Class #5529

Restorative 20-Minute Flow

20 min - Class


This restorative Pilates Mat class by Leah Stewart is perfect for when you need a bit of quiet and relaxation while engaging in gentle movement. It will encourage you to focus on feeling free in your movements, without the need to emphasize heavily on technique. Take the next 20 minutes to treat your body and refill your cup.
What You'll Need: Mat

About This Video

Jan 09, 2024
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Hi there. We are going to do a restorative class today. This class is designed just for those days that you just don't think you can put a lot of exertion and you just want a few minutes of quiet and to restore. And so that's what I designed this class for you today. So let's go ahead and enjoy it, and let's move together. So I want you to go ahead and lie down on your back. And as we do this class today, I'm gonna encourage you to just focus on your breath. And I'm gonna encourage you to simply just focus on just feeling free in the movement and not being so confined to the technique and the details of it.

Here, you may not be able to feel like you draw them in very far, and that's totally fine. I just want you to go where it feels comfortable. More than anything, I just want you to feel the anchor of your pelvis on your mat and just your shoulders as open as you can. So to begin the class, we're just gonna gently draw the back knee in toward the back shoulder. For me, it's the right knee into the right shoulder, and then we're gonna alternate.

So as you do this, I want you to be very gentle, so you're not pushing and pulling too much on your joints here, but you're just guiding your leg in, guiding your thigh in, and then just feel how your pelvis sort of naturally responds to that. Sort of like it's walking back and forth, side to side. And I just want you to do that and breathe. And I just want you to recognize maybe where you feel tight in your lower back or restricted in your hips, or maybe where you feel like you're holding your jaw tight. I'm talking, so my jaws relax a little bit.

I want you to even think of, opening your mouth, parting your lips as you breathe here. You can keep your eyes open or close. Whatever feels better to you. Let's go back leg and then front. I want you to come to the center here.

Now draw your legs a little bit closer together if you could squeeze them again. Now I want you to rock your pelvis underneath you a result, your thighs will come closer to your chest or to your belly and then rock your pelvis out. So initiate the movement by rocking the pelvis underneath you. Letting the thighs respond by coming closer to your torso. Again, exhale Cute the back of your neck nice and long as you do this.

Adjust it accordingly. If you feel like you're getting a little tenser or a little, necky, just go ahead and lengthen the back of the neck and just adjust it. Let's do a few more. Excel. And in Helen, as you do this, you'll just feel that lower back opening and lengthening and stretching.

You'll feel that You might even feel the opening and the stretch all the way down into your coccyx, all the way down towards your tailbone, and it just feels really nice. And let's do one more. And exhale. Holding your front leg in for me at the left leg, slide the other leg out. Now, you're gonna keep the one hand on the thigh.

The other hand, you're gonna keep on the other thigh. Now, with your knee that's bent, you're gonna rotate it out to the side you're gonna tap the toe down to the floor, to the mat. So you're in this nice open position here, and then you're gonna bring it back in all the way to parallel. So the leg goes out. You rotate the lie. So the knee goes out to the side. The toe taps down onto the mat.

And then you lift it back up. So as you do that, you can let your opposite hips sort of naturally respond to the movement, but I do want it to stay fairly stable. We're gonna add a little bit more freedom of it in just a moment, but for now, we're just focusing on the hip that we're rotating and moving. And hold it there. Draw the back leg up and switch, fill that nice extension there, fill that stretch, and draw the leg out tap the toe, and bring it back.

So as you do this, just really allow your body to be fully on your mat. Just just let the mat support you. Just feel like you're sinking down into it. Let gravity do his job. And you can just focus on mobilizing that hip joint and just feeling that beautiful opening and just being very gentle with your body here, not pulling too much, not prodding, just letting it move. And last one, toe taps and bring it up and then reach that leg out and just feel that opening and let's just have that moment.

Lay in there with your palms up just for a slight moment, breathing care. Gather your inhale? With your exhale, draw the legs back in. Both of them are gonna be in, and let's do a couple more of those tilts of the pelvis rocking the pelvis underneath you. And then bringing it back.

Excel rocking the pelvis underneath you, keeping your throat relaxed, the back of your neck, nice and long. 2 more rocking the pelvis underneath you. Last one. Finding your center point, letting the pelvis anchor down, drawing that back leg behind you, keeping the front knee bent. Now this time as you rotate and open, you're gonna let your body rotate with it.

