Why ‘Movement’ In Fitness Is A Cargo Cult

For starters, if you’re unaware of the term ‘Cargo Cult,’ here’s a brief explanation (before you go off and google it):

It’s a name given to religions with roots in primitive tribal societies, mostly out of Melanesia, and New Guinea. These religious movements erupted out of the group’s first contact with western civilization.

In short, western explorers would show up with their advanced technology (radios, weapons, and other cargo) on the beach to be met by these loin cloth-wearing people. And to these tribal folks, these mysterious western travelers were gods.

They had advanced technology irreplicable with basic sticks and stones. The tribespeople believed all this cargo was sent by their gods. And with this belief, they continued performing their rituals and praying to the heavens for a never-ending supply of cargo.

What they didn’t know was that a whole new world existed outside of their little island and there was a clear, reasonable explanation for all these goods and gadgets.

You see… In a cargo cult, you’re forever waiting for more magical items to wash up on the shore or fall out of the sky. You’re in a constant state of hoping for something that isn’t all that magical.

What you lack is the knowledge and understanding of how the so-called magic happens.

The same is happening everyday on social media. People scroll through and collect a bunch of disconnected snippets of cool movements, drills, and fancy tricks with no understanding of the technology that made it possible to do them.

Here you go. Have a handstand.

So people try to replicate the movements, usually incorrectly, and think they’re doing something progressive but it doesn’t actually move them forward.

What’s worse is doing it this way could prevent you from making lots of progress in the short and long term.

Does this really matter? Of course it does, and here’s why: You must first realize there is no magic—no one way to do things.

Rather, there are many methods that work for millions of people. The problem most face is getting bogged down in the tactics, as opposed to the fundamentals.

They’re distracted by bells and whistles (“movement coaches” showing off on Instagram), rather than building a foundation that works for them. So if something isn’t working for you, always ask why, and then assess the method you’re following.

Are you building a base from which anything can be done, or are you shortcutting the process and trying to replicate magic?

Or worse, are you relying on something gimmicky that promises to shortcut your results, only to leave you frustrated?

The Cargo Cult Of Internet Fitness

Internet fitness is full of fancy gadgets, supplements, apparel, proprietary techniques, and secret protocols. This is par for the course, because Gurus and leaders want an edge over the competition.

What makes this difficult is how it affects YOU, the person who wants to improve, move well, feel better, or get rid of nagging aches and pains that come from sitting too much.

In a cargo cult, the underlying premise is that magical things fall out of the sky and give you an instant result. So once you find that ONE thing, you’ll finally be able to do cartwheels and backflips on command.

This can make things really confusing.

Shiny Objects Don’t Equate To Skill Or Results

We often get asked what type of shoes we wear, or what mats we have in our video tutorials.

Sometimes, we are asked about what types of clothes we’re training in, despite Ryan performing lots of movements in jeans. Which is pretty contradictory considering the many people doing movement demos in form-fitting yoga pants and dedicated workout apparel.

It’s understandable. Ryan is doing some amazing movements, so it must be the perfectly crafted shoes and his custom tailored tights he’s wearing under his jeans (I’m kidding, of course).

Don’t worry, we love yoga pants, karategis, and minimal training shoes but they’re not what gives us the ability to move freely and with control.

It’s the continual practice and dedication to movement that allows us to move and function how we want.

The same can be said for special supplements and meticulous diets. You might believe that you’re missing out on a specific food type, a particular ratio of macronutrients, or a special form of intermittent fasting. But none of these tactics alone will help you perform better or change your body composition…

Just like trying a special movement won’t shortcut your ability to do a handstand on command.

Results come from regular movement practice and building skills, not from one single thing you’ve not yet discovered.

Lastly, if you’re curious as to whether or not you’re struggling with this, look around at who you follow, or what you’ve seen on social media. Many so-called Fitness Gurus will often tell you something along the lines of:

You have do things a certain way (aka: there is only one way)If you fail, it’s your fault, not their faulty system

This removes your personal autonomy and rips away the potential for you to explore your own body’s potential and limits. And it’s pretty easy these days for anyone with an ounce of charisma to convince thousands of people they have the secret to movement success.

We recommend you focus on a process, not a singular idea or concept that very well could lead to a dead end.

We Give You The Process, Not The Cargo

When you look at GMB, you’ll notice there are no Gurus here. Andy, Jarlo, and Ryan all have different backgrounds when it comes to physical movement. And they’ve spent decades studying various martial arts.

There is no cult of personality here. When you think of GMB, you probably think of the approach, not a single individual or the people running the show.

Dangers Of Dopamine-Fueled Internet Browsing

You’re likely reading this article on the device in your hand. If you’re on a computer, you’re in the minority. That device in your hand helps you keep a schedule, pay your bills, watch movement tutorials, and ensures you’re never bored while taking a deuce.

In a way, your phone is akin to a fancy ship dropping off lots of magical cargo at any time you want it. And as you scroll, you aren’t quite sure what you’re going to get. Today it could be a bottle of pills promising to make your achy knees feel better. Tomorrow, it could be some fancy massage gun to loosen up your tight muscles.

It’s like a pulling the lever on a slot machine that provides never-ending cargo from the gods of hyperspace.

You can watch thousands of videos of people doing flashy and difficult movements. And they can be beneficial for you when programmed correctly. But in general, most of the flashy stuff you see on social media isn’t that helpful.

