Class #5582

Total Body Challenge

25 min - Class


Join Jo Bezzina for a Mat class with an emphasis on three-dimensional flow and transitions. Challenging you to set the tone of your own workout, you'll engage in creative combinations of Pilates exercises that will surprise, refresh, and work your entire body, particularly your core. Jo's strong, precise cueing guides you every step of the way, preparing you to access more challenging exercises.

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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Hello, everybody. Welcome to day one of the challenge. I'm so looking forward to getting our bodies moving. This class is all about three-dimensional movement. So we're gonna be working on flow and transitions and hopefully having some fun together. So we're gonna come down onto the mat and just starting simply with some seated roll downs.

So have your feet and your bottom fairly close to one another here, and we're just gonna have the arms reaching forward. So take a breath in and really find that lift. Think about how you can work from the ground up to find your best posture in this starting position. And we'll roll the pelvis under. Think about the weight of the organs just falling back onto your sacrum Stay here for the first one.

Just take a breath in, find that expansion into the back, and then as you roll forward, feel it so you're being pulled forward from your pinky fingers, from the crown of your head, and rebuild back to upright, sending the air into the back of the body. We'll go again, roll it back, again, working with the weight of the internal organs to help guide this movement and see if we can raise the arms a little, find that work as the load changes, lowering the arms back, and finding that reach from the side of the hand and sitting tall. Let's do 2 more. So rolling under finding that connection, still feeling your feet acting as a nice sense of support. An anchoring, rolling back up. And on this last one, I'm gonna try to get my arms a little higher, rolling under And finding that lift, rolling the arms in the socket, and then returning to upright plugging the arms into the sockets, taking the hands onto the floor, and lowering ourselves down onto the mat, We're gonna play with some bridging.

So the first few will be pretty much, as you know, them, rolling the pelvis, finding that reach thinking about how you can use the front and back of the legs evenly, working with the arms to create that stability. And as you roll down, softening the chest, but, you know, not collapsing the front of the body, if you can help it, still allowing it to feel integrated. Energy through the fingertips, awareness of the outside border of your foot, breath in, And then as you exhale, nice and wide through the collar bones, maintaining that weightedness through your head, and rolling up using this time just to feel where you're at, what your body needs, and melting down. Now next time we go up into the bridge, we'll stay there, and we're gonna explore some oblique work. So rolling up Find that reach through the knees, and then from here, I'm gonna rotate my pelvis towards you, and I'm gonna dip into this hip so that we create a nice sort of sink into that hip socket, I'm gonna stand on my right foot, reach my right knee forward, to help square me off and then do the exact same thing over to the other side.

And up. So while there's clearly a twisting action going on here. I'm also focusing on this idea of the legs kind of spearing past each other reaching almost like we're trying to find more range with each return to the balanced position. We'll take the arms overhead and leave them there as we roll down, and we'll just do that one more time so you can get a little bit more practice. So drawing the arms down, find that bridge up. This time, I'm gonna rotate away from you to start with, so rotate and dip and pressing through the foot to find that return to evenness.

You might feel like your arms are doing quite different things to one another as you're moving through space. One more over to the left, keeping the legs nice and, aligned. So they're not moving out of this frame and then rolling the body back down to the ground. So taking the hands interlacing them behind the head and floating both legs up into tabletop, we're just gonna come up into a chest lift and hold, find that weight in the tail Feel out reach through your elbows, nice and broad through the chest, and then rolling down. I'll just do one more like that, exhaling as we curl forward, breath in, and exhale down. Now from here, next time we curl up, we'll hold And you're gonna rotate so that your right pinky toe is looking for the left edge of the mat and then coming back up through center.

Left pinky toe hunting for the right edge of the mat and center. So we'll do another 2 to each side maintaining that lift through the upper body and keeping each side of the waist as balanced and even as possible. So the movements happening from the rotation of the leg in the hip rather than any side bending. Once we're in the middle, we'll lay the body down, take a breath in, find that feeling of weight through the tail, into the back and exhale curling forward, and we'll repeat. 3 to each side. Just refining that movement now. And exhale to tap, inhale to return. And one more over and up, over and up. We'll leave the legs in the air, lay the body down, take a breath in, Now for our more traditional oblique work, let's explore a little crisscross or rotate Feel that energy coming from the center, think about the way the upper body is exploring a different plane of movement to what the legs are doing, keeping the weight in the pelvis.

