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Sunday, 13 August 2017 00:00

Barbell at 9 a.m.


What’s Next

Now we’ll take a break from so much barbell focus and move on to a Gymnastics Cycle.  Gymnastics meaning bodyweight movements like pull ups, toes to bar, handstand push ups and wall walks, pistols, dips, muscle ups, etc.  You do not need to be able to do any of these movements to participate. Modifications and “levels” will always be provided.  This is still a part of our “strength” focus for the year (if we look at the year in terms of the Open being the end game) which means we are trying to get stronger with our bodyweight movements.  Closer to the Open, we begin to focus on muscular endurance, unbroken sets, and cardio. 


What you can expect:

-Strict Pull Ups: You should really have a strict pull up before you begin kipping pull ups.  If you’ve got strong strict pull ups, some times there will be the option to do them weighted. If you do not have a strict pull up, you will continue to challenge yourself with less bands or difficult ring rows.  A very important note: Volume is important. If you can only do 1-3 strict without assistance, you should do them but then continue to get volume with a band. What’s better? Doing 3 strict pull ups in a day or doing 15 and you use a light band for some of them. 

-Body control work: Your core and you body awareness is very important for gymnastics.  There will be accessory work that will include hollow holds, muscle activation, progressions etc.  If you cannot hold a proper hollow body position, that is your first goal. Shoulders off the floor, arms by your ears, feet 6 inches up, legs together, toes pointed and, very important, lower back pressed against the floor. Someone should not be able to slide their hand under your lumbar while you hold a hollow body.

-Progressions: You may not be on your way to a muscle up quite yet but on some days we will ask that you try a progression on rings (no worry, it won't be to pull yourself up, more like different types of ring rows/dips)  There are progressions for pistols as well and you will note what level you are at and if you are ready to do the RX movement or if you will scale with one of these progressions. Pistols put a lot of pressure on the knees and lower back. Even if you can “squat” below parallel on one leg, if you are on your toe, your back is overly rounded, and your knee is tracking in, it is more productive to do a progression and learn the correct movement.

-Shoulders: We will be doing shoulder lifts with barbells and dumbbell because gymnastics is mostly shoulders. 


What you need to do to help yourself and get the most out of this cycle

-EXTRA mobility to keep your shoulders healthy and forearms loose.  One thing I highly recommend everyone starts doing is T-spine mobility. If you do not know what this means, ask a coach asap so they can show you how to do it properly. 

-Take care of your hands.  Remove calluses. Moisturize when not at the gym.  Don’t go crazy on the chalk, that makes you rip more.

-Scap strength for shoulder stability.  Band pull aparts, LIGHT WEIGHT reverse flies and lateral arm raises should be done pre WOD.  Some stability exercises will be given post WODs also.  

-Core stability: We do a lot of this at the gym but if you know your core stability is week, start practicing extra hollow holds and plank holds.  I’m not talking about sit ups and GHD sit ups.  We’ll still do those. You need to work on keeping your body rigid while other factors try to work against it.  One check you might want to do is ask a coach if you do a HSPU with a lose core and over extended back. This is incorrect and something you should fix during this cycle.  Makes the movement easier if your core is strong!



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