Lack Back Mobility for The Overhead Squat? Try This...
A regular squat can be hard for many to get correct - the symmetry, stability and number of joints involved puts immense strain on the body and nervous system, making it difficult to perform well if the required mobility is not present in the athlete.
This drill can help you gain better mobility and control of the arms above head whilst simultaneously squatting - this helps massively with hip/knee stability, spinal strength and general power output for example in jumping.
Steps to do this safely:
1. Hold at yoga wheel at your back and lift your feet one by one onto the wall - use your heels and toes to create glute and knee engagement.
2. Extend the elbows above head, using external rotation at the shoulders and a retracted scapula (bar optional).
3. Push the feet into the wall using the knees/glutes and push the butt towards the floor while rolling backwards a little down your spine.
4. Squeeze the muscles of the spine to extend it horizontally while you roll slowly backwards, puffing your chest out.
5. Keep your arms and spine in alignment.
6. Keep knees behind toes (positive shin angle) to maximise glute engagement, while pushing the butt to the floor and the shoulders up and behind.
7. Hold your weight/poise in your upper abs, drawing your diaphragm into your ribs while you push your chest out.
Ricky Warren is a calisthenics coach, mobility specialist and MMA instructor. He is the founder and head coach of Bodyweight Gurus, a group of movement practitioners who hold UK wide workshops designed to create better movers.