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Hi, I’m Jillian Hessel. And today, I’m gonna lead you through a workout on the high chair, also fondly known as the electric chair. I’m not as familiar with this apparatus, I have a different brand. So hopefully, we’ll stagger through together. But I did wanna show you if you don’t have an electric chair at home or a convertible chair, how you could kind of jerry-rig one in your own studio or home, using a reformer box leaning against the wall.
There is a bit of a gap space between the wall and the chair. And what I’ve gone for here in placing this box is kind of a similar width of the seat that we have on the electric chair. So I wanted to show, especially since we’re discussing mature clients, that this is a very safe, kind of locked in position. We’ve got the box or the back of the chair behind, and we can also use the handles either this way or wrapping the arms around, and it’s very, very stable. So now, I’m going to be using the actual electric chair for the rest of class.
So we’re going to lose this setup. But if you need to, follow along at home with your own set up. Okay, so now, we’re gonna begin the workout with some standing work, which is really great for balance and stability. And I’m building on my little foot class. So if you followed along with that, we would be taking over right from there.
So I’m going to first face the chair and step down. And for a client that has balance issues, we’ve got the handles here. If you’re able to balance more easily, you can have your hands either on your hips or I dream of Genie; I like to call this, in front. All right, so I’m gonna hold the handles and step down with one foot, and step up with the second foot. And what I want you to really pay attention to is that the fifth metatarsal, which is your pinky toe joint, is really wrapped over the top of the pedal.
Make sure that you’re not standing too far back, and I call it kind of a dangler, yes. So we really wanna get those pinky toe joints as well as the big toe, wrapped over the foot bar, just like we would in prehensile on the reformer. So hip-width apart, and we’re going to then step off with the first foot, just in front of the chair, and roll through toes, ball of the foot, heel. And again, paying attention to that standing leg that it’s not rolling in or rolling out, and also that we’re connected right up into the top of the hips so that we’re not sitting into this supporting side. So I really lifted here, and I’ve got my two headlights very straight, and I’m going to pump the pedal with the heel slightly lifted.
Now, if I lift too high, I would have the tendency to fall to my big toe. So I wanna keep all five toes so I’m not lifted to the highest point of that foot. Just dropped down just a little so that when I pump, I’m gonna let the pedal come up. I feel the work pushing down from the back of the glute. And I press down, one, two, three, four.
So it’s a real balance point, depending on how heavy you’ve set your springs. Eight, nine, and 10. Now, for 10, you may wanna have your client at first, at least hold on because we’re going to rule up on that supporting leg and weight transfer, and then roll back down through that supporting leg, lift the heel, and pump one time. Try it without holding on. Weight transfer up and I fell forward.
So that gives me some feedback on how I could balance, maybe just with two fingers and one hand. See if I can do that weight transfer. And I’m gonna do five of these. So that was three. See if I can do it without help.
Four, and back down. And one more, five. And remember that the eye focus is also very important, and the pump comes up. So now, I’m gonna step down once again and climb back up to that start position with all 10 toes wrapped over the foot bar. Make sure the abdominals are lifted and the buttocks are drawn together, tailbone dropped down, shoulders over the hips.
Step off carefully with the second foot and roll that foot on the pedal up. But again, not too high that you lose that fifth metatarsal related to here. And pumping 10 times, and 10, nine, eight. Keep the hip steady, seven, six, five, four, three, two, one. Weight transfer, roll that heel down, lift the heel of the foot on the floor, roll back through, and pump, and press down, one hand, and stretch.
Lift that heel on the pedal, three. And I’m trying without touching. Look, ma, no hands, right? And four, but the handles are there if I need them. And pump one more, five, and press, I don’t feel so steady on this side, and up, okay?
So that’s the standing number one with a weight transfer. So now, we’re going to lean in. I’m gonna step down once again, same transition. And again, I always come back to this all 10 toes wrapped over the pedal, and step down. And let the pedal come up.
This time, we’re in a place just below the knee cap at the top of the tibia. And again, I’m looking with the overview that I’m really in good alignment here, and I’m going to take hold of the back of the chair. Now, you have two choices here: if you don’t wanna flex, you can lean forward in a flat back diagonal, staying supported. The original exercise is done in a Pilates curl. So we really draw the waist and the rib cage back, and we’re going to flex that foot, lifting the heel up and down, and two.
