Tim Ferriss Features Coach Sommer in His New Book, Tools of Titans
New York Times best-selling author Tim Ferriss has just released a new book titled Tools of Titans, in which he profiles the tips and tricks of many high-achieving, elite individuals from a wide variety of disciplines and activities, including the founder of GymnasticBodies, Coach Christopher Sommer. Ferriss and Coach Sommer have been working together since Tim reached out to gain some guidance on his own Gymnastics Strength TrainingTM journey, and since then they have recorded two podcasts that have helped introduce many new people to GSTTM.
Tim Ferriss is no slack in the gym either, and Coach Sommer has mentioned how he was pleasantly surprised with Tim's gymnastics preparation leading up to their training together. The attention to detail and high level of focus is clearly apparent in Tools of Titans, and Coach Sommer is deeply honored to be a part of this book compilation project.
Tim Ferriss and the Jefferson Curl
One movement in particular that captivated Tim's audience was the Jefferson Curl, a weighted mobility exercise that is a mainstay in the GymnasticBodies Courses. The Jefferson Curl is a unique drill in many ways, the first and most noteworthy of which is that it seems to go against decades of "proper technique" that has been taught in physical therapy clinics and strength and conditioning gyms all over the world.
As Coach Sommer mentions in his podcast interview with Tim Ferriss, the Jefferson Curl needs to be approached gradually and progressively. Start slow, using only a wooden dowel or a 5-lb dumbbell to help give your body some feedback as to how it is moving through space. Standing on a slightly elevated surface like a box or mat, slowly begin to curl your spine down towards the ground one vertebrae at a time. Keep your chin tucked and legs straight, and focus on evenly rounding your back as you reach towards the floor.
Pause for a moment at the bottom of the Jefferson Curl to exhale and let the weight pull you a little bit further. In this lowest position, you should feel a deep stretch through your hamstrings, glutes, and lower back. To come back up from the bottom, simply reverse the movement, extending your spine one vertebrae at a time until you are standing upright and tall on top of the box or mat.
There should be no pain felt at any point in time during the Jefferson Curl. If there is, then back off and use a lighter weight or more shallow range of motion. Listen to your body here, and exercise a bit of caution so that you can continue to make progress in your GST practice for years to come.
The benefits of the Jefferson Curl are many, including increased strength and mobility throughout your entire posterior chain. This goes beyond simply your glutes, hamstrings, and lower back, however, as this movement will specifically target the tightest and weakest segments of your spine, no matter where they happen to be. Many people also feel a great stretch through their shoulders and lats at the bottom of the movement, an added benefit to this whole-body mobility exercise.
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