I am using the Half Bear exercise extensively with clients to restore and reboot ‘Ideal Movement’ in relation to the transition period from the floor to standing. Half Bear is a contra-lateral stabilising exercise and teaches us where the support is using our diagonal quadrants.
Half Bear differs from other lunging exercises in that the legs are arranged obliquely, instead of in-line, and this facilitates the coactivation of the muscles responsible for single leg stance, from the support hip to foot.
The rear leg works eccentrically in the forward motion and this re-educates the entire adductor group to yield and lengthen.
Please see below for how to set up and perform this essential exercise.
- Set up with the legs arranged obliquely. The trunk needs to travel into the space created by arrangement of the legs as though it was travelling in a narrow corridor.
- First position is to get the same side hand onto the front knee to centrate foot and ankle. From here bring the contra-lateral hand to the wall, chair or floor, depending on your stabilising ability through range. This equals double support.
- If youre using the wall or chair, come back and forward 3 times, increasing end range on each rep.
- If going all the way, keep long sides and long spine, place the other hand down and create a proportional push through all 4 supports while lengthening spine.
- Come up by pushing through front foot and hands with long spine.