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Bottoms Up For Better Shoulders

The nature of the clients that come to Wild Geese for training means that they’re the type of folk who see physical limits as challenges rather than actual limitations.

This means I get people coming to me with all sorts of injury issues.

A very common injury site is the shoulder, especially with our Rugby, BJJ and MMA guys.

That's me, checkout the clavicle on the left of the image (it's my right)

That’s me, checkout the clavicle on the left of the image (it’s my right)

So we have developed a fairly good system of training to get these guys back in the game at the same level, or where possible, better than they were when they got hurt in the first place.

Of course the Anatomy in Motion based Postural Assessments go a long way towards this.

Anatomy in Motion in action

Anatomy in Motion in action

But it’s only part of the equation.

In my mind rehab, prehab and training are simply points of view rather than separate entities.

So once an athlete or client comes into me and we get the assessment done, we can use that info to speed up the rehab their physio has already given them and then get them into some proper training.

There’s rarely an injury case that stops all training. We can always fond some way to improve the body and stimulate growth, and since the bodies response to training is largely hormonal in nature. And hormones are carried in the bloodstream through the whole body, the act of training one part of the body can speed healing in another.

Pretty cool eh?

One of the biggest things we find in our shoulder specific work is the use of the Bottoms Up Kettlebell grip.

This essentially means we’re holding the kettlebell upside down, which is inherently unstable and asks the lifter to work pretty hard to simply to keep the bell upright and balanced.

Now, bottoms up kettlebell work is usually touted as a grip training tool.

I disagree.

Over gripping the Kettlebell to balance it robs you of the opportunity to stimulate the rotator cuff muscles adequately.

This video expands on that point:

So one of the very first of the Bottoms Up Kettlebell Exercises we may introduce to the client is the Waiters Carry.

This is an easy exercise to cheat, especially with excess muscular tension.

The point of this, and all the Bottoms Up Drills, is not to generate excessive tension through conscious control, but instead encourage the muscles to fire reflexively in a natural manner.

So pay attention to the details presented in this video clip:

Adding a few sets per arm of bottoms up waiters carries to your warm ups are a great addition to your upper body workouts.

Play with these, use less weight than you think you you can handle and listen to the body.


Dave Hedges

And for a detailed look into the Kettlebell Swing, click here:

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