Created by Equinox consultant, Michael Fitch, with true power and athleticism in mind, “Animal Flow” is an instinctive new way to reconnect with one’s body, focusing on how it moves and functions. “I lifted weights my whole life, but when I finally reached my goal, I realized that I was constantly injuring myself, had joint pain, and felt just awful overall,” says Fitch. “I decided to step out of my comfort zone, put the weights down and focus on bodyweight-based practices only.”
Fitch explored gymnastics, parkour and break dancing, and noticed that across all the disciplines there were adaptations of animal movements — movements that have been around forever. He also became interested in the way you could flow from one move and explode into another. Fitch decided to combine primal moves with flow transitions, and this revolutionary program was born. Try it and see how powerful your body is.
Repeat the entire circuit two to three times through, resting 30 seconds between exercises, and two minutes after completing each circuit.
1. Front Steps
Start in “loaded beast position,” similar to child’s pose but with knees and shins off the ground, arms extended forward, and hands on the ground pushing back into your heels. Head is facing down so your spine is neutral (a). Pushing away from the ground with your feet and arms, spring forward replacing your left hand with your left foot, knee bent and heel landing flat on the ground, left arm ending in the air. Your right leg extends and knee touches the ground (b). Return to starting loaded beast position and repeat on the right.
Reps: 10 on each side
2. Side Kick-Throughs
Start in “static beast position,” on all fours, hands under shoulders, knees under hips, pushing into the ground with your toes and hands so your knees and shins are lifted off the floor (a). Simultaneously lift your left arm off the ground as you kick your right leg under the body and through until it is fully extended forward, shifting your weight onto your right arm and supporting left leg, chest now facing the ceiling (b). Return to starting static beast position and repeat kicking the left leg forward.
Reps: 10 on each side
3. Vertical Frog Jumps
Place your feet a little wider than shoulder-width apart, toes pointed slightly outward, and squat all the way down until your palms are flat on the ground in front of your feet. Shoulders are pulled back and spine is in a vertical line with the ground, facing forward. Feet should be flat or as close to flat on the ground as possible (a). Explode upward jumping as high as you can while fully extending your arms above your head (b). Land lightly on your feet, and go right back into the starting position.
Reps: 10 to 15
4. Plyometric Hand Change Push-Ups
Get into a push-up position, hands under your shoulders, feet slightly apart. Perform the downward part of a push-up slowly (a). Then, explode up from the push-up with enough momentum to lift your hands off the ground and separate them further, landing in a wider position (b). In this wider position, slowly perform the downward part of your next push-up (c). Explode up again and this time move your hands inward, back to a narrow push-up position.
Reps: 5 in each hand position
5. Jump Pull-Up
Stand on a step in front of a pull-up bar, making sure the step is high enough that you can comfortably grab and hold the bar, palms facing forward (a). Grasping the bar, jump straight up off the step and use your arms to hold yourself so that chin is above the bar, feet dangling in the air (b). Using just your arms, slowly lower yourself down until your feet are back on the step.
Reps: 10 to 15
To hear more about Mike Fitch and his training practices, visit www.globalbodyweighttraining.com.