One of the toughest things we do with DVRT is challenging people to think differently about their training. Going against the grain isn’t easy, but we don’t do it to just be different. Ask most people WHY they are doing what they are doing and you won’t get much of an answer, or unfortunately one along the lines of, “well, it’s what has always been done” which is actually an off shoot of “it has been proven to work!” A great example is how people to continue to use warm-ups ineffectively and fail to realize they can make you really strong.
I know, we typically think of warm-ups as what we SHOULD be doing to get our body temperature up and even improve our flexibility. Rarely though do we think about using warm-ups to make us actually stronger. That is where understanding the science about movement strength training plays such a big role in why we do things differently in DVRT.
We all can understand if we move better we can produce more force, perform more exercises, and use the right muscles. What we tend to understand far less is HOW we get our body in a position to do so. We have seen people go from sitting there and holding stretches to doing “mobility” training.
It isn’t about these things being “bad”, but rather not the most effective means of using warm-ups to prepare our body and lead to becoming really strong. After all, we don’t see people that move badly doing really athletic things right?
Why is what I am going to suggest to you has the ability to work so much better? We have to understand WHY our body is not moving well and how if we use warm-ups the right way we can unlock so much more than we imagined.
We Sit Too Much
We can’t argue that we all sit too much, it is just the reality of our societies now. The idea we are going to go back to old times of gathering food and farming all day isn’t reality. While everyone agrees sitting is a problem, most misunderstand what is actually happening.
One of the biggest problems of sitting is we are artificially supported. In doing so, in spite of our postures and other things, our body shuts down. Remember, our body is REALLY smart! If it doesn’t have to work harder than it has to, it won’t! Our bodies are designed for survival, not to look cool in social media.
Those muscles are shut off, so how does that impact our movement? When many of the stabilizers of our body are not working, the body also goes to protection mode. That means reducing the range of motion of our arms and legs so that we don’t risk hurting our spine. From a survival aspect that makes a lot of sense.
This all leads to us looking like we have poor flexibility/mobility, we can’t move in the ways we want, and we can’t use our bodies the right ways. That is why our warm-ups shouldn’t revolve around stretching or mobility exercises, but using activation to enhance both.
“But Josh, isn’t mobility the foundation of everything?!” That sounds really good and I’m not arguing mobility isn’t important, but it is how we go about actually achieving those mobility results we really want. Why isn’t just doing mobility exercises as most people know them the way to attack these problems? Am I just hocking you DVRT warm-ups cause we want you to use sandbags?
When we don’t create proper balance of stability and mobility, we see problems!
Not at all!
I’m a great example of what we are actually talking about. Having a spinal disease, my body is always looking how my body will create stability. That means if you watch me move without proper warm-ups I look like a pretty strong disaster (after all that is what disease does to people right?). However, watch me after I perform some of our DVRT warm-ups and most would not know I had much of a problem at all!
That is because my body needs stability to enhance my mobility. How do we do that? Through proper activation of the chains of the body to work synergistically that gives permission to my body to move well. My point is if these concepts of our DVRT warm-ups can work for me, then what can’t they do for someone who’s issues are mostly a function of sitting too much or having accumulated some injuries over time?
When we combine science with practical application, some pretty cool magic can happen in our training. So, what are some examples of how we can use DVRT warm-ups to achieve so much more?
DVRT Warm-up drills like NSCA state chairman, Douglas Sheppard, shows are a perfect example. Many people are understanding tension is a BIG part of the solution, but tension without real purpose doesn’t work. These DVRT Dead Bugs have a combination of load and directed tension to connect the chains. One of the best parts of using the Ultimate Sandbag is that we load that helps create tension in the core, but we also pull the handles apart that creates tension in the lats that helps connect our core and pelvis. While the mini bands do the same from the bottom up!
The same can be said of movements like the hip bridge. Why put the weight on our hips when the glutei don’t work by themselves? They work WITH the lats, they work WITH the core, and they work with the feet to produce motion when we walk, run, and do real life activities. That is why DVRT warm-ups like the hip bridge Douglas shows is a BETTER way of getting the body moving better, and getting the glutes so much stronger!
Do you notice how we use science from the world of therapy in PNF diagonal patterns from our back to more movement to eventually more upright positions. The principles of our DVRT warm-ups we are using of tension, feedback, and intent are HUGE! That is why when you see what DVRT Master, Sean Lettero, demonstrates in this half kneeling lift/chop not only helps low backs, not only makes your shoulders move better, but gets you ready for dynamic lower body exercises like lunges and squats!
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Do these types of DVRT warm-ups really help? Check out what Coach James Sullivan said after he did movements like this in HIS training!
“Combined it with hinge to overhead press-out squat and got those fingers to touch effortlessly ????????????????????????”
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