So this is great ankle action. Great for people who have sprained their ankle, a lateral ankle sprain; really strengthening. And this is also really important for walking because this is the towing off part of taking a stride. So walking, running, skipping, hopping, jumping, we need this action. I believe that’s about eight, nine.
Deep, lower abs scooped out, and 10. And I’m gonna lift the knee off, see if I can balance. Lift the knee off, push down, step up. And once again, back to both feet, equally balanced, lift off and switch sides, stepping down, rolling through that standing foot, making sure that the knee is tracking correctly. Lean in just below the knee cap at the tibia.
And once again, extend that foot flexing and pointing. Lifting the heel, be careful not to roll up too high. Again, I’m gonna do it wrong here. Notice how my heel rolled. I lost my fifth metatarsal.
So it’s not the object to lift absolutely the highest that you can, but to really strengthen the lateral part of the ankle. I’ll call this, number eight, and nine, and 10. And see if we can balance, lift the knee off, and push the pedal down. Once again, step up and let both heels hang. So now, we’re going into a cross over pump and we’re going to pivot.
So on this one, the outside leg stays on the pedal in parallel. And notice I have kind of rocked my foot so that I’m in position with the heel on the outside of the pedal. The object here is not to let the pedal come up too high, but to feel the work from the back of the glute here, pressing down without changing the hips. So if you have a more petite client, if they come up too high, they’re gonna be thrown off center. So stay very centered on that standing leg.
And again, see if you can do it without holding on. And really squeeze the base of the buttocks together, and pressing down. Push the pedal down to change sides. We’re just gonna pivot back to that start position. Once again, always coming back to that, really lifting, and then pivot once again, and step down.
So a client can hold on here on the handle if they’re feeling unsteady. Be sure they’re not sitting into the pelvis, but lifting out of it and pressing down. Two, three, four, five, six, seven. So don’t let that pedal come up too high. Nine, and 10.
And then we’re gonna pivot. We always wanna get off safely; very important. So both feet hanging down, step off carefully and let the pedal come up. All right, so now, we’re going into foot pumps. So I’m gonna turn around and climb up on the chair.
And this is really lovely for clients that may be a little frail or unable to stabilize on a free standing chair. I’m sitting towards the back of the chair and I can wrap my arms around. Really focus on lifting up. Through the crown of the head, I can also hold on here. So kind of up to the client, how they feel comfortable.
And we wanna really work on that hip flexion, so we’re gonna let the pedal really push up and press down. And clients will feel right away if they push too far and come away from the back board. Three, and four, and five, six, seven, eight, nine, 10. So, Pilates V. Now, we’re gonna do little pumps with quick progressive breath.
(Jillian inhales and exhales) Two, (Jillian inhales and exhales) three, (Jillian inhales and exhales) four. See if we can hold without holding on. Hold that shape. Nine, (Jillian inhales and exhales) and 10. (Jillian inhales and exhales) Now, here, bring the pedal up.
And if you have a ball or a pillow that you like to put between the knees, I just rotated from my Pilates V into parallel hip-width apart. And we’re gonna do the same thing: 10 slow pumps, and then the quickies. And again, be sure that the client isn’t rolling in on the big toe; keep all 10 toes in contact with your pedal. Ready? Press down.
(Jillian exhales) Two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, 10. Quick pumps. (Jillian inhales and exhales) Two, (Jillian inhales and exhales) three, (Jillian inhales and exhales) four, (Jillian inhales and exhales) five, (Jillian inhales and exhales) six. (Jillian inhales and exhales) Maybe your arms over head. (Jillian exhales) Eight. (Jillian inhales and exhales)
Arms coming down. (Jillian inhales and exhales) 10. (Jillian inhales and exhales) Now, we’re gonna take the hands, and we wanna create a right angle here, right at the hip. So I’m holding the top of my thighs and I’m just gonna work the feet again, flexing and rolling. Up and down on those toes.
Again, this action is so important for foot mobility. And the heavier your spring, the harder it is to hold that shape. So I’m gonna do 10, and release. Now, I’m going to move before I come together with the feet to the heels. I like to give a lot of foot work here, because once we’re locked into a good position, we can get a lot of strength building and also mobility at the hip.
So again, pressing down, 10, nine. Really dig those heels and lift the toes up. Six, five, getting taller, four, three, two, one. Quick ones, (Jillian inhales and exhales) two, (Jillian inhales and exhales) three, (Jillian inhales and exhales) four, (Jillian inhales and exhales) five, getting taller. Six, really working from the back of the leg.
Seven, and eight, (Jillian inhales and exhales) nine, (Jillian inhales and exhales) 10. (Jillian inhales and exhales) Let the pedal come up and bring the feet now, together; no gaps. Check to see, is one knee in front of the other? Maybe the pelvis isn’t equally pressed into the back board. It’s a really good place to check.
So let’s try again. Now, with the heels lifted, be careful not to lose the pinky toes that we’re really wrapping and drawing those sitting bones together. Ready? Press down and lift, one, two. Squeeze the base of the tush together.
Four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, 10. Quick ones, (Jillian inhales and exhales) two, (Jillian inhales and exhales) three, squeeze the adductors; inner thighs. Four, (Jillian inhales and exhales) five, (Jillian inhales and exhales) six, (Jillian inhales and exhales) seven, (Jillian inhales and exhales) eight, (Jillian inhales and exhales) nine, (Jillian inhales and exhales) 10. (Jillian inhales and exhales) Lift the arms up and bring them around. Once again, create that 90 degree angle with the thighs, and lower the heels, flexing and lifting, and two.
And lift, working those feet, three. And four, and five, and six, and seven, and eight, and nine, and 10. So now, we’re going to take the feet wider. I don’t have a wide pedal here, but opening a little bit laterally from the hips, knees tracking right over the feet, and same thing with open hips. And I’m really going for it, letting that pedal come up as high as it can, pushing down.
One, two, three, four, five, six, seven. Nice hip mobility, eight, nine, 10. Quickies, (Jillian inhales and exhales) two, feel that heel to butt connection. Three, (Jillian inhales and exhales) four, growing taller. No arms if you can. (Jillian inhales and exhales)
Six, (Jillian inhales and exhales) seven, (Jillian inhales and exhales) eight, nine, and 10. Good, all right. Rest a second, that should get you a little burn, yes? So let’s step off the chair now, and we’re going to go into an exercise, using the pedal that works really well for unstable clients to again, work on this hip flexion action. So I’m gonna come around with my back to you to show the foot placement for the standing leg.
I need to make it a little lighter because I’m gonna be working only one leg. So again, this is very individual according to your needs or your client needs. So I’m gonna laterally rotate. So a little bit of a Pilates V to start. You may need to re-adjust once you figure out what you’re doing here, so that again, we don’t wanna sit into this supporting leg.
This glute has to really be working. You can place the arch of the foot, the heel of the foot, or the toe. And if your client is very unstable, they can take both hands. I’m gonna bend this knee to start and do five press downs. One, and two.
And if I can, one arm or both arms off. And you have to really watch when that pedal comes up that it doesn’t throw them off balance. Then see, driving the heel down, if they can straighten from that supporting side and repeat. Five, four, three, two, one. If they’re doing well with that, and only if you’re doing well, you can try rising to the ball of the foot and balancing.
Five, four, three, two. I lost it, and one. And slowly, lower that heel down, lift the leg, and release. So I’m gonna come around the back. Now, you know where the standing foot is, and stand the other way and repeat the other side.
I’m gonna do a little different foot position, just for fun. I’ll be on the heel this time. So I’ve bent the standing leg and I’m gonna press down, one. This is the most stable, two, three, four, and five. Now, I’m straightening that supporting side, really wrapping the glute under the seat, and pressing, five, four, three, two, and one.
Now, I’m going to rise up on the ball of the foot and see how that balance is, five, four. Let that hip lift, three. Knee tracking over the toes, and one. And can I balance? And lower, I fell. (Jillian laughs)
And release. So now, if you have a client that’s not so worried about balancing and is feeling unstable, we can repeat this exercise, using a long gondola pole. Hopefully, you have something handy at home. So we can keep the pole right in the middle of the body, or if we wanna really challenge, take the pole out to the side. So I’m gonna do the exact same thing, this time on this side.
I’m gonna move in and place my heel. And I’m starting with a bent leg here, and same thing, five, four, three, two, one. Straightening that standing leg without losing the vertical line of the leg, and pressing. This is hard. Four, three, two, one.
And now, rising. So I’m pushing down through the pole, up onto the ball of the foot, and pushing. This is a little harder with the heel. I feel I’m a bit far from the pedal, but I’m able to find it without shifting. I can do one arm.
I don’t think I can do both, and come down. So I’m gonna turn around, and on this foot, go on the ball of the foot, just to show you some variety. So I’m up on the ball of the foot. I’m gonna now, just use one hand on the pole. So you have choices.
And heel lifted, five, four, three, two, one. Letting the pedal come up, spiral wrap under the seat of that supporting leg, straight leg. One, two, three, four, five. Let the pedal come up, and rise to the ball of the foot. This feels a little easier with the ball of the foot on the pedal, than the heel.
So pick your poison. (Jillian laughs) And come down, and relax. Okay, so now, we’re going to go into some of the going up front we call lunge; going up front into mountain climb. I need to change my spring so that I have a little more help. Now, if you have a high chair, you may be familiar, when you take the cushion off, that we have these raised bars.
And they’re very useful so that you don’t have to continually look down when you’re standing on the chair in order to have foot placement. So we’ve got the back board to place the knee and the guides here on the actual seat. So I’m gonna give myself a little extra help. You probably know your chair better than I do. But I’m doing one spring from the top and one from the middle.
You may have four springs. So it really depends on your body, weight, the lever, the length of your legs, and your strength. So I’m gonna mount back up again, facing front, exactly the way that I did at the beginning of class. Push the pedal all the way down; it’s much heavier of course. And step up, and push both heels down, and again, find my vertical line.
And I’m going to step up with one foot and place it so that I bend that knee and it’s braced against the back board. All right, so the foot is in good alignment through the central bar, and my hands in front here, touching lightly. And I’m going to lift that back heel, not so high that I lose the pinky toe, keeping all five toes, but really lifting in the back of the seat here, really work there. And coming up, one, and back, partway down, don’t go all the way, two. Find your balance point, see if you can take your hands off.
Three, four, five. Come back down. This is a little stretch I added. We’re gonna lower that back heel down, all the way, follow the hand of the leg that’s down, up, and really stretch that knee into the back board. Lean back, really great hip flexor stretch.
Close the front of the ribs to come up. Grab the bar again, lift that back heel up just a little, and five more, ready? Five, see if you can do it without the hands. Four, three, two, one. Now, stay there with or without the hands, and mountain climb.
Bending and straightening, one. I need to come up just a little higher. And one, two. Can I do it without the hands? Three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, 10.
Straight leg, grab the bar, straighten that leg that’s up on the chair, and come all the way up to a straight knee. You’re gonna leave the pedal with the back foot. Focusing the eyes once again, rise on the toes and think leg pull from the mat work. Pull the tummy and bring the hips under, and find the other side of that bar. Release the first leg, lower the heel.
This is where those grooves really helps so that I’m in good parallel. Bring the knee to the back board. I don’t need to look down. Somewhere, there’s the pedal. Yes, and I come back down.
So we’re gonna start on the other side now. Five little lifts, ready? One, two, three, four, five. Come down, drop that back heel. Watch the fingertips, lift up, inhale, really stretch, drive the heel down, and lift the chest.
Nice hip flexor stretch; we did a lot of pumping. And then close the ribs, bring it back. And five more little lifts, and one. No hands if you can. Two, three, four, five.
Mountain climb, ready? 10, nine, eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two, one. Grab the front bar, straighten that knee, and come up, leave the pedal. Rise to the ball of the foot, think leg pull. Sucking the belly, bring the pelvis under, and reach the other foot back, lower that heel, never having to look, bend the knee, trust the pedal is there, find it, and lower yourself down.
And then step to the pedal. Hands can change to the handles, and step off. All right, so that was lunges going up front, combined with mountain climb. Now, we’re gonna take, if you remember that crossover that we did, and go into a lunge to the side. So if you remember, we stood a little bit back from the front pedal and crossed that foot over.
Really getting the heel positioned correctly, step down, and then step up onto the chair. Okay, so here, we have this handle if we need it. I’m actually gonna step off and reposition myself. I didn’t say, but I don’t have a lot of rotation at my hips. So I’m gonna step back even a little more and take the heel of the crossover foot, right to the back edge of the pedal.
I didn’t do that with the other exercise. So I’m stepping down. Wrong handle, sorry. And reaching up. And now, I have a choice; I can hold here.
And if you have your Jerry-rigged chair, you’ll have to hold here. You might wanna raise your handle higher. But here, I can bring my forearm to the top pedal. I want a good, parallel leg here, really working under the seat, and I’m gonna come up, and one. And that knee is braced against the back board, three.
So I’m really solid, four, and five. We’ll do 10, six. See if you can balance, seven. Can you take both hands off? Eight, nine, and 10.
Mountain climb, I need the handle. And 10, nine, eight. Really driving from that back of the seat. Six, five, four, three, two, and one. Come on down.
And now, I’m gonna change the grip on this hand, on the handle, to under grip, and push the hip out. This chair will not tip, so I can go for a really nice stretch. I’m gonna push this hip way out, reach this arm up. And one hand is palm up, this hand that I’m reaching is palm down, and I breathe, and stretch all. Does that feel good?
Now, carefully, to come up, bring your hip under, close the outside rib, and come back. Now, we can change without stepping off. So I’m gonna turn, face the pedal, and here’s my home position once again. And I’m going to pivot once again and step off a little bit farther behind than for the other exercise, and we’re going to once again, come up. And I’m balanced, and I’m gonna go up and down 10 times.
One, two, three, four. Can I do it without holding on? Five, six. Here, it’s a little harder for me, seven. Bracing that knee against the back board, nine, and 10.
Hold it there and pump. 10, nine, eight, seven. Really working from the base of the seat, six, five, four, three, two, one. Lift up to go down so we don’t make a loud noise. Take your hand under the bar, push that hip out, reach out, breathe, and stretch, stretch, stretch, stretch, stretch.
Pull away, pull away, enjoy it. And then use the hip and the rib to come back. Now, rather than step down here, onto the floor, I’m gonna take that leg off and step into the well, away from the pedal. All right, so I have solid wood beneath me. I just wanna give you a nice, back extension.
So we’re gonna take the feet into Pilates V, with the heels dropped down. And wherever you’re comfortable holding on the poles, depends on your shoulders. We’re going to imagine that we’re a sail filling with wind from the base of the buttocks. So I’m gonna press those hips forward and roll through, lift the chest, and enjoy that stretch. The heels are driving down, and it’s a big, big stretch for me.
And then inhale, crest up over the top, look straight ahead. And for a moment, let’s just do some neck rolls. So exhale, drop the chin down, lift it, look up, and lift up to go over, down. And up, and once again, down. And this time, fill your sail with wind.
If you can come a little higher on those handles; I like to hold the front edge. And really lift away, open, open, open, breathe. And once again, close the ribs and drop down. And this time, let’s just stretch the neck by looking over one shoulder on an in-breath, exhale, roll it all the way around, half roll. I get to look at the ocean; not bad.
And now, I’m gonna reverse it. Inhale, exhale, neck roll around and center. Once again, each side. Dropping down and rolling, and center, and once again. (Jillian inhales and exhales) (Jillian inhales) And release.
So now, very important for safety, I’m stepping onto the solid part of the chair, turning around, backing my feet off to our usual home position. Step off carefully, tow ball of the foot, heel, and let that pedal come up. All right, so now, we’re gonna go to the floor. So get your mat and we’ll roll it out. All right, so I’ve rolled out my mat as you can see, but I haven’t changed my spring yet, because you don’t know what I’m doing.
So I’m going to take off one spring and have just one middle spring because I’m gonna be working a little bit lighter. I have these small boxes here, because I wanted to suggest for this next exercise. You can see one is twice as high as the other. But you can also roll up your mat if you need to, for something like this. We’re gonna do a tricep press down.
You may be familiar with the exercise. You wanna place the box or roll up your mat so that when your pedal comes down, it’s not going to hit. And for this exercise today, I’m just gonna sit up with my feet in diamond. And my heels of my hands are pressing down on the pedal. I’m really opening my chest, so picking up from the exercise we just finished with, and I’m gonna press down.
One, and two, and three. So I let that pedal really come up to stretch my shoulders, four, and five. This is a wonderful prep for long back stretch on the reformer. And this is eight, nine, and 10. By now, you should know; quick, percussive breath, ready?
(Jillian inhales and exhales) Two, (Jillian inhales and exhales) three, eyes focused straight ahead. Four, (Jillian inhales and exhales) five, (Jillian inhales and exhales) six, (Jillian inhales and exhales) seven, (Jillian inhales and exhales) eight, (Jillian inhales and exhales) nine, (Jillian inhales and exhales) 10. (Jillian inhales and exhales) Slow five ones, just go for the stretch. As high as it goes, inhale, exhale, push down. And four, hopefully, you’ve opened up a little bit, three, and two, and one.
