A great workout. mY only concern would be whenyou used the magic circle to help support the neck while you focus on the abdominals. According to the chek institute, this is something we should't be doing. Functionally, we need our neck to be able to hold the weight of our head, so supporting the head like this detrains the neck , so ultimately we get more of a thoracic kyphosis with a hunched forward position.
Thank you Sheree for your comments. I'm glad you enjoyed the workout. I also appreciate your commentary on the use of the Fitness Circle to support the head during the ab series.
I respect Paul Chek and his institute, but do not believe that using the smaller neck muscles to hold your head up the entire time you work your abs is necessary, depending on the focus of the exercise and the length of the series you're performing. Those with strong enough neck flexors can certainly do the exercise without the prop if desired. I like to change the focus and programming frequently to work all of the muscles around the spine (including the cervical area). This particular variation is an excellent programing choice to both support the head and neck for those feel strain in their necks and can't feel the ab work (which was my intended focus for this series of exercises). Continued in part 2.
Part 2 (sorry this is a length response) I also believe use of the circle is a good programming choice for those with poor timing of muscle firing patterns, and / or lack of mobility in the thoracic spine. This workout was intended to offer variations of exercises that work well in a group setting with different client abilities. You should adjust the program to the client / class in front of you, so knowledge of the client's strengths and weaknesses is essential.
As far as the issue of excessive Kyphosis, you need to work all of the muscles around the thoracic spine in a balanced manner, such as the erector spinae (which you'll see in exercises included in this workout like the Swimmer's Stretch and Breaststroke). That balance is what Pilates is all about to me. In that way you avoid creating bad postural habits and encourage good ones throughout the workout. I should have done a better job of explaining that during the workout, so again, thanks for your comment! :)
YEAH!!! What a great class! I honestly cannot believe how FAST it went. What great variations on flex-band exercises (at least with my limited band experience). I LOVE John's personality. I think that is partly what made the class go fast. You're so fun!!! Love your humor!!!! You made me laugh!!!! :) :) :) Thank you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!