You're almost there - please check your email inbox to confirm your subscription. Knowing the types of exercises available, and the benefits of each form, can help ensure you build the strength, endurance and body that you want. Read more about PROPER SPINAL ALIGNMENT here. Secondly, due to the enhanced proprioceptive feedback, the eccentric isometric protocol allowed my athletes greater ability to implement the various cues I instruct them to utilize, including proper foot alignment, proper spinal positioning, and optimal core recruitment. It’s important to note that strengthening all these phases are key for sports performance as well as to help reduce risk of certain injuries. This is extremely important. 3. means) and approximations of several athletes. Get into a tall kneeling stance. The results above are quite fascinating on multiple levels. Simply put, the enhanced sensory feedback gives them a better sense of feel, allowing them to more easily attend to important external and internal coaching cues. With that said, I employ both variations with my athletes. I'll come right out and say it. Now, while keeping your body in a stacked position from your head to knees, take 3-5 seconds and use your hamstrings to control the movement as you lower your body down to your full range. Based on my preliminary data, I’ve found that incorporating a dorsiflexion position during glute bridges slightly increases hamstring activation, while a neutral foot position (gripping the foot flat on the floor) produces slightly greater glute activation. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean that motor unit recruitment was inordinately high or that a significant training stimulus was elicited. Single Leg Hamstring Bridge is a great exercise that strengthens the hamstrings, glutes, core and lower back.Lunges and squats are known for strengthening the glutes and legs, but many people are prevented from doing them due to knee injuries or other impedements. When you reach your full range, engage your posterior chain muscles and press your body away from the floor and back to the starting position. However, I never use them as a replacement for the basic compound movements but instead as drills to complement the larger foundational exercises. Eccentric Bridge Why: This exercise targets the hamstrings and glutes. To learn more about applying unique posterior chain exercises to your training routine check out my Complete Templates. Additionally it truly engages the smaller muscles that help stabilize the lumbopelvic hip complex. Eccentric exercise isn't something your crazy uncle does, and concentric contractions have nothing to do with childbirth. I’ve literally seen dozens of scenarios where athletes who report little if any activation in their posterior chain, suddenly feel as though their glutes or hamstrings are about to explode simply from correcting their foot and ankle alignment. The bridge is a bodyweight strength training exercise that develops strength in your core. Hamstring Eccentric Exercises Prone Hamstring Curls Cuff weight around ankle Cue for 1-2-3 up and 1-2-3-4-5 lowering Can also do in standing but prone have more control Seated Theraband Hamstring Curls Band around ankle, cue good sitting posture Cue for 1-2-3 pull back and 1-2-3-4-5 relax Again this optimizes the posterior chain activation without compromising natural spinal alignment and postural mechanics. As previously eluded to, one of the most common issues I see on hip thrusts & glute bridges is faulty mediolateral alignment where the individual allows their hips to excessive spread & externally rotate while also allowing their feet to rotate out with zero big toe activation. In other words, when moving into the eccentric stretched position, as the torso is positioned at 45 degrees, the head should match it. Now, I’ve not yet performed an EMG comparison examining hip thrusters and glute bridges with or without foot and ankle activation, or without proper postural alignment for that matter. 26 Best Eccentric Exercises1. In addition, they commonly report that the level of “burn” and lactic acid/hydrogen ion buildup is almost unbearable with eccentric isometric reps. Single Leg Hamstring Bridge is a great exercise that strengthens the hamstrings, glutes, core and lower back.Lunges and squats are known for strengthening the glutes and legs, but many people are prevented from doing them due to knee injuries or other impedements. Imagine a rope is pulling your hips backwards or that you are trying to press your hips back against a wall. This could mean you aren’t performing the hinge properly, or are not engaging your lats. Double leg glute bridge with leg lifts Plank with leg lifts I want to give a special thanks to ATHOS company for providing the EMG body suit. This hip hinging variation strengthens the muscles of the posterior chain. Do not allow your lower back to hyperextend, ribcage to flare, or your torso, spine, or hips to rotate. This also helps to ensure that the athlete is pulling into the eccentric phase with their hip flexors, as the abdominals and hip flexors work together when performing voluntary hip flexion. When in doubt, it’s always better for the toes to be too inwardly rotated than too externally rotated, as more inward rotation helps create additional torque into the floor. It’s this data from which I’ll be reporting my findings. One of the most common errors I see individuals make during posterior chain movements is moving into excessive forward head tilt and kyphotic posture. You should be on the forefoot of your back foot. In fact, if you really want to light up your EMG readings simply contract a muscle in its shortened position and the numbers tend to automatically spike. Initiate the movement with your hips and push them backwards as far as you can. Once you’ve hit the bottom position, use your upper body and press back to the starting position. Eccentric strength is really important for daily functions for example walking down stairs/slopes or lowering objects to the ground. This next exercise is one of the best ways to correct this fault. Read more about ECCENTRIC ISOMETRICS here. From eccentric to isometric, these are the fundamental building blocks of any holistic, full-body exercise program. Eccentric Bridges – Exercise for Hamstring