Over the past few years you may have heard a new term used around the arenas of sports performance and fitness: MOVER.

You may have seen some of these Movers in action. Often they can be found traversing their terrain in the style of various animals, doing handstands and flow-ing to acoustic/tribal music. In their male forms, many of them can be identified by the man-buns atop their heads and by their shirtless torsos.

I'm not gonna lie, they do some impressive shit that I am nowhere near being able to do. If Mover's had existed back during my university b-boying days, I'd have been all-in (minus the man-bun) and my breaking would have been far better for it.

They have popularised many important things in sports and fitness including mastery of ones own frame, mobility and moving outside of the sagittal plane.

As with all cool things, there is a danger here. For the sportingly inclined, becoming a Mover will give and take away from your sporting prowess and depending on your sport, it may actually take more than it gives.

It's about bang for buck. Any sort of regimen adopted alongside your sport that is meant to enhance your sport needs to

 

a) develop certain specific attributes particularly useful to your sport (e.g. sprinters need to be able to produce large forces quickly
b) develop general attributes that the sport doesn't help develop that without will leave the athlete out of balance (e.g. sprinters never lift their arms overhead while sprinting but as people they should retain a good capacity to do this)

 

Keeping on with the sprinter example, sprinters need strong upper body muscles. Freestanding handstand pushups are an excellent developer of upper body pushing strength and a sacred exercise in the Mover's catalogue. They also take a very long time to master for most and cannot be performed explosively even when mastered.

Given this, there are many better exercise selections for a sprinter that can be done without a long learning curve and can deliver strength and speed benefits.

How long does it take to learn?
Does it really help me develop a key attribute?
How easy is it to recover from and does it eat energy that may better be spent elsewhere?
If it helps develop general attributes, are there more time and energy efficient ways to go about cultivating these?

These are some of the questions it is worth asking yourself when you are selecting any exercises to enhance your ability to do your sport, from the Mover's catalogue or otherwise.

If you're committed to being better at your sport, it is always worth keeping this as your main training focus. If it isn't the thing in training that you spend the most time and energy doing and thinking about, you will probably found yourself overtaken by others pretty quickly.

More diversified movement is the greatest gift the Movers rise has highlighted to us. 

You don't have to become a Mover to reap the benefits of this. 

And you probably shouldn't hook line and sinker if you want to remain ahead of the game in your sport.

 

Arton "Moving my man-bun back off my head" Baleci
Float Sting - Sports Performance and Rehab

P.S. If you must become a Mover, keep your t-shirt on unless you're outdoors in blazing sunshine. I have not came across a movement yet that a t-shirt prevents me from doing.

P.P.S. And the cliche music? Really? What's wrong with James Brown, Slipknot or Adele? Or ANYTHING else?