Class #98

Mat - Additional Balance

10 min - Class
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Description

Spend ten minutes focusing on the principles of Balance, Center and Concentration. This short class is a good way to either take a few minutes away from the hassles of the day to focus on your breath or as a supplement to a full body workout.
What You'll Need: Mat

About This Video

Feb 17, 2010
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Transcript

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You're going to start standing up. Okay, so I'm starting with a little bit of balance work today. You can be either off your mat or on your mat. Sometimes the floor is slightly easier to balance on than the mat. And I think what we'll do is just position yourself so that you're facing this direction, but also give yourself enough room so that if you were to lift your leg behind you, you wouldn't kick the person behind you. That'll be, and then, okay, so with that, just standing, bringing yourself into the room, look down at your feet.

They should be slightly separate or just a right underneath your sitting bones, a shift forward and back on your feet a couple of times, rolling through the foot, maybe lifting up onto the toes a little bit. And then as you shift back through your heels, lift the toes a little bit and then just settle yourself into what feels like a position in which you've got weight in the front and the back of the foot from that place. Take an inhale. As you exhale, start melting towards the floor. Allow your head to start moving downwards. Feel the ribs compress down or heads. So allow the body to reach down towards the floor. Go as low as you can.

It's all right to bend the knees if you need to or want to. Letting the head hang the arms hanging. Take a breath at the bottom. As you exhale, pull up from the ABS. Allow the pelvis to talk under or to press forward slightly to to maximize the stretch to the lower back or coming all the way up to standing. Finishing with the head, lifting up in the eyes going forward.

Take another big breath and expanding through the rib cage. As you exhale, feel the ribs start to slide down the front of the body. That action allows you to drop your head and as you continue rounding down, focus on your breath, your body, looking inside of your body or within yourself and and seeing what you need or where you might be a little tight and looking for more of a stretch maybe in that place. Inhale at the bottom and we're excelling to come back up. So pretty deep abdominal contraction. Maybe a little hugging of the midline with the inner thighs to start to involve the legs. Let's do that right one more time. Bringing ourself into our bodies, into the room. Feel the shoulders away from the years. Not with a lot of force, but definitely not sliding up into the years as you roll up and down. Good hanging out at the bottom, deepening the belly and just seeing if just with that action we can take ourselves a little further. Here we come all the way back up here on the exhale.

Rolling up. Uh, okay. And then from the top, let's start on the left leg. Bring the right leg forward and then just take a minute. Put your hands on your hips. What you want to feel is that the front hip bone and the back hip are in a straight line, meaning what? In a straight line across. Okay.

So from there you can keep your hands on your hips if you want to monitor that or you can just drop your arms to your sides or you can reach your arms up to the air. Whatever you feel is appropriate. And with that Xcel, pull it from the abdominals. I want you to feel that your leg is pretty light in space. Inhale that like she's going to reach down and touch the ground. Emily, your hip is just a little higher yet and then pull up again. Good. So can you here find a sense of not engaging the leg too much, but really kind of like you have a reel in your abdominals that's pulling that leg up through space. We'll go in two more times here. Lifting up the leg.

Good and releasing down. Yeah. And Kristie, your right hip tire as well. Yeah, I left the lane just when you thought you fixed it turns its back on. You hold at the top. You have the leg at a place on, you might feel your leg muscles here, but where it can be relatively relaxed. Let's bend the leg there. We're standing on. Squeeze Your Bot. Press all the way back up. Inhale to bend, exhale to squeeze.

It doesn't really matter how big the bend is. Bigger the bend, the harder it'll be to get up. More than likely it's two, three more. Two more and one more. Not a big deal. If you lose your balance, you just come back at it, let that tow go down. In fact, what that whole lake come down, let's change sides for a moment. So take a minute, figure out that the pelvis is in neutral. Start engaging the abs or find a good sense of support from there. And then we just float the leg up, pull it up from the ABS, like there's a rubber band attached to the side and the just underneath the ribs up, you can challenge it to the whatever level that you're into can come two inches off the floor. You can try to come right out in front of the pelvis.

