You Should Do This: Dumbbell Lateral Raise

It wasn't that long ago that all things "Bro" AKA Bodybuilding or hypertrophy or as it's often put, non-functional hypertrophy related were shunned.. Dumbbell flys, Bicep Curls, Lateral Raises and the like, all persona non grada. They were "small" single joint exercises that didn't deliver much "bang for your buck".  And truth be told, as someone who preaches this, that philosophy is pretty much on point. Especially for the person who only has 2-3, 30-45 minute blocks to spend in the gym each week. If that's you, you're gonna get a LOT more outta "BIG" multi-joint lifts like Squats, Pushups, Bench Presses, and Deadlifts. But what if you've got more … [Read more...]

You Should Do This: Plate Resisted Dead Bug

"Roll the belt buckle to the chin.." "Push the bottom rib into the abs...." I say those about 50 times a day. Why? It's all about the Open Scissor position. It's no good. But its the default for lots of people. Instead of using the "core" to brace against the forces, this default makes you Instagram famous uses the lumbar spine and pelvis, driving into each other, to buttress forces. In a perfect world we want a neutral scissor position. The neutral scissor is just the "Pillar" or "Cylinder" position, nothing new. Core Control: You don't want excessive lumbar movement, flexion (rounding) or arching (extension). We need to be able to put the … [Read more...]

You Should Do This: Band Snatch

The Band Snatch Is Super Cool and Neat-O The Band Snatch has two strengths: 1: It's easy on the shoulder joint for almost everyone. 2: It'll fry your shoulders in the process. All three heads, front, medial, rear delts will all get swoled up. Plus, I stole it from Shelby Starnes, and he's super jacked, so it must be good. You should do it. Checklist:  Shoulders IN the joint, the whole time: NEVER Over-reach at the top: Once the shoulder joint is fully extended, that's it. Don't reach as far back as you CAN, reach to the end range of motion. Once the scapula are retracted and the upper arm (humerus) is centered, STOP! Just like … [Read more...]

You Should Do This: TRX Row

If I could do only one pulling (rowing) motion what would it be? "100% it would be the TRX row." In my opinion the TRX is the greatest row machine ever built. It's scales easily from beginner to advanced, it's self-limiting, and it's almost foolproof. Plus, and mostly its one of the best tools I've found for training the lost art of scapular retraction. True, you can overdo it. But in my, desk jockey, sitting all day slumped over, world, 9/10 people have a real issue pulling those shoulders down and back,  pinching the shoulder blades together in the back. So we NEED to train scap retraction and depression and need to be able to do it with a tool that … [Read more...]

You Should Do This: Band Pullaparts

The 4 exercises that, I think I program for literally every single client. 1) Cat Camel Stretch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DxCDP4IzxVs 2) Quadruped Thoracic Rotations: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S4XAD8N8DH0 3) Glute Bridges: https://youtu.be/MwNP1Ure28Q 4) Band PullAparts: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=haXhpH20eFc All 4 address "posture" deficiencies more than anything. In an era of perpetual flexed forward, shoulders rounded forward, desk jockey syndrome we need some more upper back to help PULL and HOLD us up. Besides, I was once told you can never have too much ass, abs and upper back. Band PullAparts 101:  Stand tall: … [Read more...]

You Should Do This: Floor Press

The Floor Press: It's nothing more than a bench press without the bench. <---like you couldn't figure that one out.  Why It's Awesome: Limits the range of motion at the shoulder joint. It's pretty hard to "dump" (approximation the Humerus) the shoulder forward with these. MUCH easier on the lower back than the bench press cause the legs are out of the equation. The floor provides MUCH better feedback than the bench for maintaining shoulder tightness (packing) and driving the shoulders down into the ground to press the weight. Full Pause or Touch and Go?  Either.... Full Pause Floor presses are GREAT for building speed, starting strength and … [Read more...]

You Should Do This: Superman Mobility

There are some near universal truths when I get a new client: 1: They lack Thoracic Mobility/ scapula control 2: They lack glute activation/ strength 3: They create motion from the lumbar spine, and consequently have overactive spinal errectors (low back muscles) I would guesstimate that I see all three of these in a new client 90% of the time (cause, they are somewhat interrelated) and at least 2 of the three get hit about 95% of the time. And it all goes back to our flexed forward, low amplitude/ low velocity world. If you're always sitting, hunched over a screen, in a box, or in front of a box, you're probably not: Sitting up straight, shoulders in … [Read more...]

Pressing Through Your Heel Is NOT Flexing Your Ankle…

Can you?  "Feel Your Heels" And I don't mean "do you logically realize that you do, in fact, have a body part (the calcaneous) that is in the lay mans terms called to as the "heel". But, can you actually "feel" it? Like right now? Feel it, as in, manage not only the pressure on the heel but where the pressure is and maybe even alter the pressure points? And I'm NOT talking about flexing the ankle and pushing off the back edge of the foot. (More on that a bit later) But instead, just feeling and maintaining pressure in the whole heel. I'm willing to bet you can't. I know this because probably 80% of the people I train have trouble doing just … [Read more...]