Let's do another one to each side. Center it off. And rolling down. We're gonna have some fun with some choreography here. So stretch the legs out long, and I'm gonna take my left leg on top so that I'll be facing you. The arms are going to be overhead. We're gonna roll forward into a roll up position.

From here, I'm gonna bend the knees and find a mermaid. From here, I'm gonna grab hold of this top knee, open it up and flex forward, and then reach forward as I roll down, I'm gonna find that lift from the underside of my thighs pause here for a beat beat and cross the right leg over the top. So we'll be able to change directions. So up and over, all the way into that rollover, find our Mermaid, find our forward fold, Scoop forward, so I've got that weight in my low belly. I'm gonna get ready to support the weight of my legs as I roll down so I can do a beep beep cross the left leg over the top and lay the body out. Okay.

Let's do it. So up and over, into our Mermaid, into our forward fold, Find that scoop and roll it under. Beat beat the legs, right leg on top. Take it up and over for our next roll up. Going into our mermaid, I'm just gonna adjust myself on the mat, rotate forward again, scoop forward, and lay it out, and beep beep. Left leg on top, this is our last set.

So we're curling forward up and over. We're gonna find our side bend We're gonna find our forward fold. Gonna find that deep scoop. Get ready. Find that energy through the outside border of your feet. Beat. Beat. Right leg goes on top, find that energy out through the arms, curling through, dive it over, into our mermaid, into our forward fold, reaching out, and scooping through.

Finding that hundred position that taking the hands behind the head and floating both legs up, let's go down. I like the inhale here, and then exhale to scoop back up again. You can reverse the breath if that works better in your body and up. Let's do 4 more inhale, reach it down, exhale scoop it up, helps me keep the weight in my tail, If I use the x halo up, we'll do last 2 and up, and final one. And up, bending the knees, lay the body down, and take both arms into the air. Let's just reach the arms up.

Drop them back down once more, and feel how that dropped position of the arms just helps to give you that anchoring. It's gonna be useful here. So as my legs travel away from you, I'm gonna open up my arm. From here, gonna straighten the legs and return the arm, bend, and open. In and out one more time, and then return to center, going over with bent legs and opening the arm, are you gonna straighten and bend.

2, and 3, and then bend the knees coming back to the middle. So going over and close open, work through the backs of the legs as best as you can to help support You can bend the knees to return to center. You can actually come back in with straight legs if that's a greater challenge for you, and that works for your body. But we'll definitely go over with the knees bent just so you've got that nice awareness of balance between the two sides of the pelvis. Do one more set over bend and straightening, feeling that change in the lever, as you move through the two different positions of the legs. Last one I really feel my obliques working with this variation.

And coming back into the middle, Very nice, hugging the knees into your chest. Let's take the hands under the thighs and roll up to a seated position, and we'll just go ahead and straighten the legs gonna do a little side, spine twist here. So reaching the arms long, find that wrap of the shoulder blades around your rib cage, and rotate working from the center as you spin coming back through, really thinking about how you can create that balance through the two sides of your pelvis, I really think about as I'm twisting, kind of reaching forward because it's so tempting to lean back to find more range. So there's something that you can think about that applies to you last one here, and then we'll come to a stop I'm gonna take my left leg across, so it's just beside the knee, taking the arms out, we're gonna add a little bit of a spine twist, thinking about that nice thinking of the thigh bone down into the hip, creating a nice little glute stretch, perhaps, Keeping the leg where it is, undo that spiral, reach quite a way away so that you can spin yourself around into a side sitting position. Gonna come up into a beautiful side plank. Really find that reach from fingertips all the way down to your heels and toes.

Gonna bring that arm through and reach for my back heel and then return to the side plank. From here, chasing my hand with my gaze as I reach down and lifting back up again. And again, we rotate and find that side plank, find that length as the hip drops, and energy through the midline. Once more, spiral and reach and float down and up go ahead and bend the knees and return to sitting on the bottom. We'll take the other leg across. And rotate around.

And then thinking again about that side bone dropping down rotating the other way, getting that read, I'm gonna have my back to you. Gonna bring ourselves over into our lovely side plank position, and we're gonna thread the arms through reaching for the back heel and then find our long line. From here, chasing the hand with the gaze and then returning back up. 2 more. And on this part, I'm really thinking about that reach through the bottom side of my body. It's quite, tempting to be dazzled by what the moving hand is doing But if you can get that energy down into the ground, it's gonna really help open up the ribs on that side. And then we'll bend the knees and come on down.

So from here, we wanna have a little bit more space So I'm gonna take myself back on the mat, but still have somewhere for your head to land, of course. Take both legs up into tabletop, and return them to that straight position. Again, try not to tuck the tail under. We're rolling over into our rollover position, finding that frame through the arms, but here we're gonna take one leg wide. So as we roll down, I like a flexed ankle. I'm gonna roll down. And once my bottom hits down, I'm gonna bring that right leg in rebounding the left leg out to the side, coming back to the middle, Left leg goes out, roll, find that sweep, use it to push the other leg over.

Like one of Newton's desk toys since we roll down, there's a bit of a reaction of the leg pushing the other leg out of the way. Center. Left leg goes out. Sound effects can help sometimes. K. Let's do one more to each side, right, leg abducts.

Around we go. Find that sweep up and over. Bring it in, out to the side, around, and through. Now from here, we're gonna finish a little more traditionally, so separate both legs, flex the feet. And as we roll down, we'll chase the movement with the crown of our head and finish up in a nice open leg rucker. So from here, we're just gonna do 3. Roll it back and find that lift to return you to upright. Here's 2.

Now on the next one, we're gonna let go of the right leg and tuck it under so that we can stand on the left. And you might need to do a little adjustment on your mat. I'm gonna take a nice side angle stretch, not too dissimilar to what we did earlier with our side bend, keeping the foot on the ground, if it feels comfortable for you, just going the other way. Cart wheel back over to that side stretch. This time, lift the top leg up. You know what's coming.

Up and over, you get a little moment to prep Here we are, and let's take it forward and back thinking about how you can stabilize with that bottom shoulder, What used to be my least favorite exercise? I've now grown to love. I have a respect for it, 2 more, hope you do too. Last one. And then from here, lowering the leg and coming on down.

Let's do our open leg rocker. I'm gonna just face this way just so that I can see you taking both legs and we go over and lift over and lift once more. Remember to let go so that you can stand on your other leg. So we'll find that nice side bend and a little stretch just gonna move over on the mat a little and then up and over. I'm really pushing off with my bottom leg, so that it's not just hanging out into that stretch.

Now from here, you may have gotten away with it the second time, but we're gonna take that leg up and we're gonna flex the foot and bring it forward and back. Very good. Feel how both arms are contributing to this movement. We've got 3, and 2, and 1 more. And then lowering the leg down.

This time, I'm gonna stretch out long and bring ourselves around into a plank and lower ourselves all the way to the floor. Take a moment here just to reach out through your hips and find that connection to the ground pointing the feet. We're going to, explore a little breaststroke here in my variation of the breaststroke, anyhow. So from here, we're gonna bend the knees and come up into some extension. So basically all the extenses of the body, maybe not so much the shoulders, but a little bit are on. We're gonna float the hands off so that then when we reach the arms and legs away, we've got that nice sense of support from the back.

We open the arms close the arms and legs from here, keep the chest open as you bend the elbows and bend the knees And then as we come down to the ground, the legs will straighten. So we'll do another 3 of these coming up into extension. Remember to use the legs to help find that connection through the back, float the hands, and shoot the limbs away, open and close the limbs, and now bringing the hands around the sides and then lowering everything back down to the floor, float it up, Find the reach, expand, connect, pull in, and then lay it down. Once more. Coming on up.

Reach it out. Open. Close. Pull and bring it to the floor. We'll take both hands and rest them one over the other.

Allowing the forehead to rest, float the top thigh, and then bend the knee so you get a really beautiful spiral through the front of the body reaching the elbows away nice and far, and then returning back down to the floor. You might need to adjust your pelvis float the left leg, end of the knee, rotate find that spiral. Think about that long line from the elbow to the knee and down. Let's do that once more. So float the right. Bend the knee.

Feel that long line from elbow to knee, and then bring it back. And once more. You can feel free to really less let your forward rest onto your hands, While doing these, I'm just making some room for the mic. So now we're gonna turn on to our side, bending the knee, and the elbow underneath. Gonna stretch the top leg out long and have that nice long line through the top arm. So as we rotate, Our chest is gonna open.

