Posted May 24, 2019

12 Days Of Dead Bugs

Over the past 2 weeks I’ve been doing a mini series on Instagram covering the ins and outs of dead bugs. To give everyone access to it, I wanted to showcase the entire series here in today’s post. Enjoy!

 

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12 days of dead bugs. 🐜 🕷 🐛 Day One – canister core positioning. Setting up for a solid dead bug tends to take more energy than many people realize. First, get your abs to actively flex and pull your ribs in and down, essentially working on squeezing abdominal tension in all directions. Second, pull the shoulders into the floor so that you feel your lats kick up, similar to a bench press. This double tension from the abs and lats helps provide front to back stability while increasing the muscle activity of the core muscles being used versus just going through the motions like a drunken clown high on helium. Last, keep all of this tension and try to breathe deeply without losing your positioning or letting that solid AB tension go. So why is developing this tension so important? The main point of a dead bug is to have enough spinal stability that when you start moving your arms and legs, the spine isn’t moving. The fancy term for this is lumbopelvic disassociation, which means moving the hip without moving the spine. Using this tension helps reduce the chance of spinal movement, but also works the abs like crazy. This concept becomes stupidly important for stuff like squats or deadlifts, when spine movement under loading is kind of a bad idea. Tomorrow we’ll go through some regressed forms of a dead bug leading into the classic version.

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12 Days of Deadbugs Day 2: regressions to progressions and avoiding the snapping hip When starting out on deadbugs, bracing is massively important, but so is finding a position that works well for you. The first movement here is a small pelvic roll that helps explore spine flexion and extension to find the position where you can crush the hell out of your abs without feeling any low back discomfort. From there progressing to a bent knee dead bug and into a straight leg increases the length of the lever arm producing an extension moment on the low back, and makes the abs work a lot harder. Adding in arm movements further increases the lever arm length the abs have to control against and add another layer of intensity. What if your hips snap when ever you lower a leg? It could be a tendon sliding over a small bony outcropping on the pelvis, and usually isn’t anything to worry about but just feels weird. If that’s you, you can go through any of the bent knee regressions to reduce the demand from the region and see if that feels better.

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12 days of dead bugs Day 10: scissor versus canister Getting into position was a big focus on the first day of this series, so I thought a bit of a throwback visual would help to reinforce and remind everyone of that concept. Because much of the movement being done by the arms and legs works to push the spine into more of a scissor position if left unguarded, working on maintaining more of a canister position with your dead bugs can help ensure you’re getting the core stabilization you’re looking for on this movement. Think of flattening the abs down, tilting your belt buckle towards your chin, and squeezing your ribs down, all while not rounding your shoulders like a homeless Quasimodo. For real, where’s that guy going to go for some bell ringing fun now?

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