How much time do you spend researching the best training practices, improving your program, and learning how to do different movements?
A lot, right?
But how much time do you spend on activities that allow you to move your body through a variety of planes freely? If you’re like most people, not nearly as much as you should.
In this post, you’ll learn what mobility is, why you need a mobility routine, and how to get started with a simple plan.
What Is Mobility?
Before getting into the meat and potatoes of this post, it’s worth spending a couple of paragraphs to explain what mobility is and why you need it.
Mobility is simply a measure of how well you can move your body through various ranges of motion. It encompasses muscle flexibility, joint range of motion, strength, and endurance capacity.
Anatomical differences also play a role in mobility. Certain people are more naturally mobile than others, but we can improve our ability to move freely through space.
A good way for you to understand mobility is to think of a squat. Good mobility would allow you to reach good depth comfortably and produce optimal force, where the lack of mobility can prevent you from squatting much before your heels lift off the floor, and you lose balance.
Mobility: Why You Need a Good Routine
Mobility is a characteristic that works in the background and significantly impacts how your body moves. This, in turn, affects how well you can do different exercises and activities, how safe you can remain, what results you can achieve, and much more.
For instance, poor hip mobility can prevent you from reaching good squatting depth, resulting in less muscle and strength in your lower body.
Inefficient movement patterns further exacerbate problems and contribute to poor mobility. Not activating the right muscles, not having enough flexibility, and not having good posture and alignment all worsen over time and culminate into lackluster results, or worse - injuries.
A good mobility routine is vital for:
- Improving the way your body moves
- Allowing you to engage the correct muscles
- Keeping your balance on a variety of activities
- Keeping you safe and injury-free in the long run
A Sample Mobility Routine You Can Start Doing Right Away
This simple routine will help you work on the spots that typically suffer from a lack of mobility. These are the:
- Stand against a wall and bring one foot forward. Make sure your heels are planted firmly.
- Place your hands on the wall for balance and begin to push through the knee, aiming to get it closer to the wall. Don’t let your heel get off the floor.
- As you press forward, hold for a few seconds and release. Do this five to ten times per foot.
- Stand tall with your feet slightly outside hip-width level, and toes pointed slightly out.
- With your heels in complete contact with the floor, take a breath, and descend into a squat.
- Go down as comfortably as you can and hold the position for ten to twenty seconds.
- Thoracic Spine
- Sit on a chair and place your hands behind your head.
- Bring your chest out and rotate your torso to the left as much as you can. Hold for a couple of seconds.
- Then, rotate your torso to the right and hold that position for two seconds.
- Keep alternating between the two for 30-60 seconds.
- Stand tall and hold a broomstick in your hands with an overhand grip. It should be parallel to the floor.
- Keep your hands as wide as your shoulder mobility allows, and raise the stick over your head.
- Bring it back behind your body as much as possible and hold the position for a few moments.
- Rotate the stick back to the starting position and repeat five to ten more times.