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Posterior Chain Mobility Program

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This program is designed for those who are lacking range of motion in global flexion  (touching your toes).

If you have good range of motion here, put your focus on another area where you are restricted.  If you are not sure what you should be working on, schedule a quick mobility assessment with a coach here or visit with us about it before or after class.

If during your toe touch test, you experience pain while performing the test, regardless of range of motion, consult with a physician.  

Pain is likely present:

  1. In the back at any point during the test or laboring to return to standing.  In extreme cases, there will be pain and a decrease in range of motion.
  2. In the hamstrings.  This is usually experienced as a sudden onset.

If you experience pain during the test, follow these guidelines in the gym:

Avoid: 

  • All painful movements
  • Hinging
  • Loaded Squat Patterns
  • Olympic Lifts
  • Rowing
  • Toes to Bar
  • Burpees
  • Sit Ups
  • GHD movements

Proceed with Caution: 

  • Unweighted squatting patterns
  • Running
  • Light Carrying
  • Biking
  • Double Unders
  • Box Jumps

Safe to Perform: 

  • All non-painful movements
  • Strict pressing patterns
  • Strict pulling patterns

Retest every 7 days 

  • If pain worsens, refer to a practitioner
  • If pain persists, continue to follow the rules above
  • Once pain free, re-introduce formerly painful movements

Once you are pain free: 

Re-introduce strength training

  • Start with 50% of weight used the month before injury
  • Always utilize “slower down faster up” tempo
  • Increase weight by 5-10% per week as long as the athlete is improving and pain does not return

Reintroduce Conditioning

  • Scale weights to at least 50% of weight used the month before injury
  • Increase weight by 5-10% per week as long as the athlete is improving and pain does not return
  • Emphasize form and movement over intensity

If you display a limited range of motion that is pain free OR there is tension in the calf without pain, make the following modifications:

Modifications for Athletes with Limited Range of Motion:

  • Deadlifting from blocks
  • Substitute Romanian Deadlifts for Conventional Deadlifts
  • Perform Olympic Lifts from the hang

Use caution when hinging from the floor. Athletes with limited range of motion on this assessment may have trouble getting into a proper position. Modify by training from the hang or pulling from blocks while you work on improving length.

Note: If experiencing a strained hamstring on one side, unilateral leg movements on the healthy leg are a green light.

 In addition, follow the posterior chain mobility program below, which includes 10-15 minutes of mobility homework that is to be done every day. 

Most or all of this mobility work can be done at home, but if you need to use a band, barbell, foam roller, etc. feel free to stay a couple minutes after finishing a workout at the gym and get in your mobility homework.

If you consistently follow this program, you will likely see great improvements in your range of motion, which leads to stronger, more pain-free deadlift, olympic lifts, kettlebell swings, etc.

Posterior Chain Mobility Program

Monday 

  • Sciatic nerve flossing for 1 minute per leg before and after working out
  • Seated straddle pose x 2 min
  • Pigeon Pose x 2 min/side
  • Foam roll upper and lower back, lats, and gut  x 2 min each

Tuesday

  • Sciatic nerve flossing for 1 minute per leg before and after working out
  • Eccentric Ankle Dorsiflexion 3×10/side
  • Banded Shoulder Distraction x 2 min/side
  • Foam roll glutes, hamstrings, calves x 2 min each

Wednesday

  • Sciatic nerve flossing for 1 minute per leg before and after working out
  • 3 way hamstring stretch x 30 sec each/leg
  • Pigeon Pose on Box x 2 min/side
  • Foam roll upper and lower back, lats, and gut x 2 min each

Thursday

  • Sciatic nerve flossing for 1 minute per leg before and after working out
  • Eccentric Ankle Dorsiflexion 3×10/side
  • Banded Shoulder Distraction x 2 min/side
  • Foam roll glutes, hamstrings, calves x 2 min each

Friday

  • Sciatic nerve flossing for 1 minute per leg before and after working out
  • One leg hamstring stretch on bench x 2 min/side
  • Lying Figure 4 stretch against wall x 2 min/side
  • Foam roll upper and lower back, lats, and gut  x 2 min each

Saturday

  • Sciatic nerve flossing for 1 minute per leg before and after working out
  • Eccentric Ankle Dorsiflexion 3×10/side
  • Banded Shoulder Distraction x 2 min/side
  • Foam roll glutes, hamstrings, calves x 2 min each

Exercise Library

Sciatic Nerve Flossing

Seated Straddle Pose

Pigeon Pose

Foam Roll Upper Back and Lats

Foam Roll Low Back, Sides and Gut

Eccentric Ankle Dorsiflexions

Foam Roll Glutes Hamstrings and Calves

3 Way Hamstring Stretch w/ Band

One Leg Hamstring Stretch on Bench

Lying Figure 4 Stretch Against Wall – Keep your butt in contact with the ground

Banded Shoulder Distraction