5 "easy" yet effective movements to develop your core strength and mobility. These are absolute core killers if you do them correctly.
In this video, we are describing movements that do not require incredible levels of strength but are still super effective in developing the body.
In many cases, light exercises and "easy" movements are the most effective because developing the body is all about tension and not all about resistance (contrary to what gym bros think).
The interesting thing about all of these 5 movements is that they have the same base of quadrupedal locomotion. However, each of them trains the body and especially the core in a unique manner.
You will develop superior core strength with all of them, 4 out of 5 movements will also develop supportive strength and stability in your scapula (shoulder girdle).
These also require lots of coordination so your brain also gets a nice refreshing workout to stay young and vital.
1. Spinal Cat Walk
You're probably familiar with the Cow & Cat poses of yoga and how they're used to gently mobilize the spine moving it from an arched position to a rounded one.
The Spinal cat has a very similar movement except you're also taking continuous steps forward & backward making the core activation much stronger. It's like doing walking full-range crunches.
But instead of just crunching, your core has to work a double action of both stabilizing the cat movement and compressing the core. This creates muscular engagement in the entire abdominal wall, the six-pack muscle (rectus abdominis), side abs (obliques) and the deeper core (transversus abdominis).
It's both a therapeutic and strenuous exercise which can give you great coordinated control over your spinal extension & flexion movement.
2. Zebra Walk
Zebra Walk adds one significant difference to the traditional cat walk pattern. You're fully straightening the supporting leg with every step.
This is a fantastic way to improve the fine control of your knee joint. You would be surprised how hard your quadriceps have to work in order to perform the knee extension.
Placing yourself in the all-fours position offers part of your bodyweight as a natural resistance. Raising one leg at a time further increases the difficulty.
But this is just half of the move. In order for your knee joint to extend with control and carry your body forward, your core area has to stabilize with great precision to avoid tilting from side to side.
Resist losing control and you'll notice your whole leg and core to the shoulders working hard while gaining functional strength and movement accuracy.
3. King Kong
The King Kong (aka Tarzan Walk) utilizes a quadrupedal movement with the hips lower than the shoulders. To achieve this the lower back will be arched and the legs wider to lower the hip region.
On the contrary, the arms are supported on the knuckles raising the thoracic spine and shoulder level higher.
This trains your abdominals and TVA to engage and support in a different muscle length compared to a neutral or flexed position. In addition, having legs wider will have your inner thighs working harder.
With every step, you can also bring the knees further towards your upper body meaning your increase the hip flexion. This will intensely train your groin and upper thigh region increasing their mobility.
Overall, it's one of the best ways to express your inner primate while building agile muscles.
4. Cobra Walk
The Cobra Walk is a movement pattern with a maximally arched spine. This is a walking version of the Cobra Stretch from yoga. The yoga stretch however is merely passive stretching of the anterior core.
In the walking version, your core has to work hard to carry its bodyweight because the hips are in the air while you take steps continuously supported on your hands and toes. This trains your abdominals magnificently.
There are very few people who train the arched abdominal strength of their bodies because they're afraid it will somehow hurt them.
It's true many people who do planks let their back sag towards to ground which may put a strain on their backs. But this is mostly because they've no idea what they're doing.
It's totally different to consciously arch your back while keeping your core active. This is a fundamental ability and if you can't engage your core muscles with an arched spine you have a severe weakness in your body.
There are also ways to modify this exercise that I share in the Movement 20XX Expansion.
5. Tortoise Walk
The uniqueness of the Tortoise Walk is the shortened length of your limbs. Moving on top of your knees and elbows eliminates the shins and forearms out of the equation.
This significantly reduces the range of your limbs and their shock absorption. Unless you want to clumsily inch yourself forward, you must generate motion from somewhere else in your body – namely the core.
The tortoise is a great example of how limiting movement from some areas of the body induces compensation in other areas.
In this case, it's a positive and purposeful compensation. To both create motion and make the movement soft and controlled your core has to work quite literally like never before.
Especially the sideways flexion of the torso is accentuated which will work the crunching function of your obliques very nicely.
But as with all of these movements, the benefits are too many and too complex to mention. You can only find out the true scope of the effects by trying and feeling out these movements yourself. Let them surprise you.
Released: MASSIVE Expansion to Movement 20XX Method!
This week, we also released the biggest update to Movement 20XX Method to date.
The purpose of this advanced expansion is to cement Movement 20XX as the most complete movement training method available.
This is a massive update featuring:
- 30 new animal movements
- 5 new routines
- A new methodology lesson
- 32 new videos and over 3 hours of video
The update is more suited for intermediate/advanced members who have already completed at least month 3 of Movement 20XX.
These are movements me and Samuli have been working on the most in the last 6 months - movements include many unique and extraordinary creations and classics from over the years.
If you already own the program, it's 100% free and you can just log in. You can learn more about the entire method at Movement20XX.com