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Season 5 - Episode 2

Core Yoga

35 min - Practice


Strengthen your entire core in this dynamic ab-focused class. We move through floor work and standing balance challenges that will leave you feeling strong, confident, and focused.
What You'll Need: Mat

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Hey there, welcome. This class is designed to strengthen and bring awareness to your core, yoga for the core. So in my experience, your core, from your knees up toward the chest area, front, side, and back. Front, side, and back. All right?

So we're going to try to address most of those areas. So without wasting any more time, we're going to lie on our backs and begin there. So come on down. Join me. If you need to pause at any point or do more of what we're doing, please feel free.

Okay, so let's ground for a moment, okay? Bend your legs, plant your feet toward the edge of the mat, and relax your arms. We even close your eyes. And if it's helpful for you because, yeah, there might be a couple of moments where it's difficult. If it's helpful for you to create like some kind of motivation or intention that, you know, you want your back to feel better, you want to feel stronger, whatever it is for you, take this time.

Do clearing breaths, here you are once again, or maybe it's your first time showing up, rolling out the mat, whatever it is, it's all good. So let's begin by hugging the knees in toward your body. So stretch them in. You might feel a release in your low back. You could rock a little side to side as if you were massaging your back.

You could do some circles, circles one way, circles the other way. And if you ever get a little fatigued while we're in this position on our back, you can always come right back to this. Pull the knees in toward the center, but then widen them like you're trying to touch your knees towards your underarm area. I don't like the word armpit. Okay.

Now extend the left leg out. Let's point through the toes for this one. All right. I feel like that activates the leg pretty nice. Keep it hovering above ground, either high or low up to you.

Hugging and kind of pulling that right knee in. Switch sides. So extend the right leg, point through the toes or the heel, it's up to you and hug the left leg in. Now do the same thing, but let's lift the head and shoulders so that now a little bit more of your belly muscles, your core are turned on. Feet are maintaining active.

You're switching from side to side. So what's nice about this is that you have this stretch as the leg is coming in. The strength and stability of the leg going out. And then the midsection is holding it all together. And you're exhaling as you pull the knee in and like basically switching sides.

All right. All right. Your core, your core. One more to the left. Now bring both knees in, head and shoulders down.

Take a quick pause, which might equate to a breath. Both hands behind the head, I want you to be able to support your neck here. Okay. Now extend the right leg out, keep the left leg in. Now drop the left elbow and arm down and reach the right hand on the outside of your left knee.

Feel that kind of like the abdominals turn on. There's like, it's a version of bicycles, right? Now what you're going to do is switch, right hand behind the head, right elbow down, extend the left arm, boom, and then switch. You can even push through that grounded arm for a little more lift. We're going to do 10.

That's two, two, good, three, three, exhale, four, four, exhale, five, exhale, five, exhale, six, exhale, six, nice, seven, seven, eight, good job, eight, nine, nine, ten, ten, perfect. Happy baby in between. Just an opportunity to kind of like stretch out the hips, the groin, grab hold of the outer edges of your feet, your ankles, or your shins, or even just the knees, right? It's a little recovery moment. Then send the legs straight up, place your hands underneath your low back area, right around where your butt and your low back meet, all right?

Now start with the head down, leg lifts, inhale the legs down, exhale the legs up, 10 times. Exhale the legs down, exhale the legs up, two, if you want to lift your head and shoulders up, that just engages the core a little bit more, three, your choice, four, if your back is super confident, five, you can take your hands behind your head to support the neck. Let's go for number six, so we're not racing through these. Keep your legs strong and active, seven, good, eight, nine, ten. Bend the knees in, pause, okay.

Legs straight up again or bent if your hamstrings are tight, active feet, right? Point through those toes or drive through the heels. Now fingertips to the shins, exhale, slide the fingertips up, inhale down, exhale up, two of ten, exhale, exhale four, exhale five, exhale six, exhale seven, rotate the inner thighs in, everything active, eight, exhale nine, exhale ten, good job. One more rest, pause. Arms overhead, last one.

