Whatever you focus on, expands. Like this document.
- 1.1: Added my latest Dynamic Mobility Warmup Videos to my section at the bottom. This was a big release.
- 1.0: It is now February 9, 2016 and I deem this version to be v1.0.
- 0.9: Ugh, you don’t even knowwww.
- Started this around Summer of 2015.
Backlog/To do list:
- I found out how to make a youtube video loop without having to make GIFS so I can link directly to the video.
- Add update date for each section to know where I left off.
- Add Systema
- Add Steve Atlas
- Add GymnasticBodies
- Add Hunter Cook?
Mobility has multiple definitions depending on who you’re talking to. Some people just refer it to the amount of range of motion (ROM) your joints have. But to me, mobility is not only about passive flexibility, but about flexibility, strength AND control in the full range of motion. That’s my favorite definition of it and I utilize these concepts and intertwine them in my personal training because I like to take a more active/conscious approach to flexibility. I love this stuff because I wholeheartedly enjoy limbering up (loosening up just for feeling good) and increasing my movement-repertoire through fun/novel ways of using the flexibility that I have. When I combine it with yoga, I link the breath with movement which increases my mindfulness and helps me get better in tune with my true self.
Dewey Nielsen has several YouTube videos with extremely clear progressions mated to folk music. He demonstrates simple things like the squat and the ’90/90′ and how to move in/out of them and how to stand up from the floor without using your hands. As someone who worked in a hospital and was in charge of reducing fall-risk, I’m very big on helping people to increase their balance or to learn how to get up without using their hands because I have often seen people becoming SO disabled, handicapped and immobile that they cannot stand up from the floor. (I think about the ever increasing geriatric population a lot.)
Also, FWIW, Dewey Nielsen works together with Dr. Spina which is very important to know because his writings make for great educational reading material so be sure to read everything he writes as well.
- The Squat
- Double Collapsing: Heels to Toes, Toes to Knees, Knees to Shins Extend, Repeat
- Single Collapsing: Knees Outside / Knees Inside
- Posting: Short Post (Side to side)
- Posting: Short Post to Sit
- Posting: Short Post to Sit
- Posting: Short Post to Sit to Step to Sit
- Posting: Short Post to 90/90
- Posting: Long Post to Reverse Table
- Reaching: Overhead Rotation with single arm
- Reaching: Crawling
- Single Leg Squat Progressions
- The 90/90 (knees are ~90°, thighs/hips are ~90°)
- Reaching: Front Thigh, Front Shin, Back Shin
- Hip Switching: 90/90 Rockover
- Hip Switching: 90/90 Wheel
- Hip Switching: 90/90 to Prone
- Stepping: 90/90 Rockover to Hip Up
- Stepping: 90/90 Rockover to Hip Up to Step
- Stepping: 90/90 Post to Step
- Traveling: ‘A’
- Traveling: ‘B’
- Beginners Quadrupedal Patterns (Locomotive stuff)
- Elbow/Knee Crawl
- Bear Crawl
- Gallop Crawl (Straight Arms)
- Crab Walks
- Traveling Squat
- Related: Hip Flexion Crawl
- Intro to Reptile/Lizard Crawl
- Advanced Quadrupedal Patterns (locomotive)
- Amoeba Crawl
- The Hover (Freeze in a Bent-Arm Gallop Crawl)
- Lizard Crawl v1.0 (push up/down)
- Lizard Crawl v2.0 (stay low)
- Lizard Crawl v3.0 (stay low + arm sweep)
- Lizard Crawl v4.0 (stay low + arm sweep + hip internal rotation)
- Lizard Crawl with Step Through
- Lizard Crawl Freeze-Frame Drill
- Floating Scorpion (it’s like a lizard crawl archer push up, haha!)
- Balance Beam Basics
- Static Balance and Posture (ball of foot, not arch)
- Rocking ( weight transferring)
- Walking (ball of foot, not arch)
- Low Walk
- Stealth Walk
- Valslides are just a brand of “sliders”… You can also use socks on a slippery floor. Glossy magazine paper, too.
