Class #5520

Reformer with Overball

55 min - Class


Be curious and patient as you explore creative flexibility in this dynamic Reformer class with Sarah Bertucelli. Utilizing an Overball, this class focuses on dynamic stretching and stability in your pelvis, enhancing your range of movement. Sarah's guidance encourages you to find nuances and tension to let go, discovering what works best for your body.
What You'll Need: Reformer w/Box, Overball

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Let's focus on playful flexibility. Are you ready? Go ahead and, make sure you have a squishy ball. We'll use it for some of the class, but not all of it. Hold it in your hand to begin.

Open your heart, stand tall with your 2 feet underneath your hips, breathing in, and breathing out. Bring your hands together in front of you holding the ball with two hands, roll down, that the ball just kind of find its way. If you can, hopefully, without bending your knees, you can put the ball on the floor. Push into the ball a little to pull up through your abs. Pull up your shoulders.

And then roll yourself back up. Inha, exhale to roll down, Just gonna feel your way through your roll down. Put the ball on the floor. If you can't do this with straight knees, go ahead and bend them. Push into the ball to hoist the belly up a little more.

Feel the shoulders nice and plugged. The neck is relaxed. And then round yourself up. Then one more time, please. We're rolling down.

And push. I found my toes and round and roll. Beautiful. So I'm gonna have a seat on the reformer. I am set with a lighter spring that I would normally use for my footwork. I've got 2 reds and a blue.

So I'm going to be doing mostly single legs when we get going there. So I would recommend a lighter spring than usual. We're gonna take the ball with us. We're gonna swivel around with the feet resting on the foot platform and go far enough forward so you feel like you'll be in the right spot for your, shoulder rest. Place the ball on the center of your upper back around that area. You can always maneuver around a little bit and then see if you can find a place where your head can relax.

So your head is relaxed. So if your ball is too inflated, it might be difficult. So you wanna make sure you find the right position for you. Allow your feet to feel that they're comfortably resting. Allow your arms to open and your head to relax.

So my friends, today, we are gonna focus on being patient and curious and letting go in the stretches, so please breathe in through your nose. And breathe out completely. Focus on breathing into the ball. Perhaps you might wanna roll a little bit to one side. I've taken my arms out to the side.

That feels good to me. And then you might wanna roll a little bit to one side. Now I like to do this sequence on the floor on the mat without the shoulder rest in my way, but since we're doing a reformer class, we're going to just use what we have here? Come to center. Let your arms make their way up to the ceiling. Cross one arm over the other like you're giving yourself a hug. And then do the same thing where you roll just a little bit to one side.

Be patient and curious. See what you feel. And then roll just a little bit to the other side. So the idea here is thoracic mobility. We're gonna work a lot on thoracic mobility.

Undo your arms and cross the other arm on top. And then let's just make a point to roll in the other direction. First, so it's my upper body that's rolling. And, certainly, if I was on the floor, I might be able to go a little further. But since I'm on the reformer, I'm stopping when the older rest kinda tells me I need to.

Breathing in and breathing out. Now Undue the arms. Place your hands down on the mat somewhere and, lift your bottom up and scoot down just a little bit. And see if you can feel just a little bit of, an opening higher up, which would mean more along my collar bones. Take your arms straight out to the side and sort of press the arms down into the reformer to open through that chest and release So I'm pressing and releasing. And one more time, pressing and releasing.

Now Here, I'm gonna use my hands on the back of my head, so I have to go up and over so the shoulder rest are not in the way. And I'm gonna lift my head up. And then I'm going to clasp my fingers together and let my head rest in my hands and slide back until you feel that the tops of your shoulders are just perhaps touching the shoulder rest. So wherever it makes sense for you. So this is where we're gonna stay for a little bit.

I'm waiting into the ball The ball is kind of in my low mid, mid cage area, whatever feels right to you or wherever you are. And here, using your abdominals to select the spine, we're gonna lift up a little bit, so a little bit of ab work and lower down. Now if your legs are long, you could always rest your legs on of the bar if you wanted to. Again, we're just being creative with the equipment we have here. So as I do these little mini abdominal curls, I wanna see if I can really squish the ball a bit more, keeping the pelvis as best as possible and neutral. And, again, so it's a little tiny, little chest lift. Lift And one more time, we're gonna lift.

Now take the arms forward for me, keep the curl you have in your body, and let's work on curling the pelvis. So you're gonna look in the direction of your pelvis, and you're gonna see without using your legs, how much movement you can make and drop your tail down. How much movement can you make, and drop your tail down, and how much movement? So I'm stretching my low back by working my abdominals, real small movements. It should feel quite nice. Now here, let's go ahead and slide the legs in the direction of straight.

So you're just underneath the foot bar and see if from here, you can just pop yourself right up to a sitting position. Good. Now, again, if you need to modify for your longer arms and legs, go ahead and do so. Now I'm going to lie back without the ball underneath me. You can get there however you'd like. I like to push up into the roll up bar. With my knees.

And then I'm gonna put my feet on the foot bar and place the ball underneath my pelvis. So here, truly find a place where you feel that you can just relax your pelvis. Don't even think about your abdominals at first. Just let your pelvis relax and sway a little bit side to side. Again, you'll hear me say a lot that we need to be patient and we need to be curious.

So this class is all about finding nuances, finding what works for you. So I'm doing kind of like a little figurate with my hips. I'm going to one side with my pelvis. And then to the other side, it feels like a little figure 8, but it's just kinda swaying side to side. And my legs are responding. And then let's come back to a rest position.

So my pelvis is resting. My feet are just resting on the foot bar for now. K? Engage those abdominals a bit, open through the chest by pressing the shoulder blades down onto the mat, and actually press a little bit into the head. Just a little bit into the head. So we've got a little bit more back work here.

See if you feel safe lifting your legs to tabletop if you do do. Stay here for a moment. Do you feel safe stretching one leg out to straight and pressing it into the foot bar and then the other? So we're pressing two legs straight into the foot bar. Let's go ahead and flex the ankles. Pressing down opening the chest.

So it feels a little bit like I'm just, balancing on that ball. I'm gonna lift just one leg up and put it down. One straight leg up and put it down. So it's a marching. Actively pressing through the shoulder blades, actively putting a little bit of weight through the back of the head and breathing and marching.

One more time on each side. Beautiful. So bent one knee, put it on the footbar, bend the other knee, put it on the footbar, go ahead foot on the footbar, not the knee, Now lift your pelvis up, take the ball out from underneath you and just take a little relaxing moment there. I find that I just really can't get enough of having a ball underneath my pelvis or underneath my rib cage for grounding. Let's go ahead and place the ball for a few moments between the legs, and you'll float your legs to a tabletop position Let's flip the arms up to the ceiling and plug the shoulders down onto the mat here. So the arms are gonna stay still as you twist squeezing the ball, you can bring your feet together if you want, or you can keep them parted the same distance of the ball. Squeeze the ball as you pull back to center. So we're inhaling to twist, and we're gonna squeeze the ball and pull back to center.

And a little bit bigger twist, maybe, squeeze back to center, and one more time. And back to center. Now hold the ball between your two hands. Stretch your two legs to straight. Again, feel the shoulders grounded. We're gonna twist the legs one direction.

Keep the arms still to begin with. So when you do this, be mindful of the opposing shoulder really rooting down to give you a more firm anchor to twist from. So think about that. Now We're gonna add to that a little bit. So as you twist with your legs, your arm opens, your ball goes with the arm that opens, come back to center.

Holding the ball in two hands. We're gonna reach open and reach in the direction there of the of opposition. So I'm not saying that very well, but, hopefully, making sense. So my arms and legs are moving in opposite directions, and the ball goes in the one arm that's reaching totally out to the side. One more time. And one more time over here.

I just got a little confused. Good brain game stuff. Good bend the knees. Hug your knees into your chest for a moment. And we're just gonna put the ball down and kinda out of the way for a few moments.

We're gonna put our heels on the bar. Feel your spinal position, chest is open, be mindful of your eye gaze, and let's just press out a couple times here. So I've got a light spring because I wanna focus a bit on stretching in single legs. So, again, I said I was on 2 reds in a blue, so it's a little lighter than I would do my normal footwork. Come in and stay. Let's lift the right leg up first, and you're gonna make figure 4 with the right leg. Try to keep your pelvis down.

Conflex the ankle if it suits you, and we're gonna press out pushing a little bit into the stretch here and press in trying to enhance the stretch. So I'm gonna push my foot a little bit into my thigh to open my knee. And then as I come in, my other leg is pushing my foot toward me as I consciously pushed my knee away. So think about that a couple more times. Feel that wonderful stretch through the hip, If you really keep your pelvis, anchored, you should feel a nice stretch.

Stay here. Now we're going to roll side to side a little bit of ross the body with that leg. That's where I feel most stretch. You can go the other way. Maybe that's a good stretch for you. And then we're gonna roll again, feel the stretch, and come back to center.

So I've just kept the shape, and I'm moving my spine in rotation and one more time. Come back to center and let's change legs. So we're gonna cross now the other leg on top of the 5 figure 4 stretch. You can flex the ankle if you want. And pressing down into the stretch, and pulling the leg in. So, yes, my right leg is moving, but I'm thinking about what's happening on my stretching leg here.

So as I go to straight. I'm moving my thigh away from me. As I come in, I'm pulling my foot, and pushing my knee away still. I guess both times, I'm doing that. Pushing away a little.

You could actually use your hand. That feels really nice. And here now, we'll stay and will go across the body, beautiful stretch there, and then the other way. So Tick talking into what feels good with you, please move at the pace that suits you and remember to be patient. And to be curious.

Linger somewhere if you want or keep moving if you prefer. It's up to you. Come back to center, and then we're gonna change again. So put your two toes on the bar and settle in here, press out in a few times. We're using both legs. We feel all of our things.

Head is an alignment. Chest is open. Pelvis is an alignment. And then we'll press out one more time with two legs and then come on in. Now slide your feet all the way together take right leg up, cross it over left.

