From The Pilates Studio

From The Pilates Studio: Introducing Sara

Friday, May 3, 2013 9:49:59 AM America/New_York

From the Pilates Studio is our new, once a week, column that offers specially designed fitness tips from our resident Pilates expert (and Patti's personal instructor), Sara Bogle of Pilates on 66.

But before we began actually sweating, we wanted to catch up with Sara and find out a little bit more about her! 

Restorsea: For someone who doesn’t really know anything about Pilates, how would you describe it?

Sara Bogle: Pilates is a movement system that strengthens and stretches the entire body using a series of mat exercises as well as spring driven apparatuses. It strengthens and tones muscles, improves posture, increases flexibility, and was created to provide a healthy body, mind, and well balanced life. The best part of Pilates is that it’s really good for everybody – my youngest client is 13 and my oldest is 86!  

R: Wow. What are some of the other benefits of Pilates?

S: Everyone always says they want the Pilates body, because we’re all about ‘stacking our core’ in our workouts. Another one of our big things is circulation. All my clients tell me how much it has helped with their cellulite, because we’re strengthening all those little muscle groups in the body by pulling everything tighter. My aunt actually describes this experience the best: she calls it shrink wrap, and says that after she’s done a Pilates session she feels likes she’s been sucked up and wrapped away.

R: Have you always been a fitness person? How did you get involved in Pilates?

S: I’ve always been active my whole life: I danced, did gymnastics and ran track – a little of everything. When I decided that I wanted to go to school for dance full time, I also purchased a Pilates DVD and became obsessed. I started going to the classes and doing it every day religiously and eventually just fell in love with Pilates. It totally changed my body, and made my dancing so much better.  I just kept going ever since.

R: What are some other fitness things you’re obsessed with right now?

S: I’m running the Brooklyn Half Marathon, so the other day I went to get fitted for new sneakers at JackRabbit, and I loved it. In their store they literally put you on a treadmill hooked up to a computer and analyze the curve and arch of your run. It’s crazy. I bought these Saucony sneakers and I ran 9 miles in them the first day. I don’t know how I did it, but I did it. I also really like these new Clif Shot Blocks. You take 3-6 before any physical activity and they’re literally blocks of gummy energy. I’m going to start eating them before Pilates – they get you so amped up.  

R: Your husband, Justin, is a two star Michel chef. How do you balance fitness when I’m sure there’s so much good food?

S: During the week I’m very good and regimented, but on the weekends I let myself enjoy. I think that there is a balance and you can’t really restrict yourself too much.

Every now and then I do a little challenge with myself where I don’t have any wheat, dairy, and alcohol for 24 days. I’ve done this three times, and I felt amazing each time afterwards. I like doing fun little things like that, but it’s also important to recharge your body. It’s like, juicing for a few days is great, but you also need to have a balance and stay healthy.

R: It’s not really healthy to just juice?
S:
Right. The thing with juicing is that you starve yourself for five days, and then you eat something solid and it just hangs off your bones, because your body is literally starving. We just bought a juicer, and it’s great I love drinking things fresh, but we also eat too.

Be sure to check back next Friday for her first weekly tip.

From The Pilates Studio

From The Pilates Studio: The Roll Down

Friday, May 10, 2013 10:00:05 AM America/New_York

Last week we introduced you to Sara, our in-house Pilates expert, who will be updating you every Friday on exclusively regimented poses for anywhere you can lay down a mat! For our first session we’re focusing on articulation, and Sara recommends The Roll Down, a foundational mat exercise that works the powerhouse and limbers the spine.

To practice The Roll Down:

1. Begin by sitting up tall with your feet planted on the mat, hip width apart. Wrap the hands behind the thighs and keep your elbows wide.

2. Pull your abdominals in and curl your pelvis under, creating a C-curve position in the spine. Bring your chin towards your chest and begin to lower your back down towards the mat, focusing on only the first few vertebrae. Hold this position for three deep breaths. Keep the C-curve in your spine and curl back up to your starting position.

