It is very important to extend your back out in the opposite position to give it strength, re-align and flexibility. I’m sure if you saw someone laying on their stomach on the floor with their arms and legs extended, moving as if they were swimming you would THINK it looks so easy. However, this is an exercise I gradually build my students up to, as it greatly challenges the core. If I had to pick one exercise, I would suggest that anyone that sit’s for long periods in the day should at least be doing the Swan each night.
Another popular complaint is headaches! We carry so much stress in our neck and shoulders. Throughout a class I will cue proper head alignment and will often go around and gently correct the head or neck to avoid any additional pressure. Focusing on the breath in all of the Pilates exercises will also help with decreasing any tension brought to class. My favourite Pilates exercise to decrease tension in the neck and shoulders is placing 2 fingers in the middle of the forhead, while resisting the pressure of your head going into your fingers. Including this with your breath will get guaranteed results. Continuous movement of the arms in standing Pilates will help to correct shoulder alignment which will make you look taller and decrease on the next tension.
If you come to class with a headache, let me know, so I can include some exercises in the class to help.
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