2SP POWER BLOG

in     by Staff Author 06/28/2016
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Leg Day Exercises: Exposed

#TipTuesday Series of Leg Day No-No’s

By: Joe Neal

FEELTheBURN!

 

ANY ATHLETE WILL TELL YOU THAT SOME OF THE MOST DREADED DAYS OF THE WEEK ARE “LEG DAYS”. LEG DAYS CAN LEAVE YOU FEELING LIKE YOU’VE JUST WALKED FROM ONE END OF THE EARTH TO THE OTHER, BUT WE ALL KNOW SQUATS, LUNGING PATTERNS, POSTERIOR CHAIN EXERCISE AND EVEN THOSE DELIGHTFUL ROMANIAN DEADLIFTS PAYOFF BIG FOR ATHLETES.

ALONG WITH BIG PAYOFFS, USUALLY COMES SOME RISK. THIS IS NO DIFFERENT WHEN EXECUTING COMPLEX AND OTHER HIGH LEVEL EXERCISES INTO YOUR STRENGTH TRAINING PROGRAM. INJURIES THAT OCCUR IN THE GYM CAN NOT ONLY INHIBIT YOUR OFF-SEASON PROGRESS, BUT THEY CAN HAVE LASTING EFFECTS DURING AND AFTER YOUR PLAYING CAREER IS COMPLETE. IF FOR NO OTHER REASON, THIS IS WHY YOU SHOULD HIRE QUALIFIED STRENGTH COACHES FROM ESTABLISHED INSTITUTIONS. THESE ARE THE PLACES WHERE YOU’RE GOING TO FIND TRUE STRENGTH TRAINING PROFESSIONALS JUST AS INTERESTED IN KEEPING YOU HEALTHY AS GETTING YOU STRONG. 

THERE’S NO DOUBT 2SP COACHES PRACTICE A “SAFETY FIRST” APPROACH TO PROGRAM BUILDING. WHETHER YOU’RE ALREADY A 2SP ATHLETE OR NOT, WE FEEL IT ESSENTIAL AS PROFESSIONALS TO SHARE WITH YOU SOME OF THE MOST COMMON RISKS ASSOCIATED WITH SOME OF THE HIGHEST YIELDING LOWER BODY EXERCISES. THIS IS WHY I HAVE CHOSEN AND CREATED THE FORTHCOMING SERIES OF ARTICLES – EACH ONE SURROUNDING A COMMON LOWER BODY GYM EXERCISE AND EXPOSED IT. 

FOLLOW THIS SERIES OF POSTS, AND CONSIDER THE KEY POINTS OF EACH EXERCISE EACH TIME YOU TRAIN. YOU’LL PUT YOURSELF IN A POSITION TO ATTAIN GREATER LONG-TERM RESULTS AND ALSO STAY HEALTHY ALONG THE WAY.

WE’RE GOING TO KICK THINGS OFF WITH SOME COMMON MISTAKES MANY ATHLETES MAKE WITH THE KING OF ALL LOWER BODY EXERCISES… THE SQUAT.

Range of Motion Issues in Squatting

LET’S START WITH THE MOST VISUALLY UNDERSTANDABLE/ASSERTIVE POINT IN THE SQUAT, THE BOTTOM. FULL SQUATTING SHOULD BE THE GOAL, HOWEVER, THIS CONCEPT CAN BE QUITE SUBJECTIVE! IF YOU’RE UNSURE OF JUST HOW FAR YOU SHOULD BE GOING DOWN, EXAMINE THE KNEE FLEXION AND TORSO ANGLE YOU CURRENTLY ARE ABLE TO ATTAIN DURING THE MOVEMENT.

Good Squat: Knee Flexion & Torso Extension

AN UPRIGHT TORSO IS AN UNDERESTIMATED ELEMENT OF A QUALITY SQUAT. COACHES AND ATHLETES ALIKE ARE TOO USE TO VISUALIZING AN ATHLETE CREASED OVER FROM THE WEIGHT OF THE BAR. I THINK IT HAS BECOME SO COMMON IT IS NOW ACCEPTED AS PART OF THE MOVEMENT IN MOST GYMS.

Bad Squat: Athlete’s posture is creased over

Most Common Reason For Pattern Depreciation

THE TWO MOST COMMON REASONS FOR THE DEPRECIATION OF THE SQUAT ARE A LACK OF HIP MOBILITY AND THORACIC SPINE EXTENSION.

 

 

TRAINING MISCONCEPTIONS BEGIN WHEN TRAINEES BELIEVE THAT THE MOBILITY AND EXTENSION DEFICIT ARE ONLY INFLUENCED FROM PROPER OR IMPROPER TRAINING HABITS. HOWEVER, THE MOST INFLUENTIAL PROCESSES ON MOBILITY AND EXTENSION ARE THE RIGGERS OF LIFE. SITTING AT A DESK ALL DAY, POOR POSTURE, IMPROPER BREATHING MECHANICS, ALL CONTRIBUTE TO UNSATISFACTORY MOVEMENT MECHANICS. THINK ABOUT THE NUMBER OF TIMES POOR POSTURAL MECHANICS ARE REINFORCED THROUGHOUT THE DAY. HOW MANY TIMES DID YOU SIT DOWN IN A CHAIR AND SLOUCH OVER, DRIVE THE CAR WITH ONE HAND AND LEAN TO THE SIDE? POOR POSTURE IN OUR EVERYDAY LIVES CAN FOSTER MOVEMENT PATTERNS THAT DO NOT REFLECT FAVORABLY ON THE EXECUTION OF THE “KING OF EXERCISES” OR MANY OTHER BIG EXERCISES IN THE GYM. IN OTHER WORDS, WE NEED TO BOTH WORK HARD TRAINING AND BE CONSCIENTIOUS OF HOW OUR DAILY ACTIONS CAN IMPACT OUR ABILITY TO PERFORM IN THE GYM.

ONE OF THE QUESTIONS I LIKE TO ASK MY ATHLETES WHEN TALKING ABOUT MOBILITY IS, “HOW MUCH TIME HAVE YOU SPENT ON THE FLOOR?” IF WE ARE ASKING OUR BODIES TO GET DOWN LOW IN A SQUAT ESPECIALLY UNDER LOAD AND HAVE NOT MADE IT CLOSE TO THE FLOOR RECENTLY, I DOUBT THE RANGE OF MOTION WE ARE ASKING FOR IS GOING TO BE AVAILABLE. THE MORE TIME WE COMMIT TO INCREASING AND SUSTAINING A  RANGE OF MOTION WILL HELP YIELD A MORE CONSISTENT MOVEMENT CAPABILITY. THIS WILL ALLOW YOU TO AVOID THE MAIN PROBLEMS IDENTIFIED ABOVE, INCLUDING HIP MOBILITY FROM SITTING IN A CHAIR WHICH ULTIMATELY WILL SHORTEN THE RANGE OF MOTION OF THE SQUAT.  FURTHERMORE, AVOIDING SLOUCHING AND LEANING WILL GIVE ME THE ABILITY TO EXTEND MY UPPER BACK DURING THE EXERCISE.

How can we battle these everyday problems?

ANSWER: INTRODUCE SOME LOW LEVEL/IMPULSE EXERCISE THROUGHOUT THE DAY TO REMIND THE BODY IT CAN REACH THE RANGE WE ARE ASKING FOR. AN ATHLETE CANNOT APPLY AN EXERCISE THREE TIMES A WEEK FOR 10 TO 30 REPS AND EXPECT A MOVEMENT FLAW TO DISAPPEAR THAT MAY BE REINFORCED THOUSANDS OF TIMES A DAY.

HERE’S A FINAL POINT TO CONSIDER. MOVEMENT DEFICIENCIES CAN COME IN A FORM AS SIMPLE AS BREATHING; A PERSON CAN TAKE UP TO 20,000 BREATHS A DAY. HOW DO WE BATTLE SOMETHING THAT OCCURS AS MANY TIMES AS THAT?

TO BEAT DOWN A HIP AND THORACIC EXTENSION DEFICIENCY I SUGGEST TRYING TO IMPLEMENT THE BELOW  TWO EXERCISES REGULARLY THROUGHOUT THE DAY. A PRESCRIPTION COULD LOOK LIKE 3 TO 6 SETS SPREAD THROUGHOUT THE DAY FOR 10 TO 15 REPS. THIS STRATEGY WILL ADD UP MUCH BETTER THAN A SINGLE APPLICATION PER DAY FOR 3 SETS OF 10.

Check these videos out and do a three week phase and enjoy the improvements in your squat!

VIDEO OF QUADRUTED EXTENSION ROTATION:

 


Video: Side & Front view of Quadruted Extension Rotation

 

RACK SUPPORTED SQUAT:

Video: Side & Rear view of Rack Assisted Squat

LOOKING TO IMPROVE THIS RANGE OF MOTION FOR THESE COMPLEX MOVEMENTS?

TAKE ADVANTAGE OF MOBILITY EXERCISE IN CONCERT WITH LOWER PROGRESSION MOVEMENT. THIS WILL POSITIVELY INFLUENCE YOUR PROGRESSION TOWARDS MORE DEPTH DURING EXERCISE. MOBILITY ISSUES SEEM TO CLEAN UP MANY OF THE COMMON MOVEMENT FAULTS SEEN IN SQUATTING AND OTHER MOVEMENT PATTERNING CONCERNING ATHLETES IN MOVEMENTS IN REPETITIVE ACTION SPORTS.

 

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