Article written by Addison Turney
I’m an Information Systems Technician for the Navy, which means I spend about 12 hours every single day sitting in front of a computer, and if your job is anything like mine, you spend a good portion of your day doing pretty much the same. In fact you are likely at your job right now reading this article instead of actually working, hunched over, one hand on your mouse and the other is propping up your head as you fight the urge to fall asleep.
Whether you’re a seasoned fitizen, or your girlfriend just dumped you so you decided it’s time to get a 6 pack you may have noticed that sitting for long periods of time in a chair really stiffens up your lower back, hips, and legs.
What is actually going on while you are on your duff for long hours is the fascia, a flexible layer of tissue covering your muscles, is beginning to adapt to its most common position, kind of like slow drying concrete, if you don’t keep it moving it’ll set. This leads to several deficiencies in balance and mobility in your lower-back, hips, and legs.
Ok so now you’re thinking we’re all going to die because we have a desk job, is there anything we can do about it? Yes, absolutely. I’ve tried quite a few things and here is what works for me and doesn’t take all that long. If you aren’t doing anything already you should consider trying it for a couple weeks and see how you feel.
First I bought myself a lacrosse ball, you can find them at any sports store for a couple of bucks, and if you don’t live on the East coast, which is the only place in the world where they are sold, there is always Amazon. While I’m sitting I can use the lacrosse ball to roll out my hamstrings, glutes, and lower back pretty much all day if I want.
Once I get to the gym I foam roll. If you are new to foam rolling you will hate these, and then after you’re done you’ll love it. Most gyms have some there are those weird looking Styrofoam rolls in the corner with all the unused yoga mats, bosu balls, and elastic bands. Start by rolling a whole section of your body like the hamstrings. Go over them a few times nice and slow when ever your get to a really tender spot hold the roll there for a few moments till you are able to relax. If the pain is too much to handle try rolling around that spot and then come back to it. You can add more pressure by changing angles and adjusting your body positioning as well.
Last thing I do is something I call the stripper pole. I get into my squat stance near something stable and vertical I can get a hold of, a power cage works great for this. Then while holding the “pole” I lower myself down as much as comfortable, hold there for a moment and come back up, twerking isn’t necessarily but it likely will vacate the general area making the gains easier to obtain. I keep repeating this till I can get ATG or taint to paint with ease. I also like to shift my weight from one side to the other in order to get more pressure.
In all it should only take you a few minutes, which is great if you’ve gotten to the only squat rack and someone is only half way through their curl and shrug super set. Your presence and superior mobility will intimidate them and cause them to leave early so you can start your work out.
Addison Turney is active duty military, serving in the Navy as an Information Systems Tech. He is currently forward deployed in the Arabian Gulf and is working towards his goals with Brandon Morrison as his trainer. When not out to sea he enjoys competing in Powerlifting and hopes to start competing in Olympic lifting soon.