Monday, February 13, 2017

Bird Dog Variations

Bird Dogs which were popularized by the work of Stuart McGill are a staple in many rehab or training programs.  We utilize many different variations of the bird dog at Soul PT.  After watching Joel Seedman's variation with a row, we decided to show off some variations we do in our clinic and explain how we use them.


Bird dogs are great to teach trunk stability on a moving upper extremity, moving lower extremity or both.

A pre-requisite to performing a bird dog with ideal form is to learn the concept of a "neutralish" spine.  A neutral spine is neither arched nor rounded, or the midpoint right between the two.  By staying in this stacked or centrated position it should encourage more stability and position we would ideally be able to maintain during work, life and lifting.

Once one understands neutral spine, it's time to work on stabilizing that on a moving limb.  The traditional bird dog has one lift alternate arm and leg while on all fours, while maintaining a neutral spine.

Benefits of Bird Dogging - Hot Dog Hot Dog Hot Diggity Dog.

By removing a limb or limbs from the floor, it causes your body to resist rotation to maintain postural stability.

Due to the unstable nature of these movements, there is a need for continuous adjustment in order to execute them properly. This awareness will bombard your nervous system with a lot of information which can help modulate pain. It also improves lower back resiliency by grooving proper mechanics.

The next couple of videos, demonstrate different progressions to the regular Bird Dog exercise that you can implement in your weekly routine for a new challenge.

-Quadruped Shoulder Abduction
-Shoulder Abduction with Leg Extension
-Shoulder Abduction in Bear Holds (raise knees 2 inches of ground & hold)

-Vertical Row in Quadruped position
-Row in Bear hold (raise knees 2 inches of ground & hold)
-Bird Dog & Row

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