glute ham sit up

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gogi
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glute ham sit up

Post by gogi » Sat Mar 08, 2008 4:08 pm

I have been doing glute ham sit ups for some time now; usually 3-4 sets of 10-12 reps. The first set I do going only to parallel and the remaining sets I go all the way to the floor. I enjoy the exercise and I believe I am doing it correctly (although not as fast as demonstrated in this video: http://www.petranekfitness.com/cms/index.php/Video/C62/ )

It seems like a great exercise to me, but there are opinions that it could cause damage for lower back and spine over time.

I would like to know about your experience with this exercise and your opinion about its safety. Thanks!

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Post by Ironman » Sat Mar 08, 2008 5:11 pm

It looks like and ab and hip flexor exercise. I wouldn't do it that fast though. It should be safe if you do it slower. It doesn't look like a glute/ham exercise though.

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Post by gogi » Sat Mar 08, 2008 5:28 pm

It seems too fast to me too. I do it slower as I feel that this way I have better control over the movement. I guess that "glute ham" is in the name of the exercise only because it is performed on glute ham developer. It does involve abs and hips as well as rectus femoris if done correctly.

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Post by TimD » Sat Mar 08, 2008 5:30 pm

It is an ab/hip flexor ex, it's just done on the device used for the GHR. Similar to the old Roman chair situps. I've never heard of it being harmful to the spine, but like anything elsd or extended, just keep it uner control.
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Post by Stephen Johnson » Sun Mar 09, 2008 10:15 pm

People with tight lower backs and hip flexors will have problems assuming the bottom position of the exercise. And the trainer on the video seems to be doing the exercise ballistically, throwing her torso down then springing back up. Doing it slower would be OK I guess.

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Post by gogi » Mon Mar 10, 2008 3:34 am

Thanks guys. The movement does feel good when I control it both down and up.

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Post by KPj » Mon Mar 10, 2008 7:50 am

I wouldn't even try that exercise. Well, the first part, looks fine when she stops hyper extending the spine (when her back stops when parallel to the floor).

The first part actually sickened me in the same way as those videos showing people blowing out their knees etc does.

Some people think Hyper extending the back is fine, though, so you need to bear that in mind.

At the same time, there are lots of ab exercises that are fine and don't have this issue (or, debate), I can't think why anyone would try something like this when considering the other options available.

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Post by TimD » Mon Mar 10, 2008 8:24 am

The idea of hyperextending the spine goes to increasing ROM and to also flex the spine itself, something you couldn't do with a flat on the ground situp. There are two camps, I know, on the idea of flexing the spine. Dr Squat, and Bill Starr, ("The Strongest Shall Survive-Strength Training for Football" - a classic)actually recommend the spine flexing thing via trunk curls, good mornings, etc,; the idea being to strengthen up the smaller muscles, connective tissues surrounding the spine. That said, there are some that absolutely abhor it. I'm not opening up a debate, but my take on it is this, if you're going to try them, use control, and get into it lightly and cautiously. Personally, I've done some form of this for over 40 years and have never had problems.
Tim

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Post by KPj » Mon Mar 10, 2008 8:50 am

my take on it is this, if you're going to try them, use control, and get into it lightly and cautiously. Personally, I've done some form of this for over 40 years and have never had problems.
Yeah, this is where things like this get confusing. It's the same with flexion of the lumbar spine, which I believe was regarded as fine decades ago, but more recently has been shown to be bad news for spine health. I actually thought the 'rounding of the lower back' thing was common knowledge now, but then I started going to this small PL club with a lot of older guys in it. They class me and another guy my age as a 'technical lifters' LOL, because we lift with good back position! Where as they 'just lift' - rounded lower backs, weight belts gallore - I'm pro weight belts for max attemps but not for every rep you ever do! Anyway, these guys are fine too, strong as hell and 2-3 times my age! It's not as if I can say to them, 'just wait and see what happens to your back in a few years', because they have waited, and they have seen for themselves, lol, I don't have an argument at all.

My view is - 'why risk it'? There are other options that let you get the job done. It would be different if lack of hyper extension or lumbar flexion was holding you back in some way or another. Only then is when I personally would consider trying it out for myself... Until then, I'm happy to let the scientists do the research in this one :-)

KPj

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Post by TimD » Mon Mar 10, 2008 10:01 am

Hey, KPJ, if my memory serves, I think your from Scotland. have you ever been to the fames up there. One reason some of the older guys were using the rounded back stuff was for the stone loading events.It's pretty hard to stay technical when you have to bend down and and bear hug a big old rock. But you've got a good point, if your concerned, why risk it"
Tim

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Post by KPj » Mon Mar 10, 2008 10:52 am

TimD wrote:Hey, KPJ, if my memory serves, I think your from Scotland. have you ever been to the fames up there. One reason some of the older guys were using the rounded back stuff was for the stone loading events.It's pretty hard to stay technical when you have to bend down and and bear hug a big old rock. But you've got a good point, if your concerned, why risk it"
Tim
Yeah, that's correct - stay in Scotland. Shamefully, I've never been to any of the highland game events (assuming that's what you mean), although it is on the to do list. We do have local yearly events, very small, I guess they are trying to get the community spirit up by doing traditional Scottish events, like a mini highland games - the only strength thing they do is the Tug of War, which is allot of fun (even more shamefully, I sneaked in a dynamic warm up before hand!).

I have a hard time finding a good PL club, though, but they seem to be getting more popular which is good. Although the one that I have found was about 3 miles away from me the whole time! Just never knew it was there. We're starting to get an OL presence, though, if you follow the common wealth games? Got a couple of good clubs starting to get a name for themselves so hopefully you guys across the pond will start to hear more from our wee country ;-)

KPj

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Post by gogi » Tue Mar 11, 2008 3:35 pm

KPj wrote:At the same time, there are lots of ab exercises that are fine and don't have this issue (or, debate)
KPj wrote:My view is - 'why risk it'? There are other options that let you get the job done. It would be different if lack of hyper extension or lumbar flexion was holding you back in some way or another. Only then is when I personally would consider trying it out for myself... Until then, I'm happy to let the scientists do the research in this one :-)
These are good common sense points KPj, thanks.
And thanks everybody for your comments!

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