Move To Learn

I was recently watching the movie file Move to Learn which can be purchased at

Movement patterns, movement and learning have become something that i have recently developed a real interest in since the birth of my son Archie 18 months ago.  It has been a real insight into seeing how we develop movement patterns in those early months right through to when  the baby/toddler starts to walk.  The other reason I have taken a big interest in this area is due to some recent books and courses that I have been reading and attending (Fundamental movement patterns of prone movements through to rolling, crawling and walking with the FMS group and Stop Chasing Pain).  Many of these educators and courses all place an importance on this within the movement prescription for clients and that by getting our clients (adults included) to incorporate some of these movements into ones exercise program, we can look to improve our movement and overall function.

The Move to Learn group highlight that we should look to incorporate the following movements in this particular order:

  1. Rolling (unilateral rolling using the upper limb and then the lower limb as initiator of movement)
  2. Gliding on the stomach (lying prone and lifting hands and feet up off the ground)
  3. Unilateral flip flops (turning the head to one side and bringing the arm up to 90 degrees and then bending at the elbow so that the thumb faces the head and bringing the knee up on the same side and then rotating the head to the opposite side and completing the same on the opposite side.  This can be progressed by alternating from one side to the other side after each repetition).
  4. Cross pattern flip flops (this is certainly more challenging and requires the person to rotate their head to one side and bringing the arm up to 90 degrees and then bending at the elbow to have their thumb face their head.  The opposite leg should be then bent up with the opposite arm to the head rotation lying down by their side and hand under the bent knee.  Then look to switch the head, arm and leg positions).
  5. Stomach crawling (lying prone and keeping the hips and torso to the ground as low as possible and then crawling forward and backwards by using the opposite arm and leg to move you).
  6. Rocking (starting in the 4 point kneeling position, gently rock back and forth through the same range of motion).
  7. Unilateral crawling on hands and knees (start on hands and knees and lift the same hand and knee and bring them forward, lifting them off and placing them on the ground at the same time).
  8. Cross pattern crawling on hands and knees (start on hands and knees and crawl forward by lifting the hand and opposite knee off the ground at the same time and then placing it down at the same time and then move the opposite hand and knee).
  9. Cross pattern walking (walking forward and having ones finger point to their opposite foot and cross their midline as they move forward). 

Move to learn focuses largely on the use of these for children and suggest that by incorporating as a daily part of their life, they can help to improve ones learning abilities and overall movement and function.  They suggest that these exercises be done daily and look to start having one master the exercises in the order above before progressing to the next.  The key is to make the exercise fun and for many adults who currently exercise, these movements will get them thinking and needing to problem solve in a fun relaxed environment that places minimal stress on the body. 

Challenges can be had by having the person count backwards, closing their eyes or switching between movement such as complete 5 unilateral crawls and then 5 cross pattern crawls.   Other movement variables could also include changing the repetitions, sets, speed and range of motion. 

For those who would like to find out more about this, please check out

This blog post was written by osteopath Heath Williams of Principle Four Osteopathy.  At Principle Four Osteopathy we have an interest in strength and conditioning, exercise prescription and rehabilitation.  Services currently offered at our clinics include:  Osteopathy, Functional Movement Screening, Clinical Pilates, Strength and Conditioning Technique Assessments, Exercise Prescription and Rehabilitation consultations.

Principle Four Osteopathy is located across two locations within Melbourne.  Our clinics are located in the Melbourne City CBD near the corner of Little Bourke St and Elizabeth St as well as Melbourne Docklands on Bourke St. 

Find out more about our clinic or book an appointment at

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