The following is one of my favorite motto's about exercise: “ Your workout should never take more from you then what you gain from it.” Meaning if you worked to the point where your back and knees are aching for days then you did to much. Are you feeling like you need a nap after training rather then re-energized? Then you did to much. Sometimes the exercises proscribed for the day need to be adjusted based on your starting condition. Modifications are nothing to be ashamed of. We all come from different backgrounds and experiences.
Here are a few simple ways you can modify your workouts to still achieve a positive benefit.
Planks, Pushups, Dips and more can all be modified by simply changing the angle of intensity. How do you know if you need to modify? Strained neck, butt lifted, chest lifted, and/or back arched are all signs that you have lost your tension and proper body alignment. Modify and complete the lift with proper technique.
2. Use Assistance
By using a wall, door jam, suspension cables (TRX) or a friend you can shift your center of gravity to take stress off of your joints. An assistant allows you to begin to hone in those movement patterns that your muscles are quite ready for such as: lunge, pistol squats, cossack lunge, or suspended lunge
3. Lessen the rage of motion
Sometimes increasing the range of motion can intensify the movement to a degree that you aren't quite ready for. Go as far down as your body allows with control.
4. SLOW down and move with grace
There is no need to "drop it like its hot." Slow down your speed and lower into the movement with integrity and precision. When you gain more strength and become more familiar with the exercise the depth will come naturally but precision is still important.
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