Toes to the Bar?

From a reader ( and a chiropractor)  via email

“I have a a question regarding the movement  “Toes2Bar”.  I have several die hards for patients and despite my best efforts to educate them, they just never seem to be able to wrap their head around the fact that all this lumbar flexion and high volume are causing back injury.  That being said, I wanted to get your take on the amount of lumbar disc loading that might go on during this toes2bar movement.  Personally I have tried them and I do notice my back is sore the next day.  Just wondering if you thought this movement might load the spine less than an actual situp or crunch, similar to the SL situp you advocate.”

My response-

1- I recently heard an anecdotal report about a severe skull fracture from losing grip on Toes-to-the-bar. Most people use momentum to get the last few and if grip fails the results could be catastrophic.

2- Toes to the bar is hip flexion aided by momentum with the hands acting as a fixed point. As many readers know, the  psoas pulls directly on the lumbar spine. This sounds like a prescription for failure. Sahrmann’s straight leg situp on the other hand is a slow controled movement in which neither end of the chain is fixed. Very different.
3- People have always liked the hanging knee up exercises ( toes to the bar is simply a more “advanced” knee up) because they make you sore and sore equates with good. The reality is that the abs get sore from attempting to control the eccentric action of the leg lowering. Not a great concept.
In any case, I’m obviously not a fan. However, it’s a great exercise for the chiros and PT’s out there as it will keep the patients coming.

10 Responses to “Toes to the Bar?”

  1. Altamonte Springs Chiropractor

    Toes to the Bar? | Michael Boyle’s Blog

  2. I think injuries from doing crossfit exercises are very high.

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