Over the past few weeks we have discussed the screening process all our members go through during an initial evaluation and at all re-exams. Today we will talk about the push up. This may bring back nightmares of middle school and high school fitness tests, or "boot camps" complete with sloppy reps, burning muscles, shoulder pain.
In reality, "The "Push-Up", or Trunk Stability Push Up is used as a basic observation of reflex core stabilization, and is not a test or measure of upper-body strength. The goal is to initiate movement with the upper extremities in a pushup pattern without allowing movement in the spine or hips.
Extension and rotation are the two most common compensatory movements. These compensations indicate the prime movers within the pushup pattern incorrectly engage before the stabilizers.
The push-up movement pattern tests the ability to stabilize the spine in the sagittal plane during the closed kinetic chain, upper body symmetrical pushing movement” (Cook, Movement, p. 100).
After determining whether or not you can complete the push up screen, (ie is there pain, is there any strength issues, does the body come off the floor as a unit) we assign certain "resets" to accompany you in your quest to perform a pushup with physical integrity.
These "resets" help address some of the reasons you may struggle with this screen, such as:
-Limited performance during this test can be attributed to poor reflex stabilization of the core.
-Compromised upper-body strength or scapular stability – or both – can also be a cause of poor performance during this test.
-Limited hip and thoracic spine mobility can affect a client’s ability to achieve the optimal start position, also leading to poor performance during the test.
(Cook, Movement, p. 100).
If you find yourself struggling with push ups, trunk stability, core strength etc, these "resets" are a fantastic way to improve upon the limitations you may have in your body. Simply improving hip and upper back mobility in addition to increasing stability in the shoulders will do wonders for your body.
You can learn all about how "Pressing Reset" can change your life Saturday November 11th at our 4th Original Strength Pressing Reset Workshop. Its fast, simple, repeatable everday and works to make you a more complete pain free human.