The inchworm drill
This exercise is easy to do in uniform, making it simple to do while on duty.
By Bryan Fass
Responders, for this month's column I think it due time that we go back to basics.
Less talk and more action; specifically, less of yours truly writing what you should or should not be doing and more demonstrating with practical on-duty examples. The exercise I have chosen to start with is called an inch worm. It is a stretch for the hamstrings, calves, lower back and hips, and also a strengthener for the core, spine, abs and arms.
The beauty of this movement is that it's self limiting. If you are too tight to do the full movement, simply reduce the range of motion or even better hold the stretch positions longer.
This exercise/stretch is easy to do in uniform, thus making it simple to do while on duty. As a precaution, if you have any history of or are having pain in the calves, knees or lower back please consult with a physician or physical therapist prior to performing this movement.
Just as the name implies, you'll inchworm your way across the room keeping your glutes tight and your abs braced (see past articles on how to brace). Try this 2-3 times per week to loosen up and get stronger.
Begin on your hands, with knees locked and feet flat. (‘V' position)
Brace your abdominals, and maintain spinal alignment. Slowly walk out on your hands into position 2, squeeze the glutes, hold 5 seconds. (Plank position)
Walk your legs up to position 3, keeping the knees locked throughout the movement. Continue.
- Avoid letting the hips rock side to side.
- Do not shrug your shoulders or round your back.
- This is a great Hamstring and calf stretch.
As you get stronger, perform with a pushup