NOT SHOWN IN THE VIDEO is the screen we use to track progress with these drills. They can be found below…
Please don’t do these just for the sake of doing them, the whole point is to address specific deficits most people deal with in the lower body, and the screen will show you which you should be aware of.
IF YOU ARE IN PAIN OR EXPERIENCE PAIN ON THE COURSE, please read this entire article before attempting any of the drills.
As a bonus, I will show 2 parts of the screen that we can look at before and after we do these drills.
The first screen is the single leg bridge:
Keep in mind we are using this as an assessment, NOT a warm-up drill – don’t do 3 sets of 10 of these if they feel difficult that’s not the point.
The single leg bridge tells about glute and core stability. If your glute and core are coordinating properly, then you won’t have any trouble carrying out the instructions. If not…
Maybe it’s tough to keep your hips level? Did you feel you hamstrings tighten up, even cramp? Did it bother your back?
All of these symptoms would indicate that your core and glutes aren’t firing like they should…these drills are meant to correct this issue.
The second self-assessment I want you to try is checking full body rotation.
Stand facing away from a mirror, feet still together. Rotate in both directions until you see the front of your opposite shoulder in the mirror. (so if you’re rotating to your right, you should be able to find the front of your left shoulder in the mirror)
If you can’t see the front of your opposite shoulder, well then…
…we have a limitation in rotation.
These drills are also meant to help with that!
Remember where you fell short during the single leg bridge, and the rotation screens, because we’ll be re-testing after we do these drills.
The first drill is a goblet squat. Holding a weight in front of you, squat as low as you comfortably can.
Sitting at the bottom of your squat, you can begin to work on prying open your hips, slowly walking your feet wider apart after a few repetitions on each side (this one’s a tough one to explain – video is better).
After the goblet squat, we move on to a hip extension mobility drill.
In the half kneeling position, place a club in front of the body and maintain a tall spine. Press the club vertically into the floor to initiate core engagement.
Rock the hips forward, pushing them toward the club and maintain a tall spine.
The biggest mistake people make is allowing their low back to bend, as opposed to extending at the hip. Take a video of yourself from the side if needed, to make sure you don’t fall into this poor movement pattern.
Now that we’ve loosened the hips, let’s fire up the glutes and get them involved.
Hip clam shells are a fantastic drill to get the glutes going.
It’s a really easy drill to screw up though, most people end up rolling back into the wrong position and activate the incorrect muscles.
Once you’ve mastered the clam shells, it’s time to move on to the hip airplanes.
Standing on one foot, squeeze the ground with your toes.
Create an airplane position by hinging at the hips and moving your torso parallel to the ground.
Do not allow your knee to wobble, as you rotate at the hips to an open position (see picture on far right). Control the motion back down to the starting position and place foot down to rest between sets.
Following the airplanes, we connect all of the dots with a hip hinge pull through. This is a fantastic exercise that helps your glutes power up, while your core stiffens and helps you control the movement.
Anti-shrug your shoulders (depress shoulders by squeezing armpits and pushing the shoulder blades downward), brace your core, and slowly control the band back between your legs – creating a hinging movement at the hips.
Once you get to the bottom of this movement, reverse directions by squeezing the buttocks, and pull your hips forward against the resistance (your hands should come forward with your hips). Repeat.
Now that we’ve done the pull throughs, let’s re-test.
For instructions, return to the beginning of this post, but let’s re-check your single leg bridge and feet together rotation.
Did they improve?
If so, great! You’re one of the lucky ones.
If not, don’t panic, most people have to work at drills like this with some daily consistency before seeing improvement.
You have the tests we use to determine progress. Use it to track yourself over time. Take videos if you need to keep yourself honest. Consistency is king!
For those of you who felt pain during the initial tests, you are NOT to proceed with any of these drills if they also cause you pain. Don’t buy into the myth of no pain no gain.
These are a few of the drills we MIGHT use for rehab purposes but understand that you are in a different category of assessment and more must be done to determine the appropriate course of action to FIRST eliminate your pain.
If you’ve seen my upper body warm up post and you’re thinking “wait….I’ve seen that last part before,” it’s because YOU DID.
The rules are always the same!
What’s the saying? The weights in the gym don’t change…the words in the Bible don’t change…such are the rules of training the body.
Test, re-test. If there’s no improvement, that DOES NOT mean you can’t be helped, it means you need a more thorough movement assessment.
If that’s something that interests you, you can learn more by applying for one of our phone consultations, where you will get to speak with a PT and determine the appropriate course of action given your symptoms:
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