Strength-stability stand alone short almost daily routine: What would you include?

Discussion in 'Flexibility, Mobility, and Movement' started by guardian7, Oct 24, 2019.

  1. guardian7

    guardian7 More than 500 posts

    Strength-stability, stand alone, short, almost daily routine: What would you include?

    It struck me that there are standard strength moves like pullups and pushups, and there are various mobility routines like flexible steel, and various stretching routines, but what I think I also need is what I will call a strength-stability routine.

    Basically, I want to create a short, stand-alone routine of ten minutes separate from normal workouts that concentrates on strengthening stabilizing muscles, particularly to improve posture.

    These are my moves so far. I want less than ten moves tops. Something I can do almost daily at home. No equipment except a band or light dumbell(s).

    1. Bridge progression (can't do a proper one yet).
    2. Prone superman
    3. Bird dog
    4. Hollow body hold
    5. External shoulder rotation resistance band exercises.

    6. One leg deadlift with a hold/stretch.
    7. Crucifix hold with light dumbells.

    8. Armbar with a light dumbell.

    Considering, hindu pushups, static lunge, and cossack squat.

    Would you add to or replace any of these moves for a better one for a quick routine? Basically, this is a "what I know I should be doing but don't" routine. I am 50 years old. No health problems or injuries. Shoulders tight, particularly left. Posture needs improvement. I sit down at work on the computer a lot but I also do Thai boxing. Need to take care of my shoulders. The first five in the morning. 6-7 I would do separately in my office with mobility work like shoulder dislocations. Doing bottom's up KB holds once a day in my office. Number 8 before bed with my stretching routine.

    Anyone else (especially over 40) have a standalone daily mobility/stability/stretch routine--apart from their workout warmup or cool down they would like to share?

    Yes, stretching is important, but I overcame plantar fasciitis not by stretching alone but strengthening my feet, barefoot martial arts, jumping rope etc. Did me better than the doctor's advice. Threw away my orthotics. Strong First is good advice. Stretching is not enough.
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2019
  2. Steve Freides

    Steve Freides Forum Administrator Senior Certified Instructor

    First, I'd take @Pavel Macek's Resilient workshop.

    In lieu of that, I suggest you: Stand up and put something heavy over your head.

    If you have the mobility to do it now, use a barbell with two hands. Practicing the barbell military press has done more to improve the health of my shoulders and t-spine, and therefore my posture, than anything else I've tried over the last few years.

    IMHO, the perfect exercise for high-mileage bodies is the one that, if you do it wrong, hurts, but if you do it right, makes you feel better. Such is the barbell MP for me. Use a weight that's heavy enough, which means it's not super-heavy. For me now, at age 64 and 150 lbs., 65-75 lbs on the barbell military press.

    Get a pair of rings - they're $25 these days and you can do all sorts of good things for your shoulder on them.

    I am not in a competition cycle now, so my focus is on improving myself and not my numbers. Yesterdays' workout was:

    Q&D swings, 4 series (L, R, L, R)

    20 kg kettlebell military press, 3 each side

    Skin the Cat + a Front Lever hold on the rings x 1

    Barbell MP x 65 lbs x 5, 8

    Straddle DL, 225 lbs. x 2 reps each way

    That kind of session makes me feel like a million dollars afterwards. If I had to pick a number, I'd say all the weights/efforts were 65%, which is enough to notice, enough to benefit from, but not enough to be classified as heavy or stressful or anything like that.

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  3. Antti

    Antti More than 2500 posts

    I have four exercises I always feel better afterwards:

    -The good morning. I prefer to use a safety squat bar.
    -The behind the neck press. I like a barbell. Really helps my shoulders, upper back and chest.
    -Squat. Decent weight, prying, just staying in the hole for a good while. I like the SSB for this one as well.
    -Farmer walk. Load or time until feeling better. Great for shoulders and the back.

    I use a light load when doing these for the restorative purposes, and more when doing them for strength. I also prefer longer sets, 8-12 reps, except for the squats a few singles is enough.

    The load and the barbell are not necessary, even if preferable, at least for myself. Just bodyweight feels good on the squat and the good morning.
  4. Anna C

    Anna C More than 5000 posts Elite Certified Instructor


    Me too, although I would add bench press to that. I feel like that has helped my posture possibly even more than the overhead press. Counterintuitively, it has helped my upper back muscles stay tight and have a natural chest-up posture. I sit at a desk all day, too, so it's really helpful.

    I think good posture comes naturally if the body's muscles are developed well.
    Steve Freides likes this.
  5. Steve Freides

    Steve Freides Forum Administrator Senior Certified Instructor

    If I had the mobility to use it, I would.

    Antti likes this.
  6. Steve Freides

    Steve Freides Forum Administrator Senior Certified Instructor

    I would if I could. My lower back is damaged goods, and at times I have trouble getting up off the bench due to arthritis and just general stiffness in my lumbar spine.

    FWIW it doesn't seem counterintuitive to me at all that BP would help counter a rounded upper back - after all, it's really the opposite.