So think about squeezing with your inner thighs and let the leg just relax there. Squeezing with your inner thighs as you straighten. Now if you pull too hard with your lower leg, it might feel a little weird on your knee. So you wanna think really that I'm not hugging my knee or hugging with my leg at the top. Instead, I'm hugging with my leg at the bottom. Hold here.

Sway side to side. TikTok. Oh, that's where the stretch feels really delicious to be. And TikTok. So feel the rotation. Enjoy. You can do whatever you want with your arms here.

It's up to you. You do you. Come back to center. Put your other foot down right next to, so we wanna be at center here. Cross the leg over. Squeeze those inner thighs.

And press out. So, again, just be mindful of not whacking the knee out too much as you straighten the legs. So Here, I'm thinking of squeezing with my inner thighs rather than hugging with my lower legs. So just think about that. And I feel quite a lot of inner thigh engagement as a result of that, which is nice.

So now I'm in and I'm holding that, and I'm gonna sway over to one side. And I'm gonna sway to the other side. Find myself singing when I'm stretching. Please make sure you are breathing. And notice, you know, the pelvis is moving.

The pelvis is finding where the stretch feels interesting. So allow that to happen for your body, please. And then we'll come back through to center. Make small v positions, so squeeze those heels together, settle in, feel both legs working equally, Remember to pay attention to your eye gaze every now and again. Are you in the habit of staring at your feet? If you are, try to stop doing that.

Try to look up to the ceiling or maybe dance around somewhere else. So now we'll come in and we'll stay. So you're, in your small v, you're gonna remove your right leg and you're going to let it rest out to the side. So I've rested out to the side on the outside of my foot bar. And then I'm gonna press to straight like that. And then as I come in, it just kinda glides just outside of the football. Now if that doesn't work for you, your leg can just come underneath the footbar.

That would be fine with me. But if it does work for you, come in and stay, allow the knee to bend the leg that is straight and push into the floor to open a little bit through the front of your hip here. Straighten the leg, press out, come all the way in, allow the leg to bend, push into the floor, and enjoy that stretch good one more time. We're gonna press out in, find that stretch starts to soften for me after I do 3 or so. So let's go ahead and straighten the leg, put the foot back on the bar, seal, we do the other side.

So can you take the leg out to the side, just outside of the foot bar? And you might find ones a little tighter than the other, just like me. And you're gonna see if you can press out there. If you need to put your foot somewhere else or your leg somewhere else, please do. Try to really feel the openness across the front of your hip crease. So for me, it's my left leg, the one I'm not pushing out and in with.

And now we're gonna come in. We're gonna bend the knee. Push into the floor and feel the stretch. Straight in the leg and press out. Bend the knee, push into the floor if you can, and stretch. So I'm like, in my mind, I'm pushing myself, away from where my foot is on the floor.

And one more time, please. So I'm not so particular about pointed feet or flexed feet. Do what feels good to you. Lift up. So now let's put your feet wide on the bar. And turned out it to your comfort. Okay.

Same idea here. We're gonna press out and end a couple times with both legs. Just kinda get sorted out and organized and feel. How your body feels should feel nice. And then we're going to press out this time and stay. Take that right leg off the bar and, thread it outside of the foot bar like we did on the other one and bend in bend the other knee, and you're gonna push into the stretch, look in the direction of the leg that's on the foot bar, and press out undoing it.

So we're gonna come in trying to go wider if we can, bed in the knee, and I'm pushing looking in the direction of the foot that's on the foot bar. And undo it. And I'm going wider each time, and I'm getting a little more range, and I'm looking feels really nice to me. I'm gonna do one more there, please. So I am working, but I'm also really finding stretches it as a result.

I'm finding more range each time. So go ahead and undo that shape. Press out, put 2 feet on the bar. So I like doing this one from the up position. So here, make sure you're secure with your other leg.

Take the leg away. So you've changed sides, and you gotta openness through your hip crease as you bend in. Oh, that's my tighter side to see if you can make a connection to the floor. Push into the floor, look in the direction of the leg that's on the foot bar, feeling a nice openness through the hips there, undo it. Try again. So you're gonna find it. Nice. So each time I find that my leg slides outside of the foot bar a little bit better.

So see if that is the case for you too and keep working to not even feel the footbar if you can. Yay. I was able to do it on that one. And we'll do just one more here. So, again, we're coming in. We're sliding open. We're grounding the foot.

Or stretching and breathing. Press out two feet around the bar. Come all the way in, please. Let's bring the feet close together, a little separation, and just enjoy a few calf raises down and up Now this spring tension is just a little bit lighter than I normally like to work my calves and stretch my calves. So, you know, certainly, if you wanted to stand up and give yourself more spring tension, you could, but we can also work with lighter spring sometimes. So press up and then down and stay. Just bend one knee for me and find a spot on the foot bar where you can just really enjoy that stretch.

Dropping that heel underneath the bar. You can use your other foot to kinda pull yourself in a little bit more, flex the ankle, and give yourself a little extra stretch. Be curious here. Don't be shy to move your foot around and find your stretches. Just make sure you're secure on the foot bar. And then let's change sides.

