An interesting and simple test to try on yourself!
Posted by Blue Ox Athletics on Saturday, March 18, 2017
The first position is an advanced assessment I use with some clients. It is a test of hip external rotation and overall spinal flexion. I believe this was suggested to me as an assessment a number of years ago by Ido Portal when he stayed with us in Portland. If one’s goals include some sort of tumbling or rolling, or if one is looking for full body injury-proofing or functional mobility, then I see this as being a useful tool.
It’s not for everyone – for example, if you’ve had a flexion-intolerant back injury, this isn’t for you. I actually lost the ability to do this for a few years following a back injury I had around 2014, but now I can do it again without problems.
This isn’t a position I’d use to develop mobility. I’d instead use some targeted exercises directed at whatever the limiting joints are.
Once this position can be achieved, it can then also be used for some positional breathing work.
I’ll sometimes use it as an assessment of muscular tone by seeing how easily the position can be achieved compared to someone’s normal.
The second position in the video is the Double Pigeon Lateral Tilt. This is a more difficult position and the lateral lean is used to assess and one’s side bending ability from left to right. This in particular requires the Quadratus Lumborum muscle to go near end range, and many with a so-called leg-length discrepancy actually have a hip shift caused in part by an imbalance here. This position makes any side to side differences pretty obvious, as you can’t really cheat with your foot holding the opposite knee down.
Give these a try and see where you are sitting…in this case, literally!