Our arm goes back, and our leg reaches forward. And then we sweep the arm rotating the body and taking the leg behind. Opening up. I like to think of this as the Mickey Mouse variation of book openings, because I remember those watches when I was a kid with Mickey Mouse's arms and legs all moving away from the center. We're gonna go the other way now.

So reaching back with the leg, sweeping around, finding that openness, and really thinking about how the top of the body and the back of the body are moving in opposition to each other. Once more. Ah, and then bringing it in. Let's do the other side. I'm gonna spin around, and we're gonna take that bottom elbow, have it bent so that you can really let your head cradle.

Bottom leg bent also, and then top leg and top arm straight. So I like to open up to the ceiling first. I just think it feels really familiar and really lovely. And then sweeping the body, looking for that ringing out sensation as the rib cage rolls forward, and then back. It's like the, the treat after doing all of that oblique work earlier.

And then let's go the other way, finding that openness. So part of the reason that we're doing this is to really find that sense of space through the front of the body, through the hips, as well as through the top of the abdominals so that now we can lie back down over into our belly and have a little play with the rocking. So Let's start with the legs long and the hands on the floor. We're just gonna come up into a little bit of extension here, not dissimilar to what we did earlier, and we're gonna slide the hands along the mat, find that openness through the chest, straighten the arms quite a bit, use your triceps, and float them up. Now you should feel really strong and stable through the upper body. We'll pull the heels towards the buttocks and grab hold, hopefully, of those ankles lifting up And then thinking about all that expansion we created to help give us access to this movement.

One more. And then thinking about how we get out, so straightening the legs You can even return our hands as we did in the breaststroke. Come on down, and let's find a quick little child's pose here. Pushing down with the shins, let's bring ourselves, I'm just gonna travel forward in my back a little, into a nice plank position here. Feeling that support from the arms and the legs, and we're gonna pave it back, finding that nice fold at the hips and energy through the arms.

Keeping the left hand in place, really working it hard, step the right hand back, get ready to work it very well, so that we can lean back without shifting through our pelvis and roll on up So you'll notice I was very deliberate with my hand movement. Let's just roll the shoulders up by the ears, let them settle, recover from some hard work that you've done today, one more. And this time, we'll roll down Leaving the arms hang freely, and walk the hands out. Think about how your legs are helping to support the movement out into the plank, take a breath in, find that space, and now keeping the right hand where it is, we're gonna push back, take the left hand back first, get ready to work it hard, my heart aside, take you back, and back and hang. Find that connection through the feet, but also through the abdominals as you roll up. Supporting the spine, finding that lift.

Let's just move those shoulders Get that lovely gliding action of the shoulder blades, and step into the center of your mat. Give yourself a little pat on the back Well done. You've completed day 1. I'm really excited to see you in the day's upcoming. Take care. Bye bye. Thank you so much for joining me for day 1 of the challenge. I hope you feel that fluid and subtle motion through your body as we explore three-dimensional transitions and exercises.

In day 2, we're going to be looking at the concepts of and expansion, we'll be using an over ball to help tap into the body and really find the balance between those two


Jen U
1 person likes this.
Beautiful!  Admittedly, I only watched this morning as I prep my mind for the class I will teach later.  I will definitely come back and do this!  I loved the choreography.  Super creative
1 person likes this.
This was really creative with great cueing. Excited to start this series.
I loved the Roll Up - Mermaid - Forward Fold - 100 combo Jo! It's a great way to mobilise and get the heart rate up without strain!  Challenging and fun!
1 person likes this.
So excited for this challenge and loved day 1. Those transitions, so good, creative and flowing
1 person likes this.
Wow, I loved it. Fun and creative...inspiring with wonderful cueing.
1 person likes this.
Fun class! Looking forward to the next 4!
1 person likes this.
Lovely and creative. Thank you Jo. 
1 person likes this.
I was so excited to see your classes. I love your style and wanted you to know how inspiring you are for my classes on Kangaroo Island South Australia ❤️🙏
Rachel W
1 person likes this.
Thank you - I loved the 'Mickey Mouse' style chest and hip opener and all the creative variations for the obliques
1 person likes this.
Started the challenge a few days later than I expected to but enjoyed it and looking forward to more! 
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