Aneesha Reddy, an engineering final-year student gets done with her household chores in the early hours of the day and then keeps snoozing or sitting like a couch potato while binge-watching.
“At the beginning of the lockdown, I was quite enthusiastic as I finally found time for myself, and fitness. But doing the same monotonous exercises on the terrace got me less motivated with time. So now, I barely feel like exercising and find something else interesting instead,” says Aneesha.
While many enrol in many online fitness classes with great zeal and enthusiasm, they start finding it boring for various reasons. But what if during these fitness workouts, you could walk like an ape or crawl like a beast or a crab? That is what this emerging form of workout called ‘Animal Flow’ is all about.
Introduced to many Hyderabadis during a two-day Animal Flow workshop conducted by Devrath Vijay in October last year, the movement-based workout centred around a bodyweight programme. This is focused largely around ground-based work which aims to improve mobility, stability, and strength.
“Animal Flow is a complete bodyweight programme which does not just focus on weight loss or muscle gain but on many aspects of fitness and a way of life,” says Shikara Baddam, a clinical nutrition consultant and 500 Hrs advance yoga trainer who attended the Animal Flow L1 instructor course and is now one among the few certified Animal Flow instructors in the city.
With the spectrum of fitness in India moving beyond just cardio and weight-lifting, many fitness enthusiasts look for functional training or movement-based workouts for a flexible as well as a powerful body.
“Animal Flow is a ground-based workout without use of any equipment and can be done on any floor or grass surface. It involves your four limbs – palms and feet – which will make you more agile, flexible and also increases the range of motion in your body,” says Shikara.
“The workout also makes you fit than reducing your weight. If you’re not strong enough, then what’s the point of losing 10-12kgs and not be able to do basic things at home like lifting a bucket of water. So, I think the focus of fitness is shifting from weight loss to strength development. So Animal Flow is a combination of all these things which can be done in addition to our regular workouts,” she adds.
Founded by the USA-based Mike Fitch, Animal Flow includes a range of movements that are grouped into categories called the ‘Six Components’ — Wrist Mobilisation, Activations, Form-Specific Stretches, Travelling Forms, Switches and Transitions, and Flows.
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