Anyone who has been to a class at CrossFit Murrayfield knows that I am a huge proponent of mobility exercises.
Why do we need to work on mobility?
- To be more supple allowing us to maintain good form while performing movements in our workouts.
- To help ease any pain we may have from previous workouts.
Spending just 10 minutes a day to improve the mobility of our joints can result in significant pain relief and general health improvements. Start with the three exercises below and as you learn more mobility exercises pick one area each night to work on and you will soon find relief from muscle soreness and aches and pains.
Remember when you perform mobility exercises to test, then mobilize, then retest. This will allow you to notice changes in the range of motion and suppleness of your joints.
Here are three mobility exercises you can do at home:
1. Squat Test
Performing a deep squat is a test of your mobility but also a mobility exercise in itself. See how long you can sit in a deep squat with your feet flat on the floor and your torso upright. Most people only last around 1-2 min before they stiffen up in the hips or shins. This will tell you what area you need to work on. Try and sit in this position every day and notice an increase in how long you can squat without tensing up.
2. Couch Stretch
Many of us spend a lot of time sitting so we are tight in our hip flexors which can lead to back pain. Performing this wee mobilising exercise is a great way to loosen up your hip flexors and quads. With one leg bent in front for stability, put the toes of your back leg up along the edge of a couch (or wall, or plyo box) with your knee on the floor. The more vertical the shin, the better the stretch. Squeeze your bum and press your hip forward to stretch your hip flexors. Hold this position for 3-5 min.
3. Lunge with Hip Drive and Glute Stretch
This is a good exercise for stretching your hip, glutes, lower back and shoulders. It’s more of a dynamic movement than a static stretch. Start with one knee on the floor with your hands under your shoulders. Place the opposite foot up beside your hands. From here you squeeze your bum and press your hip to the floor. Then take the front foot back and over the back leg to stretch your bum and repeat 10-15 times on each side.
Good luck mobilising. Let me know how you get on.