Integrated Exercise Progressions:

By Brent Brookbush, DPT, PT, COMT, MS, PES, CES, CSCS, ACSM H/FS


For a comprehensive review of unstable load and surface training:


Integrated exercise progressions combine upper and lower extremity exercise into functional patterns with the intent of improving inter-muscular coordination and strength during whole body movement patterns. Although these progressions may not allow for enough load to maximize hypertrophy or strength sport performance, they are incredibly beneficial for field sports, improving functional strength, and may aid in optimizing movement patterns by targeting core subsystems. It is recommended that individual exercise progressions are practiced before they are combined into Integrated movement patterns:

Relative Flexibility Progression:

Relative flexibility progressions are general guidelines for exercise selection that can be used while correcting postural dysfunction/movement impairment. Within the progression for each integrated movement pattern, relatively flexibility progressions for the movement patterns they comprise should be respected. Additionally, the introduction of the integrated movement patterns may be progressed from patterns least likely to result in compensation to patterns requiring optimal mobility and neuromuscular control.

  1. Legs with Back/Pulling
  2. Legs with Shoulders/Overhead Press
  3. Deadlift with Shoulders/Overhead Press
  4. Legs with Chest/Pushing

Subsystems Recruited:

The core subsystems recruited during