Brian Li

Hollow Body vs. Straight Body

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Brian Li    284
Brian Li

Hey guys, I've been reading people's posts here suggesting people to strive to get into a hollow position for levers, planches, and malteses and I always thought a straight body is supposed to be the correct position one should go for. Doesn't the hollow body somewhat shorten the levers thus making it slightly easier than the straight body where it is at the longest? Also, a straight body looks more aesthetically pleasing and I see most gymnasts and elite gymnasts perform these skills with a straight body.

By the way, are there two types of 'hollow' positions, one which is most commonly talked about here (somewhat piked body) and the other which is a straight body with shoulders protracted?

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seiyafan    13
seiyafan

I think in hollow body your shoulders are rounded so it's easier to engage the upper back and traps

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Kyle Devlin    1
Kyle Devlin

The hollow body should be used in positions like planche, back lever, and Maltese. Hollow body helps utilize the strength of the scapular during the positions. When you say straight body, I assume you mean a neutral scapular? If so, then no olympic gymnastics do that. They hollow when necessary.

There aren't two types of hollow body positions. The pike in the hips isn't part of hollow body. By trying to get rid of the curve in the lumbar spine, it only seems like hips are piked.

Correct me if I'm wrong.

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Philip Papandrea    20
Philip Papandrea

Hi,

But I thought in a move like the Front Lever the shoulder was supposed to be retracted which would put the body in more of a straight position?? If it is hollowed it would seem that the shoulders would be rounded foward which is what you want for planche. So confusing.

Phil

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Kyle Devlin    1
Kyle Devlin

You should strive to retract the scapular during a FL. It just happens to be very hard to have a perfect retracted scapular so the shoulders do usually get a rounded shape, and that's fine. the body its still straight because there is no pike in the hips.

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Brian Li    284
Brian Li
The hollow body should be used in positions like planche, back lever, and Maltese. Hollow body helps utilize the strength of the scapular during the positions. When you say straight body, I assume you mean a neutral scapular? If so, then no olympic gymnastics do that. They hollow when necessary.

There aren't two types of hollow body positions. The pike in the hips isn't part of hollow body. By trying to get rid of the curve in the lumbar spine, it only seems like hips are piked.

Correct me if I'm wrong.

I was referring to this hollow:

hollow.jpg

I define a straight body as having no pike and no arches, and not by position of scapula.

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Typhoon    0
Typhoon

Remember that you can be straight and hollow.

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seiyafan    13
seiyafan

If you look at any gymnast doing iron cross from the back, it looks like he is having a hunchback, upperback is rounded but everything below is straight. I think that's the hollow position we are talking about, please correct me if I am wrong.

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Joshua Naterman    1,748
Joshua Naterman

Hollow refers to producing a more or less perfectly straight back. Lumbar spine loses extension and becomes flat (NOT flexed), legs are in line with the spine, and most importantly the head and neck are in line with the spine as well. There will usually be a very slight flexion curve in the T-spine but it is very slight, less than 10-15 degrees total and the neck stays in line with the spine.

That picture of a hollow shows crappy head and neck posture. It could be worse, but the head and neck are held forward. You should strive to have the neck in direct alignment with the curve of the T-spine.

You guys need to be patient, we will get some sort of guide to proper shape out as soon as we can. We are all busy. In the meantime, read about packing the neck. Search Google for "packing the neck" and read.

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Brian Li    284
Brian Li

Thank you guys for clarifying. I had mistaken what a hollow is supposed to look like. So now basically a hollow is having the lower back flat and neck packed in short words.

You guys need to be patient, we will get some sort of guide to proper shape out as soon as we can. We are all busy. In the meantime, read about packing the neck. Search Google for "packing the neck" and read.

Sorry if this is a dumb question, but what is the importance of having the neck packed while holding gymnastics strength position like levers? Is it just to protect the spine or are there muscular benefits or something else? Thanks!

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Blairbob    308
Blairbob
but what is the importance of having the neck packed while holding gymnastics strength position like levers? Is it just to protect the spine or are there muscular benefits or something else?

Proper form.

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Joshua Naterman    1,748
Joshua Naterman
Thank you guys for clarifying. I had mistaken what a hollow is supposed to look like. So now basically a hollow is having the lower back flat and neck packed in short words.
You guys need to be patient, we will get some sort of guide to proper shape out as soon as we can. We are all busy. In the meantime, read about packing the neck. Search Google for "packing the neck" and read.

Sorry if this is a dumb question, but what is the importance of having the neck packed while holding gymnastics strength position like levers? Is it just to protect the spine or are there muscular benefits or something else? Thanks!

You will actually get proper muscle activation, which will allow you to build much greater strength as well as use more of what you have. There are many benefits to proper form, but this is the primary one. It lets you actually build the strength you think you are building. Bad form is smoke and mirrors: It looks neat but doesn't get you where you want to go in the long run.

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Igor Czerniawski    8
Igor Czerniawski

 

 

 

There will usually be a very slight flexion curve in the T-spine but it is very slight, less than 10-15 degrees total and the neck stays in line with the spine.

 

I think you meant something else here, because T-spine can be naturally  flexed between 20-40 degrees and rounding your shoulders to increase even farther that flexion can definitely strengthen many positions in gymnastics.

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Mitchell Rabushka    90
Mitchell Rabushka

Hollow refers to producing a more or less perfectly straight back. Lumbar spine loses extension and becomes flat (NOT flexed), legs are in line with the spine, and most importantly the head and neck are in line with the spine as well. There will usually be a very slight flexion curve in the T-spine but it is very slight, less than 10-15 degrees total and the neck stays in line with the spine.

That picture of a hollow shows crappy head and neck posture. It could be worse, but the head and neck are held forward. You should strive to have the neck in direct alignment with the curve of the T-spine.

You guys need to be patient, we will get some sort of guide to proper shape out as soon as we can. We are all busy. In the meantime, read about packing the neck. Search Google for "packing the neck" and read.

Hi Joshua,

 

I am really looking forward to the "How to Hollow" guide because it is so important for F1.  It will be nice if the guide comes w/ a video.

 

By the way, I tried flaring the outside of my hips forward to touch each other and it seemed like this effort causes my lower back to flatten and I get strong core activation.  Not sure if I'm really able to flex the outer edges of my hips forward or if I just get the perception that that's what I'm doing.  If I am flaring the outer edges of my hips forward please let me know if that is acceptable in a hollow.  Thank you.

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