Posts tagged ‘Exuberant Animal Short Form’
Frank Forencich, Chief Creative Officer of the health leadership organization Exuberant Animal, is hosting a workshop in San Francisco on Saturday, April 10 at the Diakadi Body personal training and wellness center.
The daylong event will include presentations on human evolution, functional exercise, and the power of play. (Earlier in the month, Frank will deliver a similar talk to the Stanford University School of Design, in presentation with the design firm IDEO.) The EA San Francisco Jam will also include movement sessions and games that practitioners, educators, athletes, trainers, coaches, and athletes of all fitness levels can incorporate into their lives and work.
Anyone interested in functional fitness, play-based fitness, and evolutionary movement is encouraged to attend. Click here to register.
Skye Nacel is a friend whom I met at an EA event in Seattle — he is the founder of Mocean365, an action photography and video production firm based in Vermont that also organizes a fantastic series of action workshops. Skye recently produced 10-minute video that leads viewers through the Exuberant Animal Short Form movement sequence — a perfect way to start the day or warm-up before any strenuous physical activity.
In mid-April, Frank will lead a two-day seminar with Wildfitness in London’s Regent Park:
American movement guru Frank Forencich is one of the leading experts in the growing field of evolutionary fitness and his books have been a major influence on the philosophy of Wildfitness and our holiday programme. The seminar is a fantastic opportunity for forward-thinking fitness and movement professionals to get an insight into the new trend in fitness towards ‘natural movement’ and to gain inspiration from one of the key voices and proponents of this culture shift.
The seminar is ideal for personal trainers, therapists, martial artists, dancers and physical educators, as well as non-professional fitness enthusiasts.
Finally, trail runners, endurance athletes, and barefoot enthusiasts should check out the Misty Mountain Foot Quest, in partnership with Mick, The Barefoot Sensei. This is an EA-sponsored multi-day run in Washington state from Quinault to the Elwah, up the spine of the Olympic Mountains. The Foot Quest party kicks-off on Thursday, August 12 and the two-day run includes sherpa support. Sign up with Eventbrite.
From Gretchen Reynolds’ always excellent Phys Ed column in the NYT about whether stretching is necessary :
[Runners] with the tightest hamstrings had the best running economy. They also typically had the fastest 10-kilometer race times. Probably, the researchers concluded, tighter muscles allow “for greater elastic energy storage and use” during each stride. Inflexibility, in other words, seems to make running easier.
For years, flexibility has been widely considered a cornerstone of health and fitness. “It’s been drummed into people that they should stretch, stretch, stretch — that they have to be flexible,” says Dr. Duane Knudson, professor of biomechanics at Texas State University in San Marcos, who has extensively studied flexibility and muscle response. “But there’s not much scientific support for that.”
What changes as you stretch a muscle is primarily the message, not the physical structure of the muscle.
Reminds me a bit of an article Gretchen wrote last year, “Stretching: The Truth“:
The old presumption that holding a stretch for 20 to 30 seconds — known as static stretching — primes muscles for a workout is dead wrong. It actually weakens them. In a recent study conducted at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, athletes generated less force from their leg muscles after static stretching than they did after not stretching at all. Other studies have found that this stretching decreases muscle strength by as much as 30 percent. Also, stretching one leg’s muscles can reduce strength in the other leg as well, probably because the central nervous system rebels against the movements.
The best way to warm-up? Dynamic stretching! Gretchen says these are the best pre-workout exercises (see video at the beginning of this post):
The Best Dynamic Stretches
These exercises- as taught by the United States Tennis Association’s player-development program – are good for many athletes, even golfers. Do them immediately after your aerobic warm-up and as soon as possible before your workout.
(for the hamstrings and gluteus muscles)
Kick one leg straight out in front of you, with your toes flexed toward the sky. Reach your opposite arm to the upturned toes. Drop the leg and repeat with the opposite limbs. Continue the sequence for at least six or seven repetitions.
(for the lower back, hip flexors and gluteus muscles)
Lie on your stomach, with your arms outstretched and your feet flexed so that only your toes are touching the ground. Kick your right foot toward your left arm, then kick your leftfoot toward your right arm. Since this is an advanced exercise, begin slowly, and repeat up to 12 times.
(for the shoulders, core muscles, and hamstrings)
Stand straight, with your legs together. Bend over until both hands are flat on the ground. “Walk” with your hands forward until your back is almost extended. Keeping your legs straight, inch your feet toward your hands, then walk your hands forward again. Repeat five or six times.
UPDATE: Exuberant Animal Short Form is a fantastic series of dynamic movements to start and end every day.