Most of you will all be wondering why I have chosen to feature a complex strength exercise on a Yoga Blog site, but it is because, as a yoga practitioner and avid student in the art of movement, I have come to appreciate the common similarities between strength and grace. It all boils down to intention and state of mind. Over the past several years, I have focused my attention and intention on implementing different tools into my Yoga/Movement morning practice and I have found that a few specific exercises stand out. Some include patterns with a light club bell and others with a light kettle bell.
Understanding the importance load and strength have towards optimal vitality can help you adapt, become more versatile and more agile in many traditional yoga postures. The 1 Arm KB Swing Snatch can be a great tool for developing more strength for inversions, hand stands and isomeric, static postures in the overhead and mid range positions.
Today, I would like to feature a few of those movements; one in particular – the 1 Arm KB Swing Snatch.
The KB swing to snatch is a fundamental exercise in building strength endurance, but did you know that it is also a great exercise tool for strengthening your fascia system? The KB snatch requires a certain level of precision as there must be the availability of both tension and relaxation for the the acceleration and deceleration phases to move optimally. Below is a step by step approach to ensuring the health and safety of implementing this beautiful exercise into your strength/endurance routine. Or if you are like me, just adding a few reps per day into my daily movement practice.
1. Screen: Establishing a baseline for this exercise is critical to ensure shoulder health and minimizing risk. Ensure that the client has adequate shoulder mobility first, as well as thoracic mobility.
- Screen 1: Shoulder mobility screen – The FMS Shoulder Mobility Screen or Apley Scratch Test is a great test to ensure a client has optimal movement at the shoulder. Checkout the Functional Movement Systems for their shoulder mobility screens.
- Screen 2: Lumbar Lock Thoracic Spine Screen – This test can ensure the client has adequate mobility and symmetry in their t-spine. Because of the single arm rotational stress this applies to the spine and shoulders, you want to ensure the client has the avaliable range first. Checkout this video: https://youtu.be/7OHMFPVZYOI
2. Mobilize: Choose appropriate mobility drill based on the screening. The T Spine Rotations Bow and Arrow is a great option. Checkout this video for variations on this drill.
3. Stabilize: Choose a stability drill that can offer versatility and reflexive control. A corrective approach to the TGU is a great option. Breaking down the posts can help build stability of the shoulder and postural muscles by offering a variety of loaded positions. Check out our blog piece here for a full breakdown.
The value of the aacceleration phase offers immense benefits in driving power from the ground up. The hip drive engages the posterior chain, but also promotes extension, under tension of the deep front line and spiral line; while simotaneously counter balancing rotation of the load. Much like winding up a spring and stacking the joints, the deceleration phase then unwinds the spring by elogating the tissue while still under tension.
The value of the deceleration phase offers immense benefits in eccentric strength endurance; specifically benefiting the deep back line and spiral line; while simultaneously creating a level of relaxation under tension as you move from the stacking of the joints into unwinding the natural spiral/rotation we can see in the follow through. This also gives the tissue time to transition back into the winding up, acceleration phase for the next rep.
6. What are the benefits for training the fascia system: Train the tissue, and by tissue we mean fascia. The benefits are endless and can enhance your traditional yoga practice.
- Specific training can enhance the fascial elasticity essential to systemic resilience. Think whole systems integration.
- The fascia system responds better to variation than to repetitive programs.
- Proximal Inhibition can offer additional elongation benefits to activate the stretch reflex. Letting the more distal parts of the body follow in sequence, much like an elastic pendulum.
- Complex movements require reflexive control and adaptation.
- The fascial system is far more innervated than muscle tissue, this offers immense benefits to improved body awareness and opportunity for bio feedback.