A friend of mine the other day commented on an article in Mens Health magazine, called, The New Science of Speed. The article was about the BOSU ball creator David Weck and his very interesting ideas on fascia, spiraling and sprinting.
He talks about how when you sprint, the old standby of hips to lips with your arms is not as effective as spiraling your arms with your hand supinating on the upstroke and pronating on the downstroke. One of the new believers is Tyson Gay. Gay is the fastest US sprinter and recently the slayer of the fastest man in the world, Usain Bolt. Weck taught Gay how to spiral his arms while sprinting and coincidence or not, Gay beat Bolt in the 100m.
Weck talks about how spiraling the arms tenses the fascia which allows for greater running efficiency and keeps your body aligned with a better gravitational center. This is taken from the Mens Health Article.
"If you pronate your hand while it's back, you help your hip flex on that side, which is what is happening when your arm is at the back of the swing," says Weck. "It will lead to the internal rotation of the upper arm, and the 'recoil,' for lack of a better term, of your lats, biceps, and pecs as they prepare to help bring the arm forward again."
I found this to be very interesting. I can remember reading Warren Hammers soft tissue treatment book for the first time and discovering muscles that spiraled or twisted on insertion and the theory was that the twisting allowed for greater energy transfer. The two prominent structures were the latissimus dorsi and sacrotuberous ligament. I realized all great sprinters have great lat development and hamstring development. (hamstrings insert fascialy into the sacrotuberous ligament). Coincidence? Maybe, maybe not.
Weck is a big believer in what appears to be spiraling training. Believing it trains the brain to work in more congruency with the body that opens up to better athletic performance.
Scott Sonnan does some interesting things with club bells that involves circular training. Training in all 3 planes of motions. I bought a pair of Spaulding Indian clubs when I was in chiropractic school to help rehabilitate a dislocated shoulder from my rugby days. This spiraling idea brings me back to thinking of this circular type of training.
I'm a big believer in how fascia is a major component to movement and health. The performance aspect will be a very big field in the next few years and will continue to be an exciting topic. I think I will try spiraling the next time I run.