Tendon Problems Brad Beer presents a great exercise for treating hamstring tendon problems - eccentric bridges. Begin by tucking the chin. This is actually a critical component of all proper movement, and is simply what the process should look like during any properly performed glute bridge or hip thruster. #1) Isometric Single Leg Glute Bridge + Negative Band Resisted Straight Leg Raises. Additionally this did not appear to negatively alter posterior chain activation during the eccentric phase. Similarly, in the top concentric position, the head should be perfectly parallel to the floor and inline with the rest of the body, as the natural eye gaze will be looking straight up towards the ceiling. Perhaps he would find similar results or maybe his findings would be entirely different. In terms of anchoring your feet/ankles, you have several options. Similarly, just because the numbers aren’t exceptionally high during the eccentric phase of the exercise doesn’t necessarily indicate that strong straining stimulus was not present. Once the athlete reaches the full stretched position they’ll hold the eccentric isometric for an additional 4-5 seconds. This eccentric component is the most important part of the exercise. Place your shins in a relatively vertical position. Additionally, it may not have been as sensitive to eccentric contractions. This is extremely important. Eccentric Exercises. Straighten your knee, and point your foot towards you (dorsiflex). This exercise also improves grip strength, shoulder and scapular stability (both should remain in a relatively fixed position for the duration of the movement), and lumbo-pelvic stability. 4. Clients are therefore capable of working with greater weight during an eccentric exercise. Lie on your back on the floor. Before examining the utility of eccentric exercises for treating and preventing hamstring strains, an understanding of a common injury mechanism is necessary. 4. Attach two resistance bands around a secure surface and loop each one around your ankle. 1. And yes, all exercises including glute bridges and hip thrusters are performed in barefoot conditions, socks, or minimalist shoes. However, during eccentric isometrics this appeared to be minimized, and also seemed to improve the further the athlete progressed into their set. There should be tension in the band for 100% of the movement. Place your shin in a relatively vertical position, or else your hamstring might take over. If it is more comfortable, you may rest your head on a foam yoga pad. I'm not trying to hype this up to be something more than it is, nor am I suggesting that the results should be taken as the end all, be all of glute training. However, from practical experience I’ve observed some phenomenal and almost unbelievable occurrences when implementing proper foot and ankle mechanics on posterior chain movements. Position your body so the front of the barbell is an inch or so from your pelvis. 1. 5. Tuck your chin, and keep your neck in a neutral position. While keeping your entire body in a fixed position, lower your leg towards the floor. In addition, I had begun playing around with these on myself and my athletes just a few weeks prior to performing the EMG analysis, and the intensity of muscular contractions in the posterior chain were through the roof. During the eccentric phase of the glute bridge the athlete is instructed to actively pull themselves into the stretched position by contracting the hip flexors and core musculature rather than simply allowing gravity to pull them into the bottom position. Eccentric Split Squat (0:42)2. Before you go, take a deep breath in (360 degrees of air around your spine), brace your core (360 degree brace around your spine), tuck your ribs towards your hips (close the space in your midsection), and squeeze your glutes. This is extremely important. Several key findings have been researched regarding the benefits of eccentric training: There also tends to be very little core activation and transverse abs as well as excessive tension to the abductors with little if any activation of the adductors. Another way to think of this is the muscle activation achieved from the eccentric isometrics  (at least in terms of what showed up on the EMG analysis) was semi-delayed, demonstrating increased recruitment only later in the reps once the lifter began to concentrically shorten their pre-stretched and primed muscle fibers. This was perhaps the single most surprising finding for me as I was expecting greater posterior chain recruitment and muscle activation in the glutes and hamstrings during the eccentric phase. 3. That’s because the longitudinal bench setup provides significantly less support thereby producing exponentially greater levels of mediolateral instability. Therefore, more conclusive empirical research is needed, particularly in non-biased controlled settings. Although there was likely increased muscle spindle activation during the eccentric isometric protocol (especially during the eccentric phase of the movement), the increased muscle spindle activation may have acted more as a neural primer of sorts rather than a stimulus for triggering increased muscle activation during the actual eccentric contrition. This exercise is designed to test the eccentric activation of the front leg’s glute. More specifically, this involves keeping the foot completely straight or even slightly inwardly rotated (2-5 degrees inward) similar to proper foot strike when running. For the inner thigh, do the opposite — squeeze the … Therefore I am providing a slightly easier but still extremely effective alternative. 1. Here are some examples of eccentric contraction: Split squat (upward motion) Push up (upward motion) Glute bridge (downward motion) Dumbbell curl (downward motion) Step down (downward motion) Romanian deadlift (using kettlebell, downward motion) Now, I want to go on record as saying that I only used myself and a handful of athletes to compile these results, as this was a very simple and informal quasi investigation, nothing more, nothing less. However, all this changed roughly a year ago when I had the pleasure of receiving an incredibly unique and brilliant training tool from ATHOS in the form of an EMG wearable body suit. 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