Thursday, 9 April 2015

Body weaknesses test

Majority of young dudes who workout just do what ever they feel is right, hardly taking time out to find out if their workout plan is actually suited to their needs.
You should ask yourself this question at least a week into your regimen, Is your workout improving your body?
This is not just about your biceps or your waistline, but your overall strength, flexibility, and resistance to injury.
Can you touch your hands together behind your back? Can you reach in front of you while holding a plank? 
Even the best workout plans aren’t perfect, they can’t cover everything you need for a balanced, strong, and bulletproof body at once.
Invariably, some muscles are neglected, and that creates imbalances. That’s why it’s important to periodically test yourself and assess what needs work.
Here are three telling tests you can run on your body to identify weaknesses and DIY fixes to correct them fast. 
1. Step-down with Heel Tap
Stand on a box or step that’s 12–16 inches above the floor. Balance on one leg while the other hovers above the ground.
Try to keep your hips level as you lower yourself with your supporting leg until the heel of your other foot taps the floor.
Then, stand back up by pushing through the heel of your supporting leg. Complete 10 reps, then switch legs and repeat.
If you cant do this, its either your hip hikes up or you lose balance. Also note if the knee of your supporting leg drifts inward or outward as you squat down or stand up.
“Inability to do this exercise may mean you have weak or tight hips, which can set up back and knee injuries,” says Lowe.
If your knees bow in or out, you’re certainly at risk for knee pain.
DIY fix
Attach a band to a sturdy object and stand perpendicular to it.
Wrap the opposite end of the band around the ankle of your outer leg. Keeping your leg straight, raise it out to the side as far as you can. Perform four sets of 20 reps on each side. 
To target your knee stabilizers, lie on your back on the floor with legs straight and turn one foot out 45 degrees, flexing your ankle to bring the toes closer to your shin.
Squeeze your quads hard, actively thinking about the portion of the muscle that inserts into the kneecap. Hold the contraction and raise your leg 45 degrees in the air. Perform four sets of 15 lifts on each side. 
2. Scratch Your Back
Stand and raise your right arm overhead, bend the elbow, and reach down the middle of your back. Now reach behind your back with the left hand. Try to make your hands touch. Repeat on the other side.
If you cant do this, there is space between your hands.
“It means lack of shoulder mobility, and that can lead to shoulder injury, especially if you bench press,” says Lowe.
DIY fix
Use a base ball to roll out your pecs and shoulders. Hold the ball against a wall and press your body into it. Roll the muscles out slowly, lingering on any areas that feel especially tender.
Afterward, perform IYT raises: Lie face-down on an incline bench and raise your arms overhead with thumbs pointing up to form an I shape.
Perform 15 reps, then raise your arms to 45 degrees to make a Y shape. Do 15 reps, and then another 15 with your arms at 90 degrees (a T shape). Perform three sets like that.“Strengthening the little muscles around the shoulder makes the joints more stable,” says Lowe.
3. Plank with Reach
Get into a plank position (set up for a push up and rest your forearms on the floor). Your body should form a straight line from your heels to the top of your head. Keeping your shoulders square to the floor, reach one arm straight out in front of you. Return the arm to the floor and reach with the opposite arm. Perform five reaches on each side.
If you twist to either side or lose alignment, you have failed.
“If you can’t hold the position, your core is not fully engaging,” says Lowe. “The entire trunk of the body needs to be able to work together. If it doesn't, lower-back pain can result. You’ll also be limited in terms of how much weight you can lift on exercises like the squat and shoulder press.”
DIY fix
Practice the conventional plank. Do three to four sets, holding it a few seconds shy of as long as you can. “On the last set, hold as long as possible,” says Lowe. “And don’t bring your hands together, keep your forearms pointing in front of you. It’s harder.”
Build up over time to hold the plank for 90 seconds.


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