Have you been enjoying your Mat Pilates class? There is a lot to remember and your Physiotherapist has suggested practicing your exercises at home.
Kelsey has put together this video for you to follow along with at home. Phew, that is going to make your home practice MUCH easier.
The Saw is a classical Pilates exercise used to mobilise the spine, tone the waistline and stretch your hamstrings and hips. Due to our often sedentary lifestyle, these muscles can shorten and weaken considerably.
The Saw exercise uses the deep abdominal muscles to pull your upper torso forward, a practice that helps you learn to initiate movement from your body’s center. Not only does this move strengthen your back, but it will also improve posture. When combined with the correct breathing technique, the Saw helps to expel stale air from the lungs while emphasizing lateral breathing. Joseph Pilates (founder of the Pilates program) recognized that many people breathe shallowly, only bringing air into the top portion of the lungs. This constricts the flow of air, increases stress, and can lead to fatigue. But full, deep breaths help to oxygenate the blood, which is energizing and rejuvenating. Deep breathing such as this will also help eliminate toxins through your lymphatic system.
In Pilates, you learn to breathe in through the nose and out through the mouth. With every inhalation, the ribs expand to the sides and into the back. On the exhalations, the abdominal muscles are pulled in tight toward the body’s center (the powerhouse). This technique is called lateral breathing because of the way your ribs expand and contract to the sides and back.
This exercise will also help you develop stable and controlled movement throughout your whole body.
Not only will the Saw exercise build strength through your core muscles (the powerhouse) but through your upper back and shoulders also, Pilates is the exercise that just keeps on giving. Sit up as tall as you can when initiating the movement, and then twist as far to the side and as far forward as you can to finish the movement. The longer your twist and reach, the more space you’ll be able to create between your vertebrae. This will help you create a strong, supple spine and graceful posture.
Watch the video and follow along with Kelsey’s instructions to get the most out of your home practice.