The Roll Up is a basic Pilates mat exercise, yet it is one that frustrates new clients. The more you use your abs and breath the more easily you will be able to move. Don't get frustrated...when in doubt modify and in time you will be moving with grace.
Purpose- massage the spine, stretch the back and hamstrings, link breath to movement
Preps- Curl Up, Hip Escalator, Roll Back, Hamstring Stretches
Form- peel off the floor bone by bone in a smooth manner engaging the core, take as many breaths as needed (especially on the getting up)
Modifications- bend the knees, "walk up" using hands under thighs, add in small hand weights or hold pole to counterbalance, put a strap on feet to hold them down, start seated and only roll halfway back
*May not be appropriate for those with low back problems such as disc injuries or fusion.
How to Advance- use one full breath to move, use in transitions from other exercises, hold magic circle or small ball to work chest muscles
Challenges- keep arms by ears as you move up/down, do combo moves like roll up/saw or roll up/teaser