Bridges Progression

Bridges Progression

[tweet_box design=”box_06″]This is one of the more dynamic bodyweight progressions which focuses on endurance and flexibility of your body [/tweet_box]while stimulating your core, back and arm muscles. The following image for bridges gives a visualization of how each step looks. We will look to guide you through each step on your way to displaying some insane flexibility and bodily endurance. Please note that it is important to warm up your fingers and wrists by stretching them at the joints before each exercise. This will allow maximum flexibility and will prevent you from sustaining injury throughout this progression.

Bridges Progression Convict Conditioning

Bridges Progression Convict Conditioning

Step 1 – Short Bridges

Start by lying on your back with your palms to the ground by your side. Focus on driving your torso off the floor using your core and leg muscles so that your body is perfectly straight at almost a 30 degree angle to the floor while balancing on your shoulders and feet. Maintain control on the way down as well to give muscular contraction on the full range of motion.

Step 2 – Straight Bridges

Start by sitting upright with your legs straight out together. Put your palms on the floor and again focus on using your core muscles to drive your body to a roughly 30 degree angle to the floor. Hold still before controlling the movement back down.

Step 3 – Angled Bridges

Use a raised table or similar object for this exercise. Place your feet on the floor and stretch back until your head and hands are balancing on the table. Each repetition involves pushing up with your arms and going onto the balls of your feet to bring your head slightly off the table and then controlling on the way down.

Step 4 – Head Bridges

This is an increase in difficulty from the last exercise. Replicate the same starting position again except put your head and hands on the floor on the same level as your feet. Use your arms and extend onto the balls of your feet to lift your head off the floor and slowly control back down.

Step 5 – Half Bridges

This exercise required the use of an exercise ball. Balance on your feet and hands and place the small of your back on the exercise ball. Focus on using your core muscles and arms to drive your back off the exercise bal while raising onto the balls of your feet and control back down. This exercise is great preparation for the next phases of the progression.

Step 6 – Full Bridges

Start by lying on the ground with your feet planted and your palms placed just above your shoulders. Focus on using all the muscles in your body to drive your torso up in the air until your back is arched and your are balancing on your palms and the balls of your feet. Hold this position before controlling on the way back down.

Step 7 – Wall Walking Down

Stand upright with your back facing a wall. Judge the distance you are from the wall to allow for you to adopt a bridge position at the foot of it. From your upright position, try to lean back and put your palms on the wall, then proceed to slowly “walk” down the wall with your hands until you are in the bridge position on the floor. Do not “walk” back up the wall however, as this is the next exercise. Instead lie back on the floor and safely stad back up to the upright starting position again.

Step 8 – Wall Walking Up

This time start in the bridge position with your head just at the foot of the wall. Begin to move your hands onto the wall and slowly walk up the wall until you have got yourself into an upright standing position. This will be more difficult than the previous exercise as your body is straining against gravity.

Step 9 – Closing Bridges

Start in an upright standing position and begin to lean back and bend your legs slowly. Do this until you can no longer stay on your feet and extend your arms onto the floor landing in the bridge position. The use all of your muscles to drive your body back up to starting position. This exercise is preparation for you to be able to perform the final step of the progression safely.

Step 10 – Stand-to-Stand Bridges

Stand in an upright position, and in one completely fluid move, bend back and land with your palms on the floor so that you are in the bridge position. Use all the muscles in your body to drive back up to standing position. If you have completed this progression you will not only have developed great physical strength but also perfect body control and flexibility.

The final step should look like this:

Feel free to attempt more of our progressions with the strength gained from these phases.

bridges progression

bridges progression

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Professional trainer, ex cross-fitter and a long time calisthenic practitioner. I started with Convict Conditioning and achieved levels of strength which enabled me to take part in street workouts championships. Check Out our Resources and Start Building Real Strength just using your Bodyweight!

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