don't bridge

Bridge it right or don’t bridge!

don't bridge

The bridge or the pelvic curl…whatever you call it, the end position is still the same.

But what anatomy should be working in the exercise & when?

Let’s break it down.

Some schools of thought say ‘use your hamstrings to lift the pelvis’, ‘some say ‘use your glutes‘ and others say ‘use both’. 

Bearing in mind that we have an epidemic of sleeping glutes, we want to clarify what really needs to work here:

  1. Lower abdominals start the pelvic tuck.
  2. Gluteus Maximus engages to start lifting the pelvis off of the floor.
  3. Gluteus Maximus continues to do this with the addition of the hamstrings.
  4. Hip flexors are lengthening as you roll up.
  5. Back extensors kick in as you start reaching that perfect diagonal line.
  6. Adductors keep legs parallel.
  7. NO LATS PLEASE. 
  8. Turn your palms up to avoid pressing down with you hands. Besides it opens your shoulders. 
  9. When you peak at your diagonal line ‘BLOW ALL THE AIR OUT OF YOUR LUNGS’. This will encourage the TA to close the ribs. 

Why do we want to close the ribs?

Did you know that the pressure that is created on the ribs during this movement creates resistance for the hip extensors as they hold your pelvis high. In fact, you can cue, ‘press your ribs to the floor and your pubic bone to the ceiling.’  It’s two counter movements but it works like a charm.

Another awesome cue is, ‘tuck or curl the pubic bone through to your ribs’. It should not be a lift with the pelvis at the end but rather a tuck through.

Why is this process so important?

Because through EMG testing, most individuals presented with over-active hamstrings and under-active glutes for various reasons:

  1. Sitting too long and lengenthing Gluteus Maximus constantly.
  2. Tight hip flexors especially Rectis Femoris.
  3. Posterior pelvic tilters.
  4. Anterior pelvic tilters.

But you HAVE TO get the Glutes active in the bridge.

Trust me, the process is not easy. It doesn’t just happen. We need to know exactly what we are doing when training an individuals glutes because everybody is different. 

That is why this was part of our EMG study and then we developed the Sleeping Bum Online Course + the Why Behind Compensations Online course.

It can all start with a simple but complicated exercise like the bridge. 

STOP FEELING MAINLY HAMSTRINGS AND START FEELING THOSE GLUTES FIRING INTENSELY. After all, that is why you have a Gluteus Maximus….It is your global hip extensor. 

That is the HEALTHY TRUTH!

Tanya Thompson (Founder & CEO – Of-courseonline.com & Pilates Unlimited – the Art of Movement)
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