So, again, foot is secure. I'm stretching my heel under the bar and keep your other foot on if you want, or you can hook the leg underneath, flex the ankle a bit, and see if you can find something interesting in your cab. Here, stretching and enjoying, breathing in, and breathing out. Good. 2 feet are on the bar. Let's bend the legs and hug the knees into your chest, and then roll yourself onto your side and come on up. So we're gonna work a little bit more in this next exercise. So one blue spring is ideal for this.

You can put it on the hook or the button or whatever makes sense you, but a blue spring will make sense. So we're gonna come up onto our hands and knees. So I would love it if you could tuck your toes under and get a nice foot stretch. My feet are at the back edge of the reformer carriage so that I have maximum range of motion, but you can adjust as needed. I'm gonna take my hands so that my hands feel as though, my shoulders can rest, not rest, but my hands are right underneath my shoulders. Boy, all that stretching made me a little bit loopy. I'm gonna have to get my game on here, friends.

So we're gonna open the chest and try to flatten out the back a bit here. Right? So I wanna be able to pull forward so my thighs touch the shoulder rest. So that's where you decide where your hands should be. My hands need to be just a little forward. So that when I pull forward and my thighs touch the shoulder rest, my upper body's gonna stay here. Opening through the chest, we're gonna just pull the legs in and control all the way back.

So this is abdominal stability. Hit flexors are actually doing the movement. Now you could do this with a flat back. You can do this with a round back. I'm endeavoring to be a little bit extended.

But feeling like I'm flat, right, one more time in stay. Can you hold this tailbone backing up? Can you extend one leg out to straight, flex the foot, and continue to move 3, and 2, And one more hold it in, bring the leg back where it came from, see if you can send the other leg back out to straight three times. And one so it's straight behind me. 2. Good.

And last one, two legs down. Gently come all the way to the stopper, untuck your feet and just sit in a child's pose for a moment. Feel free to sway side to side. Remember to breathe. Coming into a little bit of a push up where we're working, for trying to create more range of motion. So You're gonna bring your hands underneath your shoulders, and you wanna rest in a position.

Not rest, but you wanna organize in a where your knees, your thighs can kinda rest up against the shoulder rest. That's what I like. Now I'm pulling I'm I'm using my pecs to squeeze as well as to bend my elbows. So, they don't actually bend my elbows. Right? But, when I bend my elbows, I'm also squeezing the reformer is what I wanted to say. Now here what's nice is you can go beyond and you can find your range and then press yourself out of it. So only do it if it feels good in your shoulders, but for me, what I like about this is it creates a little bit of strength in the range of motion we're endeavoring to find here.

So last one here. Good. And then take a seat. Back on your feet. Sway into your, child's pose for a couple moments. And then we're going to change again.

So I would like you to get ready for a little bit of hip work. So you're gonna have to find your ball again. We're on a red and a blue spring. You'll use your ball and we'll lie back down. K. So once we're on our back again, you gotta be a little tricky.

I like to put the ball between my legs. I'll hold the straps with one hand. Press out, put my straps in. And then I've got my hands to hold the ball. So press out to straight and just kinda get organized for a moment, fill your pelvis, fill your spine, fill all your pieces.

Bend the legs a bit so you can place the ball between your knees in a diamond shape. Use the ball to help keep a little intention around the shape, but I'm not actively wanting to squeeze it. So how high up can you lift your legs keeping your pelvis down? And then how low can you go? So I would love it if you can go beyond the reformer. If you could take your heels down to tap the spring, that'd be great. Of course, you need to make sure that you are not losing your stability through your front body, through your belly. Abdominal muscles, and that your back says it's safe.

So this is an exercise I like to do quickly sometimes, but today, we're just keeping a nice, moderate pace here, trying to use both legs equally, functionalizing a lot of things here. One more time, and then come on up. So place the ball now between the feet and stretch your legs to straight. So you can point your feet or flex, whatever makes sense to you. So we're gonna squeeze the ball actively here with a neutral alignment from the legs.

And we're gonna come up to our high point. What is that? So maybe it's 90 degrees, maybe it's less. And we're gonna do a little spine twist first side to side. Feel that. K. So now after you're sure you feel comfortable with that little spine twist side to side, we're gonna do circles. So we're gonna twist to the right and then come down, neutralize the pelvis, go around to the other side, and back reverse.

So I say neutralize the pelvis because it's kinda like the cork screw on the mat. We are moving the pelvis a little bit. But it's this because of the straps here, it's gonna feel more legs. You're gonna feel more in the legs than the pelvis, but I want you to feel that you can move the pelvis a little bit. So I'm reversing each time.

Circle around. And I'm keeping my gaze up toward the ceiling rather than at my ball because I'm my ball is there. I don't have to watch it. Good. This will be the last time, please, like this. I'm trying to keep my legs in neutral alignment. Beautiful. And now let's bend the knees and make the same exercise in turnouts.

So really tricky to hold between the heels. I find you're gonna see me wobble quite a lot, which is fun. K. So we're gonna take that same idea holding between the heels in turnout and circle down and around. Beautiful. So you are letting your pelvis respond to this if it suits you. If you'd rather not let your pelvis respond, then don't. Good.

