I just tried out my first cat balance. First impression: I am not a cat.
Cats gracefully walk across poles and narrow ledges, one foot in front of the other, without making a sound. I strive to be this way. Cats also puke in your bed. I do not strive to achieve that. I do strive to achieve surviving if I have to crawl across the top of a fence with hungry zombies pawing at either side of me.
What is it: A Cat Balance allows you to walk across a pole or narrow surface in a quadrupedal manner.
Why is it used: You might want to cross a pole that you think is too high or too slippery to stand straight up on. The Cat Balance may feel like a safer alternative.
My Experience: My first attempt at the Cat Balance was rough. I tried to put my hands and feet too close together, which caused me to have very little balance. Moving my hands farther away from my feet and bringing my hips closer to the rail allowed me to get all the way across. It helped to think of having my weight balanced between both hands and feet, rather than on one or the other. It also, in my case, required serious grip strength because your hands and wrists are a large portion of what helps you maintain your upright position. Engaging my core was also key. In my case, my hips/lower abs needed some work and some therapy to get them to function properly. They come in very handy for this movement.
That’s all for now!
An article from Parkour Generations on Balance, with some tips on the Cat Balance
Here’s an example of a Cat Balance: