Sunday, June 19, 2011

Underactive Glutes

Ok, so I want to talk about something today that affects a lot of people in a lot of different ways.

It's your asses. Collectively, they suck.

As I said in my older post, we sit. . . we sit a lot. If you look at the evolution of human beings, up until recently we were very active creatures. Think about the stories your grandparents told you. Think about how physically active they were. The dramatic change that has taken place to humanity in the last 100 years is unbelievable. We no longer need to tend to horses, or rely on riding them to get to our destination. We have no need to grow our own food, because with a simple phone call, we can have almost anything we want delivered to our houses. There is no need to go outdoors and play, since we can talk to people from across the world with a simple headset and some online gaming.

Here at All Canadian Fitness, I have had clients walk through my door that only move from the sitting position to go from their house, to their car, to their desk, back to their car, and back to the couch. This, my friends, is a big deal. We are shutting off our butts. We are keeping our glutes in this "stretched and relaxed" position for dozens of hours a week. I try to educate clients all the time on the benefits of just simply getting up out of their chairs and walking around from 5 minutes out of the hour. Now, that's not enough to fix everything that has gone wrong from years (sometimes decades) of prolonged sitting, but it's a good start.

Let's start by first looking at everything so far that I have seen come from this constant position of hip flexion.

Low back pain
Sciatic nerve pain
Hamstring cramps or pulls
Anterior hip clicking
Piriformis syndrome
Excessive lumbar curving

It causes pain while sitting, pain while sleeping, pain while walking, pain while running, pain with exercise - Let's just say a lot of things stop working when you sit on your butt all day.

But, today is your lucky day. . For only 3 INCREDIBLY easy payments of $66, I will let you in on all of the secrets.. ok, screw it, I hate people like that. See below for the 2, yeah just 2 exercises I want you to start doing, TODAY that will make this pain you are having slooowwwwlly start to disappear.

#1. There are 2 things wrong with sitting for long periods of time. First the muscles in the front of your hips tighten, and based on a simple concept called reciprocal inhibition, your glutes wont fire correctly. Simply put - if the muscles in the front are tight, the muscles in the back are much harder to fire. So, we need to loosen them up. This is a simple stretch that you can do anywhere, at any time. Just remember to keep your upper body tall, and only lean until you feel a nice stretch in the front of that back leg. Once you feel it, contract your glute on that back leg and brace the muscles in your core like you are going to take a punch. Hold this for 30-40 seconds on each side. Build up to 1 or even 2 minutes.

#2. Now that you have loosened up your hip flexors, take a minute and fire up those glutes. Yeah.. I pick pictures of hot chicks.. don't judge me. It's either that, or sweaty half naked men.
I want you to really try and feel this exercise in your glutes. If you feel it a bit more in your hamstrings, bring your feet out just a bit more from your body. Hold each lift at the top for 2 seconds - and do 10 repetitions. Make sure to push from your heels.

Do these 2 simple exercises when you wake up, at your workplace at lunch (close the blinds in your office, air humping is frowned upon in most professional establishments) and before you go to bed. These will start you on your path to healthy, functioning glutes.

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