Class #5579

Power & Invigorate

25 min - Class


Jo Bezzina leads the way in a Mat class that weaves engagement through the core with movements through the ends of the body. Through powerful imagery, you'll deepen your understanding of your body and discover spirals in your movement patterns. This class features a few challenging exercises including two instances where you will be upside down with weight-bearing on the neck. If you need, feel free to opt out of these exercises or replace them with a more comfortable modification. This dynamic class will generate heat and energy, invigorating your entire body!

While this class is a part of Jo Bezzina's Go Beyond Pilates Mat Challenge, it can also be taken outside of the challenge at any time.
What You'll Need: Mat

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Hi, everybody. Welcome to day 3 of our challenge. Today, we're gonna be working on finding our connection from the center. And then challenging that by moving from the ends of our body. So thinking about movements starting from our hands or our feet or perhaps the bottom of our trunk from our sitting bones. So let's start with the standing roll down. We're gonna turn to the side of the mat, take a breath in and just feel that lift of the rib cage up into the armpits, inhaling here. And then as we exh hail rolling through as we may normally do from the crown of our head, allowing the arms to hang.

From here, let's bend our knees, but really focus on the way our pelvis drops under, kinda like we're doing the cat. And then as we straighten the knees, I'm gonna think about the crown of my head falling further towards the floor. So we'll do that two more times. Rolling under, and then straightening and feeling the way the top of our body drops down a little further. Kinda like a little, bobbing duck or dippy bird motion.

And then from here, let's bend the knees And focus on the way the pelvis rolls over the tops of the thigh bones, pushing down through the ground to create that straightening through the legs and lifting the rib cage up, taking that inhalation. We'll do that one more time. So rolling down from the crown of the head, allowing the body to cascade towards the floor. And when we hit the bottom, let's bend the knees, find that deep scoop and straighten the legs, feeling that release through the tissue of the back of the body two more times, and stretch final one, bend, and lengthen And up to you this time, I'm gonna bend my knees to roll up again. You can roll up with straight legs if you prefer, finding that connection down into the ground through the feet and finding that lift up under the armpits as you straighten up.

Let's go down to the ground, And we're gonna stretch out along the mat, taking the arms overhead, and feeling that sense of length through the body from the feet all the way to the fingertips. From here, we'll bend the knees and just simply raise the arms to vertical. As we exhale, we're gonna curve forward into your hundred position, whatever that is for you. We'll bend the knees and place the feet back down arms to vertical and then stretch the body out long. So again, we go 1, step 2 is to find your version of the 100, Step 3 is to keep the chest lift, and step 4 is to elongate out into the map and to the far sides of the room.

One more slow and stretch it out, bring it in, and lengthen. So as we do the next five, finding that connection between the ends of the body into the center, keeping it into the center, and then dispersing that energy through the trunk, through the limbs, and reach, connect, and lengthen, inhale one exhale to inhale into the back body. Exhale connect to the mat. Let's do two more and reach. Think about your fingers and toes and how you can create that connection into your space through those hands and feet also. We're gonna take the arms straight up. We're gonna take the legs into a bent position, And we're gonna have our index fingers and thumbs connecting into one another hovering just above the forehead, curling up We're gonna reach the arms and legs vertical.

We'll open and scoop around finding that lift up even though the limbs are reaching out. And drawing in, lift at 1, open to scoop around, pause, and then draw it in. You might recognize this from the reformer to the backstroke, pause, and bring it in. Let's do 2 more. 1 open, scoop, keeping that energy into the tail, and last one, up Open around and bring it on in. Take the legs into your chest, have a little rock left to right, gonna take the limbs long again, like we did for our hundreds prep.

Let's flex the feet, have a nice wide stance, taking the arms up I'm gonna pretend I'm holding on to a big cape, reaching up to the ceiling and finding that lift as I drape the cape over my feet. Growing tall. And then as I roll down, imagining that fabric, opening up across the back body and then lengthening it out onto the mat once more here, up over and through. Find that lift, and then rolling down as though somebody's pulling your feet out of your legs and reaching that connection all the way through the hips. Up and over, and find that lift from the base Think of the width across your collar bones by pulling on that imaginary fabric, taking it all the way over to the far side of the room.

I think we'll do one final one, roll it up and over, find that lift, and rolling down. So we've thought about the ends of the body, let's bring it back into the center specifically to our navel. For the side to side, as our legs go over to the left, I'm gonna be thinking about my navel sliding over to the right and It's your choice if you'd like to have the head turn in opposition to the legs, or if you'd like to keep your focus to the center, to the ceiling. Inhaling as you go over, think of that navel moving in opposition to the legs, exhale coming back to the middle. Inhale over and exhale to center.

