The back support is a neuromuscular warm-up exercise that will help you develop a static hip extension for improved hip health. Below we will cover all you need to know to perform this exercise and increase your sports performance.
The back support is one of the best exercises to develop a static hip extension for increased hip health and performance.
Many functional exercises such as squats, lifts and jumps require proper control of hip extension. The back support can be an essential preparation or even corrective exercise to develop stable and robust hip extensors.
Start in a long sitting position with legs straight and hands positioned shoulder-width apart just behind the hips.
Begin by engaging the core and setting the shoulders. Squeeze the glutes as you drive the hips upwards, so the torso, hips and knees are all aligned in a straight line.
Hold for the desired time and repeat.
The back support is a self-limiting exercise — you will instantly get feedback if you’re not getting a full hip extension. In contrast, standard hip extension exercises such as squatting and deadlifting can be performed without full hip extension (though this is required for better efficiency) and you may not even be aware of that. In this respect, it’s worth mastering the back support as it will undoubtedly improve all other hip extension movements.
The fact remains that the back support is largely forgotten by the mainstream industry and can only be found within gymnastics, yoga and dance, as a foundational exercise.
The reason why it’s so effective is twofold. Firstly, the long position puts hip extension against gravity — providing instant feedback to performance. Secondly, the position requires end-range shoulder flexibility (extension). Without adequate shoulder extension, the body will often compensate with an excessive spinal extension (to lift the torso). This acts like a counterforce that can limit hip extension. The result? Excessive tightness in the chest/shoulders, over-arching of the back and poor hip extension. With this in mind, it will be beneficial to mobilise the shoulders and stretch the chest before performing the back support.
Now you know why you should start including the back support in your warm-up. It’s time for you to check some other tutorials: