Sustainable Fitness: The Importance of Movement Prep


Sustainable Fitness: The Importance of Movement Prep
by Katrina Falor

While attending the IDEA® World Convention in June with Red Mountain Resort’s Fitness team, I had the pleasure of experiencing some pretty incredible classes, particularly those dealing with mobility training. I’m so excited to see the industry focusing more on the often-overlooked aspects of fitness such as movement prep and recovery.

The Seated Cat-Cow stretch promotes a healthier spine from top to bottom.

A good warmup can make or break your workout, and if you aren’t warming up in a way that’s specific to the session ahead, you could be increasing your risk of injury. Instead of just hopping on the treadmill for 10 minutes before your next workout, think about mobilizing the joints that will be key players in your routine that day, getting your core turned on, and activating the smaller stabilizing muscles that aren’t always working as hard as they should be.

Pre-Workout Mobility Routine

Perform 8-12 reps of each exercise for 1-3 rounds.

Neck Circles: Drop your ear to your shoulder and circle around to the other side. Begin with half circles and work towards full circles if you can comfortably do so.

Ankle Circles: Sit with your legs extended out in front of you and slowly circle your ankles. Repeat in the opposite direction.

Use tools like the ViPR to increase your functional mobility while improving balance and coordination.

Seated Cat-Cow: Sitting cross-legged, place your hands behind your head. Inhale as you reach your elbows out wide, lift your chest, and gaze towards the sky. As you exhale, round your spine, drop your chin towards your chest, and bring your elbows together in front of your face. Continue moving with your breath.

Quadruped T-Spine Rotation: Begin on your forearms and knees. Take your right hand behind your head and inhale as you reach your right elbow towards the sky. While you exhale, round through the spine as you bring your right elbow to meet your left elbow. Continue moving with your breath.

Spider Lunge with T-Spine Rotation: Start in a high plank position and step your right foot outside your right hand. Reach your right hand up to the sky. Reset back to plank and repeat on the left side.

Deep Squat with T-Spine Rotation: Stand with your feet shoulder-width and your toes turned slightly out. Lower into a deep squat and place your hands on the ground between your feet. Reach your right arm up towards the sky, bring it back down, and repeat on the left side.

The Quadruped T-Spine Rotation drill increases upper body mobility while improving your posture.

You can take your movement prep to the next level with tools such as resistance bands, a TRX system (a portable suspension trainer that combines gravity and your body weight with different angles and positions to create limitless options for strength and conditioning), or a ViPR (a weighted rubber tube with handles for loading multi-planar movement patterns in any direction). If you are new to any of these, I recommend spending time with a qualified trainer to ensure you are using the correct techniques.

Training should never be painful! We want to be mindful of our bodies and forgiving of our limitations. Work with the range of motion you have and with consistency, you will see and feel improvement. You may even notice daily activities that once caused you pain and discomfort becoming easier to perform.

During your next visit to Red Mountain, I invite you to attend Intentional Mobility and Movement Patterns for Healthy Joints, the recovery-based classes on our weekly activity schedule, or book a personal training session with one of our fitness experts who can focus on movement prep and recovery.

Check back next month for another Sustainable Fitness article focusing on active recovery and improving flexibility.

About Katrina Falor

Katrina Falor, NASM-CPT is a group fitness instructor and certified personal trainer, and recently completed training in MELT Method®Hand & Foot and Level 1. Her wellness journey of rebuilding strength and mobility began after years of struggling with pain caused by an ATV accident that left her with a broken back and pelvis. She is passionate about helping people find the fun in fitness and strives to create pain-free, safe, and enjoyable programs for Red Mountain guests.