Hi Once again, I apologise, that this year to date I am behind with my articles. I’ve been rather busy of late. I have updated my Lecturing qualification so I can once again teach on the Personal Trainer Certificate and Diploma courses. I have renewed my Senior First Aid and CPR, something that I feel could be of benefit to everyone, so I recommend you look into doing the course, if you have not already.
I also went to Torquay and lectured at the Surfing Medicine International Conference, alongside some great talented trainers who have worked at the Surfing HPC on the Gold Coast, International Medical experts and WSL Personnel, plus many others. I then stayed to soak up the amazing energy of The Rip Curl Pro at Bells ( I also snuck off the Apostles area for a few waves and unfortunately help out when one of the hot Rip Curl Basque Groms broke a shin bone!).
However, the busiest part has been finishing an in-depth exercise technique course. This has been accepted into the list of courses for Fitness Australia and, if Personal Trainers attend, it will give 50% of the 2 yearly update CECs they have to achieve. I’ll keep you posted, as the first one will roll out in Sydney soon.
That’s my Segway! In this article I will speak about some of the content of that course to fulfil my promise of the last article. I hope you found the technical info interesting. Please remember also, that although the articles are starting again, numbers wise, there are 12 from last year available as well.
One of the subjects I cover in the weekend course is grip and grip width, so I’ll touch on some of that now.
There are a lot of myths and mumbo jumbo out there!
Item one… the wider you go with a Lat (Latissimus) Pull down the better… rubbish! If you go wide (for most people except those with VERY long arms) you will decrease the range of motion/travel. Logic says the more distance you shift a load the greater amount of work you do… simple, but often over-looked. I will post a pic of an INCORRECT width grip. The lady in the picture, would get much more benefit by closing the distance. Whilst we’re on the topic of the lat Pull Down, I see regularly people advocating an advanced upper back curvature to engage more, well in my book, why would you contort your body way out of its correct posture? You’re only going to encourage incorrect posture.
Now let’s look at the Carrier Position; The carrier position refers to some (like me) who when the stand with their hands by their side palms facing backward, all looks normal, however, as soon as I turn my palms facing forward, my forearms point angularly outward and way out from the former position and nowhere near my side. The ramifications of this are that if I were to try a reverse grip deadlift, I would be way of centre on one arm. I also find if almost impossible to perform a barbell curl if I use a straight bar. The ‘Easy Curl’ (bent bar), was invented for people like me! I’ll post two pics to illustrate that.
Another myth; partial reps target a specific part of a muscle… not even logical again. Essentially Muscles are like Bungy Cords and only attach at each end. They stretch and contract evenly, just like the muscle, so I cannot pinpoint an area along it’s length to stretch differently!
Bench Press (please excuse my feet position in the pic, the photo was done to illustrate the bar height, compared to the chest). People will say ‘nipple height’, good luck on that one when training females! They will say bar to chest and then straighten your arms, straightening the arms is fine, but the bar will not always go to the chest safely if the lever lengths (your arms) are of an insufficient length before the humeral head (think the top of the arm where it meets the shoulder) starts to partially dislocate. Over many years of benching there will likely be shoulder aggravation.
Squatting is another mal-aligned exercise and needs careful attention adhere to a vertical shift of load. Angular bar motion during the squat (the bar losing it’s vertical trajectory), not only increases the risk of injury but decreases the efficiency of the exercise and certainly detracts from the vertical jump outcomes often required.
A last thought I’ll leave you with… the abdominal muscles are part of the core mechanism, not the only part. You can get strong abdominals and balanced core, by NEVER doing a crunch, sit-up or traditional Ab exercises!
Bye for now, I’ll look at ‘Scope of Practice’ in my next article. Where Trainers claim to be able to, (one example), write nutrition and dietary advice… but are not qualified Nutritionists or Dietitians!
Clive Rodell has been a surfing friend and fitness guru of mine for quite a long time now and an expert in the field of fitness and training methods.
Do your self a favor and contact Clive for any information and advice