Engaged!

Posted on September 23, 2013 by

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I recently had the pleasure of working side by side with Genesis Transformation’s Founder, Sheri Lynn.  Sheri was asked to create a safety, prevention and wellness program for the owners and employees at a Lumber Mill in Montana.  Their needs were to relieve the company of pain and to teach proper bio-mechanics in order to avoid job site accidents and injuries.

I was so intrigued by this work, I flew out and see what she was up to.  I could write a book or create a movie from the work going on at this facility so I’ll keep it as short as possible.   Sheri is teaching each individual techniques on how to hold their bodies in proper alignment and how to utilize proper mechanics for their specific duty within the company, as well as everyday functioning.  Employees are feeling better being out of pain, many have also lost weight, the camaraderie is indescribable, some have quit soda, alcohol, eating candy bars on break, and no longer smoke.  All stemming from their foundation of proper alignment.

Leaving Chicago I had my chest puffed a little; I’ve been in the gym setting for over 20 years, I have a love of exercise, I workout in all modalities and I’m a personal trainer.   Within 5 minutes of being in Sheri’s gym at the mill, I realized all I had learned was about to be thrown out the window.   I was about to have my mind blown, yet again by this woman.  YEP – it happened, I had my tail between the legs and felt as though it was the first time working with movement by 10 minutes in.  Her technique is SO PRECISE and like nothing I had ever experienced before.  Her integrity to building upon a foundation is what allows this program to work, for life.

A few days in, we had a lull in the schedule so she decided to teach me a move or two on the TRX, she walked away and from across the room I heard “STOOOOPPPP!!  WHAT, was THAT?”  In my head, I was thinking “it was a pretty perfect bird, NO?”  She queued a few other exercises, each one I could see she wasn’t digging my form.   She brought awareness to the fact that I was muscling through core moves with my shoulders and lower body.   I perform deadlifts, squats, planks, Turkish Getups and birds regularly, how the heck was I getting through them without FULLY engaging my core?  Overcompensating is how.

Since then, I started back to the basics of engaging my core.  I was a little humbled but more importantly, I am using correct form now and will prevent injury as well as unnecessary pain (that I probably would have blamed on age or an increase in weights).    Before I even THINK about adding any weight to my routine, you better believe I will spend some much needed time with basic core work and yoga first.  Our core is the powerhouse of our body and protects our spine.  It is crucial to build a strong core before building any extremities!

Below are two of the moves I use to strengthen my core on a continuous basis.  Be aware of alignment.  Be SURE to use your breath, exhale on the exertion phase.  Really use your breath, it helps to engage your transverse abdominus!

Reverse Lunge:

Dead Bug:

Lie on your back with knees 90 degrees above the hip and arms straight up toward the ceiling

INHALE: extend right leg toward wall in front of you and left arm toward wall behind you

EXHALE: return to starting position and switch sides

Dead Bug

Dead Bug

Rock On Fitness Friends!

Katie Surjan

Katie@genesistransformation.com