It's All About the Hinge Baby!
The hip hinge is known to be one of the most avoided movements in training programs! However, it should be the most prominent movement! Although it is an underutilized movement in programming, it is popular for strength development within the posterior kinetic chain (Cholewa et al, 2019). Hadzic et al (2013) provide justification that strength asymmetry between the quadriceps and hamstrings plays an important risk factor for lower leg injuries and strength imbalances followed by proper programming. Therefore, developing a training program to incorporate a balance between the anterior and posterior kinetic chain is ideal. It is clear that maintaining balanced muscular strength is important to the health and well-being of individuals (Krishnan & Williams, 2014).
Any particular foundational movement pattern has a variety of regressions or progressions that can be applied to present movement harmony. When movements are modified from new approaches, it is important to consider that the movement will likely carry over a distinct leg and hip muscle activity (Delgado et al, 2019) compared to the previous movement performed. Even though muscle activity will change upon these modifications, the hip hinge is still the proposed foundational movement pattern.
When it comes to flowable progressions, the three conditions to consider are positions, stability, and intensity. At Linked Fit, our progressions are ordered to prioritize movement quality in positions, then train towards a stable orientation with the focus on reaching intensity demands. These progressions can be shifted depending on the individual's goals, thus making modifications within the stable orientation and intensity demands. Although one should never neglect the positional technique in training to optimize training longevity. Reinforcements in positions with key stances on stability and intensity to produce efficient adaptations can go a long way in training and produce efficient characteristics towards fitness optimization.
Below is a list of key progressions within the hip hinge that one can consider when making upgrades in their training. Each position can be lateralized towards a greater progression based on the specific position utilized. This can be promoted depending on the available equipment.
Lying Glute Bridge
Lying Glute Bridge - 1 Leg
TRX Leg Curl
TRX Leg Curl 1-Leg
BB Glute Bridge
BB Glute Bridge - 1 Leg
RB Tall Kneel Hinge
Dowel RDL - Back Vertical
RB Standing Hinge w/ Posterior Pull
BW RDL 1-Leg w/ Contra 5-Cone Reach
KB Contra RDL 1-Leg w/ Cone Lateral Stepping
DB RDL - 1 Leg w/ 2 DBs
KB RDL w/ Plate Elevation
DB Base Hold RDL
DB RDL Pulse
KB Russian Swing
2 KB Russian Swing
KB RDL w/ RB Accommodating Resistance - 1 Arm
LM RDL - Perpendicular to BB
LM RDL - 1 Leg Contra - Parallel to BB
BB RDL - 1 Leg
BB Suitcase RDL
BB RDL to Drop
Axle Bar RDL
BB RDL w/ RB Accommodating Resistance
Cholewa, J. M., et al. (2019). "Anthropometrical Determinants of Deadlift Variant Performance." Journal of sports science & medicine 18(3): 448-453.
Delgado, J., et al. (2019). "Comparison Between Back Squat, Romanian Deadlift, and Barbell Hip Thrust for Leg and Hip Muscle Activities During Hip Extension." The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research 33(10).
Hadzic, V., et al. (2013). "Bilateral concentric and eccentric isokinetic strength evaluation of quadriceps and hamstrings in basketball players." Collegium Antropologicum 37: 859-865.
Heelas, T., et al. (2019). "Muscle Activation Patterns During Variable Resistance Deadlift Training With and Without Elastic Bands." The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research.
Krishnan, C. and G. N. Williams (2014). "Effect of Knee Joint Angle on Side-to-Side Strength Ratios." The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research 28(10).