Archive for the Low Back Pain Category

7 Days to the MBSC Winter Seminar

Posted in Core training, Injuries, Low Back Pain, MBSC News, Seminars, Strength Coach Podcast, StrengthCoach.com Updates with tags on January 9, 2016 by mboyle1959

The MBSC Winter Seminar is only 7 days away. Have you signed up yet? I can guarantee you that Ana Hartmann’s talk will be worth the time invested all by itself.

Do you know that  being barefoot may be the key to low back health?

Have you ever thought of shoes as “sensory deprivation chambers for the feet’?

Ana’s talk was our best in-service in years and we are bringing her back to MBSC next Saturday to share her info with you. In addition, you’ll get talks from me ( 25 Mistakes, 25 Years), Kevin Carr, and Marco Sanchez as well as a great hands -on afternoon.

Sign up here http://www.bodybyboyle.com/seminar 

How Strong is Strong?

Posted in Hockey, Injuries, Low Back Pain, MBSC News, Strength Coach Podcast, StrengthCoach.com Updates, Training, Training Females, Youth Training on January 5, 2016 by mboyle1959

This is one of my favorite articles…

It’s interesting, ask a strength coach what a good bench press is for a 200 lb male and chances are you’ll get a good answer. Maybe everyone won’t be in agreement but, everyone will have an opinion. Ask a good strength coach what constitutes good single leg strength or good vertical pulling strength and I don’t think you’ll get the same level of agreement or, if everyone will even have an answer. The answer might even be something like “what do you mean?” Last spring and summer I set out to answer both questions. How much single leg strength and upper back strength are actually possible? I think if you are going to train, you need a goal. If we are going to train for strength, we need to know what strong is. The four-minute mile is a great example. In 1957 Roger Bannister broke the four-minute mile. On that day he broke a twelve year old record. By the end of 1957 sixteen runners had also broken the four-minute mile. It’s amazing what someone will do once they have seen that it is possible. Twelve years to break the record and sixteen followers in one year. My goal is to raise the bar on both single leg strength and upper back strength by telling the strength and conditioning world how strong strong might be….

to read the rest click here

Progressing to Bodyweight Plyometrics

Posted in Injuries, Low Back Pain, MBSC News, Strength Coach Podcast, StrengthCoach.com Updates, Training with tags on December 30, 2015 by mboyle1959

If you are a strength and conditioning coach, you know that power matters. Plyometrics, Olympic lifting and medicine ball throws probably are used in some form in your athletes’ programs.

But, what about your adult clients? Did you know that adults need power training as much or more than athletes? Adults are losing strength and power as they age, however power is lost at a much faster rate. In fact, it’s almost twice as fast. (1.7 to be exact). What does that mean in numbers? It means that if you are losing 10% of your strength you would lose 17% of your power? When you double that loss (20 and 34%) you can see how the loss of power is quickly magnified.

So, does that mean we want to get our adult clients doing box jumps and Olympic lifting? Probably not. There is a little concept we call risk-reward or, risk-benefit. The risk of adults starting a plyometric program or trying to learn to Olympic lift may outweigh the reward? Obviously, you are going to have some adult clients that are fit and healthy and simple plyometric exercises may be fine for them.

But what about older clients, or overweight clients? How do we help these folks stop the loss of power and in fact begin to regain it?

To do this we need to defeat our big enemy, gravity. The combination of body mass and gravity can create some real problems when training older clients, overweight clients or clients that combine the two (older and overweight). We need to find a way to get these folks to move with speed but, safely. We need to find a way to reduce both weight and gravity.

totalgym

Sounds a little bit like a high school science experiment, doesn’t it? We can obviously reduce weight with diet but, that takes time. We can fight gravity by gaining strength, particularly in the lower body, but that also takes time.

Thankfully, there are two tools on the market that do in fact allow us to move with speed using loads less than bodyweight. One is the Total Gym Jump Trainer, the other is the MVP Shuttle. Having at least one of these pieces in your facility is essential if you are going to be training adult clients or, doing any type of rehab work.

The two pieces are somewhat similar. Both appear at first glance to be some version of a leg press machine but, they are far more than that. Both pieces actually allow horizontal jumping in an environment that reduces the effect of gravity.  Both also incorporate elastic bands to create resistance. For years, the MVP Shuttle was the only commercial grade piece that allowed jumping in a gravity reduced environment. Total Gym has recently entered the field with a commercial piece that has a few features not present in the MVP Shuttle.  The Total Gym Jump Trainer allows the user to move from a horizontal position toward a more vertical position.   Load can be strictly bodyweight and increased by changing the incline of the machine or, elastic bands can be added in each position. The Total Gym adjusts toward the vertical to increase the percentage of bodyweight being used.

