25 MINUTE Lower Body WORKOUT | Mystère Performer on Acrobatic Strength | Cirque It Out #11


Hi, I’m Laurie Hernandez,
welcome to Cirque It Out direct from Cirque du Soleil
in Las Vegas. In this episode, we’ll be
working out with Kristina. She performs in Cirque’s longest
running Las Vegas show, Mystère. Kristina performs 10 shows
a week, week after week. That requires her to be
in incredible shape. Kristina and performance
conditioning specialist Artemis are ready to show everyone how
to cirque up their workout. Ready to workout the CirqueWay?
Let’s Cirque It Out. – Hey there Kristina. Hey Artemis.
– Hi Laurie. Why don’t you explain to
us what we’re doing today? Absolutely. As a power track artist, Kristina requires both extreme athleticism
and excellent acrobatic skills. Before someone is able to develop their
acrobatic skills for power track, one must master efficient
lower body movement and build the lower body strength
required to successfully support the power and skill from the explosive
and acrobatic component of power track. The purpose of today’s workout is so that you master the lower
body movements with load in order to build strength on top
of an efficient movement pattern then from there, you’ll
be able to build power on top of that lower
body strength. – That sounds incredible.
– Uh-huh. I’ll leave it to both of
you to Cirque It Out. [CIRQUE IT OUT
A FITNESS SERIES BY CIRQUE DU SOLEIL] Before you start any workout, you want to make sure that you are
cleared by your physician to do so. You also want to make sure that
the workout is right for you. Before we start today’s workout, I’m gonna have Kristina
go through a warmup for movement prep and to prepare
her central nervous system for the work that
she’s about to do. [WARM UP] The first thing that I’m gonna
have Kristina start with is some belly breathing
[BELLY BREATHING] otherwise called
crocodile breathing. So I’m gonna have Kristina just
go ahead and lay on your stomach and I’m gonna have you lay flat
on your stomach, hand-over-hand, forehead on your hands and I’m gonna
have you inhale through your nose, just relax, inhale through your nose,
bring all that air into your belly, you want to feel your belly
pressed into the ground. Breathing helps to prepare
your body for exercise, it helps to reset everything. Think about how stressed
most people are as they’re running
through their day-to-day and how their breath can
help them to relax. So Kristina I’m just gonna have
you get one more breath here and then what we’re gonna do is add
some quad stretches to that breathing. So go ahead and pull your
foot to your glute, good, and then just relax your head down
and give me 3 belly breaths here. [3 BELLY BREATHES] Today’s warmup is gonna focus
primarily on lower body and hips because we’ll be doing
a lot of the lower body work. After you get 3 breaths
on this side, Kristina I’m gonna have you
switch to the other side, I’m gonna get quad stretch here, 3 breaths here, nice and relaxed, just relax into that stretch. Good. After you get 3 breaths
here Kristina, I’m gonna have you bring
it to your hands and knees and I’ll have you go through
some hands and knees rocking. [HANDS AND KNEES ROCKING] So as Kristina goes through
this hands and knees rocking, Kristina can you just go ahead
and tuck your toes underneath so you’re here and just tuck your toes
underneath this way, good, and I’m just gonna have you rock
all the way back into your heels and then come all the way forward. And this is gonna help Kristina warmup
her hips, her knees, her ankles. Good. Just going back and forth
for those nice relaxed breaths. Just get two more here. When you do the hands and knees rocking,
you want to get about 5 to 10. [5 TO 10] Good. And then I’m gonna have Kristina go
ahead and stay on your hands and knees and then I’ll have you go through
some cat cow tilts [CAT COW TILT] using your breath so I want
you to inhale, extend and yeah, inhale
extend here, good, and look up and then
exhale and I want you to actively push
the floor away with your hands and round your back, good. So here in the cat cow tilts you
want to get about 5 of these [COMPLETE 5 REPS] so I’ll have Kristina
do a couple or more and then we’re gonna take
it to half kneeling. Good. Let’s just get one
more here Kristina. Good. All right. So now from here I’m gonna have
Kristina go to half kneeling right leg in front,
left leg in back and I’m just gonna have her go
through some hip rocks forward, warming up the hips,
warming up those joints, preparing her lower body for the
work that she’s going to do. Good. So you want to get about 5
to the front, [HALF KNEELING] good, and then from here Kristina I’m gonna have you bring your
right leg out to the side and I just want you to rock to the
