The Low-Impact Workout That Has Tracee Ellis Ross Feeling 'Long, Strong, and Connected'

Tracee-Ellis-Rosse
Tracee-Ellis-Rosse

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Tracee Ellis Ross puts in serious sweat at the gym, whether she's wielding battle ropes like an absolute boss or making fans laugh as she struggles through side planks (truly relatable content!). It seems she's rarely afraid to try something new in the name of fitness, and thankfully, she's often game to share it all with her more than 11 million Instagram followers.

The Black-ish alum is feeling "long, strong, and connected" thanks to a brand new workout style, she writes in the caption of a recent post. Her secret? She's been doing MyMode by the Tracy Anderson Method.

The recently launched modality involves working out with a slew of essential props mostly made of wood, including a step platform, several weights, a wooden staff, bands, disks, and a landing pad. As Ellis Ross demonstrates in her video, the storage box for all the accessories works as a balancing tool itself. The Pattern Beauty founder also shows off how to use the MyMode staff: a long, straight pole akin to a walking stick that is attached to a multidirectional socket at the base, offering assistance for dynamic movement and flexibility.

Related: Tracee Ellis Ross Is a Fan of the Gyrotonic Method — But What Even Is That?

It might sound super complicated, but as Ellis Ross shows, the method appears to be a great way to incorporate low-impact, compound moves into your routine without taking up a ton of space. In the clip, the actress tackles a series of lower-body and core exercises using the MyMode box for balance and stability and the wooden staff to challenge both.

"Tracee is doing standing straight-leg kickbacks and some standing knee-tuck-to-leg kickbacks — all of which target the glutes, hamstrings, and core," says NASM-certified personal trainer Susane Pata, C.P.T., who watched the clips in Ellis Ross' recent Instagram post. "The beauty of using something to assist (such as a pole and/or the wooden box) is that the user can achieve a greater range of motion, working the aforementioned muscles more effectively. The 'assist' offers a way for the user to explore the deeper range of motion with security and confidence."

Related: How to Save Money On At-Home Fitness Equipment and Gear

"Single-leg training, à la Tracee, is a terrific way to train balance," adds Pata. "Even though there is some assistance with the pole and the box, there is still some balance demand," she says. You'll want to add balance exercises for "optimal muscle recruitment and coordinated movement," she explains. Plus, the combo exercises she demonstrates, such as side step lunges and leg kickbacks followed by squats, "help work the glutes even more by adding to the coordination, muscle recruitment, and balance challenge," according to Pata. (See: 6 Exercises to Improve Your Balance — and Why It's Important At Any Age)

ICYDK, the Tracy and Tracee partnership is a long one: Ellis Ross has been doing the Tracy Anderson Method for years. It's a full-body strengthening method inspired by the eponymous founder's longtime love of working the small muscles used in dance. Ellis Ross isn't the method's only famous fan, either. Shakira, Gwyneth Paltrow, Jennifer Lopez, Tia Mowry, and more celebrities have all worked with Anderson over the years, seemingly loving her use of light weights and endless reps to tackle those teeny tiny muscles sometimes overlooked by other movement methods.

Thankfully, you don't need to have serious star power (or a spare $4,500 to purchase the MyMode apparatus and digital subscription) to copy elements of Ellis Ross' new routine. For instance, jump boxes or a kitchen chair can offer stability while you do single-leg kickbacks, and a strategically placed resistance band can give you some of the dynamic stability of the MyMode staff.