Skip to Content

Bend and Reach


Purpose: This exercise develops the ability to squat and reach through the legs. It also serves to prepare the spine and extremities for more vigorous movements by moving the hips and spine through full flexion (Figure 6-56).

Starting Position: Straddle stance with arms overhead.

Cadence: SLOW


  1. Squat with the heels flat as the spine rounds forward to allow the straight arms to reach as far as possible between the legs.
  2. Return to the starting position.
  3. Repeat count 1.
  4. Return to the starting position.
Figure 6-56. Bend and reach

Check Points:

  • From the starting position, ensure that Soldiers have their hips set, their abdominals tight, and their arms fully extended overhead.
  • The neck flexes to allow the gaze to the rear; this brings the head in line with the bend of the trunk.
  • The heels and feet remain flat on the ground.
  • On counts 2 and 4, they do not go past the starting position.

Precautions: This exercise is always performed at a slow cadence. To protect the back, move into the count 1 position in a slow, controlled manner. Do not bounce into or out of this position, as this may place an excessive load on the back.

George N.