Maintaining good posture, exercising, and avoiding crossing your legs are just a few things you can do to correct your lower kinetic chain. Here are more things you can do.
A kinetic chain is made up of all the muscles, bones, ligaments, and tendons that work together to perform an action or task throughout the body.
If one link in this chain is not working properly it can cause many problems for someone.
The lower kinetic chain is made up of the muscles and joints below the waistline. This area is often where people have the most problems because it is responsible for bearing weight and transferring force when we move.
Correcting Your Lower Kinetic Chain
Here are six things you should know about correcting your lower kinetic chain:
1. Change Sitting Habits
We have been sitting in the same position for so long now, that it has caused our muscles to tighten around our bones.
So, when you try to stretch them out again, they are very resistant because they are already tight.
To change your sitting position, firstly, it is important that you become aware of your current sitting habits. Once you know what they are, you can start to make small changes to correct them.
Sit up straight in a chair with good posture. Keep your feet flat on the ground and shoulder-width apart. Use a lumbar roll to keep your spine standing up.
When you are sitting on the floor, try drawing your knees into your chest and resting them on a cushion so they are slightly higher than your hips.
If this is not comfortable, it might be better if you stay seated on a chair with the correct posture instead of being on the floor.
2. Consult A Professional
If you are dealing with issues related to your lower kinetic chain, orthotics may be a good solution for you. Orthotics are inserts that go into your shoes and help to correct the alignment of your feet and ankles. You can find orthotics in Burnaby if you live close to that area.
This can help to reduce pain and improve your posture. If you are considering orthotics, be sure to consult a professional who can help you choose the right pair for your needs.
3. Do Not Cross Your Legs
The lower kinetic chain refers to the posterior chain of musculature most responsible for hip and knee extension: hamstrings, glutes, and calves.
When you correct your lower kinetic chain, it means that you want to strengthen the muscles responsible for moving these joints into extension and making them more stable.
You do this by activating them and keeping them engaged throughout the entire exercise. One way to do this is by avoiding crossing your legs.
Crossing your legs will constrict the blood flow in these muscles and make it harder to keep them activated.
4. Activate Your Glutes
The glutes are the most powerful muscles in the posterior chain and are responsible for hip extension. When you activate your glutes, you are able to contact them and move your hips into extension.
With that being said, don’t forget to keep your core braced as well. The glutes and core work together to provide stability and power when you run or walk.
When the glutes are inhibited, there is other compensation made by other muscles in order to maintain that same hip extension; this can lead to back pain and hamstring tightness.
5. Don’t Use Your Hyperextend Knees When Lifting Weights
Hyperextending the knees is dangerous for a multitude of reasons. It can cause lower back pain and it places the knee joint into a position that could lead to injury over time.
As long as you activate your glutes and don’t use momentum, you should be able to strengthen the posterior chain without hyperextending your knees.
There’s a simple way to keep your knees from hyperextending and it takes less than 30 seconds: create some intra-abdominal pressure by taking a big breath, tightening the abs, and pulling the ribcage down while bracing the core.
By creating this intra-abdominal pressure you’ll activate your transversus abdominis and multifidus (the muscles that stabilize the spine) which will cause your pelvis to rotate forward into a more neutral position.
6. Exercise To Strengthen Your Lower Back
If you are suffering from lower back pain, it is time to put down your heating pad and pick up the weights.
There are many exercises that help strengthen your lower back muscles, but the following exercises below are a good place to start:
This exercise is a good way to start strengthening your lower back muscles. To do a deadlift, follow these instructions:
- Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and hold a weight in each hand.
- Bend your knees slightly and hinge at your hips to lower the weights towards the floor.
- Bend down as far as you can while keeping your back in a neutral position, keeping your knees bent and aligned over your feet.
- Return to an upright standing position to complete one rep.
Low Cable Row
This exercise works the muscles in the upper and middle back that have been neglected from all sitting during the day.
The low cable row exercise has been shown to increase lower back strength in previously injured individuals.
Here is how you should perform this exercise:
- In a standing position, attach a D-handle attachment to the low pulley of a cable station and lean forward 90 degrees from your hips with your knees slightly bent. Your arms should be outstretched toward the weight stack with palms facing up.
- Pull the handle toward your abdomen in a rowing motion by pulling your shoulders back and pushing out with your elbows. Your torso should remain stationary; only the arms should move.
- Slowly return to the starting position and repeat for 10-15 reps.
This exercise strengthens muscles that many people do not even know they have, such as the gluteus maximus and the quadriceps.
- Stand on one leg and lower your body as if you were preparing for a deadlift (see above).
- Once parallel to the floor, return to an upright position and repeat for 10-15 reps.
- Remember to keep your back straight with your shoulders back.
Proper posture and other things listed here can help reduce lower back pain, knee pain, and foot issues.
If you are experiencing any pain or discomfort in your lower extremities, it is important to take corrective action as soon as possible.
Addressing the root of the problem will help prevent further pain and discomfort in the future.