IMPROVE YOUR FRONT RACK POSITION. This week’s WOD after the WOD is focused on improving our FRONT RACK position, the receiving position for the clean, and the starting position for the front squat and the overhead pressing/jerk movements.
During this week’s WOD after the WOD, Caitlin walks us through several stretches to release the posterior chain and prep us for pistol squats.
In this week’s WOD after the WOD, Brandon walks through a quick and easy sequence to focus on achieving a pistol squat. Each movement described should be done for a minimum of 90 seconds per side. From anterior tibialis, calves, ankles, quads, hamstrings, and hip flexors, mobilizing these muscle groups aid in fixing mobility issues preventing you from doing a pistol squat.
In this week’s WOD after the WOD, Heather emphasizes the side body. Each movement described should be done for a minimum of 90 seconds per side. From lats, TFL, IT band, and vastus lateralis, mobilizing these muscle groups aid in bringing awareness to the back and side body, as well as aid in lateral quad pain and patellar tracking issues.
In Chinese Medicine, the gall bladder channel is also on the side body and tends to become unbalanced during seasonal changes and excess heat.
This full body stretch routine will open your entire body and eventually allow you to explore your full range of motion. Complete this routine every day for 14 days and experience the difference it has on your recovery, your performance, and how you feel throughout the day in general.
This routine takes about 15-20 minutes to complete. Be sure and hold each stretch for a minimum of 90 seconds.
For more targeted mobility and flexibility exercises, check out our full library of mobilityWOD videos.
Have you ever slumped down at your desk, working away, only to find that hours have passed and you have not moved (or breathed)? Most of us can answer this with a resounding “YES.” This is how our posture suffers and, over time, how our shoulders round and become immobile. Use these 3 stretches to fix shoulder mobility.
Flexible shoulders increase your strength and decrease the amount of load that your bones, ligaments and joints have to bear.
Do you want to get stronger? Try these shoulder opening stretches 2-3 times daily, holding for 90 seconds to 2 minutes at a time.
1. Shoulder Extension
Find a chair or surface higher than your hips. Drive your head down and through your elbows. For a more advanced stretch, place your elbows on the box or chair.
2. Underarm Shoulder Stretch
Sit in a crab position, with your fingers facing backwards. Shift your hips forward towards your ankles, and hold.
3. Pectoral Twist
Lying face down on the floor, extend one arm out at 90 degrees and swing your opposite leg up and over.
Sitting in a squat is the most natural movement for the human body. Here’s a simply how-to on how to fix your squat.
The joints and muscles you need to recruit for squatting — hips, knees, ankles, core, quads, glutes, and more — are your foundation of everything from walking to running, swinging a golf club, and doing yard work.
If you can’t squat properly, your joints are probably too stiff and your muscles too tight.
Do your knees, hips, or back often hurt for seemingly random reasons?
Test Your Squat
Hips and/or Core
This test tells you whether your problem is tight hips or a weak core. Lie on your back and assume a squat position: bring your knees as close to your chest as you can. If you can’t get them past your hips, they’re too tight. If you can bring your knees high, then your core isn’t strong or stable enough to support your squat position while standing.
Your ankles must flex enough to let your knees track over your feet. This allows you to distribute your weight evenly. The above test tells you whether your ankles are too stiff. Stand in a staggered stance facing a wall, your front foot about 5 inches away. Push your front knee as far forward as you can, attempting to touch the wall. If your knee can’t touch, work on some ankle flexibility and mobility.
Fix Your Squat
Hold on to a door jamb, the frame of a squat rack, or a chair. Drop into a squat using the object to stabilize just enough to keep from falling without using it as a crutch. Keep your torso upright and you should feel your core engage. Breathe deeply in this position for up to 30 seconds. Release your hands and try to stand up without falling back. That’s 1 rep. Do 10 reps, 3 days per week as a supplement to your training program.
Get down on all fours and straighten your left leg; your knee should be above the floor. Move your right foot beneath your left leg and pin your right heel to the outside of your left knee. This is the starting position. Now move your hips back and forth for 1 minute, feeling your hip stretch. Switch sides and repeat. Do this drill 1-2 times daily.
Repeat the ankle test, above, for 3 sets of 5 reps every day. Additionally, foam roll or use Yoga TuneUp therapy balls on each calf for 1 minute each day. Sit on the floor and place the roller or ball under your calf. Roll up and down, side to side, for 60-90 seconds. Repeat on your other calf.
A Life-Changing Skill…
In conclusion, learning how to fix your squat and learning to squat properly is a life changer. You’ll notice fewer aches and pains. You’ll reduce your risk of injury. You’ll build more muscle across your body. Best of all, you’re likely to see your performance improve in just about every activity you do.
This week, join me in our Moov Better Mobility WOD 5 as we focus on the rotator cuff and shoulder stability.
This week, join me in our Moov Better Mobility WOD 4 as we focus on opening the shoulders and massaging along the thoracic spine.
This week, join me in our Moov Better Mobility WOD 3 as we focus on opening the hips to improve our squat depth, and rolling out the IT band to reduce knee pain.