My Mom, Claire is our fitness model for most of the March Five. I took these when she came to visit me here in Portland. Want to see these moves in person? Join us for an ongoing class, or call to schedule a one on one session with Anne (503) 705-4762.
1) Crescent Lunge:
- Stand at the front of your mat.
- Step left foot back into a lunge with left heel off the ground, shoulders and hips facing forward. Reach arms up and lift your chest.
- Hold one minute then switch sides.
- Leg and back strength, hip stretch, balance.
2) Pilates Push Up:
- Stand at the back of your mat.
- Exhale as you curl your chin towards your chest, and roll down, one vertebra at a time to hang in a forward fold (bend your knees a lot if you feel any discomfort in your back). Walk out to a plank position.
- Five Push Ups, then walk your hands back, and roll back up to standing.
- Strengthens chest, shoulders, back, and core. Spine mobility.
In the photo above, see how Claire has her hands wide, knees down, and her spine in a nice neutral position? This is a lovely option. You may also do “military style” with legs straight, and knees off the ground.
3) Half Moon:
- Stand in the middle of your mat, or near a wall for balance.
- Start in a lunge, with right leg front (Warrior II). Tilt forward and reach your right hand towards a yoga block, or the ground. Slowly lift left leg.
- Work towards stacking your shoulders and hips, so that you are flat like a piece of toast.
- Hold for one minute then switch sides.
- Improves balance, strengthens legs and back.
- Sit up tall, and hold on to the backs of your legs.
- Pull your belly button in, and lift both legs to tabletop.
- Hold for one minute.
- Core, back and leg strength. Balance, and shoulder stabilization.
5) Single Leg Kick:
- Lying prone, lift belly button, guide shoulder blades down your back.
- Kick right heel towards your hip, then slowly extend your leg.
- Switch legs.
- Quad stretch, hamstring strength, hip stabilization.
This is one of the most misunderstood Pilates moves. While it looks like she’s not doing much Mom is stabilizing her pelvis, lifting her abdominal muscles, engaging her hamstrings (with minimal glute activation) keeping her shoulders away from her ears and breathing! Go Claire!!!
Anne McCranie is a Portland (Sellwood), Oregon based Personal Trainer and Licensed Massage Therapist. She suggests you shoot for one minute a day of these moves, to compliment your cardio, strength, and flexibility work. The above photos are meant to jog your memory about the work you and Anne have done together. Please see your medical professional before beginning a new exercise program.