Primal movement workouts are set to be the hottest new fitness trend of 2023. Primal movements such as squatting, lifting, pushing and running benefit everything from our posture to our balance and stability because they intentionally move your body as a whole. Primal movements are also great for your joints because they encourage blood flow throughout your body and train your muscles to become more balanced. They aim to help your body function better in everyday life, making it easier to reach up to grab a mug off a high shelf, push open a heavy door or bend down to pick up your pet. Want to get ahead of the trend? Take a look at our favourite primal workout routines to build strength and stability.
What Are Primal Movement Workouts?
Primal movement workouts involve engaging in all of the natural movement patterns that have been a part of human mobility for hundreds of thousands of years. They improve strength, mobility, posture and overall fitness and allow you to move with less effort and tension. Many exercise programs ignore movement deficiencies and are only seen as effective if they burn calories of build muscle. The goal with primal movement workouts is to develop the body in the most natural way possible.
Primal movements are movements that are natural and fundamental to the human body. They’re thought to reverse the negative effects on our body and posture that happen from our modern lives, which includes a lot of sitting and a lack of movement overall. Primal movements include:
Pull movements: These movements revolve around the upper body and primarily use the back, biceps, forearms and traps. They involve pulling a weight in toward your core or supporting your weight by pulling your core towards a stationary object.
Push movements: These movements revolve around the upper body and involve pushing a weight away from your core or pushing your core away from a stationary object. They work the chest, shoulders, triceps and forearms.
Squat: During a squat, your hips, knees and ankles bend to lower your butt toward the ground, while keeping your back straight and chest up. Squats strengthen your quads, hamstrings, glutes and calves and are great for overall lower body strength and balance.
Lunge: Lunging movements involve taking a step forward and bending one leg while the other leg remains stationary. Lunges are focused on one leg at a time and strengthen your glutes, hamstrings, quads and calves.
Hinge: A hinge is a bending movement that revolves around the core, especially the lower back, as well as parts of the upper legs like the glutes and hamstrings. Hinge movements keep the upper body straight and steady while you bend forward at the waist, bringing your upper body towards the ground.
Rotation/Twisting: This includes any movement where you rotate at the torso from side to side. Twisting movements use the core and focus on the abs and obliques, as well as parts of the legs, such as the abductors and adductors.
Gait: A combination of pulling, twisting and lunging in order to make the body do movements such as running, walking or jogging. Anything where you have to place one foot in front of the other and move your body forward or backward.
What Are the Benefits of Primal Movement Workouts?
- Boost your strength, mobility and fitness
- Improve your posture and help keep your back and head up straight
- Enable you to lift heavy objects without straining your back
- Improve your balance, coordination and flexibility
- Improve overall range of motion and core strength
- Boost the health of your internal organs
- Encourage blood flow
- Great for the joints
- Help your body function better with day-to-day activities
5 Full Body Primal Movement Workouts
1. Animal Flow Workout | 10 Min | Locomotion | Primal Movement | Venera Serova
This 10-minute workout contains smooth, controlled movements that will make you feel amazing. You do each move for about 30 seconds, with a break in between each one. This workout definitely falls on the more challenging side, so get ready to work hard and feel the burn!
2. Primal Movement Circuit Follow Along Workout (20 Minutes) | Human 2.0 Fitness
This primal movement workout consists of three sets and four exercises, with 30 to 40 seconds of work followed by 20 to 30 seconds of rest. The workout includes moves like squats, broad jumps, pike compressions and bicycle crunches. She explains everything in detail, and all you need is a small space and workout mat!
3. Primal Movement Fusion Routine – Tuff Mama | eFit30
This is actually a primal movement fusion dance routine you can follow along to improve your coordination and boost your overall athleticism. From bear crawls, to crab walks, bridge reach-backs and more, this routine is full of great moves. Follow it until the 9:30 mark, where they go into group lifts for the last minute of the video. Otherwise, it’s a great primal movement workout to follow along with.
4. Primal Movement Workout 45 Minutes | Human 2.0 Fitness
For a longer primal movement workout, this 45 minute session brings you through moves like frog jumps, roll backs with toe touches and burpee combinations. It includes a warm-up, structural and mobility section, and EMOM (every minute on the minute), plus a stretch to end it off. All you need is a workout mat and something to slide your feet on like gliders.
5. Primal Movement Exercise Routine 1 | eFit30
With this primal movement routine, you’re moving through multiple planes of motion, rather than just one, such as when you’re running in a straight line. This workout is awesome for mobility and strengthens your muscular system overall. It’s great for stretching and strengthening with moves like the rolling pigeon, the crocodile, the cricket and more. This is another tough, challenging workout, so not great for beginners, but you can work your way up to it!
If you’re interested in incorporating primal movement workouts into your routine, consider these at home workouts, from beginner to advanced!
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