When it comes to training it’s easy to get lured into the sexy stuff, the squats, the deadlifts, the box jumps. I get it, it’s the stuff we all want to be able to do, to display crazy strength and athleticism but let me tell you all this is wasted if you move like a bag of shit.
I honestly believe that the moment you start training you should be making yourself more resilient to injuries but this simply isn't the case, in fact most peoples training is the thing thats hurting them and it all comes down to movement.
Upgrade Your Software
One thing I try to articulate to all my athletes and clients is that we aren't just lifting weights, we’re using weights, we’re using weights to strengthen movement. It’s a small change in viewpoint but it changes everything. Once we master the movement unloaded we can then progress to using external resistance to strengthen our ability to perform it. This builds not only the muscle mass to support the movement but also the coordination of muscular recruitment so that we are more efficient at the movement, we are essentially upgrading our software and we all want the latest and greatest software right?
Become Fluent in training
I liken strength training to learning a new language. You don't start out with fluent conversation, you need to break it down to the basics, verbs, nouns, then you can progress to sentences, paragraphs, all the way up to the point where you can hold a conversation. Thats great, but that’s not being fluent, many state that when you can be funny in another language then thats when you’re fluent. I want all my athletes to be fluent in movement, to understand it, the whys, the hows, for them to truly get it. As when they do the magic happens, we can add more weight to the bar and we can really start building strength but much like with learning a new language we can't start there, we need to lay proper foundations, this is what allows for continual development with minimal risk.
Get returns on your investment
If we put this thought process into the deadlift, we need to break it down and learn the hip hinge in various forms. Understanding how to create tension, how to use the core musculature to stiffen and stabilise the low back, how the lats assist in this and finally how to use the hamstrings and glutes to be the main drivers of the movement while everything else stabilises. Its complex but these are the foundations that are going to keep you healthy and allow you to extract the very most from the movement with as minimal wear and tear to the body. Yes, it might slow progress initially but training is a long term process and you are investing time initially so that you can build a body that will last and not just break down on you further down the line.
Become a technician and stay strong