And let the pedal come up, let your elbows roll forward, and you can unroll your mat or take your box away. Let’s go right into spine stretch here, now. So depending on how long your are, and your legs, you’re going to measure. And of course, there’s two ways to do this: reach up your arms and flex your feet, and reach over, and see if you can press that pedal down. Hopefully, it’s not too heavy.
So if you can reach, you wanna be sure you’re not gripping with your hands; keep your wrists flat, okay? So that was our little prep just to measure. So I’m gonna bring my arms up and down to the sides, and the feet are pointed. Really stack the vertebra. You’re gonna inhale up, arms coming from the side.
As you exhale, flex through the feet, curl the tailbone down, reach, reach, reach back with the ribs forward to the pedal, and push down. One, two, three, four, five. Now, point the feet, release the pedal, shootout through a flat back diagonal, so I’m not flexed here, I’m lengthened. And sit up, focus those eyes, release the arms down. Again, in-breath up, exhale, flex, and curl those sitting pose under.
Reach, reach, reach, see if you can reach a little farther. Five, four, three, two, one. Reach the toes, reach through the spine, into a nice, diagonal in-breath. Exhale, reach down, let’s do one more. Breathe in, arms up, exhale, contract through the body.
Reach out through the crown of the head, the farthest you can reach yet. Five, four, three, two, one. Reach out, extend that spine, reach out, and sit up. Inhale and exhale, release. And let’s go right into a saw.
So we’re gonna flex those feet, palms are facing down, hip stay facing your apparatus. In-breath, reach, exhale, tip, and saw. And spiral around, in-breath, reach, exhale, tip, and saw. In-breath, reach, exhale, tip, and saw. Inhale and exhale.
Little faster, inhale, exhale, inhale, exhale. One more set, inhale, exhale. Pull back on those ribs, inhale and exhale, and sit up, and relax. So now, here’s another place. If your legs are not as long as mine, then you might wanna roll your mat up or use a small box.
We’re going to do the pike on the floor. For this, I need to lower my spring. So I’m gonna just swivel around here and put it on the lightest setting possible because this is a very challenging exercise for me. You might envy my legs, but they don’t make this exercise easier. So I do not need a box, but some of you with shorter legs may need or different proportions may need.
So I’m just gonna model this, and then take the box away. My feet are going to be up on the edge of the chair, and I have to reach for it as we did just now, with the spine stretch. So I don’t need this, but I just wanted to show you, that might be helpful for you. Okay, so you can always just roll up a mat if you don’t have boxes, as an option. So in this exercise, we’re not up on the sit bones, were curled under, scooped out.
I like to laterally rotate so that I’m really knitting the back of the legs together. And I’m, once again, gonna reach up on an in-breath, exhale, reach forward, and press the hands to the pedal. And we’re just going to beat down the pedal with a quick, percussive breath. Ready? Exhale all your out.
And… (Jillian inhales and exhales) Two, be sure you’re not flexing your wrist. Three, (Jillian inhales and exhales) four, use the lats. And five, (Jillian inhales and exhales) six, we’re going for 10. And seven, (Jillian inhales and exhales) eight, breathe through the back ribs.
Nine, (Jillian inhales and exhales) 10. (Jillian inhales and exhales) Let the pedal come up. Now, this is a little bit more advanced. You may need to curl under. I need to bend my knees on this variation.
We’re gonna do single leg. If you can, keep your legs straight. So once again, let’s start with a prep, inhale up. Exhale, contract over. Lift one leg, and five sets.
(Jillian inhales and exhales) Two, I’m bending my knee, it’s staking. Three, (Jillian inhales and exhales) four, (Jillian inhales and exhales) and five. (Jillian inhales and exhales) First leg down, second leg up, breathe in, draw back through the abs and… (Jillian inhales and exhales) Two, (Jillian inhales and exhales) three, (Jillian inhales and exhales) four, (Jillian inhales and exhales) five. (Jillian inhales and exhales) Rest and release.
Last thing, we’re gonna lift both legs. For me, I like to scoot a little bit closer, and I’m gonna keep my knees bent for this. All right, so find your balance point, lift both legs, and beat. (Jillian inhales and exhales) Two. (Jillian inhales and exhales) Deep, lower abs. (Jillian inhales and exhales)
Four, can I straighten one leg? Five, (Jillian inhales and exhales) six. (Jillian inhales and exhales) Shift it out. (Jillian inhales and exhales) Eight, (Jillian inhales and exhales) nine, (Jillian inhales and exhales) 10. (Jillian inhales and exhales) So if you weren’t sweating, now, you will be, yes? (Jillian laughs)
Okay, so now, I’m gonna go sideline. This is an archival exercise that I had a little bit of fun, trying to reconstruct from some old photos of Joe Pilates. So you’re going to lie on your side, but be propped up on your forearm. And you’re gonna need to figure out how far down towards the pedal, you’re going to be by your height. We can keep the light spring and take that back leg, the bottom leg, behind the frame of the chair.