And other side. Oh, hard to keep the turn out. Let's just do one more here in the other direction. And around. Bend the knees.

We're gonna go ahead and just let that ball find its home down underneath the reformer and take a little stretch here for a couple moments. So we're gonna use these straps as a stretch stretching mechanism, my friends. Okay? So let's stretch your legs up to the ceiling first where it's comfortable for you to be. So not super far in, but a little bit further away. K? So let's go ahead and bend one leg and kinda pull it in, hopefully, to a bent knee position so that your foot can rest on the reformer. Now if that doesn't feel right, you could hold the strap with your hand if you wanted to, but that feels good to me.

And I'm just trying to tick talk a little bit the leg that's up up. So TikTok gives me a little bit of a stretch on the outside, a little bit of a stretch on the inside. Again, My rope is across my body. If it doesn't feel good to you, please don't do it. Change it. Good. Now we're gonna change sides here. So I'm finding a place where it feels comfortable.

I'm gonna bear the weight with one foot and then take the other foot underneath me. So it's kind of kissing my other booty, and my thigh bone is reaching away. So I'm in a nice hip opener here, which feels really good. Just gonna hold that. If that doesn't work, you could modify.

And then you're gonna tiktok. So, again, the rope is just across my body, and it's just resting on me. It's actually grounding me a little bit. And, you know, if you don't feel much here, that's okay. But see if you're patient and you're curious about little movements that you can make, what you do feel. So I actually feel more sensation in the leg that is bent underneath me right now on this side. And that's okay.

So we'll go ahead and rest that. Just let your legs bend in for a moment. My knees are open. My feet are near each other. I'm gonna keep my knees open and put my hands on my thighs.

To find what feels like a deep squat. So I'm in a deep squat with my hands on my thighs. My elbows are grounded on the mat, and my hands are on my thighs. Now I'm gonna keep that arrangement so I can feel that my thighs are going to stay still. I'm endeavoring to be at about 90 degrees at the hips.

And I wanna open as much as I can to feel a little bit of a stretch in my inner leg. And then I'm gonna keep my thighs where they are the carriage will move as I straighten my legs. I'm gonna keep my thighs where they are as I bend my knees, and try to open a little more. And then I'm gonna straighten my legs. So I'm getting a nice inner thigh stretch.

And by kind of moving around in the stretch, you might be able to feel just a little bit more. Maybe not. And then bend. Now keep the bent knee position. We're going to bring the knees toward the ropes.

So try to hook the ropes with your knees and pull the legs in. My feet are parted. My knees are touching. And keep the the ropes on the knees, the inside of the knee, as you see how far you can open. So I'm endeavoring to be in a little internal rotation and come back in. Now some of you will have immense internal rotation.

I don't have a lot, so I am trying and may not look like it. But this is as good as it gets for this lady right now, although it's better than it used to be. That's for sure. So here, go ahead and open one last time. Allow the knees to separate from the ropes, stretch your legs out to straight one last time. Glad those heels back together, and let's make another change. So we're gonna work on getting a side body stretch here.

It's a little creative. So you gotta stay with me. I'm gonna take my right foot, and I'm going to, let me say that differently. I'm gonna bear the weight of the spring in my left leg. I'm gonna be stretching the left side.

I'm gonna take my right foot, and I'm gonna rest it kinda on top of my other foot. So I put my heel kinda on top of strap to keep it wedged in there. I wanna actively flex my ankle, so I'm pushing through my heel, in dorcey flexion, And I'm going to diagonally kind of bring my foot down or my leg piece down until I feel the frame would be ideal. So I didn't quite get a crossed. Try again. You're gonna lift up. Diagonally, you wanna try to get your heel to be, like, right on top of the wood piece if your body says it's okay. We're just beyond. Now one more time, I'm gonna diagonally come across.

I'm gonna try to find that spot So my heel is resting on the wood frame. I'm pushing through my heel, creating energy out through my foot. And that's giving me some beautiful stretch in my side body. I'm feeling it a little across the front of my hip. I'm feeling it in my waist.

Please breathe. If you wanted to extend the, the the reach of the stretch, you could reach your arm up overhead shoulder rest gets in the way a little bit for you to go into, lateral flexion of the upper body, but you can roll your head to one side. And notice what you feel. Just make sure you're breathing, please. I hope this feels as delicious to you as it does to me. I could stay here for a very long time. The way I'd like you to get out of this is to first engage your abdominals a little bit bend the knees slightly, the one you're stretching, lift those legs up, come back to what feels like center, stretch your two legs to straight, getting ready to change sides. K? Maybe you need to tick talk your body a little bit because I feel stretch sometimes I need to resettle, if you will. So we're gonna feel that you're bearing the weight of the spring with your right leg, Okay? You're gonna take your other foot and just kinda find a place with your heel to sort of wedge it on top.

Helps. Excuse me. It helps keep the strap on too. So now I am going to find this diagonal path down and across until I feel hopefully touching the frame. Now it's so interesting. We're gonna do that three times. Because when I do this, on the other side, it's really difficult for me to even find the frame.