So here, my pelvis is coming up. So I'm rotating in my pelvis here, and then I bring it back. And open the lake, rotate, and bring it back. 3 more. Just really gentle. Just getting a little bit more ability here, a little bit more freedom here.

And 2 more. Opening that hip. Just notice how you're letting your head sort of go with you. Just following the movement. And coming back here, bringing the back leg up, and switching, extending the front leg forward and rotate and up.

Focusing on that deep breath letting your body feel heavy on the mat. Rotate. And up 2 more. Rotate. And up. And last one, rotate.

And up. Draw the leg out. Palms up. Take too deep breath for me here. Inhale. Breath in? Gather yourself with your inhale.

With your exhale draw the legs in. Now at this time, we're gonna rotate over. We're gonna lie over it, rather. On our side. So bring your knees in. So you have this nice bending at the hips.

Your knees are together. So from here, the top armor's gonna come here. You're gonna keep the hand on the floor in front of you. So a short little sequence here, we're gonna reach out, and we're gonna feel that shoulder blade extend and reach. I just really want you to focus on what's happening in the upper back hair and then just bring it back to center. Just five. So reaching out. You can rest your head on your arm as you do that. And reach, feeling that reach and that long sensation there and back and 2 more. Reach and just let your pelvis and your thighs sort of rotate and slide and just let them respond to the movement.

You're just worried about that shoulder blade. Holding it there. Now I want you to circle the arm around the body. Let your shoulders Go on to the mat. So you have this beautiful rotation in your spine, and then coming back. Circle around?

And open, expand the body in that circular rotation, and bring it back. So your legs aren't doing anything. All of this beautiful work is happening in the upper body. The pelvis and the legs are just responding to the movements that's being initiated in the upper body. And around And let's do one more.

For it. And around. If you feel comfortable, I want you to sit in this position with your arms at the tee, bring your knees in a little bit more, feeling that nice deep rotation in your spine. I want you to open the front or the back knee open it. So you have a little butterfly position with your legs here, and then go to the other side. And it just wants you to feel not so free and flippant that you're tossing your legs back and forth, but I wanted to have a little bit more flow and not so calculated. In engaging the hips to move the thighs or anything like that.

I just want you to feel opening, rolling, and closing, And just sort of now, the upper body is staying steady, but you're allowing the pelvic bones to rotate the lower spine to rotate and she have this nice inward and outward rotation of the hip joint. And for we're gonna go to the other side. And then we're gonna do our shoulder mobility and our spinal rotation on the other side. So go ahead and adjust yourself as you need to. So you're on your side.

The one arm is straight in front of you. Excuse me. No. It's not. It's up above your head, and the other hand is in front of you, so bring your knees in. And then I just want you to simply let me adjust my shirt here a little bit. I want you to simply reach forward.

And draw it back in. And reach, remember, you're focusing on gliding the scapula there. Feeling that stretch in between your shoulder blades and that upper back. You don't need to be pressing any energy down into the mat or to the floor, just let your fingertips glide and bringing it back. Again, reach inhale and exhale.

One more time. Reach inhale. And exhale. So this time, we're gonna reach. We're gonna circle around all the way, allowing the spine to rotate, bring the arm forward, and around. Circle, getting the shoulders square, and around and overhead 2 more around.

Last one. Holding this position, feeling that stretch, letting the shoulders settle, bring that top leg up, and open. Let's do a little bit more here. I'm off my mat, but I'm gonna stay where I am until I finish this. And you're just letting the lower spine and the pelvis rotate nice and gentle. And rotate open.

And one last time to the front, And as I adjust myself onto my mat or you can as well, go ahead and bring your knees back into your chest. Adjust your clothing if you need to. And we'll do a couple more of this pelvic rocks underneath us of rocking the pelvis, allowing the thighs to come into the torso, feeling the stretch to the lower back, even through the glutes a little bit perhaps. And just feeling now, you should be able to do a little bit deeper into that pelvic rock. You should be able to get a little bit more movement in the hip joint as you do that. So reach and release one more time and exhale.

And release. Slowly extend your legs up toward this healing palms facing up. You're gonna flex and point. So flexing at the ankle, if you want to keep your knees soft or keep them even bent, That's fine with me. I just more want you to focus on what's going on in your ankle and in your feet.

So now we're gonna do circles to the outside. So flex take the feet toward the outside and bring them in and flex. So again, feeling nice and heavy, in your torso and your pelvis on the mat and just feeling that beautiful full circle in the ankle joints. I'm sure you'll hear a couple pops and cracks as well. And let's go the other direction.

