Quick interview with Chris Cooper of Two Brain Business over the question of whether a CrossFit affiliate owner should consider deaffiliating. Spoiler alert: my short answer is no, but listen further for my argument for maintaining your affiliate and how the value of a CrossFit affiliate has increased over the years. Other affiliate owners interviewed include the always awesome Doug Chapman of Hyperfit USA, CrossFit Ann Arbor, and CrossFit Games competitor Tommy Hackenbruch of Ute CrossFit.
I've been asked by other trainers in my gym sometimes "What were those eye drill things you were doing with your client? What's that supposed to do?" I do my best to explain how different interactions between the eye muscles, the inner ear, and different structures in the brain can create big changes in the outputs from your nervous system, ultimately having a large effect on your balance, coordinate, strength, mobility, and yes, pain. I'll do brief demos showing the effect on either the flexor or extensor reflexes but sometimes I'll still get a quizzical "Huh", like they're not quite sure how that could work.
So in the interest of simplicity and an awesome demonstration of the adage that "a single picture is worth a thousand words", here is a great video from PBS's SciTech Now (support your local station!) in which we see a patient relieved of a year's worth of pain and dysfunction. If after seeing this, you still have difficulty believing or understanding how eye drills might be able to help your performance in your sport of choice or just life in general, then by all means, go right on back to stretching the frack out of pissed-off, angry structures and submitting your shoulders to another thousand YTWLs...
Who came up with this new Hip Adductor stretch? (a different approach to s.i. joint / back pain relief)
In seeking to resolve my issues some medial knee pain and a tricky SI joint, I've been exhaustively going through drills from all of my certifications, as well as several other approaches. In roughly this order, I've used drills from Z-Health, Mobility WOD, Original Strength, Pavel Tsatsouline, Scott Sonnon, Eric Cressey, and Joe DeFranco. The problem is when you do this for a living and study and read this all the time, you often forget what you already know and what you've already seen as you use and learn new drills and approaches. I've experienced instant relief and performances increases before for seeming intractable injuries and dysfunction, both personally and with many clients, but it's still always astonishing when the problem disappears after finding that "just right drill". I believe I've come up with a new variation on a hip adductor stretch I recently saw again (thank you Brian DeGennaro!) that I believe I may have first seen (and promptly forgot) more than two years ago. It combines elements from Z-Health's I & T-Phase, Original Strength (Geoff Neupert & Tim Anderson) and ultimately Eric Cressey for the original bare-bones drill. The problem was, I couldn't remember where I first saw it or who may have created it. It looked like so many things I had seen or done before but it was totally unique in it's own way. My variation is basically in adding the different foot positions, as well as using internal/external rotation in the hip to increase loading & mobility in the nervous tissue. Once I used it on myself, my medial knee pain/crunchiness, instability and lack of activation vanished. Then over the course of the following two days, my pain in my SI disappeared; zero tenderness. In trying to track it down it's origin, I revisited material from Pavel Tsatsouline, Scott Sonnon, and Joe DeFranco that I believe contributed to the framework. I filmed it for your examination today. I tried it out with several of my clients and nearly all have found it to be both provocative and very helpful in improving their squats and general leg mobility. If I've somehow failed to attribute someone, forgive me, I watch a LOT of mobility and exercise videos.
Right now Gilt City is offering a special introductory promotion on my training packages; three, five, or ten training sessions at up to 42% off my regular package fees. If you've been thinking about either starting your training up or diving back in, this is a great opportunity to take some action and get some momentum going towards achieving your fitness goals. This offer is ending this Thursday, October 16 at NOON, so click through the link above to buy your sessions before the offer disappears.
Here is an excerpt from USA Today's For The Win! column (as retweeted by @LiveStrong) on my good friend and CrossFit NYC member Kirk MacLeod, whom I helped train for The Big Swim last year. I'm briefly quoted in the article about our training together. Please donate what you can for this year's Big Swim taking place this Sunday, August 17th. All proceeds are donated to benefit Brigadoon Village, a camp for chronically ill children and their families, a cause very close to Kirk's heart.