Monkey on the Cadillac
Monkey on the Pilates Cadillac or Tower is a fantastic place to not only get a great stretch but is an amazing exercise for teaching you how to do other Pilates exercises like Tree, Elephant, Stomach Massage and more. After you do it with two legs, check out my one-legged version. When you do this exercise, try to think of your thighs and stomach as trying to remain as far away from each other even when they are close together. This way you don’t work then relax, work then relax. If you continue to press into the bar when you bend your knees, you will remain connected.
Press your legs into the bar and pull your center back as you return.
Place your safety chain on the Push Thru Bar and one heavy spring from below. Then laying down underneath the bar slide back until your shoulder blades are off the mat and then place the balls of your feet on the center of your Push Thru Bar. Your heels squeeze together and your toes about a fist distance apart. Place your hands on the bar outside of your feet. Allow your arms to connect to your back and your feet to press into the bar to connect to your seat.
Point your feet and press them into the bar, pull your center into the mat and round up and over yourself until your legs are straight. Flex your ankles, bend your elbows and pull yourself deeper into the longest round shape you can make. Then bend your knees and pull your center back to the start position. Remember your thighs and stomach are not friends. Continue to press your legs into the bar and pull your center back as you return. Then point your toes and repeat 2-3 more times. If your arms are connected to your back, you will feel a long stretch through your spine. But, it’s easy to pull from your shoulders and lose the connection to your back.