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 Baseball Performance & Injury Prevention Training
 The Value of The Split Squat
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Rapid

32 Posts

Posted - 10/08/2018 :  13:26:01  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
The split squat is a hallmark strength training exercise that in our opinion should be included in any athletic development plan. Nearly all motions in sport require tremendous amounts of single leg strength. Whether it’s the push off in running or the plant leg in the pitching motion, the athlete must be able to display strength unilaterally (one side).
In addition to building strength so force can be expressed, this strength protects the knee and hip. In order to properly execute this movement, the pelvis must be split. One hip is flexed while the other extends, or one hip is bent, the other is straight. This is a critical position for running as the body utilizes reciprocal patterns such as these to create motion. With this in mind, we consider the split squat an excellent method for improving hip mobility and motor control.

Another one of my favorite qualities about the split squat is that it allows people to build athleticism and strength with a “low barrier to entry.” I simply mean that nearly everyone can do a safe split squat when the right variation is properly coached. This gives us a way to train strength in people who present with back pain or who do not squat/deadlift very well.

Here a few split squat variations we use quite commonly! All passwords are Rapidvideo.

https://vimeo.com/277144271 (Split Squat)

This is a standard split squat set up. You can load it in a variety of ways as the video mentions, we commonly use one dumbbell or kettle bell to increase the demand on the core. The split squat challenges the athlete to maintain a stiff, controlled trunk position at all times. Which gives you even more bang for your buck!

- Straight up and straight down
- Head, ribs, and pelvis stacked at all times
- Drive through the floor on the front foot
- Control the descent
- Front knee should not shoot out over toes- “Knee on top of ankle”

https://vimeo.com/277145875 (Rear foot Elevated- A.k.a. Bulgarian Split Squat)

This drill is a bit more challenging, as there is an increased demand on trunk stability and the front leg. I like to always set up from the bottom to ensure I am in a good position. People commonly set up much too wide. The same cues from above apply!

- Straight up and straight down
- Head, ribs, and pelvis stacked at all times
- Drive through the floor on the front foot
- Control the descent
- Front knee should not shoot out over toes- “Knee on top of ankle”

We hope this is helpful! Have a great week, and as always feel free to comment with questions or topic requests!

All the best,
The Rapid Team
www.go-rapid.com

Andrew Gordon, MS, CSCS
Andrew.Gordon@go-rapid.com

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