Saturday, November 15, 2008

Stand UP (or lie down) to work out

Over at iamgeekfit, there's a wee piece on why just about any position besides seated is a good idea for working out - especially if you're concerned about your low back health.
Now you might say well rowing is seated, but back researcher stuart mcgill has an article that should be out soon on this point relative to spine work:
Fenwick, C.M.J., Brown, S.H.M., McGill, S.M. (accepted March 2008) Comparison of different rowing exercises: Trunk muscle activation, and lumbar spine motion, load and stiffness. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research.
And let's face it, rowing's most common complaint/injury is the lower back. Cycling too? Well most experts who work with cyclists/rowers may tell you the problems there are poor technique or overuse rather than something fundamental to the posture.

Indeed, the inspiration for the above post is McGill's work in the Ultimate Back Fitness book about the problems with being seated - for anything. What we may take from McGill's work on sitting=bad is that for resistance training and sports work, there are so many alternatives to sitting, that it begs the question, why *train* seated? There seem to be way more benefits overall to carrying out those military presses standing rather than seated; that chest press prone, rather than seated, that considering the issues with the posture, it's hard to defend.

And for any posture, if you have pain, please don't move into it. There are alternatives! may i recommend dynamic joint mobility work like zhealth?

Happy training!


Unknown said...

"Sitting=bad." Great. I have serious back pain and the thing that bugs me is sitting. I'm a writer! :o( I'll have to work standing up like Hemmingway.

dr. m.c. said...

Hi Lisa in CA
thanks for dropping by.

So sorry to hear about your pain - i can relate.

You may want to check out if there may be some movement patterns that are impacting your back. If so there are a bunch of z health trainers in CA

and quite a few Functional Movement Screen specialists in CA too

It can really help when moving OUT of pain.

good luck!
please let me know how it goes


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