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Day 1 and 2 of March Matness: First up, The Hundred

Apparently according to our survey on Instagram, over 80% of you hate The Hundred! Probably because it’s hard work!

But it needs to be. The Hundred is the first exercise in the Mat repertoire because it’s a warm up for the whole body. You vigorously pump you arms up and down above the abdominal wall like a manual heart pump. You are literally pumping your heart and lungs, improving circulation and blood flow, whilst warming your abs by lifting the upper and lower body into the centre, and warming your arms, shoulders and back. All the time breathing in for 5 counts, and breathing out for 5 counts. (until you progress then you can inhale for 6, out for 4 and in for 7, out for 3 and so on!) What did Joe want us to do? “Breathe all ze air out out out”

#Matstories #marchmatness2020 #thehundred
“As an asthmatic, I used to find myself pretty tired and out of breath in the Hundred whilst diligently breathing in and out through the nose. Working with a straw in my mouth to exhale out through the mouth instead but with a small air cavity (like the nose) but with my mouth, allowed me to train my lungs better but to feel the exercise better. It made me breath slowly, deeper, I feel my abs really squeezing the air out on my exhale and I feel calmer and more in control.” Michelle

Watch our How To Do The Hundred Tutorial video for a little bonus help!

Next up.. The Roll Up for Day 2

Ok, so your body is warmed up and you have got good circulation going and your abs are on fire. Good job too, because now you really need them to do a full roll up. Don’t be in a rush to do a full roll up. Do the half roll back until you can keep both feet on the floor and control your body back and forward. Learn how to curl backwards in a C shape working from the deepest abs and the tailbone and not just falling back and hanging into your six pack or hips. It’s the most amazing exercise to open the hips and lower back and test your foundations before adding in straight legs, arms and a lot more load in the full roll up.

Interestingly, according to our “Marmite Matwork” survey, most of you love this exercise- Have fun!

#Matstories #marchmatness2020 #therollup
“A game changer exercise when I started using Classical Mats. With the strap, yes you help yourself get up, hence strengthening your abs but the strap really comes into its own on the way down, helping to give you an anchor to work against, to help you get out of your hips and lower back and change your body habits. At home, just try using weights around your ankles or hook your feet under the sofa, or be like Joe and use lead weighted shoes!”