Monday, February 20, 2017

Exercises to Eliminate Pathokinematics - Part III

Last week we talked about warm-up in some detail and this week we are going to focus on Dynamic stretches.  For the purposes of this blog, we will be covering mostly how this can be used in the clinic or in the gym.  The ACL Play It Safe Program uses some of these same concepts but applies them with sport to ensure maximal carry over in the later stages of rehabilitation or for performance enhancement or as a part of your injury prevention protocol.  We will cover this later in this blog series but stick to the clinical application at the moment.  Most importantly is that the concepts that are taught here should be implemented no matter whether you are doing this on the field or in the clinic. 

Dynamic Stretches:  The purpose of these exercises is to work on the flexibility of the athlete’s hips and lower legs in order to allow him or her the flexibility that is needed to participate in sport and to prevent injury.  Dynamic stretches are also designed to incorporate balance, strength and muscular endurance which will carry over to sport.  It is also critical that technique is strictly enforced.  Allowing athletes to perform the dynamic stretches with poor movement patterns simply reinforces bad movement patterns.  Poor movement patterns that will be carried over to remaining exercises and during athletic performance.

Dynamic Lunge:

Start by lunging out with the right foot, keeping both feet straight ahead.  Do not allow the right knee to go over the toes.  Bring the right elbow to the arch of the right foot, and hold this position for 3 seconds.  Extend the right knee to the straight position while bringing the left heel to the floor (make sure to keep feet and your hips pointing straight ahead).  Keeping the hands on the floor (the goal is to keep the palms flat on floor), hold this position for 3 seconds.  Lunge forward with the left leg while making sure to prevent moving into valgus and repeat the sequence on the left side.  Perform 10-15 yards or 8 repetitions on each side.

NOTE:   Several key positions to be aware of.  When lunging out, the contact with floor is controlled and not slapping the foot and controlling the knee.  With bring the elbow toward the arch of the foot, the thigh is kept in close to the elbow to push hip flexion and the hips are aligned straight and not allowing to roll out.  On side, hip position is maintained straight ahead.  Stride through is critical to control the knee and not allowing to go into a dynamic valgus.

Sumo Squat: 

Starting in a full squat position, grab your toes and pull up with each hand.  While continuing to hold onto your toes, fully extend both knees as far as your flexibility will allow.  Hold this position for 3 seconds.  From your hands on your toes position, walk your hands out to a full push-up position.  From this position, walk on your toes to bring your feet up to your hands.  Hold this position for 3 seconds, return to the starting squat position.  Perform 10-15 yards or 8 repetitions.

NOTE:   As instructed in the video, it is critical to maintain good hip and trunk position and stability during the push-up.  During the toe walk, the knees are kept straight during the entire walk up.      

High Knee Toe Ups: 

Standing with feet shoulder width apart, bring the right knee up toward your chest while grabbing with both hands and pulling to the chest as far as your flexibility will allow.  Simultaneously rise up into a calf raise on your left foot.  Pause and hold briefly.  Return to the starting position.  Repeat with the opposite side.  Perform 10-15 yards or 8 repetitions.

NOTE:  Some key points on technique is to ensure that the trunk remains upright during the hip flexed position.  This results in bringing the knee to the chest and not the chest to the knee.  Also important to make sure you are bringing the knee into straight knee flexion and not in a circumducted position (circular fashion).

Dr. Nessler is a practicing physical therapist with over 17 years sports medicine clinical experience and a nationally recognized expert in the area of athletic movement assessment.  He is the developer of an athletic biomechanical analysis and author of a college textbook on this subject.  He serves as the National Director of Sports Medicine for Physiotherapy Associates, is Chairman of Medical Services for the International Obstacle Racing Federation and associate editor of the International Journal of Athletic Therapy and Training. 

No comments:

Post a Comment