Watch the video above to learn about Joint Rotations
One seemingly simple training tool that I urge my athletes to use is joint rotations because they can teach us so much about how our bodies move in space.
Joint rotations help to expose your asymmetries, provide a strength stimulus, serve as a low intensity prehab/rehab exercise to upgrade the capabilities of a specific joint, and sometimes reveal to people patterns of motion that cause them pain.
Ground Based Movement
Watch the video above to learn about Ground Based Movement
Martial artists, dancers, and gymnasts are three of the groups that come to my mind first when thinking about people who move with grace, power, agility, speed, freedom, and endurance.
One of the things these groups have in common is that they spend a large amount of time interacting with the surface of the ground.
Being able to fall, roll, rotate, lay, get up without your hands, and sit in various postures on the floor can add tremendous benefits regardless of your training goal.
You can use this exercise category to:
- add to your gymnastics ability through body alignment
- improve coordination and tension relationships in the hips and shoulders
- improve control of respiratory muscles
- reduce injury risk as a result of having better ways to exit lifts or improve balance
- target just about any training adaptation
This category was created to help you better understand the diversity of one of the most overlooked free training tools we have at our disposal … the ground.
Watch the video above to learn about Loaded Stretching
Whether through yoga, band distraction work, or PNF many people use stretching as a component of their movement routine.
What I’ve realized is that most people stretch to “loosen up,” reduce tension, or they have go-to stretches they use to prepare specific movements.
I’ve personally found that stretching can create far more training gains if people learn the nuance of the skill.
When used to target a specific movement, isolate the joints that are limited, and then systematically progress the stretch, people seem to make improvements in movement without creating laxity issues.
Prescribed in this way, with awareness of tension cues/breathe and including post-stretching isometrics, loaded stretching can help athletes to create and strengthen better positions.
Watch the video above to learn about Positional Breathing
It is important to learn to breathe in a large variety of positions if you want to improve performance or movement quality.
Our body's survival mechanisms will not allow us to move in a way in which we can’t breathe. When breathing gets too difficult, our brains/bodies will do everything possible to try to slow us down or change our position to restore a normal breathing pattern.
Improved movement happens as a result of cultivating more awareness of breathing muscles, better understanding of the tension relationships in the midline, and better ability to dissociate spinal stabilization muscles from breathing muscles.
When used properly an athlete will be able to better navigate fatigue when placed into more stressful environments of training or competing.
Watch the video above to learn about Movement Variation
It would seem that expert movers have the most repeatable skill sets. If you watch Steph Curry shooting a free throw, Dustin Johnson swinging his driver, or Tom Brady casually throwing a football you might be in awe of the repeatability of their skill.
However, looks can be deceiving as these expert movers actually have more variety in the way they execute those skills than meets the eye.
Having a multitude of ways to execute a skill is beneficial for a variety of different reasons. You can use this variability to bypass fatigue, navigate dynamic environments of sports, and continue to refine the skill as movement quality changes with an aging body.
I’ve found that people who practice a skill by trying to find complete repeatability with no variance lose out on this dynamic, reactive, and varied ability that true experts have when it comes to skill adaptation.
Movement variation is a training tool we use to provide varied constraints into training so that you can practice this and move closer to expert level movement ability.
Locomotion & Flow
Watch the video above to learn about Locomotion & Flow
When you see a child develop, it’s apparent the human spirit is meant to explore. If you put them in a park, they’ll find a playground to climb on, they’ll run around, they’ll roll on the ground, and if they see an animal they may even try to mimic its movement.
As we age, maybe due to fear of embarrassment or not perceiving utility in that behavior, we lose our desire to explore for the sake of exploration.
Our locomotion and flow playlist is a way for you to get more systematic structure to this exploration so as an adult you can cultivate your childlike enthusiasm for movement.
Properly utilizing this tool can have specific training application to goals in things such as martial arts, running, dance, and field sports.