Flex. And bring it in. And just remembering how important it is to move through the feet to move through the ankles, try to widen the toes if you can. Couple more. And last one.

Bring it up, bring the legs together, and draw the knees in. Hold the knees into the chest to feel that warmth in the lower legs and the calves and the shins through the feet. So I slowly want you to roll onto one side, and we're gonna go on to our front. We're gonna go into a prone position. So I want you to lie with your legs a little bit open about the width of your mat. I'd like your hands to be on the floor because we are gonna be sliding the hand, so I don't want you to get stuck on your mat.

So in this composition, for their forehead down. I want you to feel nice and long. Now you're gonna draw the front leg and the front arm together. So elbow to the knee as you come all the way there. So just feeling that really nice hip joint or hip flexion, feeling that really nice expansion through the pelvis and just feeling that connection there and then reach out.

So just glide as best as you can given whatever surface you're on. So it may not be as smooth as you like, but just make it as smooth as you can. And bend and reach out. Ambend and reach. One more time each way and reach.

Last one. And reach. And I want you to come in one more time. With the front arm and the front leg. She had this position here.

So in this position, I want you to fill your palms firmly down into the mat. And I want you to lift the head neck and chest just ever so slightly. Press the arms down, press the knee down, feel how that sort of deepens the work in the hip joint a little bit, And then I want you to soften and relax. So nothing big here. Just feeling a little bit of that reach and that stretch and down just says, yeah, that beautiful expansion of the pelvis one more time.

And reaching it. And down. So in this position, hold it. And I want you to extend your arm and your leg out as much as you can. I just want you to feel.

So kind of I imagine like I'm making the letter k a little bit. And then from here, I want you to rotate that thigh inwardly. So it inward the rotation and then relax it. And rotate it in just a little bit and relax. Just keeping your forehead down on the mat. And rotate it in, and then relax.

One more time. Just four of those rotations. Rotate it in and relax. Sweeping the leg back, sweeping the arm up, bend the back, elbow in, in the back, knee up. So from here, we're gonna lift the body up. Breath in.

Just pressing down slightly with the arms and the me. And then down. Embraving? And just feeling the anchor of your pelvis down on your mat. So again, very gentle effort here.

Just letting the spine move and just feeling that expansion in the opening of the pelvis just nice and soft there one more time. And lift. And reach. Take the arm and the leg out. Imagine that you're making the letter k a little bit here. And rotate that rope that thigh in and rotate it out.

And you'll just feel how the pelvis will naturally onto that and move and forehead nice and heavy on your mat and rotate And back one more time. Rotate. And back. Slide the leg in. Slide the arm up. Go ahead and roll back onto your side, and we'll get all the way onto the back for one final rocking of the pelvis.

I draw the pelvis underneath you. And release. Exhale, pelvis initiates, thighs draw closer to the torso as a result. And release 2 more times. Exhale And release one more time?

And slowly take the legs out. Palms face up, settling yourself on your mat. Let's breathe in. So for according to whatever you might need today is you're doing this class, this class might have calmed you a little bit. It might have even energized you a little bit.

Maybe offer you a little bit of relief and some discomfort you are experiencing. Maybe it gave you a moment to Think about some things or to process some things in your mind. But whatever it is, Just know that movement comes in all all sorts of ways. Vigorous, gentle, strong, energizing, relaxing, And the beauty is that we get to experience all of it. And we know that we can always use movement to help us meet whatever needs our body has for that day.

I'm not gonna move us out of our position as we close this class. Because you may need to be here a little bit longer. So I just want to invite you to stay here and breathe. Thank you so much for joining me today for this little class. I hope that you try it again and again.

Thank you so much.


Have added this to the top of my queue Leah ❤️
Meira H
LOved this class today Just what my tired body needed! Thank you Leah! 
So great to see you here again Leah!!! Loved this class 💕💕
What a beautiful class. You have a gift and are so generous. Thank you so much Leah. I am a teacher in England and so inspired but also feel great after this class. Boo
Lina S
I'm recovering from an injury. This practice helps to reconnect with the body. It feels good mentally to move. Thank you!
Ellie T
So happy to see you back on Pilatesanytime!
This was really neat. Movements I have never thought of doing, thank you!
Cheryl L
Thank you, what a lovely class and just what I needed!
Myriam Kane
So lovely to move with you this morning, Leah…felt wonderful. Thank you!
Leah I am so excited you are back! This is top of my queue….
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