The Superhero Complex: Stretch & Activate Easily for Squats
Greg Everett and the crew at Catalyst Athletics are some of the best thinkers on Olympic Weightlifting training. Here is his recommended pre-squat mobility sequence. He also recommends continuing with your mobility into your first or second sets of your lifting session. This is something we practice at True Spirit CrossFit & Yoga, and are very gratified to see improvement in all of our athletes that follow this protocol. You can read the mobility sequence here, or find it at the bottom of this post.
Workout of the Day
Wendler Shoulder Press Week 2.2
5 @ 50% of 1RM
3 @ 65% of 1RM
3 @ 70% of 1RM
3 @ 85% of 1RM
max reps at 90% of 1RM
Four Rounds for Time of:
10 Ring Dips
1 rope climb
The Superhero Complex:
The superhero complex is a static spiderman lunge followed by a superman hold (or spiderperson lunge and superperson hold for those of you who find the gender bias of the English language offensive). Generally the spiderman lunge is held for 20-30 seconds per leg, immediately followed by a superman hold for 5-10 seconds.
This complex can be done between squat sets both to make your training more efficient, and to continue improving your position in the squat as you go. Do at least 1-2 sets of it before your first set, then do 1 set between each set of squats.
You can increase or reduce the intensity of the superman hold by changing the position of your hands and arms from your sides (easiest) to hands on your head (moderate) to outstretched in front of you (hardest), and by keeping the legs on the floor (easier) or lifting them up (harder). This should not be a maximal, sweating, gritting your teeth effort—the point is not to exhaust your erectors to the point of being unable to support your back arch in your next set of squats, but to train the ability to generate a forceful extension and to let yourself feel what your back should be doing as you squat down.
With the spiderman lunge, keep the front shin vertical and the front foot pointed straight ahead. Push your hips down as far toward the floor as possible rather than just leaning over with the chest. Keep getting lower over the duration of the stretch.
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