But on this side, easy. I'm there the first time. So just notice the differences between your sides. So here I'm on the frame, and I've got my heel resting on the frame, and I'm reaching through my foot Pushing through my heel, and then I'm feeling energetically as though I'm reaching through the crown of the head, and I'm getting lots of lovely stretches in my side body, up into my waist. Now if I didn't have the shoulder rest here, I would take my arm overhead and stretch there, and that would give you some, too, but you can just roll your head a little bit, and you could do something with your arms.

Such a beautiful view. I'm looking at those clouds back there. Just moving. So gorgeous. Breathe in and breathe out, please. So be curious here.

Maybe you move your pelvis a little bit, but you gotta keep the energy through the foot. And then we're gonna get out of it by engaging the abs a bit, bending the knee of the leg that's pushing. And then see if you can, with your abdominals, lift those two legs up, bend both knees, fine center, take a pause. And we're gonna slowly take our feet out of our straps. So this kinda work really really calms me down and makes me feel jello y and super yummy stretched.

I hope you feel the same way. We are gonna work a little bit more for the next few pieces here. So you're gonna wanna retrieve your ball again. Where's mine? It's hiding back here. That wasn't the prettiest way to do it, but you're gonna wanna use your ball, and we're gonna use it to sit on. So one blue spring for this next exercise.

So change your spring, and I like to do it on the hook. So I'm gonna have you stand up first and you're gonna wanna place the ball kinda underneath your seat near the shoulder rest so that you can sit cross legged. Okay? So you might need to adjust a little bit. Once you're here, you do you, make sure you're comfortable. So, ideally, we're sitting pretty equally on the, two sides of the pelvis cross legged. So this just adds a little instability that's kinda fun. So can you take the hand that is near the straps and reach it behind your back. And in doing that, can you now take your other arm behind you so that you can make this shape? If you can make this shape, then you do the shape with the exercise. If not, then just skip this part. K? So I'm gonna take the strap that's forward, and I'm gonna hold the strap with my hand that's, away. And then I'm gonna reach around, and I'm gonna get that hook again.

So I'm getting a nice chest opener and also actively working the external rotators. So we're gonna find external rotation and come in. Beautiful. And just find the pace that suits you, and you're gonna be able to see the difference between the two sides, both in flexibility. So I just find this to be a really nice opportunity to work on, chest opening and really acts of flexibility, which is what we're trying to achieve. In this class or what I'm hoping to help guide you through. Let's go ahead and rest that, and we'll do the same thing on the other side.

So let's just put the strap away. Uncross the legs, and why not just give ourselves an opportunity to do a squat, reach around, and hold onto the ball, Shift your weight into your feet, pick up the ball behind you if you can so your chest is open, and we'll walk around to the other side. Now you're going to have a seat on the ball. Whoops. I might have moved the reformer a little bit. And then cross the legs and make sure it feels comfortable for you wherever you are, check-in and make sure you can make that stretched arrangement here.

And boy, I just love it when I face this direction, and I get to look at the twinkling of the water. This sun and the water and all that. So we're now gonna do the exercise. So you're holding the strap, with the the proper hand, and you're gonna reach around and see if you can hold on to the bicep. And then holding that open chest here, we're gonna move in and out of external rotation. Find your breath.

And having to balance on the ball is always a fun challenge, don't you think? I do. One more time, please. Good. So you're just moving at the pace that suits you there. So go ahead and unravel that. Put your strap away. Whoops. I dropped my strap.

That is a Pilates foul, my friends, a Pilates foul. So the feet are on the floor. I'm gonna tip forward roll off the ball a little bit, reach around and hold on to it, and I'm gonna see if I can keep my arms behind me as I stand up. Making sure that you're looking forward when you stand up. Okay. So we're gonna put the ball away, and we're gonna be quite creative here. I'd like the foot bar to go down to the bottom position, but not fully down. So meaning I have 3 options here.

So I've taken my footbar down to the lowest option without being fully down. And I'd like to be on a red and a blue spring, so it's a little bit heavier than I would sometimes use for this because the bar is further away. So you should use the spring that suits you, though. Okay? So we're going to start by having a seat right at the edge. Of your reformer bed.

And then you're gonna take your hands on the bar as far out as it feels comfortable for you. Far out is good for now. And here, my shoulders wanna go up by my ears. So I'd like you to figure out how to draw the shoulders down a little bit. And let's actually press oh, that feels really good.

Let's press the arms to straight here. And then with those straight ish arms, can you open your heart and set up taller? Good. And then bend the elbows a little bit. My shoulders have lifted. I'm letting them lift.

Now I'm gonna draw them down, and I'm gonna push forward with my use my straight arms to push forward. And then I'm gonna relax. So I'm letting my background a little bit Now here, I'm gonna lean back until I can feel where the bar is. Right? So I'm leaning a little bit up against the bar. Now my shoulders will not be perfectly down. I'm exploring flexibility here.

So what I'd like you to do is see where You can use your hands, elbows, chest, to find some stretches that feel like a good idea. So I'm bearing down into the bar with my hands to spread open and kind of explore side to side movement here. So my low back is just like, naturally rounded because of the seat currently, although that's gonna change a little bit. And my upper back is a little bit rounded because of the way I'm sitting here. Okay? That feels so beautiful breathing. So now use your abdominals, not your arms, to pull yourself up, and then press chest open to straight arms here.

