Flexibility and dynamic stability is an essential part of an athletes ability to stay injury free during their season. Mobility and strength deficits to the hips are a major contributor to injuries in the athlete. Landmine squats are a great alternative to the traditional squats to help facilitate flexibility and strength to your hips and core musculature. In addition to increased gluteus and quadriceps strength, this technique can facilitate more effective muscle recruitment to the thoracic spine and shoulder musculature for a more dynamic exercise, promoting better thoracic and lumbar spine stability that’s more coordinated.
The anterior loading position of the weight, similar to a goblet squat or a front squat significantly reduces spinal compression compared to “traditional” squat.
I use this routine to address hip flexibility and re-educating injured athletes with return to sports. I routinely will have athletes perform this as part of their off-season conditioning program because there are excellent progression exercises based on this particular movement pattern
Why I like the Landmine squat and its progressions:
Hand position when griping the bar and the path of the bar as it falls forces the athlete to “sit back” for a more natural, functional movement pattern, otherwise the movements cannot be completed. Because it also requires fewer verbal and tactile cues to accomplish, it can be integrated into patients home exercise program. Next week, I’ll post how you can also progress the routine to address specifically runners, swimmers and cyclists . For now, enjoy the landmine squat and a Happy Thanksgiving.
~HIza Mbwana, PT, DPT
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