Why Endurance Athletes Should Care about Deeper Squats
As endurance athletes, we participate in sports that require a relatively limited range of motion. When we run, for example, we move into hip flexion, and we utilize a relatively small range of motion. We should NOT, however, shy away from using our full hip range-of-motion for tasks throughout the day and supplemental training. How can you check to make sure you have the mobility required to use your full range?
Find a wall and rest your butt on it. Walk your feet out about a foot from the wall and place them about shoulder-width apart. Your shoulders and head should also be touching the wall, and you should be maintaining the natural curve in your lower back. With your elbows straight, reach your arms up overhead, and place your forearms flush on the wall. Now, if you can’t get into this starting position, don’t read any further; start working on your posture and shoulder mobility! If you are okay, let’s keep going.
Slowly sit down into a squat, making sure to keep your shinbones vertical (don’t let your knees buckle in), keep the curve in your back, and keep your forearms flush on the wall. As you squat down, if you break form in any position, stop and DON’T GO ANY LOWER. Many of you with really tight hamstrings will find your lower back wanting to flatten into the wall. Those of you with Desk Jobs And Poor Posture (DJAPP) might finds your forearms lifting off the wall; this might indicate some shoulder or thoracic spine restrictions. Wherever you need work, this drill will point you into the direction towards diagnosing it, so you can fix it! Make yourself a better mover so that you can use a full range of motion throughout your day. In turn, you will realize more fluid movement when you run!