It’s Friday and, once again, find myself without a solid idea to expound upon for a blog post so we’ll toss a bunch of them in and see what comes out.
- “A to Z coaching” is how I’ve tried to explain to our interns how I approach teaching an athlete a skill. “A” being the most global correction and each subsequent letter becoming more specific.
First we deal with the “A” correction, meaning ensure that the athlete won’t hurt themselves attempting a new exercise. Then we move on to “B” which would fix the most glaring fault in the exercise. From there, I coach through the alphabet, metaphorically, with more refinement at each new correction. For example, I’m going to correct someone’s knee in a lunge (if it travels too far forward or if it collapses inwards) before I worry too much about if they’re squeezing their shoulder blades together. Depending on the athlete, we may spend several workouts at “B” before ever moving on to “C” and beyond.
-The lat-glute connection. This is the connection between the lats and glutes through the muscle fascia on the posterior side of the body. Learn to use this connection, your lower back will thank you. Dean Somerset has a great post on it. Swings are an excellent way to learn how to tighten your lats in concert with your glutes. When you’re able to create that connection, it’s the equivalent of drinking Felix Felicis for your spine.
- It’s hot as blazes in SAPT. We don’t have AC in our current building (but will in our new place… HOORAY!!!) and the forecast is 100. Oh, with a heat index of 109. Awesome. Planet Hoth sounds really good today…
- Breathing, it’s important. No duh, Kelsey. Seriously though, breathing properly, through all three areas (upper chest, ribcage and diaphragm) makes a world of difference during a training session. Thanks to Virginia, I’ve developed some pretty severe allergies; to the point where I had my first asthma attack (for all you asthma sufferers out there: wow. I had no idea how scary an attack could be.) while doing hill sprints with my husband. I did some research about breathing patterns and learned that I breathe too much in my upper chest and combine that with a hill sprint and the result is piss-poor amount of oxygen in my system. The next time we went out, I concentrated on breathing more in my ribs and diaphragm. Guess what? No asthma attack! However, as soon as I stopped thinking about my breathing, I went right back to upper chest breathing… your body will always revert to what it knows best. So, one of my goals is to practice, all the time, breathing properly so that when I’m in a stressful situation, like sprinting, my body will breathe as it should.
- Buttkamp. Pronounced “boot kahmp,” is the women-only class I teach twice a week in the mornings. These women, mostly in their 40s and 50s (but really, they’re all only 29) work incredibly hard, want to get stronger by picking up heavy things and they are NOT about to let anything/one get in their way doing so. (It’s a little scary to see how vehemently they pound the tire with sledgehammers…) They are awesome and I am so blessed to have the chance to work with such amazing women!
-Everyone should pick up heavy things. Ryan wrote a good post yesterday on the SAPTstrength site about how lifting can be a huge confidence booster and I agree 100%. It’s supremely satisfying to set goals and reach them (like getting that first pull up or squatting 200 pounds or whatever), especially when you’ve had to work hard and be patient to reach them. I’ve also seen and experienced that confidence extend out of the weight room.
Think about it: if you’re a strong person doing things like carrying a lot of groceries into the house in one trip (so satisfying), managing kids, especially if one is in a carrier, and the other decides that walking is no longer a desired activity or moving to a new place, are so much easier. Plus, women who pick up heavy things exude a self-confidence that is attractive and desirable. The world would be a better place if everyone picked up heavy things on regular basis.
- I thought this was funny.