-Excessive Lumbar Rotation-
It’s everywhere. We do it all day long. Walking is rotation. Running is rotation. If your body didn’t rotate, you wouldn’t be able to do much! 🙂
So, it’s obvious that in order to perform optimally, rotation needs to be addressed in one’s program. Here’s my school of thought, though: In order to perform at optimal levels, your body must not only be able to rotate efficiently, it must be able to RESIST ROTATION!
A few examples of exercises that train “rotation” without the use of excessive rotation are:
Quadruped Opposite Arm/Leg Extension
Transverse Torque Iso Hold
“Why shouldn’t I do the Scorpion stretch?”
The other morning, I had a client ask me why I never have her to do the “scorpion” stretch anymore. This made me think about a few articles I read a while back that really got me thinking. One of these articles was “A Joint By Joint Approach to Training” by Mike Boyle, which I referenced in a previous post, “Tight Hips and Low Back Pain.” This particular client has more than adequate lumbar mobility, which is due in part to a lack of T-Spine mobility. She could scorpion stretch herself silly all day long if she wanted to! 🙂 She said she likes the scorpion stretch, and has been doing it here and there on her own. I told her to stop doing it! It’s an easy movement for her because of her excess in lumbar mobility. This doesn’t mean it’s a good thing, though! If you look at the scorpion stretch, the rotation comes from the low back NOT from the thoracic spine. My client is lacking in T-Spine mobility. It makes ZERO sense to have her perform a movement that capitalizes on the faulty movement patterns that were created b/c of this deficit! The scorpion stretch places a lot of stress on the lumbar spine. It does stretch the anterior hip, which is a good thing, but there are tons of better ways of going about that! I “ganked” it from my “toolbox” of exercises a while back, and am glad I did!
Here are some better choices: