3 min read

Alex Hart

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How To Bar Hop Without Lower Back Pain

After a long day of work, spending a few hours unwinding at the bar with friends is common for a lot of us. But hours of drinking ultimately leads to prolonged sitting and standing, which could result in nagging lower back pain.

Nobody thinks about physical health while enjoying themselves at the bar. But you may want to reconsider and start using the chair or foot rail to help reduce that nagging lower back pain.

Difficulties meeting the prolonged postural demands hints towards a bigger issue than simply, “back pain.” This term has previously been called lower cross syndrome and is a way to conceptualize a combination of muscle imbalances that results in constant lower back pain.

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These imbalances typically consist of the following:

  • Tight lumbar extensors
  • Weak / Inhibited Abdominals
  • Tight Hip flexors
  • Weak / Inhibited gluteus muscles

The result is a hyperlordosis in our back, more commonly known as anterior pelvic tilt. But good news! If you find yourself stuck in this situation, you can work to counteract some of the tight muscles that may be causing these issues.

Here are three quick exercises you can do at the bar without catching too much attention.

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90/90 Breathing

This move is a great workout that uses specific muscle activation patterns to help alleviate a tight lower back and hip flexors.

  • In a sitting position, place your heels in front of the two front legs of the chair.
  • Make a fist with both hands and place them between your knees.
  • Press your heels into the legs of the chair, activating your hamstrings on the backside of your thigh.
  • Lightly squeeze together your knees against your fists, activating your adductors (groin muscles).
  • While breathing slowly, imagine tucking your tailbone underneath yourself, this is called a posterior pelvic tilt.
  • Repeat this for 2-3 minutes.

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Couch Stretch

This move stretches out your hip flexors, which often tightens after prolonged standing ?

  • While standing and using a high chair, bring your foot up to the seat
  • Tuck your tailbone underneath yourself by lightly contracting your abdominals.
  • Take slow and deep breaths in through your nose and exhale through your mouth.
  • Repeat this for 20 secs, 2-3 times.

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Figure Four Stretch

This stretch will target a muscle deep to the glutes called the piriformis. Doing this move will help alleviate some of the tightness  on the tailbone you feel from a long period of sitting. 

  • Using a high chair in front of you, bring your leg up onto it so that the outside of your shin is flat on the seat.
  • Take a deep breath in and out, and lightly lean forward at the hips do go deeper into this stretch
  • If your leg doesn’t lay flat, feel free to use a fist between your knee and the seat surface.
  • Repeat this for 20 secs, 2-3 times.

So next time you decide to spend an evening at the bar, make sure to try these exercises and avoid a “lower back hangover.”

4 min read

Steve McGeachy, C.P.P.S.

Posted on

This is the only workout you need to know this offseason

You’re an athlete and your season is over. Now what?

The offseason of today is much different than it was before. Back then, taking the time off, so your body and mind could recover was a priority. Now the offseason is more about improving your game so an athlete can build and progress from the previous year.

A proper offseason training regimen can improve many different aspects of your game such as injury prevention, flexibility, strength, conditioning and recovery time.

The demands of a season can take a toll, and the daily grind can wither your body down. But with more of a focused and planned program during the offseason, it’s easier to avoid the injury pitfalls and it will put you in a better position to succeed.

The following is a breakdown of an off-season training program that will have you ready for training camp.

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Muscle Activation and Mobility

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Muscle activation is the foundation of our system. It’s crucial every muscle is firing correctly. If muscles aren’t firing properly, we can’t progress into the strength and power phase for the simple fact that we would be strengthening a dysfunction. For example, if an athlete can’t perform a simple bodyweight box squat, there is no way they will be able to do a loaded barbell squat properly.

Strength and Power Development

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Once we have completed the muscle activation and structural balance phase, the next step is developing strength and power. This action will help the athlete increase lean tissue while dropping body fat, create more explosiveness throughout the whole body, and strengthen the ligaments and tendons.

Depending on the athlete and their sport, we may focus on improving relative strength, which increases the players strength but keeping their mass gain to a minimum. This is key for positional players like point guards in basketball or extreme athletes like boxers and MMA specialists.

NOTE: Super sets, volume training, and pyramid rep schemes can all be implemented in this phase. 

Metabolic Conditioning

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Following the strength and power phase is conditioning. This stage targets muscular endurance, cardiovascular and recovery time. It’s best to introduce the conditioning phase last because by this point, your season is around the corner and your body should be optimized to meet the demands of team tryouts and camps.

We incorporate drills focusing on agility, velocity and sport specific movements depending on the position of the player. After this phase we ideally transfer the player on to the court or field where we would introduce workouts mirroring game situations and intensity. For basketball, our players would now begin to run conditioning and shooting drills on the court as this is where we look to exploit the power we have built for the past few months.

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As the season progresses our athletes would begin our ”in-season” program which strives to maintain strength, agility and range of motion.

If you stick to a disciplined program during the offseason, your game will elevate to another level, and your body will be more sustainable throughout the season.

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