This week we're sharing a new exercise that we've created at Vital that trains "pushing" of the upper body.
If you check back to our instagram, and previous posts on the foot (see bright blue backgrounds around the time that COVID-19 hit to find them), you will remember that we started explaining the outside edge pressure concept with the feet.
"The arch-itecture of the lateral longitudinal arch (outer edge) of the foot is that it is strong and long and intended to take large amounts of force.
When you collapse into your inside arch of your foot, it affects tissues up the chain too (creating knocked knees, excessive pronation, and internal rotation to name a few).
To help avoid that, keep pressure on the outside edge of the foot during an exercise like a squat. With pressure on the outer edge, and the inner arch keystone high and strong, alignment of joints might stack nicely."
When keeping an outside edge pressure on the foot, the arch is in a better, more supportive position, which sets off a chain reaction of tibial external rotation, femoral external rotation, and a better advantage of the glutes in the posterior chain. We find, often, clients with hip, knee, or ankle pain, tend to mis-rotate one of the three joints in this chain, making for a new chain reaction like pronation, tibial external rotation and femoral internal rotation (with knee genu valgum as a result).
Can this concept apply to the upper body too?
“Hands and feet tend to get neglected relative to our other body parts.
Good swimmers use the rotation of their hands to maximize the effective work they do in the same way rowers will move their oars through the water ...and the same way a punch involves a rotation of the fist.
Maybe think (and better - feel) where pressure on the “inside” and “outside” edge of your hand pulls you
Like the feet there are neurological, fascial, & muscular distinctions between the “inside” and “outside”
Does your training account for this reality?"
With the upper body, in a push up as a basic example, if you collapse to the inside edge of the hand (essentially pronation for the upper body), there is an up-the-chain effect. The radial and ulnar bones will tend towards internal rotation, the humerus bone will tend towards internal rotation, and the scapula will tend to drift into elevation, activating the upper trap and supraspinatus, rather than allowing the scaps to stay flat and strong, centered on the back.
Try these outside edge pushups using these key coaching points:
1. The spine is straight from the sacrum to the back of the head. Hips are posteriorly tilted and the scaps sit flat on the spine to complete the straight line. It helps to use a dowel on the back for first-timers.
2. Keep hands just under or just under and slightly outside of your shoulder joints.
3. Start at the top of the pushup, create outside pressure on the hands, and lower yourself towards the ground without losing the coaching points from #1.
4. Ensure elbows point behind you rather than to the side walls.
Sign up today for our newsletter and stay connected with the Vital crew for more awesome information! Just create a profile above, and you're in!