Cossacks!

This video is a demonstration of a weighted Cossack. What is a Cossack? Here is a definition I found:

Definition of Cossack

  1. A member of any of a number of autonomous communities drawn from various ethnic and linguistic groups (as Slavs, Tatars, and Circassians) that formed in Ukraine, southern Russia, the Caucasus Mountains, and Siberia after about 1400 and that were completely incorporated into czarist Russia during the 18th and 19th centuries

  2. A mounted soldier serving in a unit drafted from Cossack communities

This group of people were known for preforming a dance that looked similar to this:

The Cossack that I am preforming in the video, has me putting my leg out to the side straight out from my hip. It is an amazing stretch that is meant for your hamstrings and glutes, calf all the way to the Achilles tendon!

But you say there is no way you can do that or no way you can go that low. Well, let’s start with progressions. First, your bottom is right before you heel on the base foot starts to come up. Be sure that your knees and feet/toes track each other, no valgus collapse. Once the heel comes up, go back up a little bit. You can figure this out by holding on to something sturdy and descending on the one leg, then transferring to the other. Make sure you keep your chest up and high and keep your eyes focused forward. Also, be sure to have your arms on the inside of your legs. As you get better you will go lower, lower your hands on whatever you are holding on to.

Holding on to a weight is a good idea and will create strength in your legs. Once your mobility has increased to where you can go to the bottom comfortably, try to sit, then create tension in your body and come out of it. As in the video, make a “grunt” noise to help create tension in the bottom.

Have fun and give me some feedback and let me know how you are doing!


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