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Old 01-10-22, 08:03 PM  
Lorelai
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Missouri
Classical Stretch?

It's been a VERY long time since I've posted here. We moved to a new state, and then it took some time for us to land in our "forever" home. I've had three babies in the past 7 years. My body has become foreign, and workouts that I used to use as a beginner, like Jessica Smith or Ellen Barrett, are too quick, have too many twists, or too many big ranges of motion for this out of shape body right now. After my third pregnancy, my core muscles are pretty much non-existent. I tweaked my lower back pretty good and now I'm trying to figure out how to go from here. I know I need to exercise intentionally, and I'm trying to find a way to do that so that I will slowly build up strength and cardio capacity, as well as increase flexibility and core stability so that I can go back to my old favorites without (hopefully) hurting myself again. I can get there again, right? 😅😭

Anyway, it occurred to me that I should look into Classical Stretch. I'm looking for a season recommendation, preferably, that maybe has good episodes for tight hip flexors and hamstrings, plus low back and posture muscles. Gentle core work. All or mostly standing. My 2 year old will pounce if I get on the floor. 😅 I'm not completely opposed to streaming if you have amazing recommendations, but I do live out in a rural area and if I stream it might be on my phone. A bigger screen would be nice! Hahaha. Oh, and I'm a Classical Stretch newbie, although in the past I've always been intrigued by both CS and Esssntrics (mainly I had financial issues back them and didn't try them for that reason, but that's less of an issue now). I'd love to find a season that has good instructions. I've never been very good at making a schedule and then following it (I usually did better if I picked based on how I was feeling that day), but at this point, I might need a schedule so that I don't overdo or even underdo (is that a word) it?

Thanks for reading all that. I'm really glad this forum is still here and active. 💜
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"Practice makes progress." Jessica Smith

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Old 01-10-22, 09:56 PM  
Venus
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: NE
Hello!

The Age Reversing Workouts might be a good fit for you. They're 30 minutes each, fairly gentle and good for beginners.

Classical Stretch Age Reversing Workouts for Beginners DVD Box Set

There is also a beginner's bundle with these DVDs:

Classical Stretch/Essentrics Beginners DVD Bundle

I only have one season, but I think most seasons have a mix of standing, barre, and floor exercises. Usually, the latest season is the best choice (the most up to date). And, if you read the description, it sounds like it has a lot of what you're looking for.

Classical Stretch Season 14 - Posture Boost & Back Health

There is some free content on the Classical Stretch YouTube channel. You may want to try some of the workouts there until you decide on a season.

Classical Stretch YouTube channel

Aging Backwards Mini Series by Essentrics

14 Min Psoas, IT & Hips Stretch with Miranda Esmonde-White

Perhaps you can try some of Jessica Smith's more gentle workouts. She has several playlists on her YouTube channel, which can help you find the type of workouts you want. Her latest mobility workout is very gentle and she has many stretching, barre, pilates and walking workouts (for your tight hip flexors/hamstrings and posture). She also has some prenatal and postnatal workouts.

Jessica Smith: Beginner Workouts playlist

Jessica Smith: Knee and Back Friendly Workouts playlist

Jessica Smith Playlists

Good luck on your journey back to fitness!
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Old 01-10-22, 10:07 PM  
bfit
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
I really don't mean to sound discouraging, but I'm wondering if Classical Stretch is the best place to start. I tried Classical Stretch once when I was coming back from a layoff, and I found it quite challenging and not very gentle. The stretch/yoga Jessica Smith workouts might be a good place to start, and there are also several great DVDs with Jane Adams that are really good.
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Old 01-10-22, 10:38 PM  
Lorelai
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Missouri
My main issue with yoga at the moment is all the bending and twisting. Slow twists are probably fine once I'm no longer in pain, but I think I need to be careful with bending too, at least for now. I've always been a little prone to low back tweaks, and a few pregnancies really tanked what core muscles I had left. CS seemed like it could be a good fit, modified, because Miranda doesn't go as fast as Jessica does. I know Jessica has some good stretching routines, but floor work isn't the best option for me. I'm not joking about my 2 year old... She'd think it was totally fair game to just lay right on top of me. All those deep flat back downs make my back hurt just watching. Of course, I flared it up and now I have to wait for it to calm down again, so right now I'm trying to just do hip flexor stretches and such. But I'd really like to do more ...
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"There's always an option before we quit." Jessica Smith

