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Pilates Essentials - Class #11 and #12

Posted Nov 30 2008 12:21pm
Yep, 2 hours of Pilates this morning. Ouch! I had a couple missed sessions to make up, so I was able to join two back-to-back classes this morning to make up for them.

The first class was a mat class and for some reason I thought the mat work would be a cinch in comparison to the appartus - yeah, I was definitely wrong on that one! I haven't done a lot of mat work since I started with this studio and I forgot how tough it can be! We did so much more than the usual hundreds, teaser and roll ups that typical community centre classes focus on. We did the full set of classic mat exercises like double and single leg stretches, the saw (which really challenged my poor rotation), rolling like a ball (which showed me that my spine flexibility is improving) and the open leg rocker. I don't know the names of all of the moves we did, but let me say, I moved things in my body this morning that I didn't even know I had!

Our instructor was awesome today too - she spent lots of time giving us cues and analogies to ensure we were stabilizing our cores properly. I find that in Pilates a lot of it depends on how you 'visualize' your movements and what you 'imagine' you are doing with each exercise. So, it seems that most exercises come along with descriptions and analogies to help you do things correctly.

There's the usual "As you curl up, imagine you are curling your tummy around a bar and don't let yourself touch the bar..." I've heard ones to that effect many times. But my instructor is pretty creative with her analogies and brought out some really funny ones today. Wish I could remember them all, but let's just say that quite a few of them involved strange things with your gut, butt and crotch! Ha ha, er, I mean your pelvic floor...

The second hour was an apparatus class where we used the Cadillac. I've used this equipment once before and was pretty excited to use it again today. Although, by the time we got to the second hour I was already totally pooped! But, after a quick rest I managed to suck it up and suck it in (my stomach, that is) and carry on.

We started off with some really great roll downs using the springed bar - these really challenged the core as well as the shoulders. We also did some bicep/squat combos using the spring bar again, which allowed us to almost defy gravity and get in some great deep squats. Using the fixed low bar we did some really tough roll ups where we lifted our lower bodies up so that our toes were pointing to the ceiling and then lowered them again. We also did some upper body, lower body and some great stretches.

This all ended about 11:30 and already I'm starting to get sore! I can definitely say I got a good workout today. After having both physio and chiropractic today as well, I'm plain old pooped. However, I downloaded some new tunes and am thinking that a nice run would be a great way to listen to them and zone out for awhile... work has been particularly frustrating lately and I'm feeling like pounding the pavement could do me some good tonight.

Happy running!

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