rest that side. Other side. We've got two sides, okay.

so that leg comes out. Pick your adventure, arms come to the side, Tall posture, airplane to the side, ride that wave, take it down. Here we go, reach. Extra credit if you reach further. Reach, reach, reach across the room maybe at a diagonal, And then take that arm and thread it through.

Strong arms, and then come back to the center, hold it there. Leave that top leg where it is. Other leg will come out and meet it where it is. Hold that plank there, hold it, hold it. Bring that arm down.

Can we bend? Boom, strong arms, take it out. Come back and then rest yourselves. Let's press back into a rest pose. Alright, coming out, we are going to move the magic circle to the center of our mat for the next exercise.

But before we do that, we're gonna check in with some pushups. So I'm gonna do a little slanted pushup. Legs are out. I'm on my knees, it's a kneeling pushup. Wrist, elbows, and shoulders are in line.

We're just gonna lower down, elbows stay close to the body, bend back, and lift. And bend back, lift it up. Woo, and last one. Press it all the way, boom. Alright, press back to child's pose.

We're almost there. Extra credit. I have a straddled stance here. My right knee is forward. My left knee is back.

I'm going to use my magic circle. Magic circle is gonna be on a little bit of a balance here. My right arm is on the magic circle. Left arm is on the outside of the mat. I'm going to press up like you would on the wonder chair, okay?

So hold that there, that is your balance. Bend the left leg, the left arm only. Bend it, get that out a little bit. Bend it here, press up. So while you're pressing, bending this arm, this magic circle is pressing in, so you're still using both arms, yes?

Bend it down, back stay straight. Here's your sit-up. Last one, or your pushup. Boom, other side. I find that this little exercise makes a sit-up or pushup more accessible for me because sometimes, my body does not want to do it.

So left leg comes out nice and far, right leg is back. Magic circle is balancing on the handle. Taking my right arm out on the outside of the mat, pressing down in that magic circle, bend that right elbow back, let me take it back out. Boom, press up. This is your single arm pushup.

Take two more here. Last one, and you're out of that. Now, extra-extra-extra credit. If you wanna do one more type of pushup, let's get a little higher. We are not doing a full pushup because that's not in my body today.

(laughs) So just kick back, here's your plank, hold it here. I call this the arm-release pushup. And we're gonna do just that. Take it all the way down. Ride it down, all the way down.

Hold it there, release the hands. Yeah? Press the hands back into the floor, and let's see if we can wave it up, I'm gonna take my feet down and then push back up. Press to child's pose. 'Cause that's where I am today. Come back out to your plank, hold it here, let the body down, release the hands, tuck your toes under, press back.

If you notice your chest is getting a stretch, and your arms are like, "What are we doing?" Last one. Take it out. Hold it there, let it down. Release and press back into your child's pose. Alright, we're gonna come out of that rest pose and come to the front-ish of our mat.

I'm gonna go a little bit further than the front of my mat, and lay my side all the way down. Option to take your weights into your hands here, I'm gonna push this magic circle back a little bit, because we're advancing it. I'm gonna hold the weights. Option to not use them if you don't want to, so side body is all the way forward in front of your mat, in line with your mat. Lift your top arm up to the ceiling.

Hold that there, find your balance. As you're finding your balance, push up with the arm that's on the floor to come into a teaser. Come here, hold it. And then on the way down other side, roll to the other side, to find that same start position on your opposite side. Got it? Yes?

That was practice, now you know what to do. Alright, so that was your tutorial. Let's get it, alright. So we're here, nice and tall, reach away with the weights. Other side reaches long.

Yes, up, reach, hold it. Both arms come out. I like this little rainbow happening here. And then come up to the top. Ooh, hello weights, and other side.

Here's your rainbow. Reach it up, hold it here. Little extra tease. Turn your wrists in and out. Hug the knees in, and place everything down.

Final, final burnout. Put those weights to the side, we're gonna get into some serious work here, y'all. Alright, stay with me. Plank shoulder taps, take it out. High plank.

Choose your high plank or your low plank. I'm going high, let's roll. Hold that plank, hold it here, hold it for five, four, three, two, one. Touch the shoulder. Hold, touch your shoulder.

Hold, keep going. Brace at the abs, one more set. Last one, knees down. Whew, press back. Hello, burning?

Good, we're not done. Go ahead and flip over. I know, I know. You're a pancake. Come back to your back.

Roll it back with care. Grab those weights. A little shoulder press action going on. I'm gonna leave my knees up. Bring the hands right to shoulder level.

