January 11, 2011

Scrunches, Wobbles, and Breathless Sumo

The hamstrings tell the tale.

These hamstrings, normally smooth and strong, were developing bumps I associate with adhesions. The bellies of the muscle were like a bit of bad road, dipping up and down with jellied clumps of static muscle tissue even though they were supposed to be at rest.

A monument to adhesions myself, I asked about the workout. The new exercise was feet on the ball, back on the floor, with the butt up and slow knee flexions to work the hamstrings.

A great exercise, for sure, but this had been done with much wobbling and too many reps. The hamstrings had kicked in to provide the stability my client’s spinal column was missing. Now, a few days later, I was feeling the results.

These muscles had overloaded and paid the price. As I worked out the adhesions, hoping to prevent or derail future trigger points, I was trying to figure out how to address what might well turn into body armor – a perimeter of static, overloaded long muscles helping someone work through exercises despite a wobbly, sleeping core.

We tried some pelvic tilts, scrunching the rectus abdominus while breathing out, holding the scrunch while using the diaphragm for three breaths. Rested for three diaphragm breaths, then scrunch. Rested and scrunched. The posterior spinal muscles relaxed and the core woke up.

Core stability is not breathless Sumo. It's an ability to balance one’s weight in the pelvic bowl without sloshing about and tightening the posterior spinal muscles, all the while using the diaphragm to breathe.

When I went home that night I did my tilts and ball squats. It’s always good to practice what my clients teach me.

1 comment:

'Drea said...

I didn’t see that ending coming; nice way to bring it full circle and nice tale.