Author Topic: Flexibility issue  (Read 3453 times)

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Raptor

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Flexibility issue
« on: September 05, 2011, 01:35:34 pm »
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I have a quick question that is VERY important for me to solve as of this moment: what is required in terms of flexibility for someone to be able to get in a low squat position without bending forward at the waist? As in to keep the torso erect and vertical, as much as perpendicular to the ground as possible?

Also, where do you need to be flexible to do a proper below parallel overhead squat?

As of this moment, whenever I jump off two feet I always (ALWAYS) bend a lot at the waist and jump forward or collapse into the jump (and no, I'm not overanalyzing, this is a serious issue). I look at a lot of people and they're always able to throw their legs forward and keep a vertical torso and jump, I can't do that. And my two footed jump suffers immensly because of that. It's also very frustrating.

So any ideas? What's the flexibility limitation that keeps on forcing me to bend forward at the waist (also happens in the deadlift, I can't keep a vertical torso to save my life or my spine - in a deadlift my torso is almost parallel instead of perpendicular to the ground).

LanceSTS

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Re: Flexibility issue
« Reply #1 on: September 05, 2011, 02:03:00 pm »
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I have a quick question that is VERY important for me to solve as of this moment: what is required in terms of flexibility for someone to be able to get in a low squat position without bending forward at the waist? As in to keep the torso erect and vertical, as much as perpendicular to the ground as possible?

Also, where do you need to be flexible to do a proper below parallel overhead squat?

As of this moment, whenever I jump off two feet I always (ALWAYS) bend a lot at the waist and jump forward or collapse into the jump (and no, I'm not overanalyzing, this is a serious issue). I look at a lot of people and they're always able to throw their legs forward and keep a vertical torso and jump, I can't do that. And my two footed jump suffers immensly because of that. It's also very frustrating.

So any ideas? What's the flexibility limitation that keeps on forcing me to bend forward at the waist (also happens in the deadlift, I can't keep a vertical torso to save my life or my spine - in a deadlift my torso is almost parallel instead of perpendicular to the ground).


 First off, in an overhead squat position, at the bottom of the range of motion, the torso angle is not going to be perfectly vertical up for 99% of the population.  This was one of the arguments for using the low bar squat position in the training of olympic weightlifters.  You do need good thoracic mobility and shoulder flexibility, shoulder dislocations are a very good exercise to get fluent at for this purpose.

 For the back squat, make sure you have adequate dorsi flexion, you can use the ankle rocker and many other drills to see where you are currently and progress it.  The hip flexors need to be mobile as well or they can alter form.  Last, make sure your hamstrings are flexible and your core is strong.  Lower back and abdominals, if there is an issue there it will show itself in the squat.

 A deadlift is not done with a vertical torso.


 Btw, are u sure that your back squat is causing you issues?  Because I thought you were recently hitting pr's and getting stronger, and this is right about the time that you decide what you are doing doesnt look enough like (golden child, 3 ft olympic lifters, shal, etc.), and stop progressing in favor of changing things.  So make sure you NEED to change something before you do it.  If youre really sure that its an issue, then yea, I can understand making some adjustments but if its not, keep progressing.


also : how is this a "vertical" torso?  hes leaning forward a significant amount and getting tons of hip/glute into that plant leg...

  <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NBg1JUC-Ujo" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NBg1JUC-Ujo</a>
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LanceSTS

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Re: Flexibility issue
« Reply #2 on: September 05, 2011, 02:09:19 pm »
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  Great stretch for the squat, the first one in the video with the bar across the legs.


<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MqyV9KIBuPw" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MqyV9KIBuPw</a>
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Raptor

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Re: Flexibility issue
« Reply #3 on: September 05, 2011, 05:10:11 pm »
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Check 3:40 here where he talks about seeing the shirt in the mirror. I can't really do that, I can barely lift my chest enough to see my chest in the mirror, meaning my chest is almost parallel to the ground:

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xDmWMrKT7U4" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xDmWMrKT7U4</a>

This also happens when I jump. When I plant off two legs, VOLUNTARILY trying to throw my feet forward in front on my body (otherwise I have the tendency to put both my legs straight under me like in a one-leg jump), my upperbody automatically bends forward as in an effort to try to stabilize the center of mass, and from there everything messes up.

The people I see that jump very well are the people that can plant with the feet in front of the body and kind of sinked into the hips with the torso almost erect (as in sitting in a chair basically) but because they have good approach speed in the plant they don't fall on the back but instead go up.

For me it's more a matter of preventing myself on falling on the back, on the heels, and thus bending forward at the waist. I want to correct that in both the deadlift and the jump.

How can I correct that? I don't even know the the nature of the problem is: flexibility, bad mechanics (using the wrong muscles in the wrong places), or just a mental thing that forces me to take into account these possible scenarios and make me get into these positions.

It's really weird and I lose tons of inches in my VJ. Even in my SVJ you can see that I go a bit down at the hips, knees bend forward BUT MY TORSO GOES DOWN and comes close to being parallel with the ground.