Just one more here. Keep this standing glute tight. Hold there. Then the leg that you're standing on and straight. Yeah, just keeping that like floating through space. Continuing to work conscientiously from the front and the back of the body. So letting the back extensors stay involved or keeping the spine straight.

Three to go, two to go and one to go. Oh, that's, that's sad. Bring the light down just some time, Huh? Okay. I'm going to turn. You guys can stay where you are. So what we're going to do now is pick up the opposite leg again. So we start back on the right and I do a circumduction of the hips of your leg.

We'll once again come up in front of you. Now you're going to turn it out to the side. Again, keeping the hands on the hips so you can feel if one hip goes higher than the other, bring it around behind you. As it comes behind you start to lean forward. Using the back of the leg to create balance doesn't happen. No matter how low you go.

Start to bring your body back up as the body comes up, right? Swing the leg out to the side back in front and let it come down for a moment. We're going to do it again maybe three more times. Who knows? Pick it up again. The higher it is, the harder it is. So if you need to modify by keeping it a little lower, you will swing it around behind you as it comes to the back. Really engage through that glute, through that hamstring.

Send the spine forward, start to bring the body back up. And by the way, it's fine to bend the leg that you're standing on a little bit and bring it around in front. Set it down for a second eye line and we'll just do one more, one more only, but there's something extra at the end of it. So here it goes. We swing the leg around behind, leaning the body forward, looking for length, utilizing the back leg. And I bend the leg that we're standing on just for three. Straighten the leg that you're standing on. There was one. Keep the back leg. Very, very energetic. Here's two.

Here's our last one, three. So I have to bring the body back up around to the front and in, okay. At the side, and then I'll be over and when we'd be happy with that. Okay, so pick up the legs. Same thing from the abdominals. It starts to rotate externally or reach out to the side. As it comes back, the spine travels forward. You can have your hands on your hips, you can have them out to your sides.

It's up to you what you want to do with your arms, but I recommend squeezing both butt cheeks. Come all the way back up to allow the body to come up straight. Start to send the leg back out to the side, swing it around in front, and just lower it down for a moment. Pick it up again, looking for level hips. Bring it around to the side, swing it around behind you. Start now using the back leg as a lever to send the body forward, keeping the eyes down so that they stay in line with the spine. Start to bring the body up. Swing the leg back around to the side, back up in front. Oh, here it is.

This is the end picking it up. This is also the one where we stayed, so kept prepared for that. Mentally, physically, emotionally. I don't know. I can bring your body down. Bend the standing leg straight in the standing leg, squeezing both glutes so that back hamstrings are really, really active. It's what's helping you hold yourself up. Here's two. Here's how the last one. Swing the leg around to the side.

Bring it around in front and place it down. Whew. And with that, we're just going to go back into one. Roll down. Narrow your feet a little bit, Jen and stand tall. Exhale, start from the head again. It should be a little warmer, at least in our legs, rural and down. Wound down. Once you get to the bottom, just be aware of staying engaged through your dominoes into lifted up, supported. Bend your right knee and lean way into the left hip. So the right hip will drop down a fair bit as you put pressure into the left hip and stretch it. Straighten the leg that's bent. Been the leg that straight.

Okay. Both leads come back up. They can say a little soft if you need to. They can be straight. We're coming all the way up through our spine or Alana [inaudible].

Comments

1 person likes this.
A great quick but somewhat challenging class. Good when you just have 10 minutes!
1 person likes this.
This class is quite tough if you've got tight hip flexors... or am I doing it wrong? Make it even more of a challenge by trying it with your eyes closed!
I agree with you Tiva. As someone who also has very tight hip flexors I try to focus on my hip extensors and only let my body go as low as I can bring my leg high. Eyes closed sounds tough! :)
1 person likes this.
I like the flowing combo
Thanks Martha! I love it when these old classes show up...it makes me appreciate the Pilates Anytime journey all the more...
2 people like this.
Loved it! As I slowly work myself through the back archives of the shorter mat lessons, I keep finding these gems. This routine was perfect to complement my running speed and form drills. Thanks Meredith.
Great to hear, Victoria.
I love that you're looking back sooo far.
This was my humble beginning.

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