This exercise has a tendency to overwork the muscles in front of the neck, but the most important thing to remember is that it is contraindicated for those with osteoporosis. Rolling up and down the spine puts pressure on the vertebral column and has been known to cause thoracic fractures in older adults.
Hmmm…not a question I’ve ever heard before about roll up/roll down! I agree with Jill that roll up has a tendency to cause tension in neck muscles; but once a client understands the exercise, this shouldn’t be a huge issue. It absolutely does work the core muscles!
As for roll down (with the roll down bar on the Cadillac/Tower), this one’s a bit trickier. You really have to be “connected” to your core to get the full benefit. Think about pulling your abdominals back towards your spine as you roll down to accentuate the spinal articulation…and KEEP them pulled back/engaged as you roll back up. You’ll definitely feel your core working!
Hmmm, I agree with Lara in that I’ve never heard this question before. It absolutely works the core muscles. I prefer to do it by lifting the hands up toward the ceiling on the inhale, then raising the head and rolling up on the exhale. It’s not as hard on the neck as the neck pull which I prefer not to teach. When rolling down it is important, as Jill says, to pull the belly button to the back as you initiate the move. Once on the mat, I let them slowly roll their heads from side to side to release any tension on the neck.
I started Pilates at 250 pounds and could not even to one situp. I credit roll ups and roll downs as the one exercise that really increased my core strength enabling me to do situps with ease.
I am a certified Pilates Instructor and I have not heard that either. You must teach proper technique, I do not use my neck nor do I instruct it that way.
Pilates takes a lot of talking!!! it is probably the most talked class I have ever taught.
I start from a sitting position knees bent and feet flat on floor. From there, I grasp the back of my thighs and round my back, inhaling and slowly lowering myself to the floor, vertebra by vertebra til I get to my shoulders and head to mat.
To come up, bent knees are modification, I reach above my head bringing arms forward so I can see my hands. Then reaching for my thighs, if I need to, slowly coming up using shoulders, abdominals and then coming up straightening my back and exhaling. Students who have done this a lot, can stretch out, toes pointing and rolling up and down, concentrating on the core muscles. A trick or techniques, is to pretend you are bolting your legs together. use the strength of the legs pushing against each other to bring you up, pointing the toes helps too.
I have never had anyone complain of neck injuries.
I will say this, many years ago, in the fitness field, this exercise was put on the “do not do list” along with the plow and many others. With the proper instructor, these are done in pilates, yoga and more as these certified instructors know the proper techiques and know how to do the modifications to avoid injuries.
i hope this helps!!! I have been teaching both yoga and pilates for 10 years and have students from teenagers to 75 years old in the same class.