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Pilates for Practitioner 101: Summer Cool Down for Weeks 43-44

Updated on February 3, 2017
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.

Still Regaining Stamina...Slowly

During the past three weeks, I’ve still continued to go to my Pilates class, and my Hydro Pilates classes, just to get even more stronger and to rebuild my stamina. I’m still feeling a bit better with my ongoing “summer cold”, and will resume my home practice sometime this fall, preferably in early October, like next weekend. I’m taking it things slow and at my own pace and hope to pick up momentum soon. Last week, I took a week off for some needed down time, due to my cold, and will return to my classes this week.

You can Modify Your Pilates Workout With Using Light Weights to Build Tone and Strength

Tons of Late Summer fun in Pilates

Three weeks ago, I skipped my Pilates class, since I wasn’t feeling well and need time off. Two weeks ago on Labor Day, my former Gentle Yoga instructor from last fall had taught my small Pilates class. It was a combination of Pilates exercise and yoga poses with the light weights and the big medicine balls. First we’ve warmed up with breathing exercises and doing the “happy dance.” Then we’ve gotten down to basics with doing some stretches with some forward folds and cat-cows. We’ve done some pelvic curls on the floor and did some roll-ups a few times. With the light weights, (I chose 2 pounds, since I couldn’t find the 1 pound ones), we’ve done some arm curls with both hands. And then we’ve raised them higher a couple of times and lowered them to the ground. We did do a couple of side planks with the weights, along with the horse kick, fire hydrant, and horse kick-hydrant combo pose on both sides with a count of rounds. We’ve also done a full body stretch with a few extended child’s poses. To finish out the session, we’ve used the ball to sit on for balance and stretched ourselves out by going forward and back and concluded with some alphabet legs.

Using light weights is a great way to build core strength in Pilates for your arms

Splashing Around in Hydro Pilates

For my 31st Hydro Pilates class, we’ve used swim noodles for our prop in the class. It was something different and entirely new. We’ve warmed up with the same body twists, knee raises, and side stretches, while we’ve had our noodle in our hands. We’ve done some squats in the water, while holding onto them and hinged forward for the stretch. We’ve leaned back in the water and against the noodles, while we kicked our legs, moved them in and out motion a few times. We’ve also held onto them, while we’ve posed for the planks, the one-armed and one-legged planks, and did some Pilates push-ups with the wall, and the side planks. Then without the noodles, we’ve did the same old sidekick series with the backpedal/bicycle, leg lowers, both side sashays, the chair squat with some knee pull-ups on both sides, and the press and pull stretches. We’ve also did the tree pose, the mermaid stretch, spinal twist, the Warrior stretches and the Pilates stance.

For my 32nd Hydro Pilates class, we’ve warmed up with some leg and knee raises to both sides, followed by the same twists and side stretches. We’ve also squatted a few times in the water and hinged forward. We moved forward with the variety of planks and side planks, including with the one-leg circles. We’ve went forward with the sidekick series on both sides with the leg lowers, backpedal/bicycle, both side sashays, the char squat, knee pull-ups, and then the Pilates push-up. We’ve done the tree pose, the mermaid stretch, spinal twists, the press and pull, Warrior One and Two stretches and the Pilates stance.

For my 33rd Hydro Pilates session, we’ve warmed up with the leg/foot raises on both sides with some body twists and side stretches. We’ve done the wide stance to do the squats in the pool, followed by a press and press side stretch and a hinge stretch. We’ve used the wall to do the planks, both one-legged and one-armed, with one-leg circles. We’ve done the chair squat, after we’ve finished the tree pose and sidekick series with the leg lowers, side sashays and bicycle/backpedal, and the extended pendulum by moving our legs inward and outward in a swinging motion. We’ve done a couple of knee pull-ups on both sides with the mermaid stretch and spinal twist. To end the session, we’ve did the warrior one and two poses and with the Pilates stance.

For my 34th Hydro Pilates session, we’ve started our class with the leg and foot raises on both sides to warm up our bodies. After some body twists and side stretches, we’ve proceeded to do the wide stance for squats and a press-and-pull side stretch with a hinge stretch. Back to the wall, we’ve used the bent and extended elbow planks, both with one-legged and one-armed on both sides, with one leg circles. Once again, we’ve done the tree pose for balancing, and started the sidekick series with the side leg lowers, the sashays and bicycle/backpedal in the water. Then we’ve did a kicking series by moving our legs inward and outward and up and down for both sides. After a couple of knee pull-ups on both sides, we’ve did the mermaid stretch and the spinal twist, concluding with the warrior one and two poses and Pilates stance.

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    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 19 months ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Your cold has lasted for a long time, Kristen. I hope you recover soon!

    • Kristen Howe profile image
      Author

      Kristen Howe 19 months ago from Northeast Ohio

      Hi Alicia. Yeah, it's never-ending. My immunity is a bit low this season. Thanks so much!

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 18 months ago from USA

      I've tried to convince my mother to do water exercise classes, but it's a no for her. Your description makes it sound fun.

    • Kristen Howe profile image
      Author

      Kristen Howe 18 months ago from Northeast Ohio

      Thanks Flourish. It might not be for everybody--maybe just low intensity water aerobics.

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