So now just thinking a little bit more holistically about that ringing feeling that you can create from the center of your body, And one more to each side going over finding that opposition, feeling that connection across the shoulders, that remains a constant, and back to the middle, drawing the knees to the chest. We're gonna take one leg up. I'm gonna take my right leg up, and we're going to take that side to side and connect it into our leg circles. So thinking of my right hip being drawn over to my left ribs, sweeping the body out straight, finding that connection low before the leg comes around. Let's do another 3 over around and up. And as I continue, really thinking about my left leg and the energy that it creating both into the mat and to the far side of the room.

We'll go the other way, remember that we're crossing the pelvis over towards the opposite ribs. Now I've got quite a wide position of my arms, You can do that too, or if you'd like to create a little bit of a different energy, you can keep your arms nice and close to your trunk. I like the feeling of space that it creates through my chest. So you're gonna change legs, find that position, use that sense of connection through the right leg, From here, I'm taking my left hip across towards my right ribs, sweep it around, and up, and 2, around and up, 3, around and up, and 4, around and up all the way out to the side across and up, thinking of that ringing feeling that we created with our side to side and final one. Very good.

Bringing the leg into you and drawing the other leg in to join. So here's where we're gonna play. Coming up into our chest lift, interlace the hands and place them behind the head. We're going to crisscross to the left, but this time we're gonna take both legs out straight. We're gonna bring both knees in, stretch them out long, and crisscross to the right.

And out. So the transition is going to be occurring far away from the body. From the center, but you're still gonna be thinking about that reach happening all the way out to the far side of the room, switch, reach, pull, stretch, switch, reach, pull, and stretch, twist. How can you create that connection from the center and connect it to our side to side that we did earlier, and our leg circles, One more set. So going to the left, center, pull in, and reach to the right center, pull in, stretch, and draw it all in. So now keeping the, that nice connection of the thigh bones dropping into the hips. It's something that I've really got to work on in my own body, maybe you do too. We're gonna straighten the legs up to so that the feet are pointing to the ceiling and trying to keep that nice weightedness through the pelvis. Arms will be a little closer to the trunk this time as we roll up and over.

Think about the way you can create that connection across your shoulder blades, and then placing the hands onto the back of the pelvis, allow some weight to transfer into your hands and really use those triceps. So from here, we'll split the legs going into the scissor and split, and the challenge here is finding that work from the hands into the body and trying to connect the pelvis into the hands despite that inclination to wanna rock forward off them. And now from here, once the right leg is far away, we'll bend the knee pulling the heel towards the buttock to transition into our bicycle. Pull and reach. Thinking about the way that thigh bone rolls into the hip, rather than just where the foot is in space, pausing, and reverse.

Let's do another 2, and from here, bringing both legs together back into the rollover, placing the hands onto the floor, and then keeping that feeling of lift and space between the ribs as you roll the body down. And that's gonna help keep your head on the mat nice and heavy. So let's come up rolling forward into a seated position, and we're gonna take a zed sit for our Mermaid. So from here, arms out to the side, we're gonna roll up and over into our side bin. From here, as though somebody's going to shake your hand, gonna re rotate the body and reach the arm far away finding a sense of length through the body, allowing that hip to move off the ground. From here, we'll bring the pelvis back down and find our regular mermaid position before coming up and over to the other side.

Up this time, we're going to keep it pretty straightforward and just rotate, opening back up, and into our regular Mermaid position. So we go up and over, I'm thinking about this commencing from the waist. Then my focus changes to the end, to the hand, as though somebody's drawing me forward, pulling my hand and my arm, then I'm gonna return myself back to the mat from the pelvis and up into upright. Over and, like, a key in a lock, turning, turning, turning, the whole body comes around, open it back up again, and upright, moving from the waist, keeping that lift on the underside from the hand, reaching feeling that follow through the spine, rolling, and returning up and over and rotate really feeling that twist that we spoke about and worked on earlier in the class. Let's do one more.

Up and over, finding that reach, that handshake, if it helps, you can add a little bit of a gesture just to remind you of what you're doing, up and over and turning from the center of your body, feeling that reach and glide of the shoulder blade, opening back up, returning to upright. Let's change sides, see if you can do it without putting your hands on the floor, and we'll go up and over. So this is where our handshake occurs here. So reaching through the arm feeling the way the rest of the spine is encouraged to lengthen returning from the pelvis, opening back up, using your waist, to return you to upright, up and over, we can think about the hand here, but also giving that focus to the shoulder blade as it moves around the ribs. Bring it up and lift.

