Rachel Piskin, a former New York City ballet dancer and founder of the incredibly popular New York-based boutique studio ChaiseFitness, is rediscovering the group’s training. Signing her studio is a combination of ballet exercises, cardio and basic work, everything became more difficult with the introduction of Theraband, a long, flat resistance band that can be used to enhance the challenge of almost any exercise.
Given that not everyone has the luxury of living in the New York area, Rachel offers four movements aimed at the legs and buttocks that you can try at home. If you decide you like the routine style, check out Piskin’s Chaise on the Go, which includes four streaming videos that anyone can watch online.
1 – Extension Of the arms
Stand in the middle of Teraband with your left foot, toe turned, and hold one end of Teraband in each hand, hands down the walls. Place your right foot behind you, being careful to stay on the ball of your foot so that you are in a firm position. Pull Teraband and your arms up and out as you slowly bend your knees, descending into deep hair, working against the group’s resistance. Return to the starting position and repeat 12-20 times before switching sides. This move is aimed at weapons, glutes, core and whips.
Make it harder: Once you are in a low healthy position, pulse your arms and legs 10-20 times to further engage your gluttons and hamstrings.
2 – High current elevators
Focus on improving position and alignment, balance, and gluten strength when performing high heel lifts (also known as “plie squat”).
Wrap the ends of the ribbon tightly around your arms and stretch your arms in front of you to form a triangular shape with your body. Stand at a distance from each other with your feet, your toes bent and bend your knees. Raise your arms above your head and raise your heels to balance. Go down before performing 20 total heel lifts.
Make it harder: Maintain your balance at the top of the envelope and pulsate your legs 20 times.
3 – Extension of the side legs
This exercise is aimed at your glutes, squares, core and upper body. Start on the floor in a knee position balanced on the right knee. Stretch your left leg straight to the side of your body. With Teraband wrapped in your right hand, with your hand on the floor under your shoulder, wrap the other end in your left hand and extend your left hand to the sky. Bend your left elbow so that your left fist starts behind your neck. Lift your left leg up to the ceiling and pull your left shoulder straight at the same time. Perform 10-12 lifts, then keep your leg raised and pulse it 10-20 times.
Make it harder: Keep your leg raised after the pulses are complete and point and bend your legs ten times.
4 – Flat boards
Place your feet in a slightly inverted position (toes apart together) against the wall. Walk your hands on a board so that your body forms a straight line from head to toe. Make sure your palms are just below your shoulders. From this position, press your hips back against the wall and your heels, bending your knees to the floor in a plie position on the board. Press from the wall to extend your legs and return to the board position. Perform 15 repetitions of two to three sets with a break between groups. This exercise strengthens the gluten, inner and outer thighs, thighs, hamstring, core and upper body.
Make it harder: Press after returning to the board position.
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Note that resistance strips are available in many different levels of resistance. If you find that some of Piskin’s exercises are almost impossible, you are likely to choose a group with less resistance. Also, if the group you’re using doesn’t seem to add any challenge, it’s probably time to move on to the next level of resistance. Also, remember to control the group’s level of calm. You can make a light resistance tape more challenging by “suffocating” the band and increasing the voltage.
Finally, check the resistance of the tape for wear before each use. The last thing you want is for the band to break in the middle of the exercise and leave you like a giant rubber band.