Take the top foot; it may hook in a little, don’t worry about that. Look like Joe’s foot was hooked in the pictures, to me. And you have a choice here: your hand can come to your hip or to the back of your head. Now, this looks like it’s going to be an adductor exercise for this top leg. But in fact, when I push down…
And I need to move just a little bit out. When I push down, I’m going to pop my rib down. You could see my rib is imprinted down, towards the mat. And then I lift up. So I bury down and press.
So in fact, I’m getting a lot of side bend here. And four. Inhale, exhale, don’t sink into that shoulder, drive your forearm away. Five, and six, and seven, and eight. Lift, nine, and 10.
All right, so, carefully, release. I don’t wanna have it bang too much, and we’re gonna change sides. Okay, so again, that back bottom-leg comes behind the chair, behind the frame, and the top leg in front. You’re on that elbow. Be sure you’re not sunk into your shoulder, and have your hand either on your hip or behind your head.
And we’re gonna push down and up, and two. Side bending that elbow, comes towards the chair, three. Now, I have scoliosis, so this side looks really different on me. Five, that rib loves to pop out, but it’s hard to lift it. Six, lift, lift, lift.
Seven, lift lift, lift. Eight, and nine, and 10, and come up. So now, we’re gonna do a little swan dive to add some back extension again, before we finish. And for me, I need a little pillow under my pelvis. So this is obviously optional.
Again, it’s a little bit tricky to figure out exactly where you need to be positioned, and I need to add a little more spring. So I’m just gonna move one spring up to the middle notch here, on my chair. And maybe you know your chair better, so you know what the setting will be. So we’re gonna come face down. And I have to make sure I’ve moved the mic back.
Okay, I’m coming face down and I need to measure first, where my pillow is and where my arms are. This feels like it’s gonna work pretty well. So begin by pressing your feet together if you’re able, if not, the feet can be hip-width apart. And we’re gonna squeeze down through the shoulders and the upper arms to press the body up, and then in-breath, and release slowly, lengthening back down. And again, feel the shoulder blades begin the work, not the hands.
In-breath, and exhale. Let’s just do five. This is three. And reach the ribs away from the hips on the way down. Four, open chest.
Be sure you’re not breaking at your wrists, and five. Now, lengthen up the front body and let’s press down, and lengthen the legs up. Notice mine came apart. Five, and exhale to lift, inhale to lower. Three more; lengthen to lift and lengthen to lift.
And one more, lengthen to lift. Let’s put that together. In-breath, front body, exhale legs. In-breath, front body, exhale legs. Take it a little faster.
Inhale, exhale. (Jillian inhales and exhales) Two more. (Jillian inhales and exhales) Release the legs, bend the elbows, release the hands, bring your hands with the elbows off the mat, right under your shoulders. Take a breath in, and exhale, press up, and I’m gonna move my pillow. Seat back to rest position and just stay there for a moment, opening up the back and sides of the ribs, breathing.
Spread those ribs, exhale, engage the low abs. (Jillian exhales) And once again, (Jillian inhales) and exhale. (Jillian exhales) And I’m gonna just crawl back, a little bit onto the mat so that my toes are there. Tuck the toes under, go for those 10 toes tucked under, and stretch those heels. Spread the fingers wide, we’re gonna stand up in an inverted V.
And just tread the feet for a moment, stretch out the back of those legs, and slowly walk those feet in with the hands in, and hang with your knees bent. Take your feet hip-width apart and just shake your head out, relax. Take a breath, lift your ribs away from your thighs. See if you can lift them a little farther out over the thighs, and hang low. Relax, let gravity do its work to lengthen your spine.
Now, we’re gonna roll up to standing very slowly. So take a breath in, press your heels down, lift the abs right above the pelvic bone and start curling yourself up, rolling up like spine stretch recovery. And all the way to standing as you arrive, the knees can straighten. You focus the eyes straight ahead. And I wanna thank you for joining me today.
I hope you learned something on the high chair.