The Total Gym Jump Trainer (as assembled for fitness) begins at 46 % at the lowest angle of 20 degrees and then adjusts up in 7 increments topping out at 78% of bodyweight at an angle of 36 degrees.  Assembled for rehab it begins at 27 % at the lowest angle of 12 degrees and then adjusts up in 7 increments topping out at 66% of bodyweight at an angle of 30 degrees. Up to 70 lbs of bungee can be added to any of these levels.
shuttle

The Shuttle instead remains basically horizontal and increases resistance via the elastic bands.

The result in both cases is that a rehab client, an older adult or an overweight client can begin to jump with loads far less than bodyweight.

Both the MVP Shuttle and the Total Gym Jump Trainer can also be used in a rehab setting to introduce single leg plyometrics to injured clients and athletes. In fact the application of both pieces is probably more limited by the imagination of the coach or trainer than by the machine itself.  An athlete returning from an ACL injury can begin jumps or hops far sooner when one of these pieces are used than would be possibly with bodyweight as the load.

Although I would not consider myself a machine person, I would go so far as to tell you that one of these two tools is an essential machine for every facility.  If you have adult clients, young clients or rehab clients I would encourage you to “test drive” one of these two pieces.

Seeing Is Believing

Posted in Injuries, Low Back Pain, Strength Coach Podcast, StrengthCoach.com Updates, Training on November 30, 2015 by mboyle1959

Here’s another article I wrote back in October for my StrengthCoach.com site

Seeing Is Believing

People lie, even those with the best intentions. This includes most of our clients.

What does this mean? It means that our clients want to work out. When we say Does It Hurt ( my favorite article I have ever written), they lie. However, look at the quote below.

“what you do speaks so loudly I cannot hear what you say” ( maybe an Emerson quote?)

I teach our coaches and trainers to watch clients as well as listen to them. Often times we say ‘did that hurt” and the client responds with a no. The client then walks away rubbing a shoulder, or their back. What they do speaks so loudly that I have to question what they said.

 

To finish reading, click here.

How Strong is Strong?

Posted in Hockey, Injuries, Low Back Pain, MBSC News, Strength Coach Podcast, StrengthCoach.com Updates, Training, Training Females, Youth Training on October 23, 2015 by mboyle1959

This is one of my favorite articles…

It’s interesting, ask a strength coach what a good bench press is for a 200 lb male and chances are you’ll get a good answer. Maybe everyone won’t be in agreement but, everyone will have an opinion. Ask a good strength coach what constitutes good single leg strength or good vertical pulling strength and I don’t think you’ll get the same level of agreement or, if everyone will even have an answer. The answer might even be something like “what do you mean?” Last spring and summer I set out to answer both questions. How much single leg strength and upper back strength are actually possible? I think if you are going to train, you need a goal. If we are going to train for strength, we need to know what strong is. The four-minute mile is a great example. In 1957 Roger Bannister broke the four-minute mile. On that day he broke a twelve year old record. By the end of 1957 sixteen runners had also broken the four-minute mile. It’s amazing what someone will do once they have seen that it is possible. Twelve years to break the record and sixteen followers in one year. My goal is to raise the bar on both single leg strength and upper back strength by telling the strength and conditioning world how strong strong might be….

to read the rest click here

Undulating Periodization and Load Selection

Posted in Injuries, Low Back Pain, MBSC News, Strength Coach Podcast, StrengthCoach.com Updates, Training, Training Females, Uncategorized, Youth Training with tags on September 23, 2015 by mboyle1959

Got a great  question via email after our Certified Functional Strength Coach course in Germany

I’m trying to set up my own peridization model that works for my clients. The problem is that I have no clue at what intensity I should program things like SLDL or RFESS.

I have data for bench, deadlift, chin-up, Over-Head-Press, and Front-Squat. Which percentage of my bench max can I use for the incline dumbell bench press for example?

What about deadlift max to SLDL? So One-Leg to Two-Legs?
Are there any good % from the big“ lifts to use for those single leg Lifts?

First off, great questions I’ll try to answer one at a time. To better understand our periodization model, read this:   Variety in Strength Training

1- Bench to dumbbell incline is the easiest. You need to remember that none of these conversions are perfect but, they work well to start. When we think bilateral to dumbbells we think 80% so for dumbbell bench press take 80 your bench rep max and divide by 2.

