Tumbling & jumps: the forgotten toes

screenshot_2016-04-09-16-16-30Recreational should not rhyme with detrimental. Yet, in the realm of sports and physical activities, many sacrifice the basic (and yes, sometimes boring) foundation drills for more exciting movements.

Like, I work my ass off every day 6 days a week, I really, really don’t have the willpower and time to go through hip and scapula prep drills for half an hour. I mean, I’m not paying for that. I just want to blow some steam off after work, you know.

Sometimes, people do this out of ignorance (don’t take it personally, I have been ignorant most of my life). They have complete faith in the instructions they are being given. I mean, it’s my instructor’s job to know what’s good and what’s not, right?

Catch this: Joint prep is an absolute must in any kind of (even moderately) stressful activities for longevity. If you are not doing it nor instructed to do so, time to ask some questions.

I am about to embark our members attending the GATES classes at AM Fitness into a full month of kicking and jumping so that we can build proper foundations and interesting variations week after week. Needless to say, there will be a huge focus on prehab.

I am working on putting together a full tutorial that will address joint prep for jumps, spins and kicks that could benefit any kind of performer, dancer, artist, martial artist, parkour enthusiast, trickster or movement fanatic exploring their relationship to gravity.

Meanwhile, I’d like to invite you today to learn more about toe prep, a hugely overlooked part of joint prep in jumps and tumbling. Our little toes are indeed more often than not taken for granted, and we tend to forget that:

1°) Our toes are being brutally confined in compromised position in a not so natural pair of shoes all day long;

2°) We forgot how to properly use them for proprioception if we have been wearing that kind of shoe wear;

3°) Their action will vary greatly depending on the type of surface we are working on;

4°) Our feet health and balance are closely intertwined with our postural limitations.

When we jump, we land, either on one foot or two feet, and the toes are the first part to contact the ground. From there the shockwave is be dispersed through the body. It makes therefore sense to make sure you have strong toes that will help you absorb as much as possible the impact of landing, doesn’t it?

A good place to start is the awesome work done by Tony Riddle. Check this video and give his drills a try!



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