What’s worse is most of it has no real carryover into real life. Think about it, that guy balancing a medicine ball on his head, while doing single-leg split squats on a slack line over the Grand Canyon isn’t demonstrating anything useful. He’s showing off for novelty.

Looks great. Gets your attention. Much Wow.

These videos are fun but they’re not practical. And if you try to replicate the movements, you could get hurt, or spend too much time trying things that won’t help you get better.

As the internet grows, more and more movement coaches, who are likely very lovely people, get stuck in this habit of posting for likes and views.

And this is expected because the ‘boring’ stuff isn’t all that popular. People don’t want to see you struggling working on your flexibility. They want to see you doing the hard stuff.

The downside to this is what happens for those who have a real interest in moving better and making progress. They come across some ‘influencer’ with a million followers and think two things:

This is what ‘movement training’ consists of.Doing random, entertaining tricks is a viable method of making progress.

These feats of strength and ability garner lots of attention but they’re always done sporadically and with a limited timeframe. You just can’t post your entire warm-up and document your years of practice that allowed you to look like a freak in one Instagram story.

And what is seen, as they say, is only the tip of the proverbial iceberg.

Such is life. And in the cargo cult that lives on social media, you’re forever waiting for magical movements and tricks to wash up on your digital beach to collect in your ‘saves’ folder for later viewing.

But what can you do with them? Probably nothing.

You might go back and attempt that impressive handstand push-up, but if you have no reference for how to train in a way that allows you to do an advanced movement, you’re likely to be disappointed.

And instead of learning the process of how to move in a way that unlocks your ability to do it well, you keep scrolling for yet another magical movement to save for later.

We want you to learn the process behind the movements you want to do and develop the ability through practice and effort, so you’re free to move how you want.

Practical Methods Over Complex, Illusory Gimmicks

Our goal is to teach you how to move better, get stronger, more flexible, and build confidence in your body. As a result, you can use our training to enhance your skills and abilities. You might be into martial arts, weight lifting, Crossfit, rock climbing, or a specific sport.

Or you could be like others who just want to fix some aches and pains associated with years of training.

If you’re not familiar with us, our secret is not so secret. We lay everything out in the GMB Method and it’s the very foundation that our programs are built on.

The GMB Method comes down to 5 basic steps:

Identify the goals you actually care about.Assess your current abilities in light of those goals.Address whatever’s holding you back using the most efficient approach.Apply your new abilities to daily life, higher level training goals, or really, whatever you want.Then repeat this process as your skills improve and your goals change over time!

That’s it.

Sure, we display some really cool things you can do, but we only do it as an example to show you what’s possible. You’re capable of much more than you might think, and that fact alone unlocks a lot of potential for your own movement practice.

GMB, The Anti Movement Cargo Cult

We have nothing to hide and we cling to no specific dogma. In fact, our process for moving in a systematic, step-by-step manner was borne out of practicing multiple martial arts, gymnastics, and an understanding of rehabbing the human body in a clinical setting.

Yes, that’s tens of thousands of hours practicing various forms of training and movement, only to come to the conclusion that many things work if you have the fundamentals in place.

You could practice Muay Thai or Brazilian Jiu Jitsu under a master for 10 years and regardless of the discipline, you’d still be able to kick someone’s ass.

But how many people do you know who studied one discipline for that long? Not many, right? The good news is you don’t need to spend that much time to learn how to do cool shit.

With our programs, we outline a practical, realistic approach on moving better, whatever ‘better’ means for you. To us, moving better is about physical autonomy, meaning you’re in charge of what you want to do and you get to choose how you go about it.

We don’t teach a specific martial art or style of gymnastics, even though we have experience in various disciplines.

Instead, we took what we’ve learned and organized it into a consistent framework that helps you build greater skill and mobility over time. And by using this system, the skills you learn easily transfer over to just about anything you want to do with your movement.

So, instead of having a big bag of fancy tricks to pick from, you get a carefully laid out structure to follow that’s worked for 70,000+ customers over the last 10 years.

Here’s an example of the systems approach we take inside of our Elements program.

It’s called the 5P Framework.

Prep: This is where you get your body ready for the workout you’re about to do.Practice: Here’s where you deliberately focus and work on the technical details for the  movements you’re doing this day. This is where the learning happens.Play: Now it’s time to explore movement variations and combinations to build agility and adaptability. This is also about having fun.Push: Here’s where you increase the intensity and push yourself. This is where the hard work gets done and progress is made from workout to workout.Ponder: The final portion of your session. Take some time to think about it… What went well? What was tough? What do you need to work on next time? This way, you can be mindful of your movement and take note of how things are going.

How To Move With Purpose And Practicality

With GMB, we hand you a proven framework that anyone can use.

Instead of trying to mimic what people are doing on social media, we break down complex movements in our various tutorials. We teach you how to do a proper push-up, pistol squat, handstand, and much more.

Why don’t you start unlocking your ability with a practical, well-reasoned approach to movement already?

You Deserve A Results-Driven Approach That Just Works

With Elements, you’ll build a foundation of strength, flexibility, and control over 8 weeks, setting yourself up for a successful lifetime of staying fit and active.

GMB Elements Details


Your Foundation for Physical Autonomy

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