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Fabulous Arms 3 -- Plies

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  • Fabulous Arms 3 -- Plies

    Originally posted by Sherry 01-29-2004, 12:43 AM

    What a funny thing that many people think arm work is only in the arm sequence. Oh my! Of course, T-Tapp works the arms right from the very beginning through the very end. So far, we’ve talked about full extension and hand positions in Fab Arms 1 and 1a. If you missed those threads, you might want to first review them at:

    Remember, this series is about getting fabulous arms for THIS summer!

    Plies are truly an incredible move for shaping the arms among many other body parts. In the most basic terms, it is all about really REACHING away from the body with the wrists during all of the plie arm moves and keeping the arm muscles fully engaged via one of the three hand positions: jazz hands, donut hands or firm fists.

    Start in the plie stance, feet about shoulder width apart, knees bent, tush tucked hard and big toe up – knees out.

    Around the world ….
    Before beginning the first ‘around the world’ arm movement, lets get the shoulders aligned per the first thread above. Then go to the upside down T position with the arms bent at the elbow, elbows in close to the body, palms up and thumbs pushing to the back wall. Looks like this:

    _| 0 |_

    Feel the lats kick in? Try to hold that engagement throughout the arm movements. It is very hard and takes lots of practice.

    Holding the lats in place, extend the arms to the side at an angle, palms facing the mirror. Lets use jazz hands. REACH with the arms and spread the fingers wide, wide, wide.

    Lock the elbows to get the sensation of how incredibly far and hard you are reaching. Now bring the arms ‘around the world’ to overhead – palms facing the mirror right there. Check your arms relative to the ears … arms behind the ears because the shoulders are back.

    (Little extra: When you reach overhead, reach as high as possible and TUCK harder to work the entire ab region.

    Very advanced: When reaching overhead, concentrate on keeping the shoulders down via the lats yet while reaching high with the wrists.)

    For the “W” (which we like to call George W arms here in the great state of Texas) rotate the palms in to the body as you bring the elbows down. Keep those lats tight! Keep moving the elbows down to the sides, jazz hands until the hands are about level with the shoulders. You have to make a big W to get the hands about level with the shoulders. RIGHT THERE – torque the elbows forward while pushing the thumbs to the back wall. Wowser!

    Return to ‘around the world’ with the arms totally straight and repeat.

    Jumping Jacks ….

    The same principles apply in jumping jacks. Let’s start overhead. Arms are totally straight, palms facing the mirror, jazz hands. Pull down into a W exactly as above.

    Now reach HIGH with the palms facing the mirror at the peak – jazz hands. Start the down swing and turning the palms to the floor and eventually to the body. Reach away far! Start the up swing (palms facing the floor) and pause when the arms are at the shoulder level. Reach far far far and then flip the palms to the ceiling. Feel the torque? Continue raising the arms but KEEP THEM STRAIGHT. Do not bend the elbows … no need to clap as in the original videos. If you clap you will loosen the engagement in the arms. Teresa almost always teaches this part with the arms totally straight these days. In fact, just bring your arms overhead straight and repeat the sequence.


    The real trick to maximize in/outs is 1) elbow position to shoulder and 2) hand position to engage the arm muscles. Stay with jazz hands … fingers as wide as possible. Arms are bent and elbows level with the shoulder, palms facing in to the body. Spread those fingers wide. As you move the elbows in, imagine you are pushing wet sand. Same thing as you move the elbows out all the way back. Hand position never changes.

    Elbows must stay level with the shoulders through the move or you dramatically reduce the effect.

    In/Outs Overhead

    Just combine the key techniques above … always straight arms overhead. I really, really mean straight! Palms facing the mirror when arms are up, arms are behind the ears because the shoulders are back.

    Now for the truly warped minds that want even more….

    Do the arm sequence before plies. Yikes!

    "Retired" T-Tapp Trainer
    Last edited by Forum Angel; 04-13-2016, 10:23 AM.