• Swan on the Ladder Barrel

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    I get so many questions on this exercise- both from clients and from people on instagram. This exercise is so difficult to execute but looks so effortless. Let’s break it down…

    Set up: Feet are in Pilates stance, heels together on the second bar, balls of the feet are on the first.

    Pelvis is pressed into the barrel and the spine relaxes over (take a second, this feels SO good)

    Execution: Inhale to prepare and arch the spine back as if you could touch your toes. Make sure your arms stay in line with your ears- and keep your head between the arms. Avoid tilting the head back by crunching your neck.

    Next, extend the legs completely straight, bringing the spine back in line, shooting the arms out to make a 45 degree angle. With legs straight, arch once more, reaching hands back to the feet.

    Bend the knees to relax over the barrel. That’s one full set of Swan on the Ladder Barrel.

    Tessa, pictured above, makes it look like a piece of cake. If you are struggling with this exercise, don’t fret! It will come eventually- like all exercises found within the original Pilates method, it is a full body effort! Your whole body must work together to execute this move properly. Keep practicing and keep asking questions!