(1) Learning Pilates from other than a real live instructor is not easy,
and does carry some slight risks. You should (in addition to these notes)
attend a course of certified Pilates mat sessions.
This is the safest way to learn, and it's also a lot of fun!
(2) Please ensure that you are competent in "Pilates Contrology".
(free pdf e-book).
Action for Swan-Neck Roll.
||Setup for Swan-Neck Roll:
- Lie on your stomach and lift your abs off the mat.
- Place your hands under your shoulders and bring your elbows close into the sides of your body (like duck wings).
- Shoulder blades down your back.
- Slide your jaw forward so that your front teeth are gently touching.
(Classical Pilates Cueing: The Swan-Neck Roll, Scroll right>>>...)
- Scoop deep, and inhale as you roll a marble away with your nose, and roll up (head,
neck, upper back, mid back, lower back) to the ships figure head position.
- Breathe normally. Gently lengthen your chin and your breast toward the horizon.
- Look to your left and stretch, roll your chin down to your chest, and then roll up to look to your right
- Return to lengthening your chin and breast bone out to the horizon, and pause.
- Stay scooped & exhale as you roll back down.
Classical Pilates for Beginners:
The Swan-Neck Roll
Level: Beginner, Repetitions: 2.
(The Saw preceeds the Swan-Neck Roll).
The Rest Position
Come up to the crawler position with knees hip width apart and sit back onto your heels...
Classic Pilates Cueing:
- Inhale to roll up! - Exhale to roll down!
- Scoop your abs, make a house for a mouse!
- Elbows close to sides!
- Stretches the muscles of the throat and abs.
- Works the shoulder stabilizer muscles.
- "Releases" and counterstretches the spine after all the flexing you've done.
As such, it is the Pilates alternative to the "Mckenzie Extension exercise" that is famous
for relieving sore backs.
Don't let an injury or weakness stop you!
There is always a modification. Take your time and find the right one for you.
If in doubt, seek advice!
- Keep your thumb close to your fingers, and distribute the weight or
your body equally through your whole hand and fingers.
- Review pointers under Setup, Action, & Cueing.
Classical Pilates Technique: The Swan-Neck Roll, © Bruce Thomson, EasyVigour Project
- Sore back. (If you have a
marked lumbar lordosis, seek medical advice)- Breathe naturally.
Ease your way into the stretch taking up to 10 minutes. Go only as far as pain will permit. Omit the
neck roll. Clenching your butt muscles will help protect your lower spine.
- Sore shoulder or neck, proceed with caution.
- Avoid until 6-8 weeks post partum.