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Pilates Practitioner 101: Spring Arrival for Weeks 22-24

Updated on December 22, 2016
Kristen Howe profile image

Kristen Howe has been practicing Pilates at her local gym for 2.5 years, and even at home during the winter season.

Giving my Routines Spring Variety

For the past three weeks, I’ve practiced my Pilates in the afternoon or evening, as I’ve been getting better and even better with my home practice with each Pilates exercise and with breathing. Since spring’s around the corner, I’ll beep keeping up with my home practice and challenge myself more.
With the sunshine through the windows and the temperatures warming up, I’m looking forward to spring. If I had a backyard, I would take it outside to get some fresh air. Instead, I’ll just opening up the windows to get a fresh breeze.

I’ve reached a new milestone between my home and studio Pilates practice. I’ve been doing it for five months straight now with 105 days of practicing at home, except for this week. I’ve built plenty of core strength for my back and getting better every day with being active in Pilates and other gym activities.

If you Want to try new Poses, try the Double Leg Kick at the Immediate Level to Vary Your Routines

My Own Routines Continued

This month, I’ve added more modified and various Pilates exercises from my home practice and giving it some variety to it. Here’s what I’ve done so far this month in a new template to make it easier for viewing and reading in a new format. Starting in April, I’ll be modifying any exercise I can, if it’s listed in the instructions. And if not, I’ll add a new exercise or two in its place from the Classic Pilates list as well. My back pain have been lower and lower still, down to the bare minimal at around one on the pain chart.

Workout #3: Warm up: 5 Knee Folds, 3 Heads Nods, 5 Pelvic Tilts.
Routine: 100 Modified (raising legs) {1 cycle), 5 Chest Lifts with Rotation, 3 Open Leg Rockers, 5 Inner Thigh Lifts, 5 Sidekick Series exercises, 2 Swimming Cycles, 6 Double Leg Stretches, 6 Double Leg Kicks (new exercise).
Cool Down: 3 Leg Pull Outs, 1 Child’s Pose and 3 Pilates Push-ups.

Workout #4: Warm up: 3 Pelvic Tilts-Pelvic Curls, 3 Arm Reach and Pulls, 3 Arms Over
Routine: 100 (on my Stomach like in Pilates class) {1 cycle}, 1 Reformer Series, 3 Cat-Cow Stretches, 5 One-Leg Circles per leg, 5 Teasers, 3 Open Leg Balances, 3 Saws, 3 Kneeling Arm-Leg Reaches, 5 Sidekicks with Scissors (5 small and big kicks),1 Plank.
Cool Down: 3 Spine Twists, 5 Seals, 3 Mermaid Stretches.

Workout #5: Warm-up: 1 Imprinting, 1 Angel Wings, 5 High Clams, 2 Pelvic Clocks (and reverse)
Routine: 100 (1 cycle), 4 Shoulder Bridges, 5 Roll Ups, 4 Double Straight Leg Lowers, 4 Single Straight Leg Stretches, 5 Sidekicks with 3 Inverted Scissors, 5 Roll Balls, 3 Leg Pull Outs.
Cool Down: 3 Darts, 1 Child’s Pose, and 1 Spine Stretch.

Notice how I modified the 100, Chest Lifts, Sidekick Series, Teasers with giving the exercise a twist for any level. I’ve also varied the number of reps I did for each cycle, too. That’s another way to give your routine, too.

Pilates ring poll

Do you like using the ring in your Pilates routines?

See results

Doing the Bicycle and Backpedal are Great Exercises to do on the mat or in the Water for Your Legs

Doing Warrior II Pose in Water is a Good way to Stretch Before Doing the Reverse Warrior Pose--the Same for Land Practice too

Spring Arrival of Pilates Class

For the second week of Pilates, we have a normal-sized class with no males or beginners. Once again, we returned back to the ring again and take hold of it. We started out with the stretches on our back and worked our bums off. We did the 100 on our back and with the ring, the single leg and double leg stretch, the plank and side plank, the mermaid stretch, and used the magic circle to turn like a steering wheel in her hands. We also gripped it between our knees and lifted and lowered our legs a few times and did the sidekick series with the bicycle/backpedal exercise and the side sashays, and a couple of bridge poses, too. We also did the swimming inversion exercise, when I once get a little bit better with the breathing and took a big breath by bending our legs in an exhale stretch a few times to end the session.

For this week’s Pilates class, it was a small one, since we had a sub today—and also nice weather! I’ve learned a lot of new and old stuff in the class, based on Joseph Pilates’s classic moves, something I’ve learned online last fall. We started out with the spinal twist and did the down dog, the plank, the 100, the sidekick series for the double leg lower lifts, the single leg stretch, the single straight leg stretch, the double leg stretch, the roll up, the saw, the spine stretch, the high and low clam, the double leg circle with our feet going in different directions, and rolling like a ball. We also did the seated forward fold and a couple of new exercises: the horseshoe, the popcorn, the double bicycle and backpedal on both sides, too. We followed it up with some exhale stretches.

Hydro Pilates poll

Would you try Hydro Pilates?

See results

Taking a Splash in Hydro Pilates

For the past two weeks, I started my first rounds of Hydro Pilates class this spring. It really was at medium intensity. It took place in two pools at my gym—the catch pool which is a three foot pool at the bottom of the indoor slide for Tuesdays, and the lap pool which is a normal swimming pool that’s four to twelve feet deep on Thursdays. We had a bigger size classes of senior citizens and middle-aged folks. It was a cross between water aerobics and Pilates to me, when we were both at the shallow ends. We started out with the same arm reaches with the half body twists and shoulder shrugs, when we took a breath and inhaled and exhaled with the side stretches and the Pilates stance. As for the Pilates-yoga exercises, we’ve did the Warrior II and reverse warrior poses, the tree pose, the chair pose, squatting and lunging, the 100 (in a standing position), the plank and side plank (both sides) with leg pull out, the bicycle/backpedal exercises, the side sashays and in reverse, as we also lifted our legs in the air and pointed our toes in the air by flexing them. In between the poses, we did shook our arms out to relieve tension a couple of times. We also did some plank poses on the steps and did a push up from it and also from the wall, as we end the session with the mermaid and exhale stretches with the wide stances.

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    • Kristen Howe profile image
      Author

      Kristen Howe 2 years ago from Northeast Ohio

      Pretty close, Peach. Why not start now? Go for it. There's a mixed range of students in my class from 20s to middle age.

    • peachpurple profile image

      peachy 2 years ago from Home Sweet Home

      i have never tried pilates( Pee-Lah_the ), is the pronunciation correct? Maybe when I turn middle age, I get into it

    • Kristen Howe profile image
      Author

      Kristen Howe 2 years ago from Northeast Ohio

      Thanks Tobusiness for stopping by and commenting on my hub. Sorry to hear about your back spasms. You're welcome. Good for you for exercising, too.

    • tobusiness profile image

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 2 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

      Pilates worked well for me when my back went into spasm a couple of years ago, but I'd stopped doing the exercises. I've been getting some twinges lately so thank you for this very timely reminder. I do use the treadmill and vibration plates. Very useful hub.

    • Kristen Howe profile image
      Author

      Kristen Howe 2 years ago from Northeast Ohio

      You're welcome so much Colleen. Go for you. It had radically changed my life by diminishing my back pain for good.

    • Colleen Swan profile image

      Colleen Swan 2 years ago from County Durham

      I tried Pilates at my local community centre. I was amazed at the results and will continue. Thank you for this info.

    • Kristen Howe profile image
      Author

      Kristen Howe 2 years ago from Northeast Ohio

      Thanks Alicia. I never heard of Hydro Pilates before, but I'm giving it a go. It's a bit hard and challenging, since balancing is trickier on the water. Thanks for the visit.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 2 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      I've never heard of Hydro Pilates before. This sounds like an interesting type of exercise! Thanks for sharing all the information, Kristen. I'm glad Pilates is going well for you.