Human Flag Progression

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Intermediate – Advanced


To master the human flag progression

About this Progression

The “human flag” exercise, also known simply as the “flag” is an urban variation of bodyweight training. This progression is inspired by the free-running and parkour practice sweeping many streets, towns and cities throughout the world.

The early progression already require a good amount of core strength so prepare yourself with good core exercises beforehand. The human flag also combines a pull and pushing motion with the arms. You’ve better have a good sense of muscle coordination, especially this is a food body exercise.

Here is a quick video demonstration of what we are talking about:


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Human Flag Progression Exercises List

Step 1: Feet Lifts

For all exercises in this progression you will need a pole. It could be a street lamp, pole dancing pole or any other stable thin cylindrical vertical object. Just something you can get your hands around. Hold the pole with your hands, with your palms facing the opposite way. The lower arm should be facing backwards while the upper arm, forward. Push with your lower arm and pull with your upper arm. Lean over to the side and try to support your feet just above the ground. This takes a great amount of strength and body stability. Once you are able to support your feet a few inches from the ground, try to lift them together until your body is almost parallel to the ground before returning to the starting position.

Step 2: Tuck Flag 

Your way to the human flag will not be easy. This time support your body parallel to the ground but to make things easier, tuck your feet behind your body. This will simulate a half sized human flag, and will take a lot of difficulty off as you work to the final step.


Step 3: Double Leg Drops

Support your body above the parallel position, around a 30-45 degree angle to the ground. Allow your legs to drop to a parallel position to the ground before moving back to the starting position. This will allow you to simulate a full flag position with less difficulty. Try this exercise by dropping one leg only to the parallel position, and then start by using both legs. You could also do tucks or straddles first to first lessen the load.

Step 4: Full Flag

Hold the human flag position with your body fully parallel to the ground. You could start with a straddle hold then progress your way into a full flag. This is an impressive feat of body stability and control and we congratulate you if you are able to do this. Surely you are well on your way to being the best free-running athlete there is!



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