The “bird-dog” and “deadbug” are two of the most common rehabilitation exercises out there, and for good reason. Humans are naturally prone to develop functional asymmetries, meaning that one side or one area of the body is a lot stronger, more stable, or just moves better than the other. This occurs for a variety of reasons, such as injury or even daily habits. Now the body consists of numerous “fascial slings”, which are chains of muscles that work together for integrated movement. Two of them, the anterior oblique and posterior oblique sling are pictured below:
When habits or injuries disrupt a link (muscle) in the chain, the integration falls apart and asymmetries begin to occur. This is where these exercises come into play! The bird-dog and deadbug are movements that help reestablish that movement coordination and integration. They require no equipment and are easy to perform at home. They’re pictured below:
Muscle coordination is crucial for proper movement and no one is ever “too good” to continue drilling the basics. Whether you’re an elite athlete or a recently injured couch-potato, these exercises will only benefit you!
Also, just for fun – If you Google “birddog” you won’t be disappointed: