Rowing 1: Into the Sternum on the Reformer
Rowing is one of my favorite Pilates Pilates Reformer series! There are six different exercises in the series and they all have a lot of moving parts. It’s normal to learn the Rowing Series in sections and out of their traditional order. Rowing 1 also known as Into the Sternum (or Chest) usually one of the last two of the Rowing Series you’ll learn. It’s for your arm-back connection and interestingly, this series helps you prepare for your first long box series but you will probably do many of the exercises on the long box before you learn Rowing 1.
Hug legs tight, reach your arms from your back. Press hand into handle.
With one heavy spring on turn and face your shoulder blocks. Place your legs between your shoulder blocks and hold your handles into your chest fist palms down. Sit tall. As you round back towards the springs pull your handles into your sternum from your back. Pressing into your handles to keep the carriage from closing open your arms wide to the side and round forward like your Roll up on the mat. Without changing anything, press your hands back towards the footbar, reach for your springs and try to hook your thumbs. Lift your arms up, up and up and then circle the arms around and reach towards your toes before you sit up and repeat 3x.
You may not be able to get your thumbs to hook or even touch. But try as much as you can to tough your thumbs or hook without bending the elbows right away. The more you reach from your back the more possible this exercise becomes.
Controlling the carriage is the hardest part of the Rowing series. If you can keep your whole palm pressing into the handle throughout the movement, you will be able to stay connected to your back.