Midline Stability in the Overhead Position

Movement Rx’s Ray Regno is also the owner and head trainer at CrossFit Stronghold in San Diego. In this edition of Midweek Mobility, Ray talks about better midline stability in the overhead position and the importance of developing neuromuscular awareness and control of the spine.

Ray offers three simple drills to improve the overhead position:

1. static overhead holds
– Unloaded or with PVC
– Can progress to empty or slightly loaded bar as you get better
– hold your hands/pvc/bar directly over head. hands, shoulders, hips, and heels should all be in alignment.
– use a wall or pull up rig pole as a target. draw your rib cage down bringing your lower back close to the pole/wall
– 3 sets of 10 seconds

2. STRICT pull ups
– Keep rib cage locked down
– Point your toes and stay as long as possible. global tension will help distribute the load and keep midline engaged
– 3 sets of max reps. rest 2-3 min between sets

3. wall walk / handstand hold
– Focus on staying as straight as possible as you ascend the wall. No piking (bent hip with butt sticking up) and no saggy hips
– Go only as high as you can maintaining a straight line with your body. This is your “top” position. The closer your hands get to the wall, the harder it gets.
– Hold your “top” position for 3 sets of 15, 30, 45, or 60 seconds
– Example: do 3 sets of 15 seconds at your top position with 2 min rests. next week, move up the progression to 30 seconds, then the next week 45 seconds, etc.
– Get closer and closer to the wall as you feel more comfortable and are able to stay tight
– ultimate goal is to be able to do toes and nose with a straight spine

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