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Most injuries in sport occur in the transverse plane. Poor rotational stability may contribute to increased injury risk with landing, cutting and pivoting activity. Identifying these imbalances and weaknesses in the lower extremity and incorporating appropriate training exercises can help prevent injury. The crossover cone reach is a an excellent exercise to use with athletes and weekend warriors..
 
Execution:
Position two cone about two feet apart. Begin standing on one leg and slowly squat down reaching the left hand toward the right cone. Lightly touch the cone at the bottom and return to the full upright position each time. Next, reach the right hand toward the left cone in the same manner. Alternate sides and perform 5-10 repetitions on each side. Repeat for 2-3 sets. 

Discourage any excessive valgus or hip internal rotation/adduction during the movement, and watch for overpronation as well. Encourage a slower controlled cadence especially on the descent. This exercises can be done in front of a mirror to offer visual feedback and kinesthetic feedback can also be used to facilitate the proper movement pattern.

Progression:
1. Use a shorter cone and/or reach to designated spots on the floor
2. Stand farther away from the cone
3. Stand on an unstable surface and use the aforementioned progressions 

Regression:
1. Start by using a taller cone or placing the cone on a stool or box to reduce the reaching distance
2. Stand closer to the cones

Application:
This exercise aims to strengthen the entire lower kinetic chain, increase proprioception, improve dynamic stability, and reducing injury risk. It is appropriate for all ages and abilities, and serves as an excellent way to assess and train single limb balance and stability. Athletes involved in jumping, cutting and pivoting sports can use this exercise to reduce their risk for lower extremity injuries and facilitate optimal movement patterns in sport. 


Brian Schiff, PT, OCS, CSCS, is a licensed physical therapist, respected author and fitness professional. Currently, he serves as the supervisor for EXOS API at Raleigh Orthopaedic. Brian conducts live continuing education webinars and presents nationally at professional conferences and seminars on injury prevention, rehab and sport-specific training. For more information on his products and services, visit
www.BrianSchiff.com.

Topic: Functionally Fit

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