So instead just going down as in a squat with a torso as much as vertical as possible, I do a goodmorning and jump opening up my chest instead of using the legs.

This is the problem ^^^

You can see some of that here:

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6-NYUQTIkQo" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6-NYUQTIkQo</a>

Although it's a SVJ (comes natural to me), in a running VJ there's even more bending occuring.

For the deadlift:

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jaSLaWp28No" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jaSLaWp28No</a>

Look at my torso, it's parallel to the ground when I initiate the lift.

LanceSTS

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Re: Flexibility issue
« Reply #4 on: September 05, 2011, 05:35:33 pm »
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  The thing I see with your svj is, youre bending at the BACK and extending it FIRST, then you start to extend the hips.  If anything thats causing you to lose some contribution from the tightness and reflexive action you would get out of the stretch reflex.  You can still have plenty of torso lean and jump well, but it should stay relatively stable and not extend at the low back before the hips and knees start extending.

  On your deadlift youre just not getting your back position "set" well enough before you begin pulling, it almost looks like your relaxed in the bottom.  Squeeze the chest up HARD, but you dont need to drop your hips too far down before you begin pulling, youll just end up with a higher hip position anyway once you put a heavyish weight on the bar.  If youre really certain you need a more upright position with your squats and deads, get you some weightlifting shoes.  They will change the mechanics by themselves without you having to do much.

  A good drill for the running jumps off two legs, and achieving what youre talking about with the plant leg is to start about 6-8 feet from the basket with both feet together.  Focus on taking a very big and powerful step into your plant leg, really emphasize that leg reaching out and loading it.  Dont worry about the jump height at first, just focus on reaching out with that plant leg as explosively as you can, then jump.  Once you get this down and can jump well with it, progress to a 2-3 step approach with the same mechanics.  After that, using a full run up will be much easier and form will be more stable at higher speeds.  When doing that drill one thing is to not think too much about it being a "two leg" jump, but really really focus on that plant leg, the swing leg will come through and do its thing pretty naturally most of the time if you get the plant leg working well.


try that squat stretch I linked, that will likely help you as it really hits the soleus well and not just the gastroc.  Once the knees are bent (like in a squat, dead, jump etc.) the soleus can really limit rom at the ankle and that stretch can make a big difference if you progress it and use it frequently enough.
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LanceSTS

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Re: Flexibility issue
« Reply #5 on: September 07, 2011, 04:17:51 am »
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for raptor


here are some vids of an olympic bobsled athlete, using a lower/mid bar position on the squat in a very "athletic" squat style, without a ton of torso lean.  He has on weightlifting shoes which will help a lot, but he has a similar short torso, long legs, build, and that type of squat is about as good as it gets for performance training.


<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qxl3Fj13Jdc" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qxl3Fj13Jdc</a>

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MaW4-4dJrVc" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MaW4-4dJrVc</a>
« Last Edit: September 07, 2011, 04:29:34 am by LanceSTS »
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Raptor

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Re: Flexibility issue
« Reply #6 on: September 07, 2011, 07:38:14 am »
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Well I could probably lift as well as he does if you gave me his shoes... I have never seen such shoes around here.

LanceSTS

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Re: Flexibility issue
« Reply #7 on: September 07, 2011, 08:53:33 am »
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Well I could probably lift as well as he does if you gave me his shoes... I have never seen such shoes around here.

ya exaclty, thats why I linked it, I told u earlier that if you get a pair of weightlifting shoes it will do that without you having to do much at all.  Not that you need to change it at all but youre wanting to be more upright so...

www.vsathletics.com is a good shoe, adidas has good shoes.  Just look around online, I would imagine you could find some place that would deliver to you there.
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Raptor

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Re: Flexibility issue
« Reply #8 on: September 07, 2011, 10:20:07 am »
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Maybe, but my point of this thread is that I bend forward at the waist when I jump, not necessarily when I squat. It also happens in the deadlift. I just can't sink well at the hips - I've seen people that do that so well without getting out of position or balance, they just sink into their hips backward with almost no forward knee transition (for an extreme, think Steve Cotter).

If you put me to do that I'd definitely bend forward or I'd fall back. Cotter was talking about the lower abs not firing or something like that to prevent the falling back from happening. So the issue is with jumping... my natural tendency when jumping off two feet is not to throw my legs forward and jump (and involve the hips) but to plant my legs under me as in a standing VJ and jump like that, which automatically means bend at the knees a lot. If I want to jump with hip involvement I have to think about that before the jump (actually before the run-up itself) so it's not natural but voluntary.

slowkidtryingtogetfast

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Re: Flexibility issue
« Reply #9 on: September 08, 2011, 10:00:10 pm »
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Excuse me for interrupting Raptor, but a quick question Lance i have a different body structure than that bobsled athlete and i was confused at how deep i should go in the squat, is that an example of how my squat should look like if i am training for speed and vert even though i have a different body structure. Thanks
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LanceSTS

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Re: Flexibility issue
« Reply #10 on: September 09, 2011, 01:13:48 am »
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  Depends, how is structure different?  Either way the depth is achievable, the bar position and torso angle is what I was getting at.
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