Notice what happens when my anchor leg is extended -- I cannot stretch nearly as far as when I place an anchor foot flat on the floor.

I have a secret.  I’m not naturally flexible.  Before taking up Pilates, I often couldn’t touch my toes.  For me, my tight hips restricted my movement more than my tight hamstrings.  Luckily, that’s all behind me, since I took up Pilates more than 15 years ago.  Smart Magic Circle stretches on a regular basis can help you move comfortably and gracefully, as well as protecting you from injury. 

A Couple Simple Flexibility Tests

  • While standing, try to touch your toes. If you cannot reach your wrists past your kneecaps, you may be an accident waiting to happen
  • Try sitting in a chair and crossing your legs.  If you cannot cross them comfortably, you may also be ‘waiting for an accident.’ 

When your hips and legs are tight, they restrict normal movement.  One of these days, you may step on a pebble or on an uneven curb.  Flexible people’s hips will shift to accomodate the situation.  Those with tight hips or legs may simply fall, injuring a wrist or ankle.  Try these moves to help you stretch your hamstrings, IT band and groin.

Magic Circle Leg and Hip Stretches