GMB has a lot of great content related to bodyweight exercises and plenty of good resources in regards to flexibility/mobility stuff. Ryan Hurst is featured in most of them and is a total G.
One of their best videos is the one on Wrist Preparation for Handstands:
- Shoulder Stuff
- Basic Stretches for Super Stiff Shoulders
- Stick Dislocate Variants to improve Shoulder Flexibility
- Shoulder Stretch and Scapular Mobility Tutorial
- tl;dw: scapular shrugs in tabletop, sphinx pose and plank
- Shoulder stretch for Handstand
- One of my favorite stretches, go up in a back to wall HS with hands away from wall, slide feet/butt down wall and push the chest away from wall with straight arms.
- Shoulder Stretches for Shoulder Pain
- shoulder flexion
- posterior stretch
- scapular plane internal/external rotations
- butchers block
- foam roll upper back
- Hip Stuff:
- Foot & Ankle Related
- Spinal Flexibility:
- GMB Programs I recommend
- Focused Flexibility If you want something where you are just told what stretches to do for each day of the week without having to overthink, then you’ll like this a lot.
- Elements. This is one of the funnest programs that GMB has. It will help you increase strength, flexibility and motor control using “animal” movements (aka “locomotive” stuff). This is the fun stuff that will help you create your own improvisational flow on the ground. For example, this Bear to Bear Transition. Also relevant is this video: Exploring Flexibility in Quadrupedal Locomotion.
- “The Daily Five”
- Hip Flexors
- Pistol Squat
- Low to Upper Back
- Back Rotations
- Back Bend
- Band mobility sequence (can be done daily)
- Partner chest stretch with a stick (Pec Minor, Major, Biceps)
- Rotator cuff series: long and short stick sequences
- Rotator cuff series; Subscapularis (aka Eagle Arms)
- Rotator cuff series: Supraspinatus-middle deltoid
- How to position shoulder for overhead squat
- Miscellaneous but still fucking great per usual:
- Myofascial Release
- Calves: Intro to RollStretch, a new way of working with fascia
- Adductors: RollStretch (use a broomstick)
- Podcast Interviews
If you want to learn more from Kit Laughlin, you could buy his videos on demand. His programs are extremely thorough and highly affordable. Each “master” series is only $15 and comes with something like 12-18 different videos! And no, I’m not being paid to say this and I won’t make any money if you buy them.
Emmet Louis is one of the smartest coaches I know and he has a bunch of videos on his YouTube channel. The video I feature here is one of the best on moving your joints through their full rotations. This is something you could do every morning upon waking.
Notable Blog Posts
“Emmets Blackboard” are educational lectures
- The Anatomy of a Handstand
- Dissecting the Dish Position (Hollow Body)
- Building the Bridge
- Loaded Progressive Stretching (LPS)
- Ballistic Stretching
- What’s in my training bag?
General Mobility Stuff
- Basic Joint Rotations
- Fascial release for forearms
- Jam jar lids, butter knife, or dull end of any knife works well for this
- Jefferson Curl
- Nerve Glide
- 4 way Spine Mobility Drill
- T-spine mobilization for beginners
- Handstand Mobility Test
- Lat Stretch for Handstand
- Partner Stretch for Handstand
- T-spine Mobilization (aka Butchers Block)
- Pec stretch with fascial dimension
- Fascial release for HS using foam roller
- Handstand Related Strength Drills
- Standing Arch
- Backbend to Bridge Series
- Back Opener using GHD
- Box Bridge
- Build a stronger bridge with leg extensions
- Straighten one leg only
- When that becomes easy, raise one leg
Side Splits (Horse Stance)
- Horse stance for side splits (he and I created horse stance videos for the horse stance month!)
