Treating folks, like you, who move for a living and love to move
Author: Richard SymisterHow to Build a Stronger Bridge
The bridge is a staple exercise for building strength and stability throughout the lower back, hip, and posterior chain.
As Physical and Performance Therapists, we rely upon the bridge often when treating clients suffering from lower back pain, hip dysfunctions, weak glutes, and core instability.
Here are a few tips for getting the most out of your bridge exercises. Try this:
- Zero lower back pain. Muscle soreness is common one or two days after your first few sessions. But acute sharp pain is unacceptable when performing the bridge
- Master of the basics. Start with the easier movements, focusing on your ABCs, before moving on to the more complex bridges.
- Get balanced. When progressing to one-legged bridges, shoot to achieve 90 to 95% leg symmetry. In other words, one leg should not be more than 5% weaker than the other.
- Maintain neutral. Strive to keep your pelvis level, without letting either side drop down towards the floor.
- Breath. When performing your bridge, match your breath tempo with the movement. Make sure you’re taking full breaths in, as well as full breaths out.
- Have a Training Road Map: Know the correct number of sets, reps, load, rest periods, and frequency for a productive workout each and every time. Not sure? Ask us! Three sets of ten is a nice, generic training scheme with which to start to out. But sooner, rather than later, you’ll need a program that is specific to your needs and sport. After a thorough exam, your therapist should provide you with a solid Training Road Map.
The bridge is a great exercise for almost anyone who wishes to gain more hip mobility, stability, and power. The bridge is also a foundation rehab exercise when treating lower back and hip pain. Done safely and correctly, you can progress through the bridge challenges as you get stronger and over time, and modify them to make them sports-specific.
Heal. Move. BRIDGE. Evolve.
Lower back pain is common, but not normal! Don’t gamble on generic Physical Therapy to treat your lower back pain. Come to the therapists who absolutely love treating backs and spines.