The Way She Moves: Get Fit This Summer With A Step-By-Step Guide

This summer, staying fit is one of our main goals.

But as the sun heats up, sometimes it can be hard to muster up the energy for strenuous workouts outside. Fortunately, the options are endless when it comes to getting the body fit for bikini season. So, how are we doing it here at Free People?

We’re all about strengthening our bodies all while paying close attention to relieving the mind of stress and worries. With a little help from two experts, we got the lowdown on two key moves that will do just this. From tightening up the core, to finding balance in a shoulder stand, Meghan and Elizabeth show us how they’re getting beach-ready, step-by-step. Learn the moves for yourself below and get to know more about these inspiring ladies!

MeghanFP Movement Buyer + Lithe Instructor


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How long have you been working at Free People? Can you tell us a little bit about what you do here?

I have been working at Free People for almost 3 years. I am currently in Buying for FP Movement and Swim categories. I work closely with our movement designers and swim market vendors to curate our assortment.

How does being a Lithe instructor help when it comes to buying new Movement assortments? 

Being a Lithe instructor allows me to understand the style and technical/functional aspects of what our customer is looking for in her workout gear.  Staying active and living a healthy lifestyle is extremely important to me, and that carries over into FP Movement as a lifestyle brand for all categories we currently carry—surf, yoga, dance, and run.  

What are you teaching us today? What part of the body is this helping?

Today we are learning how to do a See Saw from a push-up position. This move is great for strengthening your ab muscles while also incorporating legs, upper body, and lengthening of the spine. 

What’s one summer workout tip you think everyone should know? 

Move every day!  The weather is finally warm and spending time outside, for me, is a must.  Instead of hitting the gym indoors, go for a bike ride, do yoga, surf, paddle board, play tennis, go dancing, walk on the beach, or try something new with friends.  I don’t sweat not getting a formal workout in every single day, as long as I’m moving my body and having fun.

What are you looking forward to most this season? 

Spending time at the beach with my boyfriend, puppy, friends, and family in all of my favorite bikinis.

 Step-By-Step: See Saw


Step 1: Press up through the palms of your hands into a full plank.

Step 2: Reach one leg towards the ceiling lifting your body like a see saw.

Step 3: Extend your leg as far as you can.

Step 4: Bring your body back down in one long line back to a full plank.


Elizabeth– Yoga Instructor, The Ashtanga Yoga School of Philadelphia

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How long have you been instructing yoga for?

I am currently in my 6th year of teaching yoga.

What inspired you to start teaching, and what have you learned about yourself since doing so? 

My first yoga teacher, Gina Stickney Weddle, who told me that yoga would always be here for me. To me, she meant that yoga could always support me and also push me into the challenges of my life that I needed or had to go through. She has a very powerful and unique openness about her; and a clarity and graceful beauty about the way that she shares and teaches). She first inspired and also encouraged me to teach. I just was in love with the practice and I saw that I could explore it and learn it forever.

Later, when I learned what Ashtanga Yoga was, I knew I had to do that. My teacher now, certified Ashtanga teacher, David Garrigues, continues to teach me endless and inspiring lessons in yoga. My study with David has taken me further into this understanding of what yoga can offer me. It can do a lot of things, almost anything, but the more important way I’ve come deeper into it has been by giving to it, sacrificing for it and to it. And that has been the way that I’ve found the real joy and power of it. David has helped me learn how to refine my understanding of how the practice can become more meaningful, healing, and purposeful.

A lot of what he, and my practice and teaching shows me is what my limits are; and ways to accept them and also transform. David has been a role model to me of how the practice can bring connection, healing, and knowledge of Self. And I’m learning how to find that for myself, and also, now, to share it in a way that is more meaningful. And I’ve learned that my love of asana (postures) is a blessing, because those are the major tools through which I am learning, growing, changing through.

Can you give us a breakdown of the move you’re teaching us today? What part of the body is this helping?