"You don't have to be a ballerina to feel like one." Ellen Barrett
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Old 01-10-22, 11:04 PM  
bfit
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
I understand, but I still think Classical Stretch is too much for what you're describing. It made my back hurt, and my back wasn't even my problem area before I tried it. If Jessica/floor work is too much you should really look at the Jane Adams DVDs. Also, what about chair yoga to start with? Or chair stretch?
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Old 01-10-22, 11:27 PM  
Lorelai
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Missouri
It's definitely too much for right now. But in a few weeks, I bet I could manage it, modified. I found some sciatica friendly workouts on YouTube that I can try in the meantime, and maybe some walks to fun music to keep me motivated. I struggle with motivation and I'd rather modify a workout and have something to work towards, than start with the ultra basic, because it won't hold my interest. But, it's some cold reality to be in my early 30s and feel so out of shape. I've also been struggling with autoimmune issues and a lot of food sensitivites, and have had a lot going on the past few years which has led me to neglect my physical fitness. I'm trying really hard to find a way to get back into exercise in a gentle but still interesting way... If that makes sense? Unfortunately it took a sore back to remember what NOT to do when starting out. Dang kids stealing my brain cells... My memory isn't what it used to be. 😂
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"Practice makes progress." Jessica Smith

"There's always an option before we quit." Jessica Smith

"You don't have to be a ballerina to feel like one." Ellen Barrett
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Old 01-11-22, 12:36 AM  
prettyinpink
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
You mentioned weak core and back. Do you know if you have a diastasis?

https://www.momsintofitness.com/diastasis-recti/

Classical stretch is great, but especially if you have diastasis, you might like a postnatal fitness program that specifically addresses the entire core, even if it’s been a few years since the last pregnancy. Mutu has been around for a while, though I have not used their system personally. https://mutusystem.com/en-us/
And VFers have in the past recommended Lindsay Brin, at momsintofitness in the link above.

Best of luck.
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Old 01-11-22, 05:28 AM  
bzar
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Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: PalmTreeVille
Miranda and her daughter Sahra have free workouts to try on youtube. from there, they offer a free streaming trial which many have liked and moved on to a paid subscription since there is an abundance of content.

i revisited CS after not liking it. what convinced me and made me understand the concepts was listening to her 3 latest books on audiobook (library's Overdrive app for smart phones). i had always like Sahra's style, but listening to Miranda's books on audio convinced me to try Miranda again.

i decided to get Season 4, and i sing the praises of finally understanding how to use CS to fix my neck, shoulder and hip pain.
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disclosure: in the years 2002-2004 i had a professional relationship with a distributor of fitness videos; see profile.
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Old 01-11-22, 06:23 AM  
Izzy
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: West of Chicago in the Illinois Corn Belt
If you do the ETV Essentrics trial, they have “workshops” available that explain their movements and how they help. They also have all of-their workouts organized by so many different ways; beginner etc, parts of body, pain issues, instructor, time, all standing etc etc. I think to understand their concept doing these workshops would help (as mentioned above reading the books). The trial is 14 days. It may help with your decision.
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Old 01-11-22, 07:29 AM  
Demeris
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
I am a HUGE fan of Classical Stretch/Essentrics, so please understand that I'm not trying to dissuade you, BUT if your back is hurting, I'm wondering if some T-Tapp might help. I encourage you to check out Trisch Richardson's youtube channel and, if you're on FB, her FB page:

Trisch Richardson's T-Tapp
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