Keep that focus on your waist. You might try to side bend for a while without your hand landing immediately, lengthen it out, return it back through, and up over rotate, open, and lift final 2. 1. Spiral, lengthen, let your gaze move across the room, open, and lift and, like, a key in a lock, turning, turning, turning, you can even imagine the sounds that a a key in a lock might make final one up and open, finding that lift, scooping back from the pelvis up and over. Okay. It's time to lie on our belly.

So we're gonna swing ourselves around onto our front with our arms reaching out long, legs reaching out long, Now let's consider for a moment our roll up. We were thinking about starting from the center versus starting from the, ends of our spine. Let's float our body up and think about the sense of space that we're creating through the line of the abdomen. From here, finding that lift from the armpits and stretching the legs long, but feeling how we can open from the armpit and the hip rather than just from the hands and the feet. Nice and slow, I know everyone would prefer just to frantically beat the arms and legs.

So I'm gonna reel you in a little. One more each arm and then bring everything back down to the ground. We'll take the hands and rest them onto the lower back thinking about this in the same way. So pulling our heels towards our buttocks, but actually thinking about that connection through the backs of the thighs into the hamstrings, 3 little kicks. And now can we initiate from the center and feel as though the movement of the limbs are following what the body wants to do rather than leading.

Turning our head. 1, 2, 3. And lengthening from the center finding that sense of space across the front of the shoulders and the front of the pelvis. 1, 2, 3, and stretching out long. Something that I have to work on is trying to keep that weight into my ribs and not just hinge into the lower back.

So if that applies to you, let's work on this together. And we'll do one more. 1, 2, 3. Stretch it on out. And 1, 2, 3, stretch it on out.

Let's turn over onto our side. We're gonna stay down nice and low for our first repetition. Or variation. So the head can rest onto the bent elbow below. Bottom line can also be bent, but we're gonna stretch the top leg out so that, it is in line with our hip socket. Tophound is actually gonna rest on the side of the hip, and we're gonna focus on the movement initiating nice and close to our center.

So we'll lower the leg. You might be able to feel a change in the tissue as the leg goes lower. And then as it returns just a hip height. So we're focusing on this eccentric phase, the phase of the leg coming down and stabilizing the pelvis rather than looking for lots of height. So this is the 3rd one. We're gonna do another 3.

Down finding that change in the tissue. You can think about rotating the face slightly, so that the knee is pointing ever so slightly down that tends to focus the connection into the back of the hip a little more. And then we'll bend the knee and still focusing on the movement occurring from the hip. So we're gonna float both feet up. This bottom leg is spiraling out. It's turning out. So when the top knee goes up, both legs are actually doing the same action.

This leg now is spiraling in but the bottom leg is still working hard. Let's do another 5, really finding that beautiful movement stemming from within the pelvis, and just kind of acknowledging the fact that the knees moving in space, but not giving it too much of your attention. And down. Let's do another 2. Reaching into the pelvis and down. And final one.

Alright. From here, let's lower the feet, prop ourselves up onto the forearm, stretch the bottom leg long, take the top hand behind the head. And if you can, see if I can, we'll hover the bottom leg off the ground. We're gonna take the leg forward and back. This time, the focus is going to be on the far ends of the body. So how am I using my elbow What about the top hand into my head, top elbow into the ceiling, heel, reaching far far away?

One more. You can point that bottom leg if you like. I don't mind. And, wah, and then lowering the legs back down. Let's do this all on the other side.

So I'm gonna spin around, and we're gonna have our bottom leg, sorry, bottom, bent. Bottom leg bent and top leg straight. Top hand's gonna go onto the hip, and we're lowering and floating back up. Remember that if you're feeling this a little too far forward in the hip, you can try going for a bit of an internal rotation of the thigh. Try to keep the leg really straight. Sometimes we'll add a bend, but I think for this one, it works much better if we can keep that energy long from the center of the pelvis out to the heel.

Final 2. And last one. Okay. Let's bend both legs We're gonna spiral the thigh so that both feet are in the air. Think about this bottom leg. It's doing a lot more work than we might ordinarily expect. And down.

