Biomechanics Of Strength Training Workshop

Biomechanics Of Strength Training Workshop

Instructor:  So, what is biomechanics? Danny mentioned the term. Basically it's applying mechanical laws to biological equipment. So, looking at movement in terms of force vectors, and joint torques, and ground reaction forces, and things like that.

                  So, mainly what I do when I'm looking at people, is I look at how joints line up. I look at the co-ordination of how they move and kind of try to infer how you are producing force and transferring force. The main forces we are dealing with are: the force of gravity, the force that you create with your own muscle tension, and then also bands and stuff like that that kind of.

                  Inefficiencies can overload certain tissue, certain muscles and lead to chronic injury or even acute injuries can often be traced back to an inefficiency or efficiency in your.

                 The goals this workshop... over the last few years that I have been doing this, I have done a lot of individual assessments, and I kind of find some common issues that I see in pretty much in everyone that I have assessed. Musicians can be traced back to elements of the modern lifestyle, that kind of predispose you for inefficiencies in mechanics.

                  So the goal of this workshop, is I want to explain these concepts to you, these major issues that I see, and then I want to take you through some exercises (so this is going to be very hands on) take you through some exercises that kind of illustrate these concepts, but also kind of show you how you can start towards improving them. Because, like I said, chances are you guys have at least one of these issues where you are a little bit deficient and you could improve.

                 Okay, here we go down on your back and I brought towels for everyone. You want to use the ground to help you get into a neutral position. You lower back does have a natural curve under it. It's not flat. So, the towel helps support that curve. So, it's all about breathing. You are going to lay on your back, feet flat, hands just below your belly button. While you inhale, you're trying to expand as much as possible. On your exhale, you're trying to hollow out as much as possible. And, once you get all the air out of your lungs, you hold it for a couple counts, because on that exhale you should feel your lower abs draw up. You should feel your pelvis tilt back slightly into a neutral position, and that's the movement that you want to master. So, again: It's a big inhale, a big exhale, hollow out as much as you can, and hold it for a couple counts. Everybody good with that? Okay.

                The what the function of your core is, in athletic movement, is to transfer force. Right? You produce force with your legs, you transfer that force through your core into a bar, into your arms, whatever you may have. So, if you have a weakness in your core, your pelvis is unstable, your hip joint, your legs attached to your pelvis. So, you can't possibly get the most of your legs. Right? Your ribcage sits on top of your pelvis. Your shoulder girdle attaches to your ribcage. So, if you have an instability in your core, you can't possibly get all you have out of your arms. Right? So, it all starts with the core.

                So, make sure you can slide it. So, for an unsupported Dead Bug, it's the same set-up. I pull up my lower abs to flatten my back to the ground. I co-contract my abdominal wall to glue my ribs down, but now I have both feet in the air. Right? We will also go both hands in the air. You're going to extend opposite arm and leg, ideally, to the ground. Keeping neutral spine. On the way up, the first thing you do is tense a little tighter in anticipation of the force that you are about to generate, to move your leg back up. Then you come back to your starting position. So, you reach out. Now, let's say I get here and my towel starts to slip: I stop, tense up. That's the end range of the movement. The goal is to get to the ground, but if you can't do that with a neutral spine there's no point in forcing it. Right?


Class Member 1:  I feel terrible

Instructor:  As you get better at it, there's a whole spectrum of affirmations. So, as I am walking around right now: my lower abs are drawn up, back down, my abdominal is co-contracted, but not nearly as much as when I lay down and do a Dead Bug or when I stand under a bar and do a squat. And, going along with that theme that there is gradients of activation, when you're doing explosive movements. So, say: jump or sprint. Those movements operate off of pulses of force. Right?

                 When I go to jump, I do a pulse of force to extend my hips, knees and ankles to get my body up in the air. That pulse has to start from your core; otherwise, you're going to get some movement in your pelvis and your spine as you do the jump or the pole or whatever explosive movement you are doing. That movement is not going to contribute to the jump itself. So, it becomes less efficient and you lose some of that force that you generated with your legs. So, we are going to do one last variation of the Dead Bug that works on that kind of pulse generation: that explosive movement.

                We are going to set up, just like you did for the supported Dead Bug. So, one foot on the ground. You're going to go one leg straight, other arm over head. And, the first thing you're going to do is get into your abdominal brace. So, draw up your lower abs, tense your abdominal wall so that your back is neutral, this towel is pinned to the ground. You're going to do a big inhale. Then, you're going to exhale, tense your abs and generate a pulse of force from your hip flexor, from your lat to kick your arm and your leg off the ground. And, that sequence is very important. So, it's exhale, tense, move. Right? And, you can spread it out as much as you want to start.

               Eventually, you want to make it so smooth that you can't really see that sequence, but it's still happening in that order. So, again, I set myself up, take a big inhale, keeping everything braced. On my exhale I tense my abs and then I move. So, inhale, exhale, tense, move. That's one quick pulse.    Keep your head flat. We're just moving shoulder and hip.

Class Member 1: Keep your head on the ground.

Instructor: Yup. One knee bent, other leg straight. Inhale, exhale, tense your abs.