I use class as a proper warm up and move on to more intense stretching when my body is fully prepared. I never jump into big, static stretches, such as splits, before a class. Doing this can put you at risk for injury, and strains the muscles. Dynamic warm ups are the best way to prevent injury and set yourself up for a great class!
My Pre-class Dynamic Warm Up Routine:
- 20 jumping jacks
- 10 hip extensions (Lie on your back with your knees bent. Raise hips to the ceiling and hold for 2 seconds before slowly lowering back down.)
- 5 hip rotations on each leg (Stand in parallel and start with the right leg. Lift knee as if you were stepping over a fence and rotate out to stand in first position. Pick your leg up and rotate back in to parallel.)
- 10 leg swings (forward & back)
- 10 leg swings (side to side)
- 30 second plank
Pilates Ab Series of 5:
- Start on your back, keep your head and and shoulders off of the mat throughout this entire series.
- Single leg stretch – bring one knee into chest and straighten the other leg. Opposite hand is placed on the inside of your knee and the same arm as leg reaches for your ankle.
- Double leg stretch – start in a ball, stretch both your arms and legs out at the same time and bring them back into the ball. Keep your core muscles activated!
- Scissors – keeping your shoulders off the floor and both legs extended, grab your ankle and keep switching legs.
- Double-leg lower – place your hands behind your head and turn out your legs. Lower both legs towards the floor then bring both legs back up together before any shift happens in your lower back.
- Criss-cross – same position as ‘single leg stretch’ except this time your hands are behind your head. As your switch your legs, twist your torso to the opposing side.