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Mobility Cubed: How to Program Your Mobility

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We as strength athletes always seem to think about new programs, assistance work, and other means of ways to adding weight to our lifts. One thing we seem to let fall by the waist side is our mobility and ability to get into the proper positions that our sport entails. I’m by no means a corrective or mobility Nazi, but I will tell you that getting injured or beat up from simply ignoring some simple three minute drill is just ignorant. I love to lift heavy just as each and every one of you, so don’t think I’m trying to blow smoke up your ass, just trust me on this, I have your career in mind.

I’m sure you’ve heard of the recent Cube Method, and if not you need to get out from under a rock. While this program has many great benefits to it, I decided to use its ideology and put a spin on it to increase mobility and improve recovery.

The Basics

This is probably the easiest way I’ve found to “fix” any issues one might have, in as quickly as possible. I know that no one wants to spend months fixing an issue that could have been avoided in the first place, so this is a quick way to get you back to feeling better, or fixing a movement pattern you have needed to address.

What you’ll do is spend three weeks on one of the following programs below, and hit each one three times a day. That’s it! When you do them is completely up to you. What would work best is upon waking, pre workout ,or middle of day (if it’s on off day), and before bed.

Now for the programs I’ve came up with a few different ones that you can use. Here are the programs:

  1. One major area that desperately need attention
  2. Three areas that need attention

They seem similar, but let me outline the difference between the two…
For Program One that emphasized “desperately”, we’re talking about an area that easily gets inflamed, consistently bothers you, or is your ONE limiting factor to getting into position. For example, let’s take your hamstrings. Assuming you tested your (active straight leg raise) ASLR, and you get a score of one, this is exactly what I’m talking about. If your back consistently nags you and you sit for most of the day, and your butt tucks under at the bottom of your squat (assuming you know how to brace your trunk correctly), you’re asking for trouble. This needs fixing ASAP. Jump on this program.

For the second program that emphasizes three areas that just need attention, we’re talking about areas that don’t give you a great deal of trouble, but could have given you trouble in the past, tend to get tight, or just have a hard time getting warmed up before training. Things that I tend to notice that fall in this category for powerlifters are hamstrings, hip flexors, and pecs.
So now what?

Program One

For Program One, we’re focusing on one area. You have three modalities that must be followed, and in this order:

  1. SMR – foam rolling, lax ball, The Stick, any other implement you have
  2. Static Stretch
  3. Mobilize

So let’s go back to our hamstring example from above. In the morning, afternoon, and evening you’re going to perform the following for three weeks straight:

    • Self-Myofascial Release (SMR) – Foam Roll Hamstrings, 1 min each leg
    • Static Stretch – Foot elevated on bed/couch, or bench, 30 seconds each
    • Mobilize – Leg Lowering 1, 8 reps each leg

That’s it!! Add that up, and that’s roughly five minutes each session, so 15 minutes total! Do this for three weeks and see how much better your hamstrings are mobility wise, and how much better your squats are feeling. This was merely an example, and could be done with ANY area you need (hip flexors, pecs, lats, calves, forearms, etc.).

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Program Two

Now for Program Two, you’re going to pick three areas that need some work, but aren’t as bad as the example above. Again, you’re going to perform these three times a day, whenever suits you best. Pick ONE of the modalities below:

  1. SMR – foam rolling, lax ball, The Stick, any other implement you have
  2. Static Stretch
  3. Mobilize

The modality that you picked from above is what you will stick with for all three weeks. Do not bounce around between modalities! You will not see as much improvement, be patient and give it the three weeks, trust me. So using the example from the top of this article (the hamstrings, hip flexors, and pecs) here is what a sample program would look like if we chose the “mobilize” modality:

    • Mobilize Hamstrings – Leg Lowering 1, 8 reps per leg
    • Mobilize Hip Flexors – Hip Flexor Couch Stretch, 10 glute squeezes per leg
    • Mobilize Pecs – Half Kneeling Pec Stick Mob, 10 per arm

Again, that’s all there is to it. This one probably takes even less time, roughly 10 minutes a day at most. You can feel free to swap out any mobility drills or modality that you choose, as long as it works for you. There are plenty of things you can pick up from Mike Roberston to implement.

Closing Up

I want to mention that you still should be doing your typical warm up and foam rolling post workout. This is simply an addition, not a replacement! While you can add one of your three sessions to your warm up, be sure to complete your warm up in full as normal.

Hopefully I’ve given you some good outlines to easily fix some issues you might be having, or if you just want to improve your positioning on any of the major lifts. These programs have a ton of flexibility, and are only limited to your imagination. Give it a try, you’ll only be spending three weeks, and then can simply throw what worked for you in your warm up to maintain the progress you’ve made over the three week period.

If you have any questions or comments, leave them below and I’ll do my best to answer them!

Disclaimer: The medical information provided is, at best, of a general nature and cannot substitute for the advice of a medical professional (for instance, a qualified doctor/physician, nurse, pharmacist/chemist, and so on). The author is not a doctor.

None of the individual contributors, nor anyone else can take any responsibility for the results or consequences of any attempt to use or adopt any of the information presented.

Comments
  1. Squadrocks

    Just awesome

    1. Thanks @lift-e46de7e1bcaaced9a54f1e9d0d2f800d:disqus!

    2. Brandon S.

      Thanks Squadrocks!

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