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Workout of the Week

Barbell Back Squat

Aloha ALL, Coach Ryan here to put out some tips on the "Absolutes of the Barbell Back Squat ''. My goal is to provide you, the mountain athlete with the knowledge and support to set yourself up success in gaining strength while back squatting and prevent injury. I wanted to clear the myth that the Barbell Back Squat is for "LEG DAY", well it actually focuses and depends on the stability and strength of your core area. Now here are some tips to set up under the bar, position your body and move efficiently while squatting.

1. Barbell height should be at armpit level. Many times individuals will set bar height too high then it becomes a calf raises or tippy toe off the rack. This wastes strength  needed in the movement  itself, instability throughout the body  and an unsafe position.

2. Create a solid-stable core position when unracking the barbell. Brace core by taking a short breath into the stomach and pushing the abdominal  wall out.

3. Body Position: Hands are generally placed outside the shoulders, bar is right at base of neck along the upper trapezius and along the shoulder. This is known as the high bar position. Common mistakes are bar too high on the neck and creates discomfort to lifters. Elbow along the side of the ribcage and point down to the floor. Feet are generally slightly  outside the shoulder toes pointed forward. Toes may be angled out slightly for different body types to support a great depth in squat.

4. Getting off the rack. With a braced core, the lifter will place feet under the bar and maintain position  as outlined in step 3. Because the bar will be lower than the chest it will create a "lifter wedge". This is where you will be in neutral spine position and braced core to drive the bar up and off rack. Lifter will maintain a braced core and take 2 steps back off of the rack. Just 2, Just enough to clear rack j-hooks. Many times we take too many steps off the rack again waiting for strength  needed in the actual movement.

5. The Movement. Lifters is now off the rack, while performing the Valsalva  maneuver, breathing  in, pressing the abdominal wall out, holding breath. This will brace the core area. Lifters will lower hips and chest at the same rate of speed. Smooth and controlled. Hips will open, the backside will go back, lifters will maintain that postural integrity with a  neutral spine. Weight on the feet should be equally distributed  onto the "tripod foot". This is very important. Common mistakes or improper coaching cues are to place weight in the heels. Maintain  the equal weight through the "tripod foot". Lifters should be having the mindset of pushing  feet through the  floor throughout the lift. Barbell is lowered  until knees and hips are parallel with  a  hip hinge and bending of knees.   All body types are different. Parallel positions will look slightly different  for everyone. On the ascent while driving the "tripod foot" through the floor and maintaining   a braced core by using the Valsalva technique, the lifter will ascend from the bottom parallel position and on the way up the lifter cna release  breath. During the push the drive should come through the feet to the posterior chain, focusing on being upright with glutes really powering the lift. Many mistakes are that glutes are not "fired" or contracted and this lift becomes a heavy load on the low back and quadriceps.

TAKEAWAYS...focus on setup, body position, toe angle, tripod foot, hip hinge, creating torque, and postural integrity

Stay tuned for the next session with Coach and his movement reviews and disciplines of strength coach!

HAPPY SQUATTING!

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Life after Ski Fit

As ski fit is coming to a close it does not mean that your training has to be over. I am a firm believer in training year round and consistency lowers your chance of injury and increases your performance in sport. The sport maintenance classes we offer focus on what sports are in session and the program flows nicely if you are skiing, biking or hiking. It is important to keep your core strong and all your other muscle groups! This workout is an example of a sport maintenance class!
It starts with some good movements and right into Curtis P which is a great total body exercise. Gets your butt, core and upper body firing. Then we move into some single leg work which is really good to alleviate compensations through the winter. We then end with a quick work capacity hit which is really good because we don’t get the anaerobic hits we need during the winter sports. We end with a good core crusher!

Curtis P movement in Video below

1.00

Crystal Demonstrates a Curtis P

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Coaches orders

6 rounds

4x curtis p
3x burpees
instep with twist

6 rounds

4xea sld
6x tuck jumps
pigeon

4 rounds

30 sec sled drag
30 sec box up
30 sec bosu plank
30 sec waiter walks
30 sec calf raises
30 sec sprint
30 sec rest

3 rounds tabata

up with twist, boat, plank hops, flutter

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The Sled Push

The Sled Push/ Pull is an incredible exercise overlooked for its benefits sometimes. There have been studies utilizing this exercise with interval training that improved squat strength, and explosive speed times. A low impact movement that increases leg strength, and power in the complete lower body. Not all strength moves utilize the quad, glute, hamstring, and calf muscles all together.

Four ways you can do the Sled Push

  1. Straight arms- most common gaining core engagement.
  2. Bent Arms – gaining an isometric strength benefit in the shoulders biceps and triceps
  3. Hooking it up so you can pull allowing for arm movement to encourage sprint capacity
  4. pulling backwards with arms- working in a plain we don’t often utilize, engaging back muscles.

To utilize all lower body muscles make sure you get up on your toes driving for speed and you also tap into that number one muscle the HEART. Doing a quick sled push interval at the end of a workout can be a great way to quickly tap more strength and power into your legs. If you want to train the heart and lungs more for work capacity go with a lighter weight.

Interval workout:

75% of your squat max weight on sled

6 rounds – that's only 6 minutes!

30 second sprint with sled push

20 second recovery

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