(Part 5 of 5)
I also use the heavy elbow concept or technique for standing tricep push downs and bicep curls. For the standing tricep pushdown: start position while keeping core engaged. Grasp the bar or rope with a somewhat loose grip. I tell clients to drive their elbows towards their hips and place their upper arm in line with their trunk. In that position, elbows are directly in line with their hips just past anterior superior iliac crest of hip, in the axillary line.
Your elbows should be about an inch or two away from sides of your body in a flexed position, with your hands higher than elbows. This will engage the posterior deltoid and scapular muscle groups, which in turn keeps the upper arm from moving out of place during the duration of the exercise.
The same approach is ideal for the bicep curl, except the hands are below the elbows at the start position. This minimizes any shoulder extension or flexion during these exercises. While performing bicep curls all of the posterior musculature of the shoulder and arm should be engaged.
Remember in an earlier post, I mentioned about standing at kitchen sink, and your natural reflex to tense up if someone comes at you by surprise? Remember, how Wing Chung trains you to go against your natural instincts?
This concept comes into play in bicep curls. While performing bicep curls and throughout the entire movement you should feel your entire arm and core contract, not just your biceps!
During both of these exercises the only thing moving should be your forearms. Also remember to keep your head in a neutral position, meaning looking straight ahead, not down. Anytime you drop your chin and look downwards it will cause your upper back and shoulders to round. This will disengage the muscles supporting the humerus.
All of my clients know the “heavy elbow concept” and I hope you can try this either yourself or with your clients!
Learn more about correct techniques for strength training and resistance training at Biomechanix.net
Jon Torerk, CSCS