Do You Have a Gravity Problem?

Gravity impacts our daily lives much more than we realize.  And no, that title is not a euphemism for weight loss. ;)

But over 90% of us have lingering aches and pains - tight quads, calves, or backs; hip, knee, ankle or back pain.  It may not be painful enough to keep us from our daily activities, but it's enough to know it's still there.

What if I told you that you probably don't have a problem with a particular body part? Instead, you may just have a gravity problem.

To understand what I mean let's try this: stand up as tall as you can be.  Now slowly shift your weight to your toes, lean forward and go as far as you can without falling over.  Stay there for 20-30 seconds.  

Feel like anything is working?  I'm guessing it's your feet, calves, quads, and lower back.  I'd also guess that what kicked on is most likely your problem areas.  While we may not walk around like this - but I have seen some people that do - we're essentially standing on a ski slope.  All day long.

This gravity problem is important because unless we fix it, we may never get rid of our constantly tight quads, calves, or [insert your problem body part].  Even more, it's going to affect our squats and deadlifts.  Naturally, that's where I say "enough!"

I touched on this topic regarding deadlifts in this article, but below is one of my favorite fixes for improving someone's squat.  I hope you enjoy it and I have more to say after the video!

First, I want to give Mike Robertson credit for this approach.  Second, you may have noticed that I can't distinguish up from down.  Maybe this will help me.

But I realized I didn't fully explain why the reach is so important.  If we're constantly standing on that ski slope, we end up flattening our upper back - thoracic spine - which should have a natural curve. This flat upper back further shifts our weight forward, so the reach shifts our center of gravity back. The reach also places our rib cage in a different position and our abs will be more effective.  And you know me - anytime I can get more abs, I get excited like a school boy.

This approach has worked wonders for people that have knee, back, and hip issues either on weighted or just body weight squats.  While you won't be able to transition right back into heavy back squats, owning the basics will set you on the right path.