Cossack Squats with 60lbs of Chains
Hips Don’t Lie?
Why is improving your hip mobility important?
Well, the most important reason is that you can get your own music video. You’ll be shaking your mobile hips in waist deep water with a macrame bikini on. Shakira made a career out of it.
There are a few other reasons that might be important to you as a lifter, or you as a coach responsible for athletes.
Importance of Hip Mobility
- Less stress transfer to your lower lumbar
- Less stress transfer to your knees
- More neutral pelvic alignment (poor pelvic alignment puts surrounding musculature on tension)
- Deeper, more full range of motion movements of the lower body
- Progression toward strength in these new range of motions becomes essential
- Improves rotational power potential
- Lower injury potential during decelerative, high force movements
- Sexy bikini photo shoot (not sure why I keep going back to this?)
Exercises That Promote Hip Mobility
- Squat to stand
- Tin Men
- Full Squats
- Lunge and Reach
- Hip Flexor Stretch with Elevated Back Leg on Bench
- Glute Stretch
- Leg Swings
- Leg Raised with Foot Circles
- Cossack Squats
What are Cossack Squats?
Cossack squats are done by performing a lateral lunging motion. The toes can be slightly pointed out or straight forward during the movement. The lifter or athlete will move their feet outward to a sumo or slightly WIDER than sumo position.
From their the torso is braced and forced outward as the lifter / athletes moves to the right / left. The knee moves forward tracking over the toes and on the straight leg the toe comes up. Settling into the bottom position will depend upon your hamstring / glute flexibility and hip / ankle mobility.
The lifter / athlete can stand straight back up (easier) or slide across to the other side (harder). The slide technique keeps constant tension on the legs.
Benefits of Cossack’s
- deeper squat
- better setup on deadlifts
- hip mobility
- knee stability
- hamstring / glute flexibility
- better, stronger kicks in combat athletics
How to Progress Toward Free Stand Cassocks
You might find as you try this movement, there are TONS of things preventing you from getting into position. Your lack of ankle and hip mobility and your quad, hamstring or glute flexibility. In fact, for many of you, this position will feel really weak because it is a new range of motion and you’ve never created tension in this range.
Start slowly and perform it by holding onto the power cage. Then you can transition to a free standing movement. Also, if you are wearing Nike Shox, throw them off and do these barefoot.
Sample Cossack Squat Supersets
1A) Squats, 3×8
1B) Cossack Squats, 3×6 each way
1A) Cossack Squats, 3×3 each way
1B) Box Jumps, 6-8
1A) Psoas Activation, 3o sec each leg
Performed with knee bent and leg raised above 90 deg, held for time.
1B) Cossack Squats, 8 each leg
1C) Banded Seated Leg Curls
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