- Straddle Ups
Hamstrings / Forward Folding
For a compilation of K-Stars stuff, refer to: MobilityWOD videos organized by muscle, body part and exercise
For a compilation of Ido Portals’ stuff, refer to The Floreio Project.
Glenn Pendlay (Olympic Weightlifting Related)
Glenn Pendlay is a coach for high-level athletes and he’s got some videos about helping you get better positioning.
- Lower Body Flexibility for Weightlfting
- Barbell on Knees: For achieving a good bottom position in a squat, front squat, clean or snatch.
- Upper Body Flexibility for Olympic Weightlifting
- Stick Dislocates: For increasing the shoulder flexibility for the front rack position, requires dowel or barbell.
- Rack position in the clean: Get in rack position with elevated bar, have a partner help push the elbows up. Instead of holding a barbell i could just go to one of those low-ish pull up bars
Dr. Andreo Spina is an international speaker on the topics of joint health, movement and mobility development, sports performance, and injury management. His strong academic background and clinical experience in combination for his personal love for BJJ (Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, which is like chess with anatomy) and helping others move better has fueled the creation of his Functional Range Release® soft tissue management system and the Functional Range Conditioning® mobility development system. He has a ton of free resources out on the internet, and they are scattered about on his website, YouTube channel and Instagram.
As you could see, these are all registered trademarks and so I am only limited to what I can say but luckily for us, he and his students regularly release stuff publicly which I can feature. Note: FRC® is not just a bunch of random “exercises.” It is a massive system with progressions and prerequisites that I cannot and will not cover. Dr. Spina says the word “prerequisite” might be the least utilized word or concept in the fitness world. I agree and that is why I utilize prerequisites in my own rings routine to help keep you safe.
If you want to get the full picture of FRC®, you must attend one of his seminars and register early because they all sell out. If you’re a mindful enough mover and have a keen understanding of anatomy and think in terms of progressions/regressions already, you’ll probably find this all very helpful. I urge you to listen to all his podcast interviews and READ the articles and READ the descriptions in all the posts because they are full of great information.
CARs are active, rotational movements at the outer limits of articular motion and are helpful for expanding and sculpting the outer ranges of motion. One of the things Andreo Spina recommends is to perform CARs as one of the first things you do when you wake up to move your joints in their full range of motion, so that you maintain the range that you currently have and keep the joint healthy. He talks about this in detail in the video below.
- More Shoulder Mobility Variations
- Shoulder Rolls
- Prone Scapular Swimmers
- Internal Rotation / Kimura Mob (BJJ Related)
- Scapulothoracic Control while hanging
- Advanced: Closed Chain Hanging Shoulder Rotations
- You could do these in narrow grip or wide grip if you’re more advanced.
- Basic Scapular Control for a Pull Up
The ‘ hip opening mobility’ sequence videos below helps acquaint you with some of the basic hip positions he uses and how he transitions in and out with control. I like this one because he goes into the 90/90 and Bear Sit and Internally Rotates in the Deep Squat, then goes into the Cricket squat and back to the 90/90.
This one below puts more emphasis and nicer cues on the 90/90 and Bear Sit:
- Beginner (4min):
- Lift only the big toe up while the other four stay on the ground
- Press the big toe down into the ground while you lift the other four. (5:00)
- If you cannot do these, then hold them down with your fingers.
- Adduction of toes (bringing the toes to the midline; together, 6:30)
- Squeeze toes together without flexion (keeping them straight, not curling)
- If you cannot do this, put a pen between each toe (one at a time) and try to not let the pen go in any direction.
- Extend all toes (keeping metatarsal heads down) and plant them one at a time.
- Towel crunch progressions (9:00)
- Start with crunching only lateral 4 toes first, then crunch with big toes
- Weighted: Place weight on towel away from foot, and repeat exercises.
- Once we have a baseline strength for feet, we could take things further (10:20).
- In a Deep Squat, instead of leaning your torso, use the muscles of your feet and lower leg to help move you in a circle in a deep squat.