If these were heavier, it'd be great, but your arms are already done with you, right? So press up to the ceiling, press, and bring the arms right back, hovering over the floor. Squeezing all the muscles of the chest. Your pecs, your delts, the lat squeeze, take it down and up. You got that?

Let's increase the pace. Let's go, eight. Pull the abs in, seven. Burnout, six. Five, pull those abs in.

Four, three. Push the ceiling away. Two, one, burn it. Put those weights to the side. What? She's flipping back over.

She's flipping back over. Alright, let's get back into that plank. We're gonna do a little mountain climbers. So if you've never done them before, come out into your plank. Bring that right knee to the the elbow.

Take it back, Left knee comes to the elbow, take it back, you got it? Let's go. Run, run. The arms are holding you up. Three, two, one.

Press back in the child's pose. I bet your arms are screaming right now, right? Mine are. (laughs) And then come back to lying on your belly. Hold everything down, we're almost there. If you didn't already love swan, you're gonna love it even more.

So we're gonna go cold, y'all. Reach the arms out in front of you. Both arms are out in front. And we're gonna take our body into that rocking position. Legs and arms will fly up.

Are you ready? Swan, here it is. Press up, press up. You ready? Let it go.

And bring it in, hello. And out. What? My arms are like, "Girl, I don't have any more left in me." It's okay. We're gonna do another swan. Bring those elbows back.

Bring the hands one on top of the other. Checking with the under part of our arm. Head will go onto the hands. And here, I just want you to lift the top of your body up. So let's change it up, 'cause I got a mic on.

Hands and head meet, legs are on. Come up, lift your back towards the ceiling. Shoulders stay wide, elbows stay wide. Hold it here. Reach the arms out.

Hold it here. Reach the arms, press back. Palms face each other. Hold here. Arms come to a T.

Hold here. Shoulders press down. Arms come back to the front. Pull the arms, wide fingers towards your hips. Elbows towards each other, reach out.

Burn it out. And last one. Bring it up as far as possible. Hold it, hold it, hold it. Can I reach the arms back?

I was kidding. Hold it there. Reach, reach, reach, reach, reach. Extra credit, stretch. Grab the ankles, hello.

Shoulder stretch. Nice, right? Oh, three, two, one. Rest everything down. Press back into that beautiful child's pose because, ouch. (laughs) And press your arms into the floor.

Find more stretch as you press your hands into the mat. Let the head hang heavy, chest lowers heavy to the mat. Bring your forearms to the mat, and really press your elbows into the mat, to find stretch through your lats. your pecs, the delts. Long neck.

It's a burner, y'all. Final stretch, let's reach out a little bit further. Stretch further. Bring your hands a little bit wider than your mat. Find the stretch there.

Chest lowers. Press up, bring the hands closer, almost into a diamond. And press the hips back to find more stretch of the arms and the neck. Walk yourself up, gonna come and take a seated position with you. My shoulders are talking to me right now.

Roll the shoulders down and back. Roll them back. Thank you, shoulders. Thank you, arms. Roll it forward.

Roll forward. Let's take a little stretch forward. Take both arms forward. Take one arm, pick which arm, stretch across. I like to flip my wrist, get all those muscles in there nice and relax from what I just did to it.

Switch to the other side. Other side. Pull and stretch. Work that wrist, take your shoulder, hand over the shoulder. Pull a little bit gently towards your body, pressing into the elbow.

Stretching through the back muscles. Maybe twist a little bit more. Other side. Wrap it, elbow press, stretch. My body wants to twist today.

Twist it and come back to the center. Shake it all the way off. Inhale up, press down. One more, inhale up, rest your arms, shake them out. Thank you, arms, you're amazing.

Whenever summertime, wintertime, anytime. Pilates Anytime, your arms are ready, you're gonna have strong arms, and that's what it's about. It's about strong arms, activity of daily living, and you are done. Thanks y'all, see you later.


Saphira B
Fun, focused, and effective class on arms. I feel stronger in my arms, and stretched out throughout my body. Thank you.
Jennifer E
1 person likes this.
I adore your classes, Mychele! Always a great workout physically and I always feel my mood boosted too after your classes with your fun positive energy! Thank you!
You have such great energy! Thank you for a fun class!
Lina S
Fun and effective class! I enjoy your sense of humor!
Love your energy--so much fun!
Elissa D
I loved it! Thank you
Thanks, Mychele this was so much fun!!
Super fun, thank you Mychele- I’m gonna feel that tomorrow!
Thanks Michelle for passing on your energy and fun upper body workout!
Megan C
Super fun and effective! Love the teaser variations! I actually "LOL'd" at certain points too, especially when you said "it's gettin' hot in here..." Thank you!
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