How primal are you?

A lot of insult and injury results from extracting the attributes of primal ruggedness, and using them to concoct an arbitrary Thing called a “workout.” (Three sets of ten! Push ‘em out!!! YOOOUU GOTTA WAAANNNT IT!!!!)
— THE William Vives

Because of our flawed industry, people are always looking for numbers….numbers that really mean nothing.  In a futile attempt to please, I give people ranges. But these ranges mean nothing as well. I don't say this to be condescending. We really must ask ourselves, "What does it matter if I knock out 10 reps of a movement versus 11, 12, or 13?" What does it matter?  Wouldn't 3 amazing reps of a movement outweigh 10 questionable reps? I'd say so.

"How many reps do I do?"

"I don't many CAN you do?"

Let's stop building walls around ourselves and start freeing ourselves to good movement.

This is the first blog post on my new website (that isn't even finished yet). It’s definitely not what I had in mind as a first post on a site that isn't even completed, but we’re not always in control of what needs to be said at any given time, so let's go...

William's quote led me on a search for a primal like picture or video. I was hoping to attach his quote to the pic/vid with what was going to be a short Facebook post. That search led me to a Feldenkrais series called “The Evolution of Motion.” That, of course, got my wheels spinning, so here we are instead.

I have toyed with my own rendition of the evolution of human movement. Here is a short clip of Ido Portal's interpretation:


All of your movements, the way you walk, talk, jump, deadlift, power clean, sprint, swim, etc are linked back to these deep rooted movements. In our journey to master movement, we must not dismiss this line of thinking or we may never see our true potential. How can we sprint, if we don't know how to walk? How can we walk, if we don't know how to crawl? How can we crawl, if we don't know how to roll over? And how can you do any of it, if you don't know how to breathe?

"But I know how to breathe, Jason!"

"Do you???"


This performance was created by Dr. Frank Wildman as an observation for students of Feldenkrais. Filmed in Australia. Didjeridoo improvisation by Zoran Kovich.


This performance was created by Dr. Frank Wildman as an observation for students of Feldenkrais. Filmed in Australia. Didjeridoo improvisation by Zoran Kovich.


Every movement you make has very deep-seated primordial roots. This goes back much further than the day you were born. The Roots Fitness model that Andre Miller created completely revolves around this line of thinking and it has quickly bled into my life. I've said it before....If it feels right, it probably is and this feels right.

The Feldenkrais video series went much deeper than what I've been introduced to thus far and much deeper than what Ido played with in his video. It really hit me hard and drove some serious concepts home. Outside of it's magnificent beauty, there is much to be learned here and I've got a lot of learning to do! This excites me to no end!

Are you hitting your true potential on your deadlift? Your sprint speed? What if we refined this primal movement? If I have to crawl before I can walk and walk before I sprint, it seems to reason that if my mobility sucks enough to cause a stir in my crawling patterns it would negatively effect my sprint technique, would it not?

If you've played team sports at any point during your life and had a halfway decent coach, you're no stranger to fundamental drills. You remember them...all the tedious drills that coach made you repeat 5 million times during one practice when all you wanted to do was run plays and scrimmage. Derek Jeter (retired short stop, NY Yankees) proabably couldn't tell you how many thousands of times he's had to run up on a ball laying still in the grass, lay his glove down in front of it, and raise his throwing hand above his glove as if he was making a play on a ground ball. "Don't touch the ball Jeter....that's not part of the drill."

Why should our movement patterns/training be any different? Revisiting and understanding the fundamentals is a must if we want to become good movers....and good movers never make worse athletes. Doesn't matter if you're a powerlifter, a fighter, a dancer, a baseball player, a Crossfitter, or business exec. Become a better mover and your performance will increase. Your quality of life will increase.

Most of us are so far removed from our roots that we no longer have the mobility or strength to perform the most fundamental of movement patterns. We can't sit in the rested squat position because our hip flexion is so horrible. We can't touch our toes because our erectors and hamstrings are bound up like twisted rope. We can't bear crawl because our shoulder stability rivals that of a cadaver. Hell, most of us don't even know how to lie down correctly. That doesn't mean we don't practice though. Intent is the key. These issues certainly won't be corrected by staying the current course or adding some bullshit stretching routine to your "program." We must learn to move better and we must practice it all the time.

Fundamentals my people.....fundamentals.