A yoga teacher recommends doing this one move if you want to improve your joint health and mobility

This single, versatile movement has a host of health benefits—so I gave it a try

woman does bodyweight squat
(Image credit: Getty Images)

You often see trainers on social media claiming to have a magic exercise/food/supplement that will fix all your problems, but this movement from yoga teacher Yoga with Issy might just be the holy grail we’ve all been looking for—or almost. 

While a single movement won’t fix your whole life, dynamic movements like the one shared below get you to use your whole body (and your brain), which can improve your mobility and make you more physically aware. Anything that involves movement from the ground to standing also engages a ton of muscles that we use in our everyday lives, making it useful for functional strength.

I decided to give this movement a go myself. I had no misheld beliefs that it would improve my skin or credit score, but I was surprised to find that it was challenging and that I’d like to make it a permanent part of my workout routine. 

How to do the movement

What I found

I did three sets of fifteen reps, which is what I usually do when adding a new exercise to my regular workout. I took my time with the exercise, making sure I got it right, but Issy says you can also do the move quickly to turn it into a cardio workout.

This move made me sweat

Issy was right about this being an effective cardio exercise, but I didn’t have to speed it up to get my heart pumping. I was sweating after my first set (although that might have been from concentrating so hard on where I was supposed to be putting my hands and feet). Three sets of fifteen reps were enough to have me out of breath and red in the face, so I think I’ll incorporate it as a warmup for my strength training in the future.  

It challenged my coordination

I am notoriously uncoordinated, like a baby giraffe in roller skates, but I can see how repeating this exercise several times a week could help me to become more aware of my body and improve my physical coordination. To avoid tripping over myself, I had to be aware of where I was planting my hands and feet as I cycled through the exercise, which was a mental challenge as well as a physical one. 

I could feel it in my wrists and ankles

I’d need to test out the movement over a longer period to see how it impacts my wrist and ankle mobility long-term, but I could definitely feel the exercise in these areas. Hopefully, using this exercise as a warmup before I start lifting will bolster my mobility, and keep me accessing the full range of motion I should be getting from the joints.  

Need a new mat to support your mobility practice? Have a look at our tried-and-tested guide to the best yoga mats.

Lou Mudge
Fitness Writer

Lou Mudge is a Health Writer at Future Plc, working across Fit&Well and Coach. She previously worked for Live Science, and regularly writes for Space.com and Pet's Radar. Based in Bath, UK, she has a passion for food, nutrition and health and is eager to demystify diet culture in order to make health and fitness accessible to everybody.

Multiple diagnoses in her early twenties sparked an interest in the gut-brain axis and the impact that diet and exercise can have on both physical and mental health. She was put on the FODMAP elimination diet during this time and learned to adapt recipes to fit these parameters, while retaining core flavors and textures, and now enjoys cooking for gut health.