So legs go straight up or out, maybe about halfway down. As you exhale, bend the knees in and reach up like you're trying to hug your legs in, but you're not, you're just going to maybe touch the outer calves. Inhale, extend out, exhale two. This one might get you, this one gets me every time, three, exhale four, exhale five, exhale six, mindful of your low back, exhale seven, exhale eight, exhale nine, and ten. Feet down, pause.

Let's now stretch that area out that may have been kind of contracted with some bridge up and downs, all right? So your feet are kind of below the knees, go feet wide, this is fine. Now push up onto your shoulder blades so you're a little lifted here. Now exhale, push the hips up and give a little squeeze to the booty, right? Ten times, exhale up, so this is kind of like a keep going while I talk, three, is a stretch to the front of the body now, and kind of like some strength and stability through the hamstrings and glutes.

Six, seven, good, eight, nine, ten, okay, lower all the way down, now you've had a little break in the abs, let's go right back. Bend the knees in, take the hands behind the head, so those bicycles again, so extend the right leg out, remember those active feet, push the left elbow down and we'll begin. Reach the right arm, cross the left leg, that's one, one, good, two, two, three, three, four, good job, four, five, five, six, six, seven, seven, eight, eight, exhaling nine, exhaling nine, exhaling ten, exhaling ten, pause just for one breath, let's get right into those leg lifts, so active feet, strong legs, hands behind the head or underneath your back, you choose, inhale the legs down, exhale up, if you feel, keep going while I give you a couple more options, you can bend your legs and tap the heels down to a little less weight or you can do single leg up to you, we're about three, you may be at four or five but bring it back, come on back, five, good, strong core, six, seven, strong feet, strong legs, that's part of the whole core, you don't understand what I'm saying, let's do one more, boom, let's go right into the shin reaches, alright, so fingers up on the shins, exhale one, exhale two, exhale three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten, hug the knees in, we have that last little, I don't know, call it like a hollow hold hug, alright, so this one might be a nice way to finish off this abdominal work, arms reach overhead, legs go straight out and then exhale, exhale two, exhale three, exhale four, it's normal to feel a little fatigue by now, five, especially in that lower abdominal six area, exhale seven, eight, nine, good job, and ten feet down, bridge, this time we'll do a little bit more of like a standard bridge, feet below the knees, a little more hip width, wiggle on and shelf up on those shoulder blades, press the hips nice and high, good, drive through your heels, try to point your knees forward like even one at a time, that might add some stretch of length to those thighs and hip flexes, good, open up, let the palms face up and rest on the ground, undo the shoulder blades and try to roll down, sort of segmentally right like upper back, mid back, low, low, low, low, ground, boom, good job, give another hug, little self-love hug there for the work you're doing and then let's rock right up to sit, okay, one of my favorites here is kind of prep for boat pose, boat rotations, so ground your feet, strong legs, lean back a little bit just enough to start to feel those tummy muscles turned on, arms straight out, now reach the left arm back, right arm forward but then turn and twist and use this back arm as a little like deep twisty feel and then switch, exhale, for the first two or three maybe you use that back arm as a little like yummy twist assist and then maybe you start to just kind of tap the back behind you, the floor behind you, so there's no real assist but it's the core driving the rotation, let's do three, three, two, two, one, one, nice, now hug the knees in, kind of walk the feet a little closer, lift the chest, right, so we want to kind of like stay away from rounding the back with boat pose, lean back, lift the heels, let's stay with a bent position today, point the toes up, strong legs, arms reach out, now kind of plays with balance a little bit but take both hands over to the left like you're setting a block down, take both hands over to the right and to the left and to the right, if you want to straighten your legs go for it, I kind of like my legs bent on this one, four, four, five, last one, five, hold on to the hamstrings, pull the knees in, lift the legs just a little bit more, point through the toes, feel free to straighten out the legs, arms reach out, breathe, bound angle, bottoms of the feet together, sit up tall, maybe even like walk your sit bones back, inhale, let's take a little break here, exhale, fold, might feel nice to stretch out the low back, walk your arms forward and over to one side and over to the other, good, rise up, tabletop, okay, tabletop, from table extend the right leg back, lift it, let's point through the toes again, left arm extends, thumb up and open to the left, stable through the midsection, maybe even lift the chest a little bit, lift that right leg, on your exhalation draw left elbow toward the right knee with that cat pose spine, inhale extend, exhale contract, inhale extend, number three of five, exhale, inhale, exhale, inhale, exhale, now place the left hand down, extend that right leg back, slide the left foot over like a few inches like a kickstand, peel the right arm up, now you're going to take that right foot, slide it to the back left corner of your mat if that makes sense, draw the right arm high, this is a nice little modified side plank, stretch the right fingers, overhead palm facing down, maybe even slide that right foot back a little bit more, that full stretch, now this is say A, B is elbow to knee, A big stretch, exhale core, inhale extend, exhale contract, exhale, beautiful, last one, extend all the way back, grab hold of that right foot now, pull the right heel toward your seat safely, push the right knee back and back behind you a bit and then start to push the right foot into the right hand and feel that little back bend that might happen, now extend that right leg back again, keep your right hand wherever you'd like but turn your right toes down just a slight bit, bring the right toes down toward the ground and then push through the right heel to lift up, this is really going to target this rear end of yours and of mine, I like to bring the hand behind the head, two, good, three, remember the core is right here as well, thigh muscles, midsection, five, I think that's five, six, seven, good, eight, nine, ten, now take that right foot, use your hip right to step it all the way up to a low lunge, from the lunge curl the back toes and lift the left knee, I want to start flirting with, you can see my ankle here, the knee position, you hear a lot, keep the knee over the ankle but let's work actually safely without a lot of heavy load on getting some movement and stability in the right ankle, so you can even lift that right heel up and bend a little deeper into the knee joint, good for the ankle, good for the knee and kind of flirt with that but then let's add a little more and build up, so place both hands on your right thigh and hang right around here, hover 45 degree angle with the upper body, you feel that right leg really turn on now, maybe bend a little deeper into that right leg, if you're looking to improve your squat, the range of motion in your ankle is really important, now because we're going to be coming up a little higher, bring that knee over the ankle, square the hips, bring the arms overhead, turn your pinkies toward one another to rotate the shoulders, rocket lunge also known as an arrow lunge but this is strong, push through the back heel, hold tight through the midsection, breathe, good all the way up now, high lunge, take a little side stretch, reach that left arm up and the right hand back, just a nice extra little stretch, back to high lunge, work on a little balance here, step the left foot up, your left knee is nice and high, arms overhead, those little toe taps now, bring the left toes down then bring the left knee high, strong through the midsection, you're going to use your hip flexors on the left, exhale 2, 3, good, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, warrior 3, hands to the heart, extend and shoot your left leg back, lengthen the torso, lengthen the spine, push through your left heel, take your hands behind your head for a moment, pull the elbows up toward the high, activate that back, breathe, step back into high lunge, arms overhead, breathe in, breathe out, little open arm twist toward you, good, palms up and what's nice about this is you have to use that midsection, that core to drive yourself into that rotation, lean back a little bit, one more breath, good, now circle the arms all the way down, downward dog, take a breath, alternate knee in, so you're going to go from downward dog into plank, right knee to the right elbow, exhale, downward dog, don't lift the legs up, downward dog into plank, left knee in, 2 or 1, 1, good, 2, exhale 2, exhale 3, exhale 3, exhale 4, exhale 5, exhale 5, down to the forearms, do little forearms side plank, switch a rue, so off to the left side, left forearm, heels over to the left, right arm high, lift the hips, hold, good, back to forearm plank, right knee to right tricep, left knee left tricep, right, left, one more, right, left, side plank on the right forearm, heels over to the right, lift the hips, strong back, shoulder, left arm reaching high, breathe, beautiful, forearm plank into dolphin, walk the feet forward a bit, I like to turn the palms up in dolphin, rotates the shoulders out away from the ears, still in the core, still working, forearm plank, slide the feet back at the full length here for 5, 4, 3, 2, knees down, hips down, belly down, sphinx pose, lower all the way down, hands in cobra position, lift the hands up off of the mat, now feel by driving the elbows up toward the high, the back activated, now lift your chest, cobra without hands, so you can feel the actual strength coming from your back, not from your hands, 5, so inhale down, no inhale up sorry, exhale down, let's switch that, breathe in down, exhale up, 3, exhale 4, keep pulling those elbows back, exhale 5, now stay up, reach your arms back, palms facing down, good, now palms facing up and down, just kind of spinning the arm bones, the shoulders while maintaining this kind of sphinx pose, now reach the arms forward, lower your body down, exhale pull the elbows back, inhale, exhale 2 of 5, exhale 3 of 5, exhale 4, exhale 5, hands down, lift the chest, exhale table, beautiful downward dog, just to kind of reset, knees down, perfect table top, send the right arm forward, left arm back, little extended table, bird dog, lift the chest, strong left leg, exhale 1, knee to elbow, exhale 2, exhale 