The modern condition to stay always-on and connected through phones, tablets, and computers has caused our shoulders to round, closing down over our hearts. Fear makes us do the same thing that our screens do. We focus in and round our shoulders to protect our hearts. Now more than ever we need to be deliberate about rolling our shoulders back, lifting our chests, and opening our hearts!
Did you know that practicing Pilates can open your heart and reverse the effects of our modern forward-bending lifestyle? When the heart is open, we feel more love and are able to then share this feeling with others. How cool is that?
Even the term “social distancing” plants apprehension in our minds and a reason to be fearful of the person next to you. How can you practice safety while still showing love to those in your community? It is still safe to say “thank you”, nod, smile, and to wave at neighbors. It is still safe to reach out and support those in your community like so many of you have done for us through encouragement and your amazing financial and emotional support, through guidance, and to keep us going when our lives have been totally turned upside down.
Healing and helping the world starts within each of us. Let’s all challenge ourselves to open our hearts even more and share that love with everyone around us.
Please join us for a heart-opening Pilates class this week and discover the benefits of spending a few minutes each day to push your shoulders back, lift your hearts and raise your vibrations. The world needs your love!
Open your heart with the Pilates Swan:
Lie on the mat face down. Keep your arms close to your body as you bend your elbows to bring your hands under your shoulders. Shoulders should be away from the ears. The legs are usually together, but it is acceptable to do this exercise with the legs shoulder-width apart.
1. Engage your abdominal muscles: lifting your belly button up away from the mat. The abdominals remain lifted throughout the exercise.
2. Inhale: Lengthen your spine, sending energy through the top of your head as you press your forearms and hands into the mat to support a long upward arc the upper body. The elbows are close to the body, the head stays in line with the spine, and the hips stay on the mat. Protect your lower back by sending your tail bone down toward the mat.
3. Exhale: Keep your abdominals lifted as you release the arc, lengthening your spine as your torso returns to the mat in a sequential way: low-belly, mid-belly, low-ribs and so on.
4. Repeat 3 to 5 times using an even, flowing breath to support the movement.
5. Finish by pushing back into the rest position with knees bent and body rounded over the thighs.
Zeina A. Grifoni, MPT
Licensed Physical Therapist, Certified Pilates Instructor and Synergy+ Founder