If there is one exercise that even the top coaches tend to shy away from it would be overhead pressing, and with good reason. In order to be successful with the movement there is so much that has to go right from head to toe to elicit proper shoulder mechanics, rhythm, and functioning, otherwise injury is a certainty. If the hips, core, low back, upper back, or shoulder joint itself are dysfunctional in any shape or form it can affect the shoulder in a negative fashion resulting in weakness, decreased performance, and a risk for injury. This is where corrective work comes into play along with very detailed and attentive overhead progressions. Eventually you can return to normal overhead pressing in most scenario’s if you have been previously injured, or you are currently suffering from a shoulder injury and pain. And if you happen to be one of the few who have impeccable shoulders then corrective variations can help maintain what you have already established and decrease the risk of you running into problems in the future. Plus, even though there isn’t a call for a high amount of external loading with these drills they can still be very fun and challenging through the changes in body position, increased tension, and slower lifting tempo.
Too date, there are many overhead pressing variations that can dramatically impact the way our entire body is aligned, while offering an advantage in performing an overhead press correctly. And “The Kneeling Press with an RNT emphasis” is another great tool to have in your training toolbox when treating your shoulders and attempting to maintain or restore normal function and strength.
There are several benefits to performing this exercise. First, the drill removes the support of your legs. When this happens the body has no other choice, but too then recruit the core and shoulders more together to lift the weight up. If you have been searching for the ever elusive ZOA (Zone of Apposition), then this drill will definitely help matters. With the band wrapped tightly around the waist, the glutes have to work hard to terminally extend the hips and resist any hip bending from occuring. This scenario can enhance the core to recruit more, along with the upper back and create more space at the shoulder joint, so that you can perform the overhead movement safely.
Next, the kneeling position lowers your body’s center of gravity (COG) which shortens the entire length of the body and provides enhanced stability to the joint as a result. The longer and taller we are the harder it is to maintain joint control and there is more natural room for error when there is more joints involved. Working from a lower starting position is a great strategy for developing proper kinetic sequencing of working joints and muscles.
*Perform 1-2x per week
*Stay in the higher rep ranges to reduce the chance of technical error (8-15 reps)
*Utilize a slower tempo to encourage greater shoulder stability and joint control