Foam Roller Fun
Are you incorporating the foam roller into your Pilates exercise routine? We sell them to our clients all the time and they love using them at home. There are so many exciting and challenging options with the roller. It is a great addition to a group class, private session or home routine. Balancing can be difficult because of the small surface area, but the foam roller also helps with modifications for certain exercises, stretching and therapeutic work. Try some of my favorites to change up your routines:
Toe Taps/Knee Lifts
Bring legs to table-top and hands to the side. Alternate reaching each foot to the floor and returning to table-top, while maintaining stabilization in your torso, pelvis and lower back.
Lying on your back, inhale to prepare. Exhale, lift your head and chest, reaching your hands to the opposite wall, and scooping your deep abdominals as you lift. Inhale, stay and intensify the scoop and exhale to lower.
Single Arm Balance
Alternate arms while both feet are table-top. Another option is to alternate reaching one or both arms off the floor while one leg is table-top and one foot is touching the floor.
Place your forearms on the roller with feet apart and laterally rotated. Lift your head, chest and abdominals into the Swan as the roller moves toward you. Feel the energy reach out of your toes and head. Keep your abdominals engaged to support your lower back. You should not feel discomfort in your back. Stabilize your shoulder blades and keep the muscles surrounding your rib cage engaged.
Side Forearm Plank
Start on your forearm on your side with the roller under the outside of your lower leg. Hold the plank first lifting in your side closest to the floor, keeping your hips stacked. Once you feel stable, try to lift the top leg and hold. Try this position on the floor without the roller first.
Begin with your feet extended directly toward the ceiling. Inhale to prepare, and exhale open the legs to a scissor position, keeping the lumbo-pelvis region stable and reaching the energy out of the toes. Inhale to bring the legs together, and exhale to control the scissor motion in the opposite direction.