- Intermediate (12:30)
- Calf raises OFF the toes. (12:45)
- Big toe raises
- Forward Lean Exercise (13:30, Only done as an Eccentric to Isometric exercise until you have enough strength to do it concentrically)
- Start with far away from the wall. Keep knees straight and lean forward in a controlled fashion. When you get to the wall, push yourself back with control.
- Knee Hug (Hip Flexor) Hold & Butt Kick (Hamstring) Hold
- Lizard Pose PRLO
- Front Scale PRLO
- Pistol Squat PRLO
- 90/90 Lift Offs
- 90/90 Internal Rotation of Back Leg PRLO
- Seated, Single Leg Straddle Liftoffs
- Seated, Single Leg Pike PRLO
- Seated Dynamic PRLO
- Seated Hip ADDuctor PRLO
- Standing Hip ABDuction PRLO
- Seated Knee Extension with Maximum Hip Extension using Tennis Ball
- Front Splits PRLO
- Hamstrings PRLO
- Cossack Squat against a wall
- Middle Splits PRLO
- Prone/Superman Liftoffs with hands on back or hands on head
- Ankle Dorsiflexion PRLO
- Ankle or Toe Dorsiflexion PRLO
- Overhead PRLO
- Kneeling Overhead liftoff (this can be done one arm at a time or both)
- Finger PRLO
- Basic Hip Axial (Internal) Rotation
- Movement of back leg in 90-90
- Butterfly to Half-90
- Pigeon to Half-90
- Pigeon to Half-90 in another way (other leg ends up internally rotated)
- Half-90 to Butterfly to 90-90
- Pigeon to Pigeon
- 90:90 Hover Transfer (start in 90/90)
- Eccentric Pigeon (In a short but upright pigeon, lower down and slide leg back with core control)
- Middle to Pancake Splits (using band or weight)
- Half-90 ENG (Slowly lower down into half-90)
- Traveling 90-90’s
- Pigeon Granby Roll (Pigeon to shoulder/neck roll)
- Standing up
- If you’re having trouble doing this, do only the reverse (eccentric) in the second half.
- Stealth Crawls
- Lateral Stealth Crawl
- Post/Ant Stealth Crawl
- Lateral Stealth Roll
- Deep Step Ups (Pistol Squat power)
- Cossack Squat limbo transitions
- Standing Single Leg Hip Rotations with bent legs (flexion, adduction, extension, abduction, repeat)
- Box Elevated Pigeon Lift
- Squat Internal Rotations
- Lateral Squat + Split Squat + “Side Body Stretch” + Cossacks
- Slider Behind the leg Crossover Lunge
- Slider Cossack to Behind the leg Crossover Lunge
- Transitions between Squat and Seated Twist
- Combined Axial Spinal Rotation with Flexion
- Squat opening to wall walk bridge part 1
- Split Pendulum (Isometric adductor work with rotational lumbosacral control)
- Bridge progression
- Cossack Shapeshifting
- Weighted pancake
“Assessment -> Treatment -> Rehab -> FRC® -> Training”
- Articular INDEPENDENCE before articular INTERDEPENDENCE
- Controlled Articular Rotations (CARs)
- What are CARs and when should you do them?
- tl;dr: First thing in the mornings, as a warm up, and habitually.
- What are CARs and when should you do them?
- PAILs and RAILs
- Joint Health and Longevity
- Load > Capacity = Injury. Capacity > Load = Injury Prevention
- Notes and Quotes from Dr. Andreo Spina
- Making Joints function nice: Review of the FRC workshop
- Great article that’s all about Ankle Dorsiflexion by someone that took Spina’s FRC.
- Like I said before, read every blog post and the descriptions in each instagram post for more info. They often have great spiels.
