Press Up Front or Press Ups Facing In on the Pilates High Chair are an incredible challenge for Pilates practitioners of all levels. It has various stages so whether you're just learning them or are ready to fly there is a level and variation for you. The key to this exercise is to reach in two directions - to truly reach up as much as you reach down. It's easy to want to lean forward but you really want to find a way to hover in the up and down and not forward and back. When you can find this place, the strength you gain will change your entire arm to back connection.
Press down to lift up. Find the longest reach in two directions.
Stand in front of the chair with your hands on the handles. Step onto the pedal one foot at a time and set the balls of your feet at the back edge of the pedal. This way, as the pedal rises, you end up on the top of the pedal. Find your shoulders on your back, reach your tail long and hug your heels tight together. You'll be tempted to lean forward to get going but the key to this exercise getting you stronger is to try to go more up than forward.
To begin, press down into your hands and feet and lift up. Yes, press down into your feet to lift the pedal up. Then as you go up and down maintain a reach from your lower back into your feet and up from your center through the crown of your head. Repeat this 3-5x. If it's going well and you're ready to challenge your connection without the support of the springs, press yourself up, take your feet off the pedal. Find the longest reach you can and begin to beat your legs open and closed. Your goal is to have a "swan" like check, long spine and control of your body as your legs open and close.
Be sure to check out more of my Pilates High Chair exercises. I want to help you continue your Pilates High Chair training!