Dwight Lowery: Week 4
Dwight’s training began with various tests to assess not only his athleticism but his quality of movement. His initial athletic feats combined with the status of his initial suboptimal movement patterns was a big indicator to me of what he had to gain. He was already a successful NFL safety, yet his movement patterns indicated he had much to gain. As training proceeded throughout this month, the OptoJump quantified how much Dynamic Neuromuscular Stabilization (DNS) can improve an athlete and the results were off the charts. DNS believes that there is no strong or weak muscles within the body, but only strong or weak muscle patterns. This means I do not care how much your thigh can leg curl, but how it plays a role in controlling your pelvis and leg. Being competent throughout all movement patterns is what will generate true power, strength, quickness all with a reduced risk for injury. These are necessary attributes that every athlete needs and should always strive to improve upon. However, these attributes should not be prioritized over quality of movement, or even be separate exercises. Movement quality should be integrated within every exercise and never sacrificed. Efficiency of a system is far greater than one or two strong parts and DNS helps the brain re-discover and improve upon these patterns at a subconscious level.
That being said, Dwight followed a very unique, strict, yet constantly adapting workout regimen. Rather than following a typical strict 6-8 week leg program, I used the OptoJump daily to constantly monitor the state of his musculature. With this invaluable data, each session was based upon his current movement patterns and his test results. If his test results were below normal, or his movement was subpar, we would not add unnecessary stress to his system. Conversely, if his test results were above normal with proper biomechanics, I knew his body was ready for an intense day of work. Having this data ensured that he was continually getting the most out of his body each and every day. Regardless of the type of day we had, he improved each and every day we trained. His training consisted of continual improvement of muscular patterns, and the few times he did have any resistance added it was only to increase the intensity of a particular DNS exercise.
He has been so impressed by his improvements that often times when he is training on the football field he is in disbelief when he sees how far he has actually ran. A similar feeling occurred when he saw how high he had touched with his jump and reach retest.
Now, here are the numbers you are all probably waiting for:
Single leg power
Single leg height/power ratio:
No step max jump and reach:
+4 inches . Improved from 33.5'' to 37.5''
Max jump and reach:
+6 inches. Improved from 36.5’’ to 42.5’’ for a max reach of 10’11’’!
Running Single leg efficiency (flight time/contact time):
- 0.1 seconds.
Another gain he made was within his reaction time test. This is a test where he is straddling the OptoJump and facing a computer. The computer either makes an auditory or visual signal and he is supposed to life his foot up and place it back down as quickly as possible. Simply by changing his squat mechanics (getting his torso to be close to parallel with his shins), his reaction time improved by 3.3% (left) and 5.8% (right). It is this change in his squatting mechanics that allowed for him to reach such new heights across the board.
These improvements are great for anyone, but for an athlete that competes at such a high level, this edge will be invaluable to him. Who ever picks him up as a free agent will be getting quite the steal.