Fitness Trainer to the stars
Halle Berry, Eva Mendes, Alicia Keys, Eve and Sanaa Lathan all have something in common. Aside from sharing a common trainer, they boast Hollywood’s best behinds!
For many, there is nothing as sexy as an exaggerated sway in the lower back that makes the bum so pronounced.
However, this lumbar arch, otherwise known as “lordosis”, is often actually a sign of vulnerability to knee and lower back injury. Postural imbalances often occur in the lower half of the body. Nine times out of ten, clients come to us with much stronger muscles on the front of their thighs (quads) than the back of their thighs (hamstrings).
As a result, the “overpowering” anterior muscles of the thigh pull the pelvis forward causing a severe arch in the lower back. This imbalance can lead to lower back pain, knee injuries, tight hamstrings (prone to strains), shin splints, and many foot problems (including plantar fasciitis). Women tend to make matters worse by wearing high-heeled shoes.
The forced plantar flexion, or “tippie-toe” position, puts a tremendous amount of strain on the quads, as well as the knee itself. It never ceases to amaze me when I see trainers teaching their clients to put weight plates or risers of some kind under their heels. This not only worsens the quad-to-ham ratio, it destroys the knee joint by forcing the thigh bone (femur) to shoot forward “through” the knee cap.
Much like the advice I give for re-balancing the upper body muscles, the hamstrings should be worked four sets for every three sets of quads. This will eventually cause the knee flexors (hams) and the knee extensors (quads) to be in proper balance.
Most people think that good technique will protect them from injuries. What they don’t realise is that most exercise-related injuries result from muscle imbalances. The term “antagonistic equality” refers to the need to keep opposite muscle groups in balance. Antagonists like the quads and the hams, biceps and triceps, pecs and rhomboids, and the hip adductors and abductors, need to be equally strong to ensure good posture and to stay injury-free.
Try these hamstring exercises:
Lying Hamstring Curls: Lying on your front, kick your heels up to your bottom with your toes pointed.
Stiff Leg Deadlift: Using a barbell or dumbbells, slide your hips backward keeping your back straight until you feel your hamstrings fully stretched, then slide your hips forward as you grad the weights back up your thighs. Keep a slight bend in your knees throughout.
Thanks to tescodiets.com who have provided this article.