Good. And then let's do that again. So I'm gonna use my abdominals to round back. I'm gonna allow my elbows to bend. I'm gonna allow my shoulders to do what they need to do to find a position here.

Now if you have really tight shoulders, you could do this with your hands on the foot platform, or you could take the bar all the way down. You can modify. This just is a nice challenging shoulder stretch for me, so I really like that. Okay. So we're gonna do that one more time. So I'm pushing into the bar. I'm finding my stretch.

It feels wonderful to me, and then I'm gonna Look at my abdominals, and I'm gonna use my abdominals, not my arms, to lift myself up. And then I'm gonna straighten out and push with the arms side to side, so I'm getting a slightly different stretch. Let's unhook the hands for a moment, shake out those hands, Now we're gonna work our tricep dip and see if we can get a little bit more range of motion than we sometimes do. So step off of your reformer, please. And I'd like you to step on one hand on the foot bar, one foot, one hand foot. K? So now here, many of us like to lean back.

So can you organize yourself so that your chest is open? Your arms are straight. Your bottom is back Take your feet out in front of you. Now you are not going to touch the shoulder rest unless you're really tall. I'm not really tall, and I'm endeavoring to not move the carriage.

So I realized I had to go forward a little more so I can bend down. I'm touching the backs of my legs, but I'm trying not to move the carriage. So I'm really using my back muscle to keep that chest open, and we'll do 2 more tricep dips. So I've bent. Now you can do this with bent knees if you need to, or you could skip it all together. Press up one foot, the other foot, hoist your bottom back up, and we'll take a break from that now. This next piece I find to be really quite interesting. We're gonna work on trying to get a maximum open through the hand and internal rotation of the shoulder in a in an elbow plank position.

So we'll keep the spring the same. And here's how we're gonna get started. We're gonna put the toes up against the foot platform on this reformer, you can modify as needed because that's not important yet. It will be important later. So I've taken my hands, and I've aligned them with the outside of the shoulder rest.

And I'm gonna wedge the pinky side of my palm a little bit underneath the shoulder rest. Then I'm gonna lift my elbows up and bring them in one at a time so that I am doing I'm making, maximizing my internal rotation, which means my elbows are narrower than my hands. K? Now I'm gonna find the place where I feel I can bear some weight in the backs of my hands. And that's what I'm focusing on here. Okay? Now with weight in the backs of my hands, not as much on my elbows, but backs of my hands, I'm gonna rotate and try to get my thumbs to touch. They're not going to for me, but I'm working on it. Yeah.

Now I'm actually pushing up a little bit into the shoulder rest, which is gonna engage my bicep. So now I'm gonna take that shape and push myself back a little bit. And there's a point where I say, wowsers. That's quite the stretch. And I'd like you to feel curious here.

I'd like you to be patient. I'd like you to lean into things feel like a good idea and don't do anything that doesn't feel good, please. And then I'm keeping that little push up using my bicep as I pull myself back and I'm pushing into the tops of my hands. Right? So I'm pushing into the tops of the hands when I get to about this point where my elbows are more open, I'm actively pulling a little bit to get my bicep working as I shift side to side. So I feel a much more Interesting sensation on my one arm than my other arm.

My left arm is very interesting here. My right arm just feels hard. My left arm, it feels therapeutic. So then we're gonna come back through, feel that, actively pull up with your pinky finger to put down or rotate more with your thumb. Now open your heart here and look forward so you're extending a little bit your back.

And now you're gonna round your back, and you're gonna extend your back. So keep that hand position, and you're gonna round your And one more time, you're gonna extend, and you're gonna round. And let's give that all a rest. So arrange yourself on the reformer so that you feel like you can rest your arms for a moment. I'm gonna sit on my feet, on my knees, I'm just gonna shake my hands out.

Now this next piece is a bit more dynamic. So if you didn't feel safe there, please just do that again. And different reformers are gonna have to modify accordingly for this next piece. So be prepared for that as well. And you're welcome to be in child's pose right now and just listen to my voice for a moment if that's a better choice, feeling yourself breathing and releasing.

So if you're ready to move on, we are going to be a do a more dynamic elbow plank position. So same setup. Take your hands. Just outside of your shoulder rest. You're gonna move your feet back. You need them to be weighted on something.

So my toes are on the edge of the foot platform. I'm wedging my pinky finger underneath a little bit, but instead of having my elbows more narrow, I'm taking my elbows in alignment with my hands. That's what I'm looking here. I'm rotating trying to get the thumb down. I'm gonna look back.

I'm gonna see where my feet are. I've got a One and a half springs on, so it should feel pretty well supported. And I'm gonna feel myself supporting myself, lifting my knees. And once I feel safe, I'm gonna gaze forward straighten my legs, making sure that I can hold the carriage in with the spring that I currently have. Trying to open through my chest and use my upper back.

