We have often talked about the “zoo-human predicament,” which is the physical and mental suffering from an unnatural lifestyle. Sitting for hours on end, not getting outside for days, and even “exercising” via machines at the gym are examples of how our modern lifestyle is unnatural for us. Our true nature is to be strong, healthy, happy and free, and there is no better time than now to start to, or better reconnect to your true nature. Getting an effective full body workout, without the need for a gym membership, equipment, or a huge block of time, is much, much easier than we’re often led to believe.

Most of the modern fitness industry is largely focused on body shape or general conditioning, relying on conventional muscle isolation drills to “tone” muscles and doing “cardio” to burn calories in a – widely failed – attempt to reach those cosmetic goals. In globo-gyms around the world, movements are reduced to simplistic, mechanical, repetitive processes devoid of real practicality. Exercising feels like a chore or worse, like a punishment. No wonder so many folks find it difficult to commit to regular exercise, especially when it’s presented as such a disconnect from real life.

Moving naturally means moving the way the human animal moves in nature. It entails highly practical and adaptive physical performance. Practical because movements must be useful in a primary manner for the ability to survive. Adaptive because movement patterns and efforts must match environmental or situational demands, which require the full range of physical qualities such as balance, flexibility, coordination, and agility.

Moving naturally is not just a physical matter relying solely on raw strength. Most importantly, it also fully engages the mind. Mindful practice is essential to movement efficiency and improvement. Indeed, the necessity to constantly adapt the way you move to multiple environmental parameters demands you to be so mindful that you become entirely immersed in the here and now. Following natural movement training principles gives you the opportunity to reawaken the connection between your mind, your body and the environment. This is the beauty of it!

This full body workout is designed to be very simple and accessible to all.

Start by practicing these movements separately. Your goal is to mindfully improve your movement control, while gradually preparing your body for the upcoming work out. You may take short breaks between each repetition if needed, in order to better focus on the technique and optimize it.

Crawling

Maintain a straight spine, keep your hips level with your back (no sagging or hiking up). Keep your arms straight. Bring your knee forward to the outside of your arm. Keep looking ahead. Release all unnecessary tension to keep your movement fluid and efficient.
Context: Imagine your are actually crawling underneath some low branches with thorns.

Balancing

Find a stable and relatively narrow surface. As you walk across, maintain a straight spinal posture, as well as a good joint alignment of the lower limbs, from feet to hips. Keep your arms down and relaxed and your gaze forward. Breathe calmly, yet deeply, to help relax the body.
Context: Imagine you’re crossing a fast moving river, and ensure that you do not rush and fall.

Lifting

Find any object that is relatively heavy (but not too heavy!). Start by pushing your hips back and keep a good lumbar curve and straight spine as you lower your upper body to reach and grab the object between your feet. Once your grip is secure, press with your legs until the object clears your knees at which point you extend your hips forward to meet the object and end in the hang position. Make sure you maintain lumbar curve and keep your arms relaxed throughout the entire movement.
Context: you have to lift something heavy off the ground to free something, or someone, stuck underneath.

Jumping

Bend your knees, push your butt back, and let your upper body lean forward while maintaining a straight spinal posture. Pull your arms behind you, ready to swing forward. Swing your arms swiftly forward as you push on your legs and fully extend them to jump. After the take-off, pull your heels up underneath your butt to help bring your knees up and your legs forward more dynamically. At around mid-distance, your feet should be down underneath your body, with your arms down. Land on the balls of the feet first, then your heels come down allowing you to sit back into and absorb the landing. As you land swing your arms forward as a counter balance to help stabilize your body.
Context: Imagine you have to jump over a deep gap in the trail and stabilize yourself on the other side.

Reconnect To Your True Nature Combo Training

Combo Training

This short, full body workout circuit is made up of a combination of the previous movements and techniques. This helps you to condition through the mindful practice of movement skills and learn to effortlessly transition between different movement patterns. Remember to focus on proper form, posture, ample breathing and relaxedness. Build up speed or difficulty only on that basis. Don’t rush and compromise technical efficiency. Scale the combo up or down in order to better fit your current abilities or limitations.

  1. Start by crawling forward 10 yards, until you reach the surface you will balance on.
  2. Balance across a distance of 10-20 feet, depending on how challenging the surface is or the environment available.
  3. Reach the object you want to lift. Lift 5 to 10 times, depending on how heavy it is.
  4. Step to the side and jump back and forth 4 times. Ensure perfect stabilization at the end of each jump before you jump again.
  5. Jog back to the starting point and repeat 8 times.