30 Day Pilates Body Challenge: Day 6 – Stretching & Relaxation

30 Day Pilates Body Challenge: Day 6 – Stretching & Relaxation

Hey guys! Welcome back to the 30 Day Pilates Body Challenge. Today’s routine is going to be a really nice stretch and relax session. I just want you to slow yourself down, forget about what it is that you were doing right before this workout and what you have to do after. I don’t know about you but it can be hard for me to slow down, not rush through things, not think of my workout as just another thing to check off the list. So I encourage you to do your best to just stay present, stick with me through the workout, resist the urge to think about what’s next, what’s next, and just give this time to yourself to kind of clear your mind and reset your body, okay? So let’s get started with a mermaid stretch. We’re going to start sitting in a Z sit position. So for some of you this may not feel comfortable and if that’s the case, just go ahead and bring your legs over to the side and that’s going to work just fine, too. Ideally in this Z sit position you have both sit bones on the mat, so both sit bones are touching. Some of you may be laughing at me right now because you’re nowhere near that, and that’s okay. Just know that’s what you’re working towards. You want to try to be able to get your hips flexible enough to be able to sit that way, okay? So find this long diagonal line with me, one arm on the mat, one arm reaching away. Take a nice big inhale and as you exhale, you’re going to stretch up and over and as you do this, draw your top sit bone down into the mat. So again some of you may look more like this, and that’s okay. But you’re aiming towards getting down into the mat with that sit bone. Really get that flexibility and opening on the side body. Good. Let’s push away from the ground and counter stretch up and over to the other side. Good. Find your long diagonal line again. Take an inhale and as you exhale, draw your belly to spine, round over and reach towards the mat. So you’re getting the sense of rotation and rounding through the spine. Hold and breathe. Open back up towards me, and we’re going to do that whole set again. So let’s start with the counter stretch. Find your long diagonal line, and stretch up and over, both sit bones drawing down into the mat, reaching that top arm nice and long. Good. Push the ground away, counter stretch up and over. Find your long diagonal line again. Inhale, exhale round and reach. Good. Open back up towards me, sit tall, and we’ll just do the same stretch on the other side. So find your Z sit. You may find this side feels different based on your hips. Just adjust if you need to. Find your long diagonal line, take an inhale, and as you exhale, stretch up and over, both sit bones drawing into the mat. Good. Push the ground away from you, counter stretch up and over. Find the long diagonal line again. Inhale, exhale, round through the spine, and hold. So I have scoliosis–something you may not know about me–so I have a curve in my spine that makes it much easier for me to twist one direction versus the other. And this side is much harder for me and you may notice you have an imbalance in that way, too. That just makes it all the more important to stick to these kinds of exercises. So let’s go up and over and we’ll do the whole series again. Nice long diagonal line, stretch up and over. Counter stretch, back to your diagonal line, and round and reach. Good. Opening back up towards me, sit nice and tall, and let’s go ahead and lie down on our back. Go ahead and lie yourself down slowly and keep your knees bent, feet flat on the floor. And just take a moment to relax your body into the mat. So a few deep breaths, feeling your chest opening up. Good. And we’ll do a few curls here. So inhale to prepare, exhale flatten the back into the mat, roll up, really press your feet into the ground, reach the knees forward over the toes, and melt through your spine to roll down. Again rolling up, inhale, exhale, feeling that nice fluid movement on the way back down. Let’s do two more. Good. Take your time. Last one, and melting through your spine one vertebra at a time. Go ahead and walk your feet together, soles of the feet come together as your knees fall open. Just hang out here for a second. Close your eyes, take a few deep breaths. This is just a great stretch to open up your hips and maybe stretch those inner thighs. If you’re feeling sore from any of your workouts, this is a great place to just hang out to loosen up tension. Good, and then bring the knees back up. From here you’re going to extend your right leg to the ceiling. Grab behind that leg, I’m feeling a little tight in my hamstrings today, and you’re going to just flex and point the foot. So do what you need to do. If you’re out here, that’s fine. If you have to bend your leg, that’s fine. If you want to use a towel to help you, that’s fine, too. Just do what works for you. Try to get that movement through your ankle, your Achilles tendon. Good. And then I’m going to have you draw the right knee in towards your chest as you lengthen the opposite leg down the mat. And open your arm as you twist your leg across your body so you’re getting this twist through your lower back and opening through your chest. Just hang out here and take a few big deep breaths. Relax into the stretch. Let go of tension through your shoulder, your lower back, your bottom leg. Good. Rolling back through center, just place that right leg down and let’s bring the left leg up, and flex and point, getting that nice hamstring stretch, work through the foot. Good. Drawing it a little bit closer towards you if you can. Bottom leg stretches down, left knee comes in, and twisting stretch. Let your shoulder fall open and your knee drop across the body. Hold and breathe. Good. One more big breath. Rolling back through center, hug both knees in towards your chest and just give yourself a nice little hug. Rock side to side. Nod your chin, go ahead and roll yourself up, and you guys are done for the day! So feel free to revisit this workout as many times as you’d like, maybe tagging it on at the beginning or at the end of one of your more intense workouts. Anytime is great just to give your body a little more time to loosen up. So I’ll see you guys back here on your mat tomorrow.

15 Replies to “30 Day Pilates Body Challenge: Day 6 – Stretching & Relaxation”

  1. I am sorry but I did not start on Tuesday as day 1 I started because I wanted to give a go and I did not realise that day 5 should be on Saturday. My day 5 is Wednesday!

  2. Lol starting day 6 over 10 days later. Life/exams happens. shrugs.I'm happy to be back on the mat again.

  3. I also had the problem! Both. Day five missing and a few more and I have scoliosis (if that's how you spell it😜)

  4. I absolutely love this routine! The gentle twisting helps to align and loosen my lower back and hips so well. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  5. I have a slipped disk and rotosocoliosis and that first series of stretches, particularly the twist felt incredible! I'll be adding that into my daily stretches!

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