Sarvangasana has been called by the late B.K.S. Iyengar, the mother of all asanas (postures). The Sanskrit Sarva, means “all” or “entire,” and Anga means “organ” or “body part.” It is translated into full body pose and its benefits encompass the entire body. The posture works to combat and heal the common reverse curvature of the cervical spine which is often caused by such activities as leaning over computer screens, repetitive, continual smart phone use (tech neck), poorly designed airplane seats etc..

Shoulder stand can and be an amazing, healing and rejuvenating posture. It is cleansing for the lymphatic and digesting systems, good for nervous system, and for the organs especially the heart as it helps pump blood through various parts of the body.

What’s one summer workout tip you think everyone should know? 

Be consistent and find enjoyment in your routines. Avoid an “all or nothing” approach.

What are you looking forward to most this season?

Meeting and working with new students (and old ones), practicing in the natural heat, spending time outside while things are green and blooming, dreaming, and cooking with all the in season locally grown fruits and veggies.

Step-By-Step: Sarvangasana


Set up: It is very helpful use make use of props. Add some hight support to the foundation, with at least 2 neatly folded blankets, or a large foam pad (if you have access to one), or improvise with a boogie board or folded sheets. You want the surface to be firm, flat, and it must be large enough to support the entire foundation — from the tops of the shoulders all the way to the elbows. 

Without the support, it is likely that the head and neck will receive too much weight and it is very challenging to achieve the ideal vertical position and stay for a good length of time.

Step 1: Lie down on your back, positioning yourself on the support so that tops of the shoulders come just to the edge, and the neck will be free from the support.

Step 2: Taking the hands onto the back, kick the feet and legs up overhead, and then down to the floor into plow pose ( Halasana). Keep the hips reaching up, the feet and toes pointed and the legs straight.

Step 3: Clasp the hands together, interlacing the fingers, then straighten the arms down towards the floor. Work the upper arm bones as close to parallel with each other as possible. It can be helpful to lean to one side and then the other, rolling the shoulders under more in order to get this parallel positioning. Here, you can also adjust your positioning of the shoulders on the support of you need to. 

Step 4: Preparing to come up. Take the “J’s” of the hands, the space between the index finger and thumb, and place it up as high (towards the shoulder blades rather than close to the pelvis) as possible onto the upper back.

Step 5: Come up into Shoulderstand by flattening the hands onto the upper back as you float the legs up. Make the hands somewhat basket-like; they will be receiving the weight of the body. 

How to Work in the Posture

Press the hands to open the chest more and at the same time, let the chin lower slightly towards the chest, creating a Jalandhara Bandha gesture. Keep the mind passive and relaxed and the eyes soft as you gaze down the front body. 

Continue pressing down through the arms and reaching up through straight legs, pointing the feet. Breathe freely and do not hold the breath.

Step 6: To exit, keeping the hands on the back, lower the legs and feet with control, back overhead, once again into plow (Halasana). Then release the arms down, straightening them onto the ground (still parallel to each other) and use them as support to slowly roll down, softening the knees, keeping the head on the ground as you roll down back to the position where you began. 

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+How are you staying fit this summer? Let us know in the comments below! 

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  1. Standup Paddle Boarding! Finally took it up. I especially love yoga on the board. You really feel how balanced (or unbalanced!) you are and can make those corrections needed. Basically, early morning, mist on the water, a small paddle to a sheltered cove, some yoga, and a paddle back home. How awesome is that?

  2. Hello Yoga instructors:
    What sort of repetitions for these exercises is ideal?
    As a rower, I am used to three sets of 20 reps for any core strengthening.

  3. Miquette – October 20, 2015 6:28

    How inspirational!! This will defentaly be a part of my routine. I m always looking for challenges. Yoga is a huge part of my life, physically, mentally, and spiritualy. Yoga ehances life, It enlivens my spirit.

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