3, exhale 4, exhale 5, extend out right hand down, slide the right foot over, the left foot over, lift the left arm high, stay here, or begin to stretch the left arm overhead, slide the right foot back, that's that fully extended position, exhale, knee to elbow, inhale, extend, exhale, left palm is facing down, exhale 3, exhale 4, good job, exhale 5, extend the left leg, bend it, grab a hold of that ankle, little kind of like side plank half bow, left heel toward the seat, then push the foot into the hand and the arm, open the shoulder, get that full expression, good, fully extend that left leg out again, left arm can go higher behind your head, rotate your toes, left toes toward the floor, now inhale lower down and exhale drive through the left heel to lift, 10, 9, 8, 7, good, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, keep it lifted but bend the leg, lift the hip high and then circle that left foot all the way up to the front of the mat, good, low lunge, we were here before on the other side but now we'll do this whole little series here, curl the toes, lift the right knee, bend the left knee, lift that left heel up even to get a little extra, extra movement, extra stretch in the foot, the ankle and then we'll start to build into that rocket, right, so from here bend and straighten, remember I told you right, the core is in that leg as well, now rocket, fully extend through the back heel and out through the fingertips and hold tight through the midsection for 5, good, 4, 3, 2, rise up for high lunge, stretch it out just a little bit and we'll go for those knee lifts, so finding your target focal point, bend the right knee and rise up, okay, left leg might be talking to you, that's normal, I'm going to take the hands behind my head this time so I keep that back active, toes down, knee high, 1, 2, 3, good, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, warrior 3, keep the hands behind the head, find your focal point, find your balance even if you're about to come out of it like that, right, just pretend that that wasn't, we're going to keep going, I'm still balancing, right, and you may be at home or doing the same thing, so let's do this together, warrior 3 with that extended super tired left leg, we got this, and high lunge, some days you have it, some days you don't, my left leg was burning today, I love it though, it's like that reminder we're here, we're working, doing our best, open arm twist to the left, twist and rotate, belly muscles stable, strong, reach back a little bit, left hand grazes the back leg, right arm reaches high, and then you bring the hands all the way down, get off that left leg, darn it, downward dog, downward dog plank knee to elbow, 1, 1, 2, good, 2, 3, 3, 4, exhale, draw 4, last one here, 5, and 5, plank pose, forearm plank, side plank to the left, right arm high, lift the hips, lift the hips, lift the hips, good, forearm plank, 2 times, right and left, exhale, knee to tricep, exhale, knee to tricep, exhale right side, exhale left side, side plank on the right, hips high, hold, yes, working those side body core muscles, legs, forearm plank, dolphin pose, we've been here, palms up or down, up to you, push the chest back towards your toes, try to get a nice lengthened spine, slide or heel toe kind of like the feet back, shoulders over elbows for 5, 4, 3, 2, knees down, hips down, lower, good job, reach the arms forward, lift, actually let's take the left arm back, palm facing down, right arm extends, now lift the right arm and left leg, little alternate limb lift there, then you're basically just going to switch, right hand back, lower, lift, hold, one more on the right and left, lift the right, lift the left, and switch, and relax, take the hands back, both of them alongside the body, palms facing down, lift the chest, reach back, palms facing down, thumbs out, breathe, grab hold of the right ankle, grab hold of the left ankle, stay here or maybe use those legs to push into the hands, to lift the chest, little upward bow, relax down, windshield wiper the legs side to side, press the forehead down onto your hands, good, hands in cobra position, lift, lift, lift the chest, push back into a child pose, big exhale here, breathe in, exhale it all out, come into kneeling for a moment, from kneeling, left hand back behind you, like a little kneeling twist, you can reach the right arm up, left hand back, you can even lift the hips up and over to the left, maybe you get a little ring out in the low back, hands back behind you, open up the chest and shoulders, you can bend the elbows for a little extra stretch through the shoulder joint there, back up to center, clasp the hands, child's pose with the hands up overhead, go side to side, back on up, relax, let's take all this work, lie down on our back for a few moments, lower down with all those core muscles you've got, hug the knees in, give a good little reset to the low back and stretch the legs out, the limbs out, take the biggest breath of this time here on the mat, breathe in, exhale, allow, fully allow your whole body to relax, as a real compliment to all the effort and healthy tension you've created, just let everything kind of shake loose and let go, let the breath be a messenger to the body, right, job well done. Knees in, rock it on up, rock and roll up, good job, really really good job, I'm really happy you were here today, sharing your time with me, working hard on them core muscles, until next time, next time, next time, namaste, have a beautiful day.


