Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Mobility For Sitting On Your Ass All Day




Article written by Jay Stadtfeld for LiftBigEatBig.com
Many of our daily jobs involve sitting down for an extended amount of time, whether we work at a desk all day, or sit around at night watching TV. As one would imagine, this isn’t good for our bodies and can lead to postural decline and deterioration in the range of motion of a joint. Not good things for anyone, much less an athlete who is apt to attempt performing at their best.
Mobility is defined as, “The ease with which a joint or series of joints is able to move before being restricted by the surrounding structures.”

As you should be able to deduce, as our lives become more sedentary, we get tighter. As a functional human, we have three rights: Train heavy, bang often, and go forage for our food. If you can’t squat, you can’t carry your kill home, nor your wife (or husband, though if you can, he needs to eat) to the bedroom, which would complete the second right, “bang often”.

Below, I’ve compiled a few of my favorite mobility exercises to increase your abilities as a functional human, some are dynamic, others are static. If you are one of those people who think static stretching is the worst thing since bread, you’re a moron and see your way out. Side note: Most of these will be for your hips, since we’re focusing on people who sit too often.

I would suggest doing these once a day to combat walking around like you’re wearing a suit of armor while in accordance will local ordinance.

Shoulders
·         Shoulder Tornadoes
o    Grab a band or PVC pipe and rotate your arms around your body. 10 reps apiece. Below is a video.



Thoracic Spine
·         The shoulder tornadoes should loosen you up, but I also like to position my thoracic spine on a PVC pipe while placing my hands behind my head, and arching my back so my hands and butt are the only thing touching the floor while arching and retracting. If this is hard to follow, think about creating a bench arch. That should help.

Hips and Things Attached
·         Hamstrings
o   Assuming a standard seated position and grab a lacrosse ball. Take the ball and place it under your hamstrings. Extend and flex the knee with the ball in various positions. If you find one that’s particularly awful, work that spot out. Below is a video from KStar.



·         Anterior Hip Flexors
o   I’ve yet to find a better stretch that sucks more than simply assuming a lunge position and jamming your rear lower leg into an object. Below, KStar demonstrate a variation of this as well. 



·         Pirormis
o   This is a tough one, and I know plenty of people suffer from issues this muscle likes to cause. The easiest way to combat this is to cross one leg over the other and pull the knee across your midline (bellybutton). That should loosen this up.



Use these stretches and mobility tactics to loosen yourself up after rolling out with both a foam roller and LAX ball. This should help you combat the awful Couchitis. Go forth and conquer, newly coordinated athletes!



4 comments:

  1. The piriformis stretch is so so dirty. Ow.

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  2. Good stuff thanks! My hips have been killing me recently and the cow (?) stretch looks like it hurts so good

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  3. This ALL rocks, I have been doing these for awhile. The Pirormis can also be performed on a lacrosse ball, extremely hard medicine ball or even a small Atlas Stone (my favorite). I also drop a 70 pound KB on my quad to smash that stuff just a little bit more. This really helps the older guys, I hear it even eliminates grey hair!

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  4. "Couch" stretch!, not to be confused with the infamous couch thread BTW.

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