3. Repeat Step 2, but this time keep lowering the spine down to the base of your rib cage. Hold this position for three deep breaths. Curl back up to your starting position.

4. Repeat Steps 2 and 3, and this time keep lowering your spine all the way to your shoulder blades. Hold this position for three deep breaths. Curl back up to your starting position.

Repeat this sequence three to five times and be sure to check back next Friday for a new exercise! 

From The Pilates Studio

From The Pilates Studio: 'TV' Exercises

Friday, May 17, 2013 7:51:46 AM America/New_York

Want to catch up on last night’s Vampire Diaries but still need to schedule in a work out? Don’t worry, Sara’s got your back!

While last Friday we worked on articulating the spine, this week in From The Pilates Studio we’re all about 'TV' exercises: a series of workouts that focus on stabilization and control that are also easy to do in front of the tube. These specific movements will work your abdominals, strengthen the front of your thigh and stabilize your pelvis.

To practice today’s 'TV' Exercise:

1. Begin lying on the mat with your knees bent. Push into the backs of your arms and lengthen your neck and spine. Pull your abdominals in and lift your right leg to about 45 degrees, your knees should be together in the first position. Hold this position for 10 slow counts and breathe deeply.

2. Lower the same leg down in line with your calve. Hold this position for 10 slow counts and breath deeply.

3. Lower the same leg down in line with your ankle. Hold this position for 10 slow counts and breath deeply.

4. Repeat steps 1 through 4 on your left leg.

The progression for this exercise would be to lift your chin to your chest and look at your abdominals as you hold the leg in each position. Repeat this 1 to 2 sets on each side and be sure to check back next Friday for a new exercise! 

From The Pilates Studio

From The Pilates Studio: Teaser Balance

Friday, May 24, 2013 10:00:18 AM America/New_York

So far in our From The Pilates Studio series, we’ve been working on spine articulation and stabilization/control. Today, we’re raising the stakes a bit with Teaser Balance: an exercise that strengthens the powerhouse and works balance and stability in the body.

To practice today’s Teaser Balance:

1. Begin sitting on the mat, hold under your thighs with your hands and lift your feet off the mat.  Hold this position, focusing on your abdominals pulling in and the lift in your chest. Hold here for 3 deep breaths.

2. Repeat step 1, continue holding under your thighs and lengthen your legs out.  Continue pulling the abdominals in and lifting your chest.  Take 3 deep breaths in this position.

3. Repeat steps 1 and 2, then gently release your thighs and reach your hands towards your toes. Hold this position for 3 deep breaths.

Repeat 1 to 2 sets of each progression and be sure to check back next Friday for a new exercise! 

From The Pilates Studio

From The Pilates Studio: The Hundred

Friday, May 31, 2013 9:41:53 AM America/New_York

Have you been keeping up with our once-a-week Pilates regiment from fitness expert Sara Bogle? We hope so, but just in case you’re falling a bit behind, remember you can see this week’s exercise (and all weeks prior) here.

Today we’re practicing an exercise called The Hundred, which works the powerhouse, increases circulation for blood flow, and concentrates on the breath, building stamina in the body.

Good luck!

1. Begin lying on the mat, bring your knees into your chest and feel the length of your spine. Using your abdominals, lift your head and shoulders up reaching the arms forward and off the mat.

2. Extend your legs to a table top position, keeping the knees bent and the legs at a 90 degree angle.

3. Begin vigorously pumping the arms straight up and down.  Breath in for 5 counts and out for 5 counts.  Try to maintain this position for as long as you can while pumping the arms, breathing deeply and keeping your chin toward your chest. Work your way up to 100 pumps with the arms, 10 full breath cycles.

4. The progression for this exercise is to repeat step 1 and extend your legs straight out to 45 degrees.  With that, continue step 3.

Repeat 10 sets of full breath cycles (100 pumps of the arms) and be sure to check back next Friday for a new exercise! 

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