Mobility: More Important Than the Weight You Put On the Bar

How often do we see it? Squatting 250 is the easy part. Bending over to touch our toes, not so much. I’ve recently gotten the opportunity to work with a Masters group, and understanding the importance of mobility, I’ve been able to design warm ups to mobilize problem areas. Below are some of our favorite CrossFit movements, and how to improve mobility to increase our movement efficiency (yes, that may mean putting more weight on the bar!)

  1. Squatting- This includes air squatting, back squatting, front squatting, box squatting, full cleans and full snatches. What limits us? Exhibit A, our hips. (Not so fun) fact, tight hamstrings and tight hip flexors are the most common causes of low back pain. Tight hip flexors also limit squat depth. If this is your struggle, check out these awesome hip mobility drills. Exhibit B, our ankles. More than likely, we lack squat depth because we are trying to keep our feet glued to the ground. Any further down, and POP, the heels are off the floor. OR. Poor ankle mobility could even explain caving knees. If either of these aspects are your struggle, check out these awesome ankle mobility drills.
  2. Overhead Presses- This includes strict presses, push presses, push jerks, snatches, overhead squats, and for the sake of the argument, we’ll even throw in pullups. What limits us? Our shoulders! How often do we do a PVC passthrough, and hit a sticking point and think “Oh yeah, there it is,” and then have to do a little jig to get our shoulders to rotate? Certainly more times than I can count! It only makes sense that our overhead movements are limited by shoulder mobility. That includes our ability to shrug up on the in a push press, or find the rhythm of a good kip. If this is your struggle, check out these awesome shoulder mobility drills. (I will pay anyone who can successfully complete the split exercise!)
  3. Front Racking- Finally, the one you’re really reading this blog post for. I am the exhibit A desk job. Seven hours behind a computer and then you want me to max my front squat. Say whaaaaaaaatt? But here’s the deal, poor wrist mobility is also one of the easiest things in this list to fix! It’s all about repetitions and minor attention to detail. With proper front rack position (and of course a little technique) all of those collar bone bruises go away. Powerfully shrugging up on that barbell keeps your chest proud and your body in an overall upright position. Good positioning = more weight. If poor wrist mobility is your struggle, I present this fabulous article by Camille St. Onge.


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