If there is one fundamental move we all need, it’s this one. The dead bug is a master core strengthener that reduces back pain, improves posture, and helps us work on coordination.
It’s super important to protect the low back here by tucking the pelvis toward the ceiling until we feel out low backs touching the floor - and maintain that contact. This is what makes it difficult! Inhale the leg down while letting the belly expand, exhale the leg up while contracting core around the spine (bracing to be tickled while you have to pee).
If you’re new to these, start with bent knee marches. These are great for learning how to properly connect our breathe with the movement. Once the core is stronger, go ahead and move onto this variation. In the next variation, you can lift the arms to increase the challenge. And then finally, add in the coordinated arm movement. As one more variation, you can add a yoga block and do this on the same side; it adds a different challenge to the core.
Moving away from what is audibly described and shown in the video, here is another example of progression of this move. Also to note, once the arms are involved, this also helps with scapular stability and mobility so basically we love these.
Since pelvic alignment to protect the spine is most important, be sure to start with the first version and work your way through. Feel free to add something under your butt to help tilt your pelvis into neutral and keep it there (as shown in the video). This will get easier as you build stability, but does the same thing with or without this modification.
It can - and should be - tough to get the hang of connecting breath with movement because your body will likely instinctively want to exhale as you lower and inhale coming up. Taking the time to proprioceptively train our bodies to connect certain movements with our breath not only strengthens our deep core and pelvic floor, but it adds to the foundational stability most of us lack, and can help with aches and pains caused by poor posture and movement patterns. Retraining our brains to tell our bodies to actively engage the core and pelvic floor when exerting effort helps us instinctively protect our spines in turn helping us avoid injury, reduce/prevent chronic back pain, etc.
If you struggle with getting into a supine position, I'll go through a series of moves to strengthen the same areas in different positions for increased accessibility. Make sure you sign up for emails or create an account - I'm hoping to get a weekly roundup sent out starting soon so that you don't miss any of this good sht.