Tutorial #869

Roll Up Assistance

3 min - Tutorial


Niedra offers up some tips for those who have had trouble with the Roll up or Roll back. Using a theraband you'll get the little bit of support you need to help smooth out your form and build up your strength for this exercise.
What You'll Need: Mat, Theraband

About This Video

(Pace N/A)
Nov 23, 2012
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What we'll go over is some things you can do if you're having trouble with Rola, if you have a very stiff back, and if you can find your abs properly, you want to be working with a thorough band that's longer than usual so that when you lay it out, if you sit down at the front of it, you can grab, I'd like all of you to grab a theraband like this and you want the bottom part of the band nicely secured in your under your sit bones and your feet a little bit wider than your hips. And then hah, pull the band enough that you have traction. Tim, you want the band spread, you've got it clumped up and you want to hold it with both hands. And then first of all, just sit up, bring your elbow slightly forwards. You're not straining in the in the shoulders or the elbows and really lift your stomach muscles up so you're nice and tall and then very slightly curved. The sit bones under, so you pull your stomach muscles in and then press the ribs very slightly back into the band and let the head droop forward. The trick is not to do this, you don't want to crunch into the head.

If anything, you gently press ahead into the band, but you have this round shape. So you're cradled in the band and then just rock back a little bit and see if you can feel your stomach muscles firing and the head supported and then rock back up and rock back again. So the trick is to free the knack, but support the spine. You can go a little bit further and come back up and then see if you can rock all the way down and keep the head resting into the band as you roll all the way down to the mat. And the trick with this is that it actually supports the head and gives a little bit of support into the spot. Now with the feet bent, lift your head a little bit and put one hand on your floating ribs.

So one hands on the band. And as you lift up, you want to feel the floating ribs contracting and the head resting in the band. Tim, get the knees bent though. Yup. And then lower back down. So you're working into the upper ab area. You're lifting up, but the head isn't being crunched. The chest and the upper abs are working and lower back down and lift up again. Bring both hands to the two here and then see if you can roll up without pulling too much. If you have trouble, grab with one thigh and come. That's right. So again, if you are having trouble with the getting up, you can reach with one hand.

Be sure you don't crunch here and use the hand to lever you up. So what you're doing is giving that little bit of support into the back. And one more time, slightly round. Don't pull too much in the stomach and then lower back slowly and see if you can feel like you're resting into the band as you go back and lower back down to rest. So this is a way to give yourself a little bit of help on the roll up.

Roll down without straining in the neck.

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a new way to utilize the theraband, will give this a try with clients who always have trouble with this move (many!:) Thanks.
awesome. thanks for sharing. excited to try this with clients that do not have the mid back flexibility to do roll ups!
Niedra Gabriel
I hope you both enjoy using the Thera band with your clients and find it helpful. Please let me know how you do.
Great for my seniors and those with tight backs and hamstrings. Thx!
Can't wait to try this!
Definitely going to try this with a couple of my clients who cant master the roll up - everyone else will like the variety too.
Niedra Gabriel
That is great Joanne - I am sure you and your clients will enjoy this way of working a lot.
I love this variation, thank you for the elaborate tutorial!

I do find that for students who already have a trouble lifting up, this variation proves more difficult, as the arms are unable to move forward and assist with the leverage. So it was surprising for me to see it as a tool to help with the roll up!

Anyone else shares this observation?

Another question is: you made an emphasis to press the floating ribs down, but they're located at the back, not at the front..so the demonstration was a bit confusing. Could you please clarify the intention of this direction?
Niedra Gabriel
Thank you for your post Jenny, Yes, you are right and yes, there is some method to my madness... I find that the thera band helps isolate the correct muscle structure so the roll down and up can finally be understood, I have often found students get the ah ha moment with the band ( it does help lower rather than drop you down, so you find that spot where you were not working before.)
Yes, floating ribs are in the back of the trunk and I often use this cue to have students widen the back and deflate the front ribs without restricting their breathing - it replaced " close the ribs" cue for me a long time ago as I found it brought out a better understanding of the right way to work the ribs in relation to the hips.
Hope this helps.
thank you so much, Niedra! it helps a lot :)
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