Workout of the Day:
Jerk (Push or Split)
3-3-3-3-3-3-3

A HUGE Happy Birthday to CrossFIt Invictus Superwoman Elizabeth Terris (far right) pictured here with other studs Tabitha Stine and Rachel Medina.
A HUGE Happy Birthday to CrossFIt Invictus Superwoman Elizabeth Terris (far right) pictured here with other studs Tabitha Stine and Rachel Medina.

Full-Tilt on Correct Nomenclature
Written by Mike Hom

The CrossFit Journal is an amazing resources for coaches and athletes alike. Among its most brilliant contributions has been Anatomy and Physiology for Jocks. If you have not read it yet, I would highly encourage you to do so (http://www.crossfit.com/journal/#3856). It is a 10 minute read that conveys very useful information in an easy way of providing trainees an understanding of their posture and ideal movement. The following information is meant to supplement the journal, clarify the different types of pelvic tilt we see in clients.
First, we have to look at the 3 rules of bio-mechanics that Coach Glassman lays out in the journal. Through some extreme distillation, they are the following:
1.  Functional movement generally weds the spine to the pelvis.
2.  Dynamics of functional movement come from the hip, primarily through extension.
3.  Muted hip function = muted hip power.
The following primarily addresses the first rule.  When we talk about wedding the spine to the pelvis, we are generally referring to the articulation of the spine and pelvis to form the posterior chain. The posterior chain consists of the hamstrings, glutes, calves, erectors, and in some cases, the lats. For functional movement, we vehemently demand maintenance of the lumbar curve. This means that we want a neutral pelvic tilt with a normal lordotic arch in an athlete’s posture. So what determines pelvic tilt? 

Trunk posture can largely be determined by the flexibility of the hip flexors, erectors, glutes, hamstrings, and abs. The basic explanation for each muscle group is the hip flexors and spinal erectors work to anteriorly rotate the pelvis, while hamstrings, glutes, and abs work to posteriorly rotate the pelvis. When there is an imbalance of either the recruitment (strength or otherwise) or flexibility in any of those muscle groups, the result can be posterior pelvic tilt (like a gymnast hollowing out) or anterior pelvic tilt (excessive lordosis). So without further ado, here are some basic causes of both tilts.

Anterior Tilt -> Leads to excessive lordosis; can increase risk of lower back pain or injury when performing stabilization or overhead activities. Characterized by hyper-extension of the back.
Causes:
– Tight hip flexors
– Tight erectors
– Weak or lax abs
– Weak or lax glutes
– Weak or lax hamstrings 

Posterior Tilt -> Leads to loss of lumbar curve, pelvis is tucked under the hips. Characterized by shortening of hip extensors.  This can mean there is no full hip extension expressed, or it means there is flexion in the posterior chain.
Causes:
– Weak or lax hip flexors
– Weak or lax erectors
– Tight abs
– Tight glutes
– Tight hamstrings

Fixing these issues in a client will achieve several things. It helps articulate the 3 joint movements that are loosely discussed in Coach Glassman’s journal, which are the sacroiliac (SI) joint (btw, this joint is essentially where the lumbar curve is articulated), hip joint and knee joint.

We’ve now clarified the two types of tilt that we see in clients.  We ideally do not want the pelvis tilted too far forward (anterior) nor do we want it tilted too far back (posterior).  We want a neutral spine, effectively locking the pelvis and spine in place, that can aggressively respond and correct itself to the dynamics of any movement we introduce. 

For further reading:
Anatomy and Physiology for Jocks, Greg Glassman, August 2003, http://www.crossfit.com/journal/#3856
Common Postural Deficiencies, http://www.exrx.net/ExInfo/Posture.html
Where Have the Lordosi Gone?, Robb Wolf, July 2008, Performance Menu

  • Chris

    Great photo. Happy Birthday E.T.!

  • Ali Incredible

    Happy Birthday ET!!

  • Sage Burgener

    ET!! happy birthday girl!! you are amazing!

  • Coryna

    ET, you rock, lady! Happy Birthday!

  • Dani

    Happy Birthday ET! I hope that you have big plans involving relaxation and a whole lot of sugar. 😉 You lady are one hell of a woman and an inspiration to all of the CF ladies. I hope someday I look half as good and am half as strong as you after two kids. Have a beautiful day.

    What a fun morning. It is hard to say exactly what made it so great – it could be that I love to go heavy or C.J’s musical selection which inspired Christina and I to bust out the running man and a few other solid dance moves. Good times!

    Have a great day all!

  • Chris

    Yes Dani, you and Christina definitely had a ‘Solid Gold’ vibe going on this morning. But hey, it helped you crank out bodyweight push jerks, right?! 🙂

    My little bro Nate Dogg has been med down the past couple weeks with a virus and some minor back issues. He’s slowly making a comeback and cranked out sets of 205 lbs this morning. Good job dude!

    Now, if I can just get you on this Paleo thing with me, you’ll be even stronger!

    ~BC

  • Wayne

    Nate was looking super strong this morning.

    Highlight: Christina’s face during her ‘cabbage patch’ dance. AMAZING!

    PS, Dani, your ‘running man’ is redonk good!

  • Dani

    Bee Charmer, I find that a little running man and funky chicken prior to a heavy split jerk is the secret recipe. Perhaps we should exercise that strategy at the Games. Lol. Maybe not the reputation C.J. is looking for Invictus, but it sure would be a good laugh.

  • Wayne

    The “Common Postural Deficiencies” website is bad to the bone… pardon the pun.

    So geeky, yet soooo awesome. Much like the dance moves this morning. 😉

  • Tabitha

    Happy Birthday E.T.!! Hope you had a wonderful day 🙂

  • Nate Dogg

    Happy B-Day ET…

    Chris, Wayne- Thanks for the props my fellow Doggs… I know I’d be way more powerful with a consistent diet, but my days are very long lately. I just now took off my socks for the first time today! I put these bad boys on this morning at 7:15am leaving Invictus!! Sick huh? Was at work until 5pm, drove strait to class in uniform and just now got home. My dinner consisted of two bags of chips, two cups of coffee and I’m thinking about eating a bagel right about now…. I don’t know how i even got 205 up??

    …goodnight 🙂

  • Ian

    Happy B-Day Elizabeth… and thanks again for all the great baby advice!!!

  • slinkywebo

    Thank you all for your birthday wishes. I have not had so many birthday greetings ever. You all ROCK! Thanks for making my day.