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Recommended Reading and Links DaVinci Sketch

The Everything Pilates Book by Amy Taylor Alpers and Rachel Taylor Segel, published by Adams Media

A Gymnastic Riding System by Betsy Steiner, published by Trafalger Square

Program for Better Riding, Books 1-6 by Echart Meyners and Jill Hassler-Scoop, published by Goals Unlimited Press

Effective Teaching and Riding by Echart Meyners, published by Goals Unlimited Press

Centered Riding 2 – Further Exploration by Sally Swift, published by Trafalger Square

Balance in Movement, the Seat of the Rider by Susanne von Dietze, published by Trafalger Square

The Egoscue Method of Health through Motion by Pete Egoscue, published by Quill Publishing

How You Stand, How You Move, How You Live, Learning the Alexander Technique by Missy Vineyard, published by Marlowe and Co.

For further information on Pilates please visit www.PMA.org or www.balancedbody.com

To purchase a Balimo chair, please go to www.balimochairs.com.  Mention my name when you order!

Sample Workouts

Sample Pilates/Equilates Mat Workout with a Focus on Stretching

Goal – To warm-up prior to riding by increasing mobility, putting both mind and body at ease and increasing suppleness of characteristically tight muscle groups.

On back with legs straight and arms by side

  1. Various deep breathing techniques, visualization of body relaxing.
  2. Nose circles
  3. Let head fall to right and left and breath into neck stretch
  4. Using fingers massage occipital area of head
  5. Overhead arm floats
  6. Angel arm sweeps
  7. Puppet arms
  8. Fists and release
  9. Wrist circles and stretches

On back with knees bent and feet on floor

  1. Pelvic clock 6/12 and 3/9, circles and hip to knee
  2. Pelvic clock in 2nd position
  3. Pelvic curl
  4. Pelvis lift and press

On back with legs straight and arms by side

  1. Knees to chest stretch
  2. Heel to crotch stretch
  3. Knee across body stretch
  4. Piriformis stretch
  5. Hamstring stretch
  6. Ankle/toe flex and extend
  7. Ankle circles

Sitting with legs straight

  1. Spine stretch
  2. Saw
  3. Lower back stretch with bent knees

Sitting cross legged

  1. Breast bone turn
  2. Side bend
  3. Inner thigh stretch


  1. Cat stretch
  2. Child’s pose

Sample Balimo Warm-up and Basic Release Exercises

Goal – To warm-up prior to riding by increasing blood flow to the muscles, and releasing key tightness zones so that the body moves in a more biomechanically correct fashion.

Warm-up Echart Meyners Style

  1. Crazy Walk – various foot positions, arm movements, change of direction & tempo
  2. Hopping
  3. Skipping
  4. Crawling
  5. Standing Hip Rotations


  1. Occipital Massage
  2. Eye Reach


  1. On Side Shoulder work
  2. Feel Good Arms
  3. The Eagle

Ilio-sacral Joint

  1. Acupressure Points
  2. Cross Crawl
  3. Open Knee Side Roll
  4. SI Joint Stretch


  1. The Jiggle
  2. On Side Hip Movement
  3. Hip Massage
  4. Leg Vibrations

Tendon Plucking

  1. Traps
  2. Pecs
  3. Achilles
  4. Knees
  5. Inner thighs
  6. Hip flexors