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Thread: Isometric Lower Body Exercises

  1. #1
    Bradley is offline Senior Member
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    Default Isometric Lower Body Exercises

    Anyone have any that will keep my lower legs as strong as possible without causing additional trouble?

    I'm giving up on anything else for the lower body, excluding jump rope and snow skiing until I can get help with my legs.

    I also think I'll focus on body-weight exercises for the upper body, since it's already out of proportion with my lower body, and I don't want it to get any worse.

  2. #2
    Ace83 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Ask your doctor about Chi Kung...

    Bradley, because of your many physical issues, I won't give you advice. But I will suggest you ask your doctor about chi kung. In it's early forms it's mostly just holding stances in proper form and working up to higher times. Eventually, after many progressions and about 6 months to a year of practice you start working on one legged stances (one of which is similar to a pistol squat with the up leg rotated out).

    There are a lot of places to take a chi kung practice as you advance, and I've read that in some countries its used to treat various medical conditions.

    One of the beginning goals is to hold wu chi for 30 minutes. I personally feel awesome after this alone.

    If your doctor approves you for this, all I can tell you is that personal instruction, as always, is best. If you do go the DVD/ book route, be forewarned that a lot of what is sold is either moving chi kung practices (easier to sell that a DVD of someone standing still) or tai chi movements mixed with chi kung movements. The real benefit of chi kung comes from the standing practice (from my experience and those who taught me, as well, from what I've read from its historical use).

    Now the way I was taught, you don't have to do the meditation while, as they call it, "standing like a tree". I watched relaxing television (friends mostly). You focus on relaxing and letting your joints and myofascial network support you. With practice its (according to those who I learned from) supposed to change the way your body deals with tension.

    Anyway I heard John Du Cane is knowledgeable on chi kung, I'm sure he could give you advice on good resources to develop a standing practice if you go this route.

    P.s. as with anything, technique is critical. Without the proper alignment, you won't be able to hold the postures very long without cramping.
    Last edited by Ace83; 12-06-2013 at 07:55 PM.

  3. #3
    fatman is offline Senior Member
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    Wall sits are a great isometric exercise for the legs, and completely safe.

    Timed holds, work up to one-legged wall sits. You can increase intensity by adding resistance on top of your thighs, again without straining any joints.

  4. #4
    GeoffreyLevens is offline Senior Member
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    What about hamstrings though. Seems to me that wall sits and most all Qi Gong postures really emphasize the quads

  5. #5
    Ace83 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Hamstring/ Quad balance in chi kung...

    Quote Originally Posted by GeoffreyLevens View Post
    What about hamstrings though. Seems to me that wall sits and most all Qi Gong postures really emphasize the quads
    True, there is a big emphasis on the quads at first. But once you can "hold the ball" (main pose for a beginning practice along with wu chi and a few intro poses, its kind of like Olympic style squatting while holding a exercise ball, I mean you still get some glute and hamstring benefit from squatting right) in various places you begin to work on one legged work, which is really starting with split stances. (I personally felt great, I didn't have any problems from the early stages)

    Once you reach that point, one of the big postures in Chi kung is "holding the tiger" which is glute hamstring dominant big time. And there are others to, but they make you work up to them, because (according to my teachers) they are more technical and require more focus to keep form.

    I usually start people with the dead lift, and then when they show proficiency, I teach them to squat. Chi kung kind of does it the other way.

    But even Wu Chi, which you begin and end each practice with has benefit to the hamstrings. Your hamstrings and calves work in concert to extend the knees the last 15°, unlike the other postures in which you work on going deeper for your timed holds, you never dip below 15° with wu chi, its the balancing pose.

    Thanks for your concern Geoffrey, if Brad does go the wall sit direction he could use a box squat wall sit to hit his glutes and hams. I just figured if this was going to be a long term solution, there are more interesting and advanced options that might keep his attention longer (if his doctor approves them and he is interested).

    * I put a long side comment in gray to make the paragraph flow easier, I see that it only partially worked. Sorry about that...
    Last edited by Ace83; 12-08-2013 at 07:20 AM.

  6. #6
    GeoffreyLevens is offline Senior Member
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    Thanks Ace good info. I do think that long term Qi Gong is quite balanced but you have to stick with it and go deep.
    Ace83 likes this.

  7. #7
    Chris Hansen is offline Senior Member
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    I looked up that Wu Chi pose on google and it's a little like what my pt has me doing. The tucking the pelvis part while keeping the abs relaxed is all glutes and, to a lesser degree, hamstrings.
    Ace83 likes this.

  8. #8
    Ace83 is offline Senior Member
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    Thanks Geoffrey, In two sentence you managed to say what took me six small paragraphs, and I actually think the way you said it sounds better and is clearer.

  9. #9
    GeoffreyLevens is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ace83 View Post
    Thanks Geoffrey, In two sentence you managed to say what took me six small paragraphs, and I actually think the way you said it sounds better and is clearer.
    Thanks, product of a misspent youth. Or maybe well spent!
    Ace83 likes this.

  10. #10
    Ace83 is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Hansen View Post
    I looked up that Wu Chi pose on google and it's a little like what my pt has me doing. The tucking the pelvis part while keeping the abs relaxed is all glutes and, to a lesser degree, hamstrings.
    Chris, is it intrusive for me to ask what your going to PT for? Feel free to tell me it's none of my business.

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