side keeping your chest square, good. Just like that, and about 5 here. Then from here
I’m gonna have Kristina go ahead and extend
your right leg out, straight hands in front and then
you’re gonna rock back into your heels and then come all the way forward. You should feel this nice little stretch in
your inner thighs here and in your hips. So she’ll get 5 in each direction and then
I’ll have her switch to the other side. Great. Let’s have you
switch to the other side, we’ll just get a few reps on
each side so that you’re even, making sure you do the same
thing on each side, yes. Good. And after this, we’ll take it to
standing, we have two things standing. Good. And let’s have you bring
that leg out to the side, good, and rocking to the side. Notice how she keeps
her chest square here and she’s moving into
that foot laterally. Good. And then extending it out and
then here her whole foot is on the floor as she
rocks forward and back. Getting a nice stretch in her inner
thighs and opening up her hips. Good, let’s just
get one more here. All right. And then let’s bring
it to standing. We’ll do two more things
here standing for the warmup so what I’m gonna have Kristina work
through are prime goblet squats. [GOBLET SQUATS] You want to use a light kettlebell
so the very light kettlebell, she’s gonna hold it by the sides, she’s gonna drop
down into her squat, she’s gonna bring her elbows
to the inside of her knees and once she’s here she’s
gonna rock from side to side [ROCK SIDE TO SIDE]
opening up her hips. This little light weight
helps to fire up her core and helps her to open up
her hips a little bit more and then after she gets a few
rocks from side to side, I’m gonna have her
bring it up standing and then I’ll have her go right
back into that prying goblet squat. She’ll do about 5 of these. [COMPLETE 5 REPS] Good, opening up those hips, preparing her legs and
her joints for exercise. Good. Let’s just get one more here and we’ll move on to our
last movement prep. All right, good. So now from here, we’re gonna
put the kettlebell down and I’m gonna have Kristina move into some
hip hinges with the band. [HIP HINGES] The band adds a little
bit of resistance just the way the light kettlebell
added a little bit of resistance so she’s gonna step up forward so she
has a little bit of give on the band and then from here she’s
gonna into a hip hinge, good, reaching her hips back and then coming all the way
up pulling that band forward and reaching those hips
back and coming forward. So this helps to warmup
the posterior chain so warming up her glutes, her
hamstrings and her hips whereas the prying goblet
squat that helped to warmup more of her squat movements,
her knee dominant movements. [5 TO 10] You want to get about
5 to 10 here, good, all right. You feel all warmed up and
ready to go Kristina? – Yeah ready to go, ready to rock.
– All right, good, excellent. [STRENGHTENING WORK OUT] For today’s strength portion of
the workout, we have 6 exercises. Those 6 exercises I’m going
to have you superset so you pair up two at a time. So the first two that
we’re going to start with are the goblet squat and
the hanging leg raise. I’m gonna have Kristina
demonstrate the goblet squat so she’s going to
use a kettlebell. [GOBLET SQUATS] If you don’t
have a kettlebell at home, you can use a dumbbell or you can even if don’t
have any weights at home, you can just fill up a
duffle bag or a purse. You want it to weigh
about 10 to 20 pounds. So she picked up the kettlebell,
she’s holding it by the handles, she has her elbows
close to her rib cage, she’s squeezing her shoulder blades and
she’s going to drop down into her squat. Elbows come to the
inside of her knees and then she’s gonna actively push the
floor away with her feet to come up. Notice when she finishes her
squat, she’s squeezing her glutes, her quads are engaged, she has
full hip and knee extensions, so she’s not leaving
her hips behind you, Kristina can you just go ahead
and yeah, there you go, and drop right down and
then come back up. I’m gonna have Kristina do 3 at
a little bit of a faster pace with just a pause of a
count of one at the bottom so go ahead come down,
pause for one and come up and then drop down and come up; I’m gonna have you do
one more here Kristina. Good. You can go ahead and
put the kettlebell down. So when you go to do
your set of squats, you want to start with a set
of five and then as you get, as they become easier and
easier over the weeks, you can build up to a set of 10. The next exercise that Kristina is going
to demonstrate is the hanging leg raise. We want to superset the hanging leg raise
with the goblet squats that we just did. So you’ll need, if you’re home
you’ll need a pullup bar at home or maybe if you have a park
next door to your house, you can use the jungle gym
or monkey bars there. Or if you have a gym that you go to you
can just use the pullup bar there. So I’m gonna have Kristina come up and
she’s gonna hang from the bar here and what this exercise helps
you to do [HANGING LEG RAISE] is it helps you to build the upper
body strength and endurance and she’s gonna bring
her toes to the bar. What she’s doing is she’s actively
pulling down on the bar with her arms and using her lats to
help her to do that and then she’s using her abdominals
to help to bring her toes to the bar. Now Kristina was able to get her
toes all the way up to the bar. If you’re not quite there yet, then you can just bring your
legs to 90 degrees to the L-sit so Kristina can I have you demonstrate
just to the L-sit, so just halfway. So you will benefit just by
bringing your legs about halfway even 45 degrees
just before that 90 so just below your hips
will also be beneficial. You’ll really feel it
in your lats here, this is a big back muscle that runs
from your shoulder all the way down to your waist and you’ll also really feel
it in your shoulders as well so it helps you to build that
upper body strength that you need to support yourself when you’re
going through power track, you’re doing any of those front
handspring or handspring type movements, it builds that shoulder strength,
stability and endurance. Now I’m gonna have Kristina demonstrate
as well if you don’t have a bar at home or you don’t have a
gym that you go to or you don’t have a park next to
your house with a jungle gym, you can also do this on the floor if you
have a secure piece of furniture at home so I’m gonna have Kristina
demonstrate how to do that. She’s gonna grab hold, she’s
gonna lay on her back, she’s gonna grab hold
of this secure piece, [*MAKE SURE YOU AVE A SECURE PIECE OR
FURNITURE BEFORE DOING THIS EXERCISE] this is securely fastened to the floor and
she’s gonna bring her toes [FLOOR LEG RAISES] to behind her so these
are floor leg raises rather than hanging leg raises and
you’re still working your upper body, your shoulders, your lats and
your abdominals, your core so you can still get the same benefits if
you don’t have a bar to hang from at home. Nice. Thank you, Kristina. So the next 2 exercises in the
strength portion of this workout, you’re gonna do a kettlebell deadlift
and wall assisted handstand holds. We’ll start with the
kettlebell deadlift. If you don’t have a kettlebell at home,
[KETTLEBELL DEADLIFT] again you can use a
duffle bag or a suitcase or you can use a purse so what I’m gonna have Kristina do is start
with the kettlebell on the ground first, so just go ahead and place
the kettlebell down, good. And then I’m gonna have her
stand over the kettlebell so that the kettlebell lines up with the
middle of her feet and then from here, if it’s hard for you to figure
out where your hip hinge is, what I’m gonna have Kristina
do is demonstrate a hip chop so Kristina I’m gonna have
you go ahead take your hands and just go ahead
and chop your hips so you can find that hip
hinge, awesome, great. So the hip hinge is different than
the goblet squat that we just did. So from here I’m gonna have
Kristina reach for that kettlebell and then from here she
has neutral spine, her hips are higher than her knees and then her head and shoulders
are higher than her hips. She’s gonna come all the
way up with that weight and finish her hips and then when she hinges back
over, she’s gonna touch the bell to the ground for a brief pause and then she’s gonna
bring it right back up. And then Kristina go
ahead, a hinge over, now from here what I’m
gonna have Kristina do, see how she’s looking a little
bit more straight ahead, I’m gonna have you look down on the floor
a little bit more, there you go, perfect. You want to have a nice natural
extension in your neck when you go through the deadlifts. Now Kristina has long limbs but she has very good hip mobility so she’s able to reach all the way down
to the ground with the kettlebell. If that is challenging for you, an option
for you is to do a Romanian deadlift so the Romanian deadlift Kristina what
I’m gonna have you do is hinge over and just to your mid-shin so just
bring that kettlebell to mid-shin so just let that kettlebell lineup
the way it lined up with mid-shin and not touch the ground, but you’re still
finishing the movement the same way. I’m gonna have Kristina just do two
more here so that’s an option for you. You get one more, good, and then just go
ahead and hinge over, place the bell down
safely, very nice. So with the kettlebell deadlift, you
want to start out with sets of 5 and build up to sets of 10. For the superset you’ll
end up doing 3 rounds between the kettlebell deadlift and
the wall assisted handstand holds. So I’m gonna have
Kristina move on to wall assisted handstand holds.
[WALL ASSISTED HANDSTAND HOLD] We don’t have a wall here but we’re
gonna use this, pretend this is a wall so I’m gonna have Kristina
kick up facing the wall, yep, into, there you go, and she’s gonna rest
her feet on the wall. So if you’re doing wall assisted
handstand holds at home, you’ll be close enough to the wall so
that when you kick up onto your hands, you can just, your feet
immediately rest on the wall. And then she’s gonna hold this
starting out for 15 seconds and then build up with
increments of 5 seconds then maybe in 2 weeks do 20 seconds
then another 2 weeks do 25 seconds. She’ll superset this
with the deadlift. Go ahead and bring
it down Kristina. Good. So this is gonna help her
to build that upper body strength and endurance in her shoulders,
shoulder stability as well because you’ll see in power track there
are movements like front handsprings right so you’re coming even though
you get power from your lower body, you need to have that
upper body strength to be able to go into the
movements like the handsprings. So starting out with 15 seconds and
then building up to 30 seconds. So you’ll start with the
deadlift for sets of 5 reps, move on to the wall
assisted handstand holds and then go back to the deadlifts
and superset that for 3 rounds. For the last 2 movements in the
strength portion of the workout, I’m gonna have you do side lunges and side planks so this helps you to train a
different plain of motion, the goblet squats and the deadlifts
were in the sagittal plain which is, it’s like a walking
plank forward and back. The side lunges help you
to train the frontal plain and it also helps you
for your leg strength, it helps you to train
your stabilizers, your inner and outer thighs, adductors and abductors
which is very important when you start to train
power in your legs, you want to make sure that
your stabilizers are strong and they can handle that
power in your legs. [SIDE LUNGE] So Kristina is going
to demonstrate the side lunge. For the side lunge you
don’t need any weight, you can just use your body weight. So what Kristina is gonna do is she’s gonna
start out with her toes pointed forward, her hips are square forward. She’s going to step
out with her leg, with her stepping leg
she bends this leg. I’m just gonna have her hold
this position for a moment so you can see what’s
happening here. So she’s sitting back in her hips,
she’s loading her glutes here, this leg is straight and her
whole foot is on the floor. Now from here, she’s gonna push off
this foot and come back feet together, good, and go ahead and
step out again for me, good, and you notice
her spine is also, she has neutral spine but she’s
not completely folding forward, she just has a nice athletic lean
as she steps into that side lunge. Good. I’m gonna have Kristina
do 3 more here and then we’ll switch
to the other side. As you’re going through
your side lunges, you want to start out with
sets of 5 on each side and build up to sets of 10 and then once the sets
of 10 become easy, then you can add on a little weight
if you have a weight at home. I’m gonna have Kristina step out and go
into side lunges on her other side, good. And if you need to use
your arms for balance, so Kristina has her
arms on her hips but for balance you can have them the
way she had them before in front or even extending them out in front of
you straight, good, helping for balance. Sometimes people find that the side
lunges are much more challenging than they think they
are going to be. I’m gonna have Kristina
do 2 more here and then we’ll move on
to the side planks. Good. Nice job. So next, I’m gonna have you superset
those side lunges with side planks. The side planks help you
to train your core, they help you to build that
core strength and stability and it also helps you to build
up that upper body strength as you support your body
weight on your arm. So I’m gonna have Kristina
demonstrate a forearm plank, [SIDE PLANK] so go ahead and bring
it to the side here Kristina and she’s gonna get
into a forearm plank. Notice how her elbow is
lined up with her shoulder so her elbow is not in front of her
shoulder or under her shoulder, everything is nice in line
here and then from here, she has her feet stacked and
I’m gonna have her come up into that side plank
and lift her hips up. Now a few options here, if having your feet stacked
is not available to you then what you can do is I’m gonna have
