Do you have cringe when front squats are programmed? Do you suddenly start grabbing your wrists and rolling them in clockwise and counter-clockwise circles in and OCD pattern? The good news is that you’re not alone. Even more good news is the problem is more than likely not in your wrist. (Air fist pump). Let’s look at 3 big culprits.
- Wrist flexors
First, The biggest problem that I see in clinic with a #frontsquatproblem is an overactive latissimus dorsi (lat. for short). If the lats are overactive the ‘elbows up’ cue is nearly impossible the achieve. The muscle is not technically ‘short’. It’s more likely that the lats have become neurologically irritated causing the tiny muscle units to hold contractions. (More on the neuro part of muscle tightness in a future post). To release some of the tension in the lats and regain normal ROM, hop on a foam roller for about 90 seconds and retest your front rack position.
The same over activity that you have in your lats, you could be experiencing in your triceps. This will also contribute to a lack of front rack perfection. In order to get into optimal elbow flexion, the tricep needs to be supple and pliable. In order to reduce the tension and adhesion in the tricep, hop a rolling and give this a whirl. Just like the lat, always retest after about 90 seconds of focused work.
Finally let’s look at the wrist flexors. These can become chronically tightened from all the computer work we do as a society. Over activity in the flexors limit the amount of range on motion available for wrist extension. Take a baseball, lacrosse ball, something similar to release the tension in the tissue. **Note: go much slower and be mythodical with the release. This dude took way too much pre-workout.
There’s always more to the story, and if these 3 tenchiques don’t help, it might be more of a joint problem within the wrist itself. We have 8 small bones (called carpals) arranged in 2 rows of 4. These rows need to glide and slide on each other as the wrist is flexed and extended. If there is aberrant motion or the motion is simply lacking in these rows, Houston, we have a problem! A specific assessment by your chiro, PT, sports med. doc is needed to determine if the wrist is the problem. As always, contact InBox Functional Rehab to get assessed so you can Feel Better Faster