In this episode I talk about the benefit of doing a full range of motion in all directions when exercising. It could be the difference between a healthy back and a hurting back.
Core Balance Podcast Episode 53.
What do you think your body would look and feel like if you continued to move like you did when you were a kid? Before fitness became about treadmills and calories? There is a better way. And now you’ve found it. Welcome to the Core Balance Podcast, with your host Chris Janke-Bueno.
Thank you and welcome to the Core Balance Podcast. I’m your host Chris Janke-Bueno. I’m so glad you’re hear. I’m really glad to be here as well. I want to talk about a story from my past.
Back when I was in college, but even before that, in high school when I really wanted to lift weights. I was 14 years old when I started lifting weights. I didn’t really “get it,” I didn’t understand how to lift properly until I was about 24 or 25. About a decade of lifting improperly. One of the things I used to do was these short ranges of motion. I remember I would do a bench press, grab the bar, lay down, and I would do one or two inch movements because that movement helped me to get the pump. It helped me really feel the muscles a lot better. I would feel a burning sensation. I thought the burn was the most important thing in working out. You feel sore. Although those are components, it’s really not the reason you do it. You don’t’ exercise to feel sore.
When I finally realized that the best way to workout is to actually do a full range of motion. And because of this new insight I have actually stopped stretching for the most part. I really don’t stretch other than within the workout. For example with bench press I’ll usually do dumbbell bench press, mainly because I don’t have a spotter. Anyway, if I’m doing dumbbell bench press I will go down all the way down, I’ll let the weight go past my shoulder. This is called the “long range of motion.” Then as I push the weight back up I’m starting to shorten that muscle, so I go through the mid range and then the short range. I originally got this concept from Ben Pakulski. I don’t know if I implement it the same way he does. I use it not only in the strength training exercises, but also in the restorative exercises.
I tell this story because I really want to hit home on the fact that we need to hit every joint’s range of motion fully. And in order to do that we need to know what the range of motion of the joint is. For example, the hip socket is a ball and socket and has a very huge range of motion. There’s a lot of different things it can do. The hip can do flexion, extension, adduction, abduction, internal and external rotation. All these are ranges of motion in the three plains, frontal, sagital, and transverse. Another joint, like the knee for example, is not quite as dynamic. It doesn’t have the range of motion that the hip does. The knee is really designed to do flexion and extension. There’s a little lower leg rotation, but it’s very minimal. It definitely doesn’t have the range of motion.
How can you apply this knowledge. What I would do first is think of your fitness program in terms of which joints are actually working or moving when you’re doing a motion. For example if you’re doing a bunch of bicep curls and tricep extensions, you’re only hitting the elbow, not the shoulder, back, hip, knee. So start with knowing what joint you’re hitting, then ask about what the range of motion is of that joint.
This is what I do: I’m at the point now where I don’t think it’s possible or realistic necessarily. I don’t really want to do this. Work every body part everyday. It’s not always necessary. So to split my routine I will do Monday through Friday workouts. Saturday and Sunday is family time, rest time, eating time. And during the weekend I just let myself kind of relax. But Monday through Friday I do my workouts. I do my splits a little differently than many bodybuilders. Many bodybuilders will do chest, back, biceps, triceps, legs. That’s fine, it works for them. I have found that instead of picking muscles, I found that that best way is to pick which joint you’re working and work all the muscles that affect that joint.
This is good for 2 reasons:
1. It’s simple
2. It’s balancing
Yesterday I did “shoulders.” I didn’t just hit the deltoids. I hit every muscle that attaches to the shoulders: upper back, chest, shoulders, rotator cuffs, and traps. Try this type of workout, it feels great and gives you great results.
Thanks for listening.
I’m doing a podcast per day and I don’t want you to miss any of the action. And if you have any questions visit www.facebook.com/mycorebalance.com. I look forward to answering then in a future podcast.
You’ve been listening to the Core Balance Podcast. I’m your host Chris Janke-Bueno. We’ll talk again next time. Until then, let’s be fit, lets’ be healthy, let’s be happy. It feels good to move, so keep moving.
Stop relying on willpower, motivational tricks, and pump-up strategies and learn how to top into your inner fitness fire with Chris' 60-minute audio book: Ignite Your Fitness Passion (published 2015)
Relieve your back pain with this easy-to-follow video program designed to get to the root cause of your pain: muscle imbalance. Check out the Back Pain Module.
Learn the basic principles that make a successful fitness program with Chris' 60-page book, Functional Strength: The Key To Pain-Free Movement (published 2008)