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Office of Work-Life Programs (CG-111) -
Coast Guard Athleticism Program

Pillar Preparation

Your pillar - which consists of your hips, torso and shoulders - represents the foundation for all of your movement. All movement requires the production or absorption of forces; this force is then transferred throughout your body in order to execute the movement. Your pillar acts as a bridge to ensure the seamless transfer of energy throughout your body - its alignment and function directly correspond to the quality and efficiency of every move you will make.

If your pillar is compromised, energy leaks may occur throughout your body, causing movement compensations that can quickly lead to aches, pain and even injuries. It's important to realize that these energy leaks will also have a negative impact on the amount of power production in any given movement.

If you think of the body as a wheel, the pillar is the hub and the limbs are spokes. We want to have the hub perfectly aligned so we can draw energy from it and effectively transfer energy throughout the body. It's impossible to move the limbs efficiently and forcefully if they're not attached to something solid and stable.

Pillar Preparation is a training component that is designed to strengthen the critical stabilizing muscles of your pillar: shoulders, torso and hips. By performing Pillar Preparation at the start of your training session, you are engaging or "turning on" the muscles that will help protect, stabilize and strengthen your pillar so that you are able to safely and effectively transfer energy throughout your body during the rest of your workout. In addition, Pillar Preparation will give you a solid foundation, which will allow you to perform your operational task at the best of your ability, all while reducing the chance of injury. A strong pillar will help keep you healthy and in peak form.

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Last Modified 12/18/2013