I'm pressing the backs of my legs into the bar, so I'm using the bottom of the foot bar to help me be here. Ben the knees and come down. So that's the option 1. Try again. I'm gonna feel weight in the back of my hand, hover the knees, and straight in the leg.

So the goal here is to push down through the heels. So you can modify as needed if you needed to put your heels on something else or, adjust as needed, but I'm pushing down through my heels. Now I'm gonna look forward. I'm gonna move just a little bit to that carriage and I'm gonna come back in. And I'm gonna move just a little bit.

I'm endeavoring to be in a flat back. I'm endeavoring to have a little bit of thoracic extension and last one here. And we gently come down. And let's untuck the toes. Let's walk the feet forward because it'll be more comfortable to have them resting on the Reformer bed and just relax in a child's pose for a moment.

So I've put my hands, on the frame of the reformer around the edge of the bed, and I'm just using them to help me push a little bit side to side. You could take your arms out in front of you if you prefer, but for some reason, I just wanted my arms to be elbows bent and just using my hands a little bit more. So I chose that. And then we'll come up from that. Wow. My shoulders feel both worked and stretched.

Let's go ahead and finish up here. So, let's grab a box and we'll put it on long lies. And we're simply going to use this for stretches, my friends. Some of you have done this with me before, but I love using the box as a tool to do an upright stretch. So just take I'm gonna start with my right leg, and I'm gonna place it in, like, a figure 4 shape up against the box here, and I'm gonna just let my other leg respond. So I've moved my foot back a little bit. And the intention here is that I'm just hanging out leaning into this leg. Right? The back leg is just helping me feel this stretch.

So what I like about this is I am able to achieve 9090 hip flexion knee flexion when my leg is like this. If I were to be on the floor, I wouldn't be able to do it. So I enjoy, ironing out edges here. So I've got one hand, the one the logical hand on my foot, pushing my foot into a stretch. The other hand is on my thigh knee area, and I'm just kinda swirling around.

Finding what feels good. You can fold forward. You could make this into a twisting shape, much like the mermaid, oh, in various directions. So if you haven't figured it out, I'm not giving you specific directions here other than to be patient, To be curious, to breathe, and to explore. So use your eyes to see different things to feel different things and lean into what feels good to use.

So I've taken my hand away from my foot, pulled it across my body, and I'm gonna let my head hang for a moment here. So this feels really lovely, taking the arm across. Giving me a side body stretch much like I would get in Mermaid. I'm not thinking about organizing my shoulders. I'm just letting the stretch happen. And then we'll gently climb out of that and do the same thing on the other side, please. Maybe give everything a little shake, and then let's do the other side.

So So, again, what I like about this modification is I'm able to get a little deeper into my hip of the one leg that's in front. So I'm at 9090. I'm gonna use one hand on my foot. So I'm gonna put the other hand on my thigh. So my whole leg is grounded, and I'm not worried about where my pelvis is or where my other leg is.

I'm just letting my lead me here. So I'm gonna breathe and stretch and sway in the wind. And then I as I loosen up, I like to put my arm, my my elbow, actually, on my thigh to help me ground down a little bit. And don't assume that this leg is going to feel the same as the first leg. So play. And when you feel something, breathe into it, be curious. Be patient.

Breathing in. And breathing out, use your eyes, use your gaze, maybe to look in one direction, and then maybe look in the other direction, notice what you feel. So interesting. I feel more over here, on this side today. So I'm gonna look in the opposite direction than I wanted to look on the other side. And if you were to repeat this class, you might find that it changes.

So feel free to be, to do you. I'm gonna come over here just because I also like to do the same thing. So I'm gonna come over here and do this side. And, oh, my. I needed this one too. So I've taken my arm across. I'm twisted up. I'm not thinking about where my shoulders are. I'm just feeling a beautiful stretch in my hip.

And then we'll come up out of there. Take your leg off. Will you just stand on your 2 feet? We'll take a breath up together. Then we'll take a breath down. And let's just do a half roll down so your hands are on the reformer box.

And you're gonna round through your box. It's not even a a half roll down, is it? So round through your back, pushing into your hands, and then lift yourself up. Open your heart. Take your arms wide. Take your arms down.

Roll down, find the reformer box, push into the box, feel the abs, perhaps you'll swirl around a little bit on the wrists, And then round yourself up. Open your hearts. And let's put our eyes closed, feel tall through the crown of the head, open through your chest, feet, or balance, or weight is balanced on your 2 feet, breathing in. And I thank you so very much for playing.


Erika S
1 person likes this.
Oh, Stretchy! Such a lovely routine. Thank you! 
Krista M
1 person likes this.
I didn’t enjoy this one 🤷🏼‍♀️
Thank you Erika S!  Love that you enjoyed this class.
Hi Krista M, Thanks for your feedback.  Maybe next time:) 
Dawn P
1 person likes this.
I enjoyed working with soft ball under my back and pelvis. Recovering from a hip replacement 4 1/2 months Its good to back on the reformer
1 person likes this.
Love the stretches and enjoyed it
Wonderful Dawn P!  Love that this class worked for your body.  thank you!
Thank you Nesrine F !
Audtey F
I enjoyed some these different strecthes!
Audtey F
Stretches 😂
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