The Hunter-Gatherer (faustin) wrote,
The Hunter-Gatherer

big fat greek cheap a la carte, and squats

At My Big Fat Greek Restaurant on Mill Ave in Tempe, I love getting a big side dish of Gyros meat with tzatziki sauce for $3.50. No junk, just meat, a little green garnish and tzatziki sauce. It's at least 8 oz and possibly more. Fantastic deal, perfect size for a meal. Somehow I doubt they realized they were offering an ideal meal as a side dish for three-and-a-half bucks.

Brunch this morning was also near perfection:

  • bacon

  • leftover pork kebab / shashlik -- unbelievably good

  • mediterranean cheese style yogurt (I recently found Fage greek yogurt at Costco, which I'd been lusting for but unwilling to pay $4.59 / 12 oz, and determined that in fact I strongly prefer the Trader Joe's Mediterranean Cheese Style Yogurt)

  • a piece of raisin bread toast w/butter

  • big dish of edamame

I recall thinking this morning how simple this meal was, somewhat unusual in its composition, and yet so perfect for me, hence noteworthy.

* * * *

Today Dean and I shot two instructional videos on the air squat, with Tash. I may have erred on the side of too much detail, but I believe they're quality.

"Too much detail" depends on the audience, right? Dumbing down the instruction can be done in person. I think it's legitimate to explain the WHY of the essential anatomical coaching points of the squat. So I included that. They provide a unifying theme to the many and disparate instructional priorities in teaching the squat.

I'll explain: Squats are difficult to teach for one simple reason; we are atrophied. Our bodies are systemically misshapen and have habituated inhibited movement patterns, because of our excessive chair-sitting. Several of the most important core muscles of the body are dysfunctionally shortened or lengthened by sitting in chairs. Hence the teaching points of the squat:

  • heels down, heels just wider than shoulders

  • toes out and knees wide, femurs parallel to feet

  • CONTRACT the lower back muscles ("Put your tail in the air!") (anterior pelvic tilt)

  • chest up (contract rhomboids and upper erector spinae)

  • KNEES WIDE (adductors are shortened from chair-sitting)

  • DEPTH / RANGE OF MOTION: get below parallel, meaning, the crease in the hips drops below the top of the knee

All of these ponts need to be emphasized and often drilled through multiple sessions (up to two weeks of squat therapy for many people) for one single reason: systemic atrophy (I say "movement pathology") from lifelong sitting in chairs.

I can imagine other crossfit trainers saying that I'm going into too much nuanced or arcane detail, but I disagree. The observation that we are systemically atrophied from chair sitting is common knowledge and practically a mantra among personal trainers. However, the observation of how all the essential trouble points and thus emphatic teaching points of the squat originate in this atrophy, seems to be unique to me. I think the unifying theme is helpful, so I'll leave it in.
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