M Angela C
3 people like this.
What a great practice for my Monday morning blah feeling! Now I am feeling  strong,alive, awake and with my energy circulating throughout. Grateful for this practice which arrived when I needed it most. 🙏 
Martha K
3 people like this.
No kidding! Core Core and more Core! A very strong and challenging practice. So good!
Jenny S
5 people like this.
Holy Moly! What a season opener! Now THAT got my attention 🙀 my abs have been contentedly digesting vegan ice cream during this crazy hot summer, peaceful as can be, and then BAM! Robert is back. Just kidding around with you, it’s really great to see you here again 👏 Also, truth be told this was the exact medicine I needed right about now. As always, looking forward to the rest of this season of yoga with you 🙏🏻❤️
David G-
5 people like this.
Right after this: three bananas, about a quarter cup of pickle juice and quart of water. That was a great practice! Yesterday some buddies and I rode 80 miles at tempo—getting into a muscular flow. So freaking good. This felt like that. Thanks to Shelley, Lydia and Rosemary who taught me enough strength to do this. Namaste, Dave 
Maya A
2 people like this.
Loved this practice Robert thank you so much! Great to see you in a new season, looking forward to the rest. Namaste, Maya 
2 people like this.
great to work with you again - loved the class and the clear unhurried guidance. many thanks 🌈
Aree C
1 person likes this.
Love the class...Many thanks
Robert Sidoti
M Angela C Yay and yes!! Love hearing this - thank you for sharing how you feel! 
Robert Sidoti
Martha K Sounds like we worked the core a little?? :)  Did you feel it the next day? I personally love that feeling - reminder of the good and hard work from prior day! 
Robert Sidoti
Jenny S Jenny!! Love your comment - so funny!! Love love Vegan ice cream by the way, so good! I'm so happy to see you here and to practice with you - maybe someday live and in person! Movement is medicine - happy you got a nice dose when needed :) 
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