OHS Mobility Progression fix – Crossfit adventures of an ‘athlete’

I have truly enjoyed Crossfit these past 13 months I have been going. I am definitely stronger, faster, and more capable an athlete than ever before. To provide perspective – I was already running before Crossfit and I had completed 2 half-ironmans and 1 full ironman.

My first full Ironman w/ Crossfit training was 80 minutes faster in time. Not the same, so not completely a fair comparison. My mile time though has dropped 90 seconds, to a pretty consistent time of 6:02. These are my strengths though .. Crossfit has allowed me to attack my weaknesses, and that is the topic today:

Overhead Squats (OHS) and my mobility.

Simply put – I have horrible back and shoulder mobility. To much time typing at a computer, running, and swimming. All without the right mobility. I have tried a number of approaches and wanted to share with the community the 3 ways I found to address the issue directly.

My fault: I couldn’t open my arms enough to keep the bar overhead (I kept failing forward).


  1. Ball on pectoral muscle; lie on the floor, and rotate your arm from side to overhead while dragging your palms on the ground. Each side go a couple of times
  2. Big band attached to wall about shoulder height; loop on bicep to elbow; play arms in wrestler reverse grip in back; then slowly move forward so elbow rotates straight back. Tension will feel in the under armpit region. Each side a couple of times
  3. Rollers rollers rollers … upper back, hamstrings, lower back, just a good idea always

Another movement I did was to take the PVC in a javeline grip while placing bar on back of bicep. Here I then use the PVC under the bicep as a lever and simply slowly move the tension back and forth. 

This took a few weeks, but I now incorporate the above 3 in all my pre-WOD OHS warmups by adding it into the set, so each movement gets 3 sets.

Other successes, let me know!

Thanks to Kelly on posting great videos – I’ll find those links again and post them here for tips 1 and 2 above.




About J.D.

Passionate about CrossFit, mindset, bettering each other, technology, and the intersection of cybersecurity with products. The online views and posts represent my journey of discovery and learning.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s