This is the time of year that most companies will have huge sales and try to take advantage of the holiday season to get their products out in front of those looking for gifts for their loved ones. With that in mind, I’ll give you my gift suggestions for the Lacrosse player/fan in your life.
First off, an inexpensive, but necessary item is the foam roller. We’ve talked about using the foam roller for a self-myofascial release either pre-workout, pre-game, or as a recovery method.
I also like the TRX. If you’ve seen some of our YouTube, you’ve seen some interesting variations of bodyweight exercises. The TRX is portable and is very versatile.
Bands, like the TRX are portable, and inexpensive as well. You can use them for a variety of exercises either as a warm up or to use as accumulating resistance for another lift.
As for some reading material…
These are for the strength nerds, like myself.
And for the movie enthusiasts…
If you have any other ideas, just leave them in the comments section. We’d be glad to get some other suggestions. Happy Shopping!
Got this month’s Inside Lacrosse today. As usual, I went right to the Fitness Forum. This time I was disappointed in the workout. I understand Reebok sponsors Lacrosse as well as CrossFit. But that doesn’t mean they should go together. CrossFit has it’s place, but I don’t believe it’s a prudent form of exercise for Lacrosse players. Actually, and I’m not the first one to say this, CrossFit is more of a sport than exercise routine. Just as I believe Olympic lifting (Clean & Jerk, Snatch) is its own sport, CrossFit requires a specific skill set which takes time to develop. The Olympic lifts that are prescribed so often in CrossFit takes a very long time to learn to do properly. So long, it can take away from other exercises that allow you to be a better Lacrosse player. So are we training for CrossFit or for Lacrosse? Think about that while I move on…
Certain people have a predisposition for certain sports. Some people are meant to play football and not run cross country. Some are gymnasts and not baseball players. Some are CrossFit athletes and other are just not. There are many videos on You Tube which will illustrate my point. Just do a search for “CrossFit Fail”. There are hundreds of videos giving visual proof that CrossFit is not for everyone. My fear is that Inside Lacrosse is telling the lacrosse community that CrossFit is a viable option to all Lacrosse players. I’m telling you it’s not. Everyone can exercise, but not everyone can do CrossFit.
Over the weekend I had the opportunity to go to a continuing education seminar at Leverage Training Center in Wyckoff, NJ. The group of presenters were people I had never met, or people, I just recently met so I was really going out on a limb by spending my only day off over there. Overall, I was not dissappointed. The presenters all had vastly different topics, so I felt each presentation was fresh. Some of the topics made me think I had to go home to see how I could implement the information into my own practice. But, to me, the best topics are the ones that give you information you could implement imediately. This might be a different topic for every participant, depending on their background or needs. For me, the presentation by Dr. Perry Nickelston, DC, FMS, SFMA, of StopChaisingPain.com gave me information I could use right away.
He discussed movement and how dysfunctional movement could cause pain in certain areas of the body. For instance, knee pain usually is caused by dysfunction in either the hip or ankle, or both. Not the knee. Too many times we treat the pain, not the cause of pain. I’ve heard this before and typically prescribe to this train of thought. Many times, as I’ve written here on this site, I’ve used tools such as a foam roller or lacrosse ball to provide a self myofascial release to muscles I feel have too much spasm to allow normal movement in a joint or joints. What I learned was with each release of a facilitated or spasmed muscle, there is a coressponding muscle that is inhibited, that needs to be stimulated. Dr. Nickelston said this needs to occur within 60 seconds of releasing the faciliated muscle. Without doing this, the released facilitated muscle will just ball up again in time. The relationship is as follows:
Upper Trap (Facilitated)——>Lats (Inhibited)
Iliacus (f)——————->Tensor Fascia Latae (i)
Pec Minor (f)—————–>Mid Trap (i)
Piriformis (f)—————->Adductor Magnus (i)
Quadratus Lumborum (f)——–>Psoas (i)
Calves (f)——————–>Glutes (i)
Hamstring(f)——————>Glute Max (i)
Rectus Femoris (f)————>Tibialis Anterior (i)
The take home message I learned is massaging a faclitated muscle is not enough. I have to stimulate the inhibited muscles as well. And I have 60 seconds to do that. For more information about Dr. Nickelston, or his methods, go to www.stopchasingpain.com.
I just saw a tweet from a player saying “he’s looking forward to training for Lacrosse. YouTube is the best teacher.” UGH. I disagree, and this is from the guy who has multiple YouTube videos below. Videos are great for getting a visual representation for an exercise, or maybe get an idea for a new exercise to liven up the workouts. But it should not be the best teacher. First of all, most YouTube videos instruct on isolated exercises. It takes a human being to come up with the programming to determine the proper weights and exercise variables. Secondly, it takes a coach who knows what they’re doing to watch you do the exercise and make corrections on the spot. A video cannot do that for you. Take videos for what they are…a nice tool to enhance your workouts by giving you ideas and expanding your knowledge base.
This exercise takes a side plank, which requires stability between the trunk and pelvis, and adds a rotational component. Anytime you add extremity movement to a core stability exercise, it makes the stability exercise much more challenging. The goal is to rotate the top hand from pointing directly at the ceiling to underneath the trunk. The extremity on the floor can either be on the elbow or the hand, depending on the difficulty required.
When we warm up before training, we do all sorts of agility, low box, and explosive drills. The lateral hop is one of those drills that you can use not only before training, but also before practice or games. The low hurdles just make things more challenging in this environment, but aren’t necessary. The lateral hop is great for single legged deceleration, proprioception and balance. It’s also a drill commonly used during the later stages of ACL rehab. I believe anything good for rehab should also be used in a training situation as well. A strong and stable knee is a healthy knee.
Sometimes you see an exercise that makes so much sense, you have to steal it. Unfortunately, I can’t remember who I stole this from. It’s either Smitty from Diesel Crew or Mike Boyle from Strengthcoach.com. Either way, this is such a great exercise. I’m not ready to put a bar on the backs of my current crew, so this is the next best thing. The video is a few weeks old. Currently, they are holding a 50 lb dumbbell now for sets of 8 reps. Holding it in this fashion makes the torso remain in a vertical position, so no forward flexion of the spine and a healthier low back, no axial loading of the spine either. Give it a shot for your knee dominant exercise in your program and let me know what you think.
I’m trying to find different ways to accomplish lower body power exercises. We’ve done box jumps and single legged box jumps, lateral jumps and broad jumps. This exercise is a variation of the RFESS using a single legged jump. I like it because it not only stresses the single leg, but it’s also safer than the regular box jumps we’ve been doing. Box jumps gets competitive with regards to box height and sometimes the box is higher than it should be. Missing the jump would mean a scrapped shin or even a face plant. Tough to explain that to a parent. This exercise seems to solve that problem.
Let me know what you think. The comment box is open.