Here Kate demonstrates the Pilates Bridge – one of the February Five exercises. This move strengthens and stretches your spine, lubricating your joints.
This is a little different than a yoga bridge in that your goal is stretching your spine, not hip height. Although you can’t tell this from a still photo she is exhaling to bridge up and inhaling to lower back down, moving continuously.
Try this at home. Start by activating your pelvic floor, feet, and hamstrings. How relaxed you can keep your neck and shoulders while moving your spine?
Looking for some new moves this month? Fluid Movement & Massage offers five moves each month that incorporate yoga, Pilates, and strength work to help you increase your strength and flexibility. We suggest you do at least one minute of each of these every day.
The April Five
1) Leg Pull Back:
- From seated, press up to a reverse plank with hands under your shoulders and fingers facing forward.
- Exhale as you lift one leg; inhale as you lower your leg back to the ground. Switch sides.
- Shoulder stretch, core strength, hip stabilization.
2) Double Leg Stretch:
- On your tummy, hands behind your back.
- Exhale as you kick both legs in, then inhale as you extend arms and legs and reach out through your chest.
- Back extension, shoulder stretch.
3) Swan Dive:
- Start from a plank with knees down.
- Slowly roll down through your spine onto your pelvis, lower belly then lower ribs.
- Press through your hands to come back up to a flat back position.
- Keep abdominals turned on; think of getting longer instead of gripping with your glutes.
- Strengthens spine extensors, arms, and tummy.
4) Crescent Lunge:
- From standing, step your left foot back into a lunge with your left heel off the ground. Press into the ball of your back foot as you lift your inner thigh towards the ceiling. Right knee stays over your right ankle.
- Lift arms up towards the ceiling and lift your chest to come into a small backbend.
- Hold for one minute then switch sides.
- Hip stretch, balance, leg and back strength.
- Lying on your tummy. Grab your right foot with your right hand and pull your foot towards your hip.
- Slowly start to lift your foot up to the ceiling. Hold here for five breaths then switch sides.
- Quad/ hip flexor stretch.
Have questions about these? I will gladly take you through these exercises or answer any questions you have, just give me a call.
I just came across this Huffington Post article on ten tips for staying healthy over the holidays. Great suggestions!
The author suggests setting realistic goals – say two workouts per week, keeping a food and workout journal to track your success and hold yourself accountable, enlisting a workout buddy, limiting your alcohol consumption, and finding healthy stress management techniques. What are you doing to stay active and stress free over the holidays?
Looking for some new moves? Check out this month’s “Fluid Five”.