Kristina bring her top leg in front, you can stagger your feet and that will help to give you a little
bit more balance in this position. In the side plank, you want to start
with 15-second holds and build up with
5-second increments. So say you do 15 seconds
for 2 weeks and then in week 3 you add on
5 more seconds for 20 seconds and you want to build all the way up until
you can do 30 seconds on each side. You can go ahead and come
out of that side plank. So what you’ll do
with the side plank, Kristina is strong but you know the
artists get tired too, it does happen. Very good, we’ll get
the other side. What you want to do is
superset the side lunges with the side planks which means
you’ll do a set of side lunges, 5 on each side and then you’ll
come into your side planks 15 seconds on each side and then you’ll go
forward until you complete 3 total rounds. Awesome. Nice job Kristina. All right. And that concludes the strength
portion of our workout today. High five. [CONDITIONING] For today’s workout, I’m gonna have
you finish with a power circuit. You’ve already worked through
all of your strength movements, building that strength in your lower body
and even a little bit in your upper body and now it’s time
to add that power. So the order is always movement,
master that movement, build the strength and
then add the power and we are doing power track
after all, right Kristina? Yes. All right. So for this power
circuit, you have 4 exercises. You have your box jumps,
[BOX JUMPS] we have kettlebell swings,
[KETTLEBELL SWINGS] we have single leg squats
[SINGLE LEG SQUATS] with a suspension trainer, you can always use rings if you
don’t have a suspension trainer and then we also have some lateral skaters.
[LATERAL SKATERS] You’re gonna start out with
20-second work intervals and an equal work-to-rest ratio so it will
be a 20-second rest interval as well. You’re going to end up doing 5 rounds,
[COMPLETE 5 ROUNDS] 5 rounds of those 4 exercises will
take you about 13 minutes to complete so not long but your goal during that
work interval, during those 20 seconds is to go all out power
for as long as you can. You should be able to get all out power
for those first 15 seconds or so and then those last 5 seconds are
just helping you to maintain and build up that endurance for after
when you get tired to keep going. So I’m gonna have Kristina
start with the box jumps here [BOX JUMPS] and she’s gonna
jump up onto the box, see how she landed nice
and softly with control so you want to make sure that
you don’t slam onto the box so she’s landing very
softly with control, she’s using her core to
lower her body with control from that explosive movement
and then she just steps off so she’s saving her power for the actual box
jump by stepping off. So she’ll go for 20 seconds
here jumping on and landing with control, that’s one of
the most important parts of the box jump, not just generating that power to
explode up and come up onto the box but also to learn
how to land softly. Nice. So she’ll do
this for 20 seconds. We’ll have her get one more, good, and then she’ll have 20 seconds
to recover from this explosive effort [REST 20 SEC] and then she’s gonna
move on to her kettlebell swing so we’re gonna have
Kristina come over here and demonstrate the
kettlebell swing. [KETTLEBELL SWINGS] So for the kettlebell
swing, she’s gonna set herself up so she’s behind the kettlebell
just the way she is here. She’s going to use her hands
to find her hip hinge and hip hinge over just like
she did with her deadlift earlier in the strength segment. So reach over for that kettlebell, she’s gonna start with the
kettlebell on the floor and go ahead and give me neutral
spine here before you, there you go. Now go ahead and place
the bell on the ground with that neutral
spine, good, all right. So now from here for 20 seconds she’s gonna go through
her kettlebell swing, she’s gonna actively swing
that bell back with her hands and then stand all the way up,
go ahead stand all the way up, there you go, yeah, and
all the way up, good, and you want to actively swing that bell
back with your arms Kristina, good, and then using her hips to
bring that power forward so she’s coming forward
enough like vertical jump but she’s not jumping
from the ground. This is working the
posterior chain: the glutes, the hamstrings,
she’ll do this for 20 seconds. Let’s just get 3 more
here Kristina, good, and notice how she’s bringing the
bell about chest to shoulder height. The last one, and on the last one
give it that back swing and then place it down
safely on the ground, good. So our box jumps help to build
that power in our quads and here this is helping to build
the power in Kristina’s glutes and her hamstrings so we’re working the lower body
as a complete unit. [REST 20 SEC] So next I’m gonna have Kristina,
after her 20-seconds rest, I’m gonna have her move on
to the suspension trainer and she’s gonna work some
single leg explosive training. She’s going to work alternating
single leg squats [SINGLE LEG SQUATS] and she’s going to jump every time so
she’ll squat down, jump up and alternate. So coming down into
that single leg squat and then explode up and
then switch legs, good, working that single leg
explosive strength. Good, nice job. So she’ll be doing
this for 20 seconds and as I mentioned before, if you
don’t have a suspension trainer you can use rings if you have rings at home
or any suspension trainer that you have. Good, let’s just a few
more on each leg Kristina. Good, awesome. Now after you work through the single
leg squats with the suspension trainer, say you’ve been doing it a few
weeks and they’re becoming easy, very manageable, one of the things
that you can do, one of the options is to add an unstable surface. If you’ve ever seen power track
it’s on an unstable surface so it helps to have to train
that unstable surface so a Bosu is a good example of how
you can train that unstable circuit so this would be a way to progress that
movement to make it a little bit harder so I’m gonna have Kristina
demonstrate these alternating single leg jumps on the Bosu and notice how she lands
with control each time, she’s not trying to rush through the
movement, she’s taking care with each jump. So she’s just training her
body how to manage that jump on that unstable surface, good. We’ll just get a few more
here, one more, nice job. Awesome. Good. So the last movement that we have in
this 4-exercise circuit are skater jumps. I’m gonna have Kristina demonstrate
the skater jumps here, again these are explosive
[LATERAL SKATER JUMPS] and she’s gonna jump from side
to side just like a skater. Whenever you’re ready Kristina,
good, 20 seconds here and exploding up and
over side to side, yes, there you go. Yeah, just like that,
nice work, awesome. So she’s building
that lateral movement in an explosive pattern taking those lateral lunges
to the next level, good. And again, after this gets easy,
just get one more on each side here so say you work through the
skaters for a few weeks, maybe 4 to 6 weeks and it
becomes very manageable and you feel like you’re ready to
take it to an unstable surface, that would be another exercise that
you can take to an unstable surface. Kristina is gonna now demonstrate how
to take those lateral to the Bosu so go ahead and start
on the Bosu Kristina and then from here, she’s gonna
work one side at a time. She’s gonna come off the
Bosu and then jump on. Yeah, there you go. And as she comes on she has to
stabilize on that unstable surface every time she jumps on there
so this is an option for you if you have a Bosu at home
or some unstable surface that you can work with
for your skaters. Awesome. Nice job Kristina, good. Now once that 20-seconds work 20-seconds
rest becomes really manageable, then you can progress that
to 30 seconds of work and then cut that rest
time down to 15 seconds so that way with the power track
not only does it help you to train the explosive movements
that you need for the power track, but it also helps you to learn how
to keep generating that power and keep going even
when you get tired because I imagine you must get tired,
you have to just keep going through it right Kristina, yes, it’s tough. Thank you for joining
us for today’s workout. Now you have the tools to build
both the strength and the power for power track, right Kristina? Yes. I really enjoyed the workout,
I have to go, I have a show. I guess she’s got to go. Thank you again for joining us. We’ll
see you next episode on Cirque It Out. [CIRQUE IT OUT
A FITNESS SERIES BY CIRQUE DU SOLEIL] We hope you learned
something from this video. Even if you’re not performing
at Kristina’s level, it will help you be the
best you you can be. Don’t forget to get active with
Cirque du Soleil on our next episode and check back in for more. GET TICKETS
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