Reaching full range of motion in you hips is crucial for almost every sport. Whether you play H.S. football or are a yoga fanatic, you can implement this hip mobilization for deeper thigh flexion. The technique has two parts. First, lunge your lead leg forward on top of a sturdy stool or plyo box. Pin your foot down with your hand as you drive your front hip forward pressing your knee out. Turn your chest both in and out to find and tight spots and work through those restrictions. Second, while keeping your foot pinned to the box, drive your backside posterior. This extends the lower leg while keeping the hip flexed. This 2 for 1 technique works two ways, by:
Mobilizing tissue of the anterior hip capsule
Elongating posterior hip capsule structures and musculature
Use this technique on a daily basis, spending about 2 minutes total working on each side.
A majority of us sit all day long. Prolonged sitting has a laundry list of negative side-effects associated with its lack of movement and mobility. One such negative side-effect is a lack of hamstring function. The hamstrings (bicep femoris muscles) can adapt to a chronically shortened position as well as loosing sliding surface function with prolonged sitting.
In this week’s Movement Monday, Dr. Jon outlines a yoga block mobilization for the hamstring as opposed to the classic foam roller technique. This mobilization is a bit more aggressive and specific as well as effective for sliding tissue dysfunction. Integrate this mobilization if you are one of those people who sits all day long, a person who experiences hamstring pain, or are someone that knows of the negative side effects associated with a posterior chain that possesses hamstrings that are:
Chronic shortened – Tight muscles
Deficient in sliding surface – Expansion and contraction of tissues
Plantar fasciitis is a classic cause of heel pain which develops from repetitive strain and stress to the plantar fascia. This repetitive strain and stress causes irritation and the subsequent microtearing of the fascial structure. Microtearing results in acute inflammation and the potential development of fibrotic adhesions (scar tissue).
Take a look as Dr. Brooks outlines a mobilization technique for addressing plantar fasciitis in its infantile stages by:
Increasing blood flow (essential for healing)
Flushing of inflammation
Removal of adhesions
If you are experiencing heel pain due to plantar fasciitis please give us a shout and we can piece together an active rehabilitation to combat your injury.
Preventing Runner’s Knee or Patellofemoral Pain Sundrome (PFPSx) is always better than treating if after you’re experiencing symptoms. To ensure proper patellar tracking put together a short daily routine with these helpful movements:
Isometric leg extensions: 3×15 – keep the toe pointed with a 2 second hold at full extension. Also perform in external rotation.
Foam rolling of hip abductors: 2 mins of work spent on gluteus medius and tensor fascia latae (TFL) each.
Proper squat technique: Squat with your knees tracking over your 1st and 2nd toes, or a little outside. Be sure to keep weight loaded on your heels.
Shin splints or shin pain is a common morbidity amongst runners. That pain can be due to a number of different causes, but one of the most common is associated with limited tissue length (short muscles) of the posterior calve. The soft tissues effected within the calve are the:
In this week’s Movement Monday, Dr. Brooks outlines a foam roller protocol for addressing soft tissue length for the posterior calve.
The most common of all exercises, the push-up, it is a movement we learn as infants and utilize throughout our lives. But, are we doing it as well as we should be?
First things first, we need to address our spinal posture. Keeping an organized and compact cervical spine eliminates breaking points throughout the range of motion of push-up. Pick out a point about 1 foot in front of your hands and keep your focus there as you maintain a cervical retraction and a slight chin tuck.
Hand position should be directly under you shoulders or slightly wider than shoulder width. Scapular muscles should be engaged to draw your shoulder blades back, and also depress your shoulders with engagement of your lats. (The V-shaped muscles of your upper back.) Create some external rotation torque to draw your elbows in close to your thorax. Avoid letting your elbows flare out to the side. Flared elbows create an unstable shoulder position and reduced the room for rotator cuff tendons to move.
Use these cues to become more efficient at the push-up, and to help prevent injury.
Take a look at this week’s Movement Monday clip as I take you through proper push-up technique.
Maintaining a proper and stable base is important in all sporting and athletic events. Even for persons who do not participate in athletics, proper foot mechanics are important to help prevent pain and mechanical breakdown later in life. The basis for proper mechanics starts with the intrinsic muscles of the foot. These are the muscles that start and stop inside the foot itself. Their muscle tone, along with many ligaments, give the foot it’s shape. When those muscles don’t do their job the arch of the foot can collapse into what is known as a pronated/flat-footed position, otherwise known as a “navicular fall.” This problem is common with our society today, as the majority of us wear shoes 80-100% of our day. Problems that can arise from the loss of foot integrity include:
Metatarsalgia or forefoot pain
To help fight the navicular fall and promote proper foot structure, a technique call the “short foot” can be used. This technique can be used to train and strengthen the intrinsic muscles of your foot to maintain their tone though out the day.
Take a look at this week’s Movement Monday, as Dr. Jon reviews the proper cuing techniques for getting into a short foot position:
Carrying the bar in a proper front rack position is critical to eliminating both acute and repetive wrist injuries. Commonly, we see patients with complaints of wrist pain following front squats, a heavy clean workout, or even light cleans if done in a high quantity.
For the majority of people this is not a problem of mobility–it has to do with getting comfortable with the bar in a higher position. When the bar is caught or carried low on the chest the weight of the load is placed nearly 100% on the upper extremities, compromising the wrist. A higher position allows the load to rest across the deltoid and clavicle. Loading the shoulders and collar bone in this position transfers the weight to your torso and off of the arms.
Additionally, keeping the bar in a proper position allows for a more upright posture, taking strain off of the mid and low back. (And you know how we feel about keeping your back healthy!)
Take a look at this week’s Movement Monday as Dr. Brooks reviews proper front rack position.
Being in a good spinal position, otherwise known as an organized spine is essential for quality movement. Whether performing a back squat, a squat clean, or something as simple as sitting in your office chair, getting into a good spinal position will prevent injury and improve performance.
One commonly overlooked area of spinal organization is that of the cervical spine. The cervical spine is comprised of seven vertebrae and are found in one’s neck between the skull and the thoracic spine. The cervical spine functions as a platform for the skull and brain, similar to a golf ball on a tee. When not properly organized, the golf ball falls off the tee!
An unorganized cervical spine is predisposed to:
Take a look at this week’s Movement Monday as Dr. Jon reviews the proper cuing techniques for organizing one’s cervical spine into a good position.
One of the more rudimentary and essential movements is the combination of hip flexion and extension. Hip extension is a function of:
Lumbar Erector Spinae
An altered hip extension pattern is commonly associated with faulty movement and low back pain. Typically, an altered or faulty hip extension pattern is going to be associated with over facilitation of the lumbar erector spinae muscles. This over facilitation puts added strain and stress into the components and structures of the low back.
Take a peak at the following video where Dr. Jon outlines an assessment for evaluation the degree of lumbar erector spinae facilitation. If you or someone you know is experiencing low back pain implement this assessment and give us a call to find out how to address that hip extension pattern.