In this episode I talk about one tool that will help you customize exercises for your specific situation. Take your health into your own hands and use this tool to your advantage.
Core Balance Podcast. Episode 79.
What do you think your body would look and feel like if you continue 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.
Hello and welcome to the podcast. So good to be here and I'm so glad you are here as well. Today I want to give you a tool that will really, really help you modify exercises as needed. So if you are doing a workout and let's say you are doing a compound exercise – a compound exercise basically means that you are working more than one joint at a time. For example a bench press is a compound exercise because you are moving the shoulders and the elbows at the same time. A bicep curl is not a compound exercise because you are only moving the elbow. There's no shoulder, there's no other joints that are moving. So that's an isolation exercise. So just so you know what we are talking about here.
If you are doing a compound exercise, a bench press, a squat, a row, a pull up, a lap pull down, anything like that where you are doing multiple joints, each of those because, just because of what it is, it's a compound exercise. Each of those is able to be broken up into parts. So we actually are able to take something like a squat, break it up into parts and so if there's part of the squat that you are not able to do we focus on an isolation movement that enables you to be able to do that compound move. For example if you are squatting down, you are bending your knees, you are bending at the hips, your ankles have to flex a little bit, your back has to stay in extension, all these things happen if you are starting to squat and all of a sudden your back starts to round, that's the one isolation move that we can start to focus on is that back positioning.
So your legs might be fine, your ankles are fine, your knees, your hips, everything is good but that back is rounding. So if I were to watch you do a squat and that happens I would say all right let's take a little break, let's take a tangent as we call it, kind of a detour and we need to work on these couple of exercises to start to engage your back muscles, start to teach you how to find those back muscles so that you can engage them and then we need to work them a little bit and then we will come back to the squat as kind of a test afterwards.
So every compound exercise has the ability to do this. For example if you are doing a pushup and you can't keep your shoulders in the right position. Maybe your elbows are you know pressing and relaxing, pressing, and that's just fine but your shoulder position, you know your shoulders are hiking up toward your ears or something else like that. In that case we could do shoulder isolation movements so every compound movement will tell us exactly what is deficient, what movement is deficient if we just know what to look for.
And you can even do this on yourself too. If you are doing a movement like let's stick with pushups here. You are doing a movement like pushups that involves the chest muscles, the front of the shoulder, the triceps, the abdominals and then all the way down the leg as stabilizers you know the abs the quads and the glutes as stabilizers, you can first step is you know that this is a compound exercise, there are multiple body parts, there are multiple muscles working and then let me take the next step and isolate those body parts one at a time so that they are all awake and they are all fired up and they are all ready to go. And then I can do the pushup to end. So the general direction – the general sequence is isolate then integrate. The first part of your exercise is, the first part of your workout is isolation moves and then gradually you start to integrate.
And again integration, the integration is harder so we need to isolate and kind of prep your body for that integration. The way I see it visually is it's almost like a family tree. The integration exercise or the compound exercise is like the grandparent and you know there are not that many, there are not that many exercises that are compound and but you have a lot of kids and grandkids kind of branching off of that grandparent and those are the isolation exercises. So and those are all the exercises that will make you better at that grandparent exercise. So if that makes sense visually that's a good way to represent that. So bottom line is if you are ever attempting any exercise and you know it's a compound exercise then you are going to need some kind of prep to get you there and it helps just to break that compound exercise into its parts. So ask yourself what are my ankles doing in this exercise. What are my knees doing? What are my hips? What are my shoulders doing? What is my back doing? And isolate each of those movements and create prep exercises in order to get you into those compound exercises.
Still have questions, ask me on Facebook and I may answer your question in a future podcast. Visit facebook.com/mycorebalance.
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, let's 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)