Kevin Neeld — Hockey Training, Sports Performance, & Sports Science

Individualizing Upper Body Exercises

@timlebbossiere shares an important consideration on how to individualize upper body exercise seleciton based on t-spine presentation:

From Tim:

An easy way to individualize your program can be changing upper body exercise selection based on the thoracic spine.

GENERALLY you can classify individuals as more kyphotic (curved) in nature vs. more lordodic (flat). Individuals with flatter t-spines can obviously benefit from a strength stand point with bench press variations, but the extension pattern of these types of lifts could be feeding in to upper body movement restrictions that are already present.

Switching these individuals to upper body pressing variations where the scaps are free to move, allowing the serratus to protract scaps around the rib cage could be extremely beneficial for improving movement potential, leading to better gains down the line with the ability to recruit the correct musculature through a bigger range of motion.

Feel free to post any comments/questions below. If you found this helpful, please share/re-post it so others can benefit.

To your success,

Kevin Neeld

P.S. For more information on in- and off-season program design, training and reconditioning for injured players, and integrating sports science into a comprehensive training process, check out Optimizing Adaptation & Performance

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Kevin Neeld

Kevin Neeld Knows Hockey

Kevin has rapidly established himself as a leader in the field of physical preparation and sports science for ice hockey. He is currently the Head Performance Coach for the Boston Bruins, where he oversees all aspects of designing and implementing the team’s performance training program, as well as monitoring the players’ performance, workload and recovery. Prior to Boston, Kevin spent 2 years as an Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach for the San Jose Sharks after serving as the Director of Performance at Endeavor Sports Performance in Pitman, NJ. He also spent 5 years as a Strength and Conditioning Coach with USA Hockey’s Women’s Olympic Hockey Team, and has been an invited speaker at conferences hosted by the NHL, NSCA, and USA Hockey.