Men’s Health/Eric Rosati
You can lift every weight in the gym, but if you can’t move your body, what’s the point? Being able to flex your mobility is an important part of a healthy lifestyle—even if mastering the movements used to hone your abilities isn’t always easy.
Trainer Charlee Atkins, C.S.C.S., understands the challenge that comes with pushing your body to move in new, different ways, but she remains a staunch advocate of fighting through the pain for your own good to perform exercises like the crab reach. “This is a double whammy because it’s great warmup exercise and a great bodyweight exercise in general,” she says. “Admittedly, when first doing the crab reach it’s a little uncomfortable. We rarely open up our bodies in this position (arms extended back, opening up the chest and hip extension)—which is why it’s so deliciously good.”
The crab reach can help out anyone with tight hip flexors, particularly those of us who sit all day in an office. “This could benefit those of us who coming to the gym from a long day at the desk, [since it’s a] chest and shoulder opener,” Aktins says.
To perform the move, you just need some space on the floor to spread out.
Add the crab reach to your warmup with 5 reps on each side for 10 reps total. Atkins recommends that you make sure to take your time and move slowly through the exercise, especially when you’re just starting out, to get the most from the movement.
Want to learn more moves from Atkins? Check out our series full of her workout tips, Try Her Move.
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