Example  100K x 5 in the bench press would be 40K dumbbells. ( .8×100)/2

To go from bench to incline we would again take 80% so the incline number would be 32K. Does that make sense. To make it easy you can do 64% ( 8×8) and divide by two.

2- Deadlift to SLDL and squat to RFESS won’t work as well. In a trained athlete who is experienced with the unilateral lifts there will be some relationships that work but, they will never work for beginners. Our trained athletes could split squat and front squat the same weights?

Ideally RFESS and 1 Leg SLDL will be pretty much equal but, that rarely happens. I like to start with regular split squat first using bodyweight and then progressing to the goblet position and then just use a progressive resistance approach. Think 2-4 K per week.

Hope this helps.

To Clean or not to Clean, That is the Question

Posted in Injuries, Low Back Pain, MBSC News, Strength Coach Podcast, StrengthCoach.com Updates, Training, Training Females, Youth Training with tags , , on September 19, 2015 by mboyle1959

Great article from our free articles section on Why We Still Clean.

As I’ve said over and over, I love StrengthCoach.com because it supplies me with a never-ending supply of article ideas. Recently we had a forum discussion, and then an article, on performing rack pulls versus performing hang cleans as a power development exercise. Some coaches supported the idea of using rack pulls as a substitute for hang cleans; however, at Mike Boyle Strength Conditioning, we remain “clean people”. In fact, we teach all our young athletes to Olympic lift. If you are healthy you will Olympic lift in our system.

to finish click here Why We Still Clean

Can You Gain Mass With Split Squats?

Posted in Hockey, Injuries, Low Back Pain, MBSC News, Strength Coach Podcast, StrengthCoach.com Updates, Training, Uncategorized with tags on July 1, 2015 by mboyle1959

Got this question yesterday?

Q- With using split squats, RFE split squats, etc. instead of back squat or any bilateral lifts besides deadlift; can
you still put on mass successfully?

A- The answer to the question would be “why not”. Do you think the body knows how many legs it on?

One idea that is thrown around is that heavy weights produce an anabolic effect. Although this may be true, I don’t think there is any evidence that the heavy load needs to be applied bilaterally? Do you really think your hormones say “I’ll hold off here, he’s only using one leg”?

Also, hypertrophy in response to high volume bodyweight work can be seen in a number of examples. Distance runners tend to have unusually large calves. Speed skaters and cyclists tend to have large quads. Any female athlete that jumps or sprints tends to have great glute development.

The reality is that heavy loads are not a requirement for hypertrophy and, that light loads might actually work just as well.

In any case I don’t think the body knows whether each leg squatted 150 lbs or, both legs squatted 300. In fact, if we look at bilateral deficit, the average weight per limb might be heavier.

Thoughts?

Do Rear Foot Elevated Split Squats Cause Back Pain?

Posted in Core training, Injuries, Low Back Pain, Strength Coach Podcast, StrengthCoach.com Updates, Training, Training Females with tags , on June 30, 2015 by mboyle1959

I just got back from speaking at the Perform Better Summit in Chicago. In between my talks I took in Stuart McGill’s talk ( he is always one of my favorites and has greatly influenced me).

Recently Dr McGill has been vocal about Rear Foot Elevated Split Squats potentially causing back pain, particularly SI joint pain and as he calls it “pelvic ring” disruption.

We probably use the rear foot elevated split squat as much as anyone and, have not had any increase in SI joint pain or back pain in general. In fact, we switched to the split squat variations in response to back pain from heavy back and front squats.

My theory on why we don’t have back pain from the rear foot elevated split squat is three fold.

1- We use a relatively short stance. A lot of the videos I’ve seen have the rear leg quite extended.

2-  We rarely do more than 30 reps per week per leg. A big volume week for us would be three sets of 10.

3- We never put the bar in a back or front squat position. Positioning the bar this way causes a great deal of lumbar extension which could increase back stress and anterior hip stress. We always use dumbbells of kettle bells.

I think this “idea” is just that and has very little basis in fact. As much I’m reluctant to disagree with Dr McGill I have to one this one.

Early in the week I polled StrengthCoach.com members and couldn’t find one who thought that rear foot elevated split squats had resulted in either them or their athletes having an increase in back pain. Coincidence? I think not.

Thoughts?

MBSC Summer Program Starts Monday

Posted in Core training, Fat Loss, Hockey, Injuries, Low Back Pain, MBSC News, Media, Training, Training Females, Youth Training with tags , on June 12, 2015 by mboyle1959

Our 18th summer program starts on Monday. It’s crazy how time flies. We still have a few spots available for late morning in both Woburn and North Andover.

PS- If you are still in school for another week you can come in the afternoon for a week or two if needed.