So I wanted to put together a mobility post because I find it’s an element to working out that lacks a ton with the majority of people. Plus, it doesn’t help that most of us are sitting all day and move in one direction – forwards (the sagittal plane of motion). This decreases our mobility and joint health. You can add these exercises to your warm up to pre set your body for what your about to do, or could be used in between your exercises to keep your range of motion up as your train/get stiff/muscles tighten. The benefits of adding mobility work to you’re training will help with your range of motion for your exercises but also improve how you feel and move through your day to day activities. I thought it might be best to also bring in Scott Fournier to this post. He’s an awesome guy – incredibly knowledgable and far to humble. Scott went through a rigorous, science-backed education with a holistic approach to training, that does more than redefine your workout—it transforms how you move, fuel, and recharge as a whole.
A common goal during an initial client assessment is that people want to get more flexible. About 90 percent of the time, what they really mean is that they want to improve their mobility. Can’t do a toe touch? Your immediate thought may be that your hamstrings are tight, but it is just as, or even more likely, that hip mobility is what you’re lacking
Mobility refers to the ability to move through a joint. Flexibility refers to a connective tissue’s ability to temporarily elongate. Flexibility of a muscle is like a Chinese finger trap: The actual length of the material doesn’t change, but you can stretch (lengthen) and shorten (contract) it. It is physiologically impossible to “lengthen” your muscles. Both ends of a muscle affix to bone at a joint
Joints like your hips, shoulders, thoracic spine (t-spine), and ankles are built to move. But when those joints lose mobility, other joints meant for stability like your cervical spine (neck), lumbar spine (lower back), and knees decide to be superheroes and try to help you move. But that’s not a good thing. How often do you see people reaching for a pillow for lumbar support or complain about how they have “bad knees”? Chances are, the root of the issue is not their lower back or knees. It’s that their hips and t-spine decided to stop helping them move, because of their decreased mobility. So in that case, stretching or more flexibility won’t help you, but working on your mobility will.
All of these things can be enhanced through mobility work. I wanted this post to address all the major points of attack, including the ankles, knees, hips, and shoulders, so it’s a great place to start. Try to incorporate these moves into your routine two to three times per week on active recovery days or before or after a workout. It’s really important to remember that everything’s connected, so if one of these joints isn’t moving properly, it’s going to take its toll on other joints
(T)WERKING FROM THE BOTTOM UP
If were constantly in high heels we’re probably lacking dorsiflexion within the ankles. One efficient exercise is a combat base. This is just putting us in the OPPOSITE position from being within high heels. Basically being in a half knee, with the back foot dorsiflexed, big toe tucked under, the front toe and knee are in line. Here, we’re trying to work the front leg, so you can have a kb on the front leg- to help push the knee past the big toe. Try rocking forward for a few reps.
If you want to clean up your squat technique, get more out of your training efforts or just feel and move less like the tin man and more like a human being…chances are, you need to prioritize your hip mobility.
When joints work nice, everything becomes easier….so let’s get them working better.
Have you heard of a shin box? or a 90 / 90 position.
What I love about it is how it targets the deepest layers of tissue associated with the joint, such as the joint capsule.
(For the fitness nerds, the joint capsule acts like a ligament to provide stability and support. It also houses synovial fluid. This protects the synovial membrane and keeps the joint lubricated and healthy).
Turn your sternum over your chest, find a stretch in your corner front hip, come back up just like your ankle, getting you’re belly button over the thigh and come back. Next, try rotating your rib cage to your back heels. This way we get external of the front hip and internal of the back hip.
LEFT LEG BEHIND – the leg were working is the front leg.
Then switch legs and do 5 each.
Let us know how it goes peeps!
I’d love to hear about any improvements or questions.