Comfort has ruined us. Chairs are are the downfall of modern bad-assery. We as a species have basically sat our lives away. Think about this:
What happens when you sit in a chair? Well, you just sit there. Imagine if our meat fueled, spear wielding, mastodon killing ancestors had Lazy Boys. We would be a wasteland of Lazy Corpses… which we are actually not that far off from becoming right now.
When it comes to training, lots of sitting during non-training times can create a lot of load error issues when it comes time to actually do something awesome with your ass. Like squatting, deadlifting, jumping, sprinting, booze fueled car flipping contests, impromptu glute flex off competitions, etc.
Basically, sitting for hours on end shortens muscles. Shortened muscles are tight muscles. Tight muscles are tight because they are compensating for some kind of stability problem somewhere else. Also, and most importantly, tight muscles are weak muscles. In no group of muscles are more dysfunctions and load errors seen than in the hip flexor complex.
When this area locks up, hip extension becomes limited. The last thing you want when it comes time to drive a PR squat out of the hole or sprint away from (or towards) a surprise grizzly bear attack, is to not be able to get your ass into the equation.
I have ordered a progression exercises (most of them stolen from people a lot somarter than me) to get your hip extension un-funked.
1. Anterior Traction PNF- You need a butt load of band tension… right under your butt. This position is basically a lunge with band tension being applied under the gluteal fold (under the butt cheek) of the downed knee. This band should be secured and pulling towards your anterior (front). From here, move into every position you possibly can that feels bad. Once you find a position that feels bad, flex into it and hold that tension for 10-20 seconds. Once you relax, find a new ROM in that uncomfortable position. It takes about 2 minutes for a significant change in tissues to occur. So, do this for at least that long on each leg.
2. Scissor Lunge- Step out of the band then drop right back into that same lunge position. Only driving through your front heel, stand up until your legs are completely straight. Now, return to that down position by driving your downed knee as far back as possibly while driving your front knee as far forward as possible. This creates a sort of scissoring movement in the hips and will tear up/stretch all of the bound up awfully-ness in your quads and hip flexor complex. Repeat 10-20 times on each leg.
3. Scissor Lunge with Anterior Traction- Step back into that band and do #2 with the added traction. Again 10-20 reps. Feel free to start cursing my existence at this point because this is absolutely brutal if you are really pushing your knees away from each other.
4. Scissor Lunge with Anterior Traction with Scapular Whatevers- If there is anything left of you, repeat #3 with a dowel, barbell, 12 foot Subway Party Sub, held overhead. I added this because any exercise that is worth actually doing will be a full body effort. Plus, scapular/thoracic/midback/whatever the pop-fitness name is for this area now, usually sucks on everyone. Some extra mobility work in this area will help get you ready for whatever full body awesomeness you have planned for your training session.
Video of my fat ass doing this awful stuff:
Comment and let me know what you think.
Solum Per Exitum. Now, un-funk your junk box.