Podcasts where Dr. Andreo Spina was interviewed
After you listen to a few of them you might notice that the same concepts are explained over and over, so you will get a nice grasp. A few of them talk about the same concepts repeatedly, but they are good nonetheless. I mean, he spends over a dozen hours talking about the science behind his system in a weekend seminar, so I don’t mind listening to every single thing he says in these free interviews.
- Mike Ranfone February 7, 2015
- Corey Beasley Dec 15, 2015
- Onnit July 29, 2015
- Todd Bumgardner June 26, 2015
- Jon Walton (Part 1) May 27, 2015
- Jon Walton (Part 2) June 3, 2015
- Ryan Hurst April 9, 2015
- Ariana Rabinovitch Sept 19, 2014
- Ricky Singh July 15, 2014
- Justin Goodhart July 9, 2014
- Perry Nickelston March 4, 2014
- Mike Boyle April 6, 2014
- Patrick Ward Nov 11, 2013
- Butterfly Squat
- Narrow Squat Sit to Stand
- Sissy Squat
- Folding Table Squat (What he used to call the Cricket position)
- Note the feet being turned outward makes it easier to focus on maintaining neutral spine.
- Hamstring PAILs/RAILs
- Frog Stand Circles
- Patellar Tendon (Knee) Remodeling Progressions
- Isometric Split Squat Hold (Top left)
- Supported Eccentric Valslide Lunge (Top right)
- Eccentric Valslide Lunge (Bottom left)
- Skater Squat (Bottom right)
- Thoracic Pails and Rails
- a variation of it using barbell
- Elevated Thoracic Bridge – Pails & Rails
- Foot Elevated, Short Bridge Press with Ankle Dorsiflexion Focus
- Single Leg Ankle CARs
- Top left: Front to back plantar/dorsiflexion
- Top right: Side to side ankle movements
- Bottom: Single leg weighted ankle CARs
These serve specific purposes. Do not try these if you are not a medical professional. If you want to learn more, you may want to be interested in his Functional Range Release® seminars. Otherwise, “for informational purposes only.”
- ‘Kimura Mob’ for internal rotation of the shoulder (posterior glenohumeral joint)
- ‘Kimura’ mobilization for the hip
- The ‘Americana’ Mob to promote Glenohumeral rotation
- Sleeper Stretch for posterior inferior glenohumeral joint fibrosis
- ‘Heel Hook’ Mobilization to promote tibial rotation
- Cervicothoracic Junction manipulation
Well, since this is my website, I might as well organize some of my stuff too, ey? Yeah, here goes.
- Inspired by “Yoga”
- Wrist Warmup
- From pigeon pose, press yourself up into downward facing dog and do these Hip Rotations and Swivels to explore the range you just opened up in pigeon pose.
- As a simple limbering exercise, you could open your hip to the side like you’re rocking a baby.
- Childs Pose Side to Side Lat Stretch
- Partner stretching in Childs Pose
- Shoulder Extension in a Forward Fold with a strap. You could also do this with a bar/stick+5lbs to help you go deeper.
- Standing Splits to Half Moon 2 with Ankle Dorsiflexion
- The more you elevate the ball of your foot, the greater the stretch on the calves/achilles tendon.
- Camel Pose Backbend Tutorial for beginners (YouTube)
- Shoulder Opener for Forearm Stand (YouTube)
- Use a strap around the elbows and a block/book between the hands.
- Yoga for Posture Routine
- Inspired by Gymnastics / Calisthenics / Bodyweightfitness
- Shoulder Roll Progressions
- Scapular Shrugs (YouTube)
- Horse Stance Tutorial for Straddle Splits
- Bridge Rotations Using Wall (YouTube)
- Tucked Skin the Cats + Foot Supported German Hang
- Work on becoming comfortable with tucked skin the cats in the full range and eventually you’ll be able to do Piked Skin the Cats with straight legs. (Work on hamstring flexibility too if straight legs is hard.)
Hope that helps! Is there anybody else who has good info that you think I should organize? How could I help make this resource more helpful? Please leave a comment below!