The top legs, the showmen, bottom leg is holding it all together. So how can you visualize that movement within your hip socket rolling out rolling in, and there's that moment in time when both legs are doing exactly the same thing as each other. Last one. There it is. Alright. We'll lower the feet down.

We'll stretch the bottom leg long. Remember, there's a lot of work going on here in bottom shoulder, taking that top hand behind the head, and don't worry so much about your range. So we've got a lot going on here with that bottom leg floating. Doing our best to keep that stability through the upper body. There's 3. Let's do another 3.

Even numbers. And I and one more. 6. Very good. And then legs together coming up onto our bottom, we're gonna stretch the legs out long, and just take the right leg across, and let's have a little spiral stretch.

And as I do this, I'm thinking about how my right thigh bone can settle down into my hip and feel a sense of grounding into the mat. I can push my knee into my elbow, and that's gonna facilitate a little bit more rotation as well. Let's go ahead and do the other leg now too. Cross over, find that spiral, pressing the knee into the hand, but making the focus, sending that thigh right down into the hip, feeling that spin. Nice long gaze, out into the distance and then uncross.

Let's start over onto our side You can start with your feet staggered. We're going into the star. So as I push down through my feet, I'm gonna feel that energy come up the center of my body really thinking about the edge of the bottom leg, stacking the top leg, and let's go for 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, and lucky last one. Woo hoo. Bring the foot down, bring the hip down, and that can feel like quite a nice stretch too. So let's just sneak that one in.

Let's switch over to the other side happy for you to start with the feet staggered. Just make sure that that bottom foot is in line with the tail. Find that connection through the shoulders using the back of the body, and pushing down to create that connection up. Once you've got that bottom foot stacked, let's go 6, and 5, 4, 3, 2, and one foot comes down. Hip comes down.

Let's take that nice stretch. Alright. Almost there. Back onto our bottom, reaching our legs long, we're coming back to that feeling of crisscross and ringing out from the center of the body, so reaching the arms long. Let's rotate and reach. Think about this hand, Somebody's pulling it or giving you a bit of a handshake come up through the center and rotate. Please to meet you and up. Let's do another three to each side and up finding that heat from the center of the body but using it to help you find that lift up through the crown of the head and energy down through the sitting bones.

An up final one. An up and over. An up. Bringing the arms down, finding your place on the mat, one more inversion. Let's see how we do taking both legs up to the ceiling, finding that opposition down into the hips, we're gonna take the legs up and over.

Notice the weight of the head, feel that connection across the shoulder blades as both hands move overhead and reach away From here, lots of energy through the legs as we pull the left leg and reach the right leg. Squaring it off and changing, thinking about all that we've done, through this class, the way that you've moved from your middle while also acknowledging and welcoming that energy from the ends and switch I think we should do one more just to really lock it in. Yikes. Control balance. Last one.

I love leaving my arms overhead as I roll down, but let's really energize opening up through the shoulders. Take your time here indulge before you're day continues to race ahead away from you. Hands go under the size. Let's roll ourselves up to sitting Thank you so much for taking the time to work out with me. I hope you can feel the heat in your body, like I can feel it in mine. And I'm looking forward to seeing you tomorrow.

Thanks so much for joining me in day 3 of our challenge. I hope you feel the same heat and concepts of pushing versus pulling. We'll be using some Therabander and some hand weights to help explore that connection our own body, and I really look forward to seeing you tomorrow.


Feeling the heat much needed Jo thank you so much
Gracie H
1 person likes this.
Amazing class! Lots of heat and fun movement! Thank you!
1 person likes this.
Really enjoying this series, thank you Jo and PA team! The mermaid move felt so good   
1 person likes this.
Loved this Jo. Loved the sidelying underneath hovered leg challenges and the unique criss cross and the flow! Thank you! CJ x
Lina S
1 person likes this.
More than heat, I felt a lot of good stretching. I've really enjoyed the mermaid side stretch (with hip flexors stretch), the criss cross variation. I feel "longer"!
2 people like this.
Love your classes!!!!!!! 
Thank you all for taking the time to leave a comment after class. It is so wonderful to be a part of your movement practice all the way from Sydney, Australia!
Kay S
3 people like this.
The roll backs and side plank parts seemed more on the advanced level?

Katie S
1 person likes this.
wonderful sequences as well as instruction. Thank you! simply curious as why you did not instruct to watch and then try the Control Balance? Simply worried for individuals who do not know that they should never turn their head when in a roll back or plough, jack knife, control balance, etc. But honestly, I truly love your teaching style.
Thank you! This was super fun!!
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