India, founder of Chukka Wellness has been a Personal Trainer for 7 years and regularly encounters people in the gym performing exercises incorrectly. This can inhibit not only progression in training but also increase the risk of injury later on in life.
Over the past couple of months, Chukka Wellness has been providing coaching points on common exercises that are usually found in the standard training program and that can easily be performed incorrectly. So far, we have focused on the Lunge, Push up, Plank and Glute Bridge technique!
This month we will be discussing the Single Leg Deadlift as balance is a crucial element to playing polo. The balancing skills are required during hooks, ride-offs and the swinging actions.
How to Perform the Perfect Single Leg Deadlift
The SLD is an all-round great polo-specific exercise; we use it a lot when training our clients as it improves posterior chain strength, hip, ankle & shoulder stabilisation, core engagement and of course balance!
· Too much over-extension of the lower back
· Core not engaged
· Hips not parallel
· Collapsing through hips
· Not placing the foot correctly on the ground
· Not bending the stationary knee
· Not leading the movement with the chest
Now let’s run through the correct coaching points.
1. Start with one foot lifted off the ground
2. Open up your toes of the planted foot (just like a star fish) and place them down on the ground
3. Slightly bend the knee of the planted leg and ensure the knee stays facing forward throughout the movement.
4. Keep hips square facing forward and engage your core.
5. Leading with the chest, hinge your upper body forward towards the ground. Make sure you are standing tall and stay lengthened through the torso during the movement.
6. As the upper body moves forward, bring the raised leg up behind you ensuring the hips do not rotate backwards.
7. Pause and then slowly bring the leg and upper body back to the start position. You can place the foot back down on the ground or keep it raised throughout the whole set.
*If you struggle with poor balance, perform the exercise holding on to a wall or chair and refrain from bringing the leg up too high behind you.
*Compare balance and muscle strength on each leg and focus a little more time on the weaker side.