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  7. WhatWouldHulkDo

    WhatWouldHulkDo Quadruple-Digit Post Count

    I like the Flexible Steel "escape your fighting stance" sequence, I think it's full of good openers and in-between strength movements. I've modified it a little, what I do these days:
    - SLDL
    - KB pullover
    - Bretzel
    - KB armbar
    - Hindu pushup
    - Tactical frog
    - Cossack squat
    - Kneeling lunge
    - TRX row

    That said, I'm not sure 7 minutes a day is enough. For me, at least, mobility doesn't seem to work as a quick warmup kind of thing - I have to dedicate some serious time to it to make any progress. Getting through that sequence takes me a little more than an hour, so I only dedicate 2 sessions a week to it. So, I'd suggest picking a couple days a week where you just spend time hammering away at strength mobility.
    guardian7 likes this.
  8. guardian7

    guardian7 More than 500 posts

    Pavel M's program looks great. I would take it if it came to Korea. I have taken KB and Barbell course and gone to PlanStrong. Waiting for Bodyweight to come.

    I live in Korea where space is a premium and I have a young daughter around. I simply don't have room for such equipment at home, unfortunately.

    I had in mind a quick mostly bodyweight routine I could do at home. No equipment, no setup.

    I do getups, hanging leg raises, face pulls, other supporting exercise etc. when I have access to equipment. I do KB BU press holds in my office, which are great.

    To give you an idea how little space there is in East Asia generally, My friend has his squat rack/pullup station on his balcony. Nobody I know has a basement/garage or separate room to work out in at home. One reason why kettlebells are so great--a portable gym.


    Regarding the military press, you just do a few "therapeutic" reps a day? I could definately do that. One or two bell sizes down?

    I am working on the L-sit. Would like to be able to lever some day. Most impressive movement. I can imagine how difficult it is by the limited ROM of my hanging leg raise.

    I did the Barbell course and I was told my thoratic mobility meant that the barbell press and low bar squat was not for me yet, unfortunately. Part of my motivation for doing this type of work.
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  9. guardian7

    guardian7 More than 500 posts

    I can reliably attend a Muay Thai for fitness class and workout twice a week combined with one other program. Right now it is daily GTG pushups. Follow a strict bench/DL PTTP program for a couple of months straight. BUT I can't seem to get myself to stick to mobility routines. This is an attempt to ingrain a habit. Hopefully, I will do more after making some progress. I learned to start small from at my age, just plugging away does the body good.

    Yeah, hindu pushup, lunge, and cossack squat are good suggestions for what I have in mind.
  10. WhatWouldHulkDo

    WhatWouldHulkDo Quadruple-Digit Post Count

    Sure - 7 minutes is better than 0 minutes. Just go into it with the mindset of being ok with slow progress. For me, flexibility/mobility has really been a grind - feels like much slower progress than raw strength work.
  11. apa

    apa Triple-Digit Post Count

    10 minutes per day I would just stick to Get ups.
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  12. william bad butt

    william bad butt More than 300 posts

    This takes me about 5 to 8 minutes. It is my warm up but I also do it on most non-training days. By coincidence it is 10 movements, I didn't do that on purpose.

    - 5 cat-camel stretches
    - 2s of 10r bird dogs (each side)
    - 2s of 10r McGill curlups (each side)
    -2s of 10r side planks (each side)
    - 5 prying goblet squats
    - 5 halo's
    - <5 min of walking with single kbell. 1st bell at side, then in rack position, then overhead (waiter walks)
    -5 glute bridges
    -3s of 5 reps 2 arm swings. Each set is more explosive
    - 5 pushups
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  13. Bauer

    Bauer More than 500 posts

    Lots of good ideas.

    I like to do contralateral stuff and doing some freestyle movements after work. I know you are into OS, so stuff like crawling, underhand switches (going from leopard crawling position to crab walk position), bear crawling. I like to do this a bit cat-like, so stretching or rotating a bit here and there, synched to my breath. Removing one or two limbs makes these closes chain moves really great for stabilizing. Transitioning from positions is also great. For example walking the hands back from bear crawling position and then hinging or squatting up. Lego Squats are great, too.
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  14. guardian7

    guardian7 More than 500 posts

    Hmm. Maybe I should just crawl every day.
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  15. Tim Randolph

    Tim Randolph Double-Digit Post Count

    You could do a lot worse than that. I have been doing GMB’s Elements program for a few weeks, which emphasizes Bear, Monkey and Frogger floor movements. It’s already made a huge difference in my mobility and made my big trunk muscles a lot springier.

    To start something like this you would need to put some time in for a couple of months, but after that I can see you going to daily maintenance mode.
    guardian7 likes this.
  16. Waryrenn

    Waryrenn Triple-Digit Post Count

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  17. guardian7

    guardian7 More than 500 posts

    Yes, I do like OS the neck nods daily. Really helps with sitting at the computer. I hadn't heard of Lego squats. Looks great. I can do them unlike the pistol, which never seemed to be a natural movement to me. A more flowing routine might help with stress.
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  18. guardian7

    guardian7 More than 500 posts

    Thanks I have decided to go with the leopard crawls with crab and bridge when my neck gets too tired. Some hindu pushups etc. basically more flowing like you do. It meets my goals as mentioned above, is simple but not easy, and something I could get results from with five minutes a day or so of consistent practice as habit building. It seems particularly good for my neck, shoulders.
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