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Thursday, April 21, 2011

Improve your Warm-Up Economy: Inchworm with Rocking Ankle Mobility


Let's face it: There's no question that a proper warm-up will mobilize the joints for the subsequent training session, leading to improved movement quality and - ultimately - more accomplished during your workout.  However, very few of us truly enjoy spending copious amounts of time warming up before we get to the "bread and butter" of our training session.

This being the case, I frequently prefer to include "bang for your buck" warm-up drills in my routine, so that I can kill a few birds with one stone.  One such drill is the Inchworm with Rocking Ankle Mobility.


Essentially, it takes two great movement prep drills, and combines them into one.  See below:



Why I like it:
  • As noted, it saves time by knocking out a few things at once.
  • The "inchworm" portion will prime your scapular stabilizers (via the hand-walking motion), awaken your core, and loosen up the hamstrings.  
  • The "rocking ankle mob" portion will improve the length of the gastrocnemius (if you keep the legs straight) or the soleus (if you bend the knee slightly during the rocking).  
    • Basically, this will help lengthen your calves a bit to improve ankle dorsiflexion range-of-motion (which is just about as important as adequate hydration), and also - possibly - aid integrity of the knee joint. 
How To Do It:
This one is fairly idiot-proof, but a couple quick pointers are:
  • During the Rocking Ankle Mob, just find a point where you can barely push the ankle to the floor.  You can keep the knee straight to emphasize the gastroc (larger and superficial calf muscle) or bend the knee slightly to emphasize the soleus (smaller and deeper calf muscle).  
  • During the inchworm, just walk the hands out as far as you can without hyperextending (over arching) the low back, and then walk the feet up to the hands as far as you can keeping the legs straight. 
  • Perform 4-5 Inchworms with 2-4 Rocking Ankle Mobs per side in the middle of each inchworm. 
That's it.  Now enjoy the feeling of improved movement prowess throughout your lift, run, or competition.

2 comments:

hann said...

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Stevo said...

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