Recent News and Events

by Cuyler Hudson, PT, DPT

Posted in Blog.

March 28th, 2019

Enter the Matrix | Using Matrices to Enhance Functional Movement

If you follow the movement industry much at all you, you might hear of the term “matrix.” Now, apart from being one of the greatest action films of all time, “the matrix,” is used in the movement industry to train a fundamental truth of human function: ALL human movement is performed in 3 dimensions.


Planes of Movement:

  • Sagittal Plane = forward/backward movement

  • Frontal Plane = side to side movement

  • Transverse Plane = rotational movement


All of the joints, muscle, ligaments, tendons etc in your body moved through these 3 dimensions when you rolled over to hit snooze on your alarm clock this morning, during your walk to work, when you got up to get more coffee etc. The biggest issue with traditional training and rehab is that it has completely neglected this fundamental truth, and to this day continues to train people only in one plane of motion (Sagittal: forward/backward). Using matrices can take the traditional exercises we all know and love, and unlock a whole new training benefit of gaining strength and stability in all three planes of motion that are necessary to function at our best in ANY activity. This will increase the capacity for performance, and decrease the risk of injury.  Here are examples of how to turn any movement you do into a matrix and improve your ability to be stable and strong during anything life throws your way.


How to Perform


Squat: Start by doing your regular 5 squats, then simply:

  • Turn your toes out and do another 5 squats,
  • Then turn your toes in and do another 5. Want more?
  • Widen your stance 6 inches and do 5 squats,
  • Then shorten your stance 6 inches and do 5 squats.

You just entered the matrix.


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Lunge: Start with a forward lunge:

  • Then step directly to your side and perform a lateral lunge,
  • Then rotate your foot 90 degrees and lunge to the same side as the foot you are stepping with.
  • Perform that sequence 5 times.

      You just entered the matrix.



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Push ups: Start with 10 regular push ups:

  • Then place your right hand 6 inches in front of your left and do 10 push-ups,
  • Then place left hand in front of right 6 inches and do 10 push-ups.
  • Keep it going with 10 push-ups with your hands positioned to the left of your feet, then 10 push-ups with your hands positioned to the right of your feet.

      You just entered the matrix.



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Step ups: Step up on a 12-inch step going straight forward:

  • Then stand to the side of the step and step up,
  • Then stand on the opposite side, cross your leg over your body and step up.
  • Now start standing on the step with your right foot, and rotate your left foot 90 degrees and step down to the left, repeat 10 times.

      You just entered the matrix.



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Stairs: on your way up to your 4th story walk up:

  • Take one flight forward,
  • Take one flight standing facing sideways going up stepping to your right,
  • One flight standing sideways stepping up on your left,
  • And one flight going backwards.
  • Keep it going on the way back down by doing one flight with a wide stance, one with a narrow, one with a cross-over step. Or go up with your feet turned in, then turned out, then straight.

      You just entered the matrix.


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Ping pong matrix:

  • Take one shot with your forehand,
  • One shot with your backhand,
  • And one shot between your legs 🙂

      You just entered the matrix.


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While some examples may be a little silly, the concept is an important one. Just as the top professionals in the movement industry have adopted matrices to help the most elite clients, you too can build them into every single movement you do, and it will help you get healthy, stay healthy, and perform better!

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