Exercise Is Simply Substitute Caveman Activity

When we go to the gym for X amount of hours per week what we’re trying to do is compensate for the difference between what we are currently doing with our bodies and what they were designed to do.

What were they designed to do? Caveman things. Hunt animals, climb trees, crawl, forage, etc. Maybe make some cave paintings.

What do we do? Well, mostly we sit. And then to try and are up for not being cavemen, we exercise. Because for better or for worse, most of us don’t live like cavemen anymore. (Just think, you’d only have to shower once a week and you’d never have to pay taxes).

Exercise is crucial because for most of us normal life isn’t bridging that gap between what our bodies are made to do and what we actually do. Our bodies crave diversity of movement – hanging, squatting, rolling, crawling, running, rotating; moving in every which way. It’s like eating all the different colors of veggies; it’s not just the quantity but also the diversity. But many people spend their day only between sitting, standing, and lying down. Think about it; your average person can spend their entire day without ever getting out of these three positions! That’s like a diet made up of easy Mac and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.

Exercise vs movement

So the question is, is your exercise cutting it? Not just in the amount, but in the diversity?

Ask yourself a few questions:
Do you spend the majority of your workout sitting down? (As in on a bench or at a machine)
Have you been doing the same exercise routine for months, even years?
Do you go through a whole workout without your hands touching the ground?

If you answered yes to any of these questions then then it’s time to start rethinking how you train. But it’s okay, it’s not so hard to start. Follow these three rules for every one of your workouts and you can be well on your way to moving, feeling, and looking like a caveman. (Those guys were ripped).


1. Spend some time in a squat. Not a barbell squat. A natural, unloaded, full range caveman squat. Like this guy.

2. Crawl. Crawling develops active mobility in the lower body and connects the core with the shoulders and hips. Start with bear crawls and beast crawls and experiment from there. (Check out our article on crawling here).

3. Hang. Hang from a bar or rings. If it’s difficult to hang for more than a few seconds then simply use a box or bench to support part of your body weight. You’ll get tons of benefit in decompressing the spine, opening up the shoulder and back, and strengthening your grip by simply hanging for one minute every workout.

If you have pain in any of these three positions then talk to our team at Performance Health and Wellness because they are absolutely essential to your physical health and longevity.

Now get out there and get moving!

Movement is Health,
Dr. Christian Barney D.C., D.A.B.C.O., C.C.S.P., ART

How can Performance Health & Wellness help you?

  • Active Release Technique (ART) to the soft tissue structures to restore normal function, decrease stress to the injured area, reduce scar tissue, and promote healing;
  • Stretching and Exercises to prevent condition from returning;
  • Chiropractic adjustments to restore proper motion;
  • Cold laser to help reduce inflammation;
  • Kinesio taping to allow an athlete to continue to particpate in his sport plus augments the treatment.
  • Functional medicine with extensive nutritional based consultation, individualized nutrition programs.

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