October 5, 2020: In this episode my guest is one of my Big Brother brothers, Hayden Voss! Hayden is a personal trainer and mobility coach and focuses on shoulders, knees, and the mind-body connection to help you live your best life physically and mentally!
Hayden: Hey, what’s up man
Zach: What’s up dude, my bb16 brother
Hayden: Alright, how are you doing?
Zach: I’m doing well, how are you?
Hayden: Good, can you hear me alright, everything good over there?
Zach: You’re coming in loud and clear man, welcome to the podcast.
Hayden: Thanks for having me, appreciate it.
Zach: So I wanted to get you on here so we can discuss a little bit about the mobility training that you’re doing, some health and wellness guidance for the followers, so tell everyone what you do and we can go from there.
Hayden: I’ve been a Personal Trainer and Group Fitness Instructor for the last 6 years now and it has taken me in a few different directions but as of late mobility and just the process of being well and moving well especially in regards to longevity has been one of my main focuses. In the last 6 months the gym I was working out of for the past almost six years shut down and now I started up my own gym with another co-trainer, another trainer so we are co-owners of a private studio and we’re also doing a lot of online stuff as well and stuff in our studio. But anyhow the training that we do largely focuses on mobility, moving well and then just increasing the overall, I would say, capacity of your body to move well.
Zach: Nice, so mobility, if I got this right is just feeling good in your body?
Hayden: Yeah, mobility, I would say is really just strength training with the intention of being able to move better and that’s what’s really interesting about it. If you were just to hear it you would think flexibility and it’s not really flexibility, there’s a component of that. It’s being able to feel strong and confident in any way that you move. So it’s not necessarily about, like okay I want to be able to do the splits it’s more like I want to be able to get my legs to whatever wideness they can go and feel confident and strong in that position. So being very mobile doesn’t necessarily mean being very flexible, you know. It’s good to be flexible but more than anything it’s better to be confident in whatever range of motion you put yourself in.
Zach: Got it. Okay so let me ask you a question, does mobility have a lot of things in common with yoga?
Hayden: Yeah there is definitely some carryover between the two and yoga is fantastic and of course it depends on what kind of yoga you’re practicing but I guess the difference is that mobility, you are going to have more focus on one joint at a time, more honed in on a certain area. Say with Yoga flow it’s going to be a lot of integrated dynamic movements where you’re moving a lot of body parts at once where you’re trying to move one thing in conjunction with another. Mobility training is going to have some components of that but it’s more going to be like okay I’m going to get my body into the position or use an object, exterior load whatever it is, and then I’m going to try to very specifically train that area. So I would say mobility training would be a good thing to do to prepare yourself for yoga. It can go both ways but I’ll just give an example. Okay I want to strengthen my shoulder flexion so you’re just raising your arms over your head, your biceps are by your ears and you get your body in that position and then you add some little weights to your hands and you just decide to go there and hold that position and you’re doing some isometric strength work for your shoulder flexion. That would be mobility training and it’s going to carry over to something like Yoga, cause when you’re in a down dog which is a similar kind of shoulder flexion you’re going to feel really strong and capable.
Zach: Okay absolutely. Awesome.
Hayden: A big part of it is preparing yourself. Mobility training will often be referred to as pre-hab. Because you are strengthening and preparing so that you don’t hurt yourself or you don’t feel not confident doing something like a fitness routine like yoga or a daily activity like just reaching out for something in your cabinet.
Zach: Right okay so who’s someone that should be doing mobility training? And how can it help them increase their quality of life?
Hayden: You know, everyone. I really think it’s for everyone and it should be for everyone. Even if you’re not doing a fitness regime or not in a hard core yoga practice, you don’t exercise every single day, no matter what, every single person is going to move and do things and you know to practice mobility is to practise for life, really. It’s not just so you don’t get injured of course that’s a nice benefit but it’s also so you feel good because this other aspect of mobility that I haven’t really mentioned yet. When you’re able to move well, your body is going to function better. Your blood flow is going to be better and your overall health of your deep insides at a cellular level is going to be better. The mind and body are connected and so that takes us right up to the mind and your mind is going to function better. It’s just a string of events like a domino effect and everything moves in a circle and if you were to think about if you don’t have mobility you’re just taking out one part of that circle that really wants to be closed and move well together.
Zach: Absolutely, so someone like me, you and I have discussed this a few weeks ago about my shoulders and my knees, like where should I focus my mobility training more in the places that are weaker? or in the places that are stronger?
Hayden: In the places you are weaker. I would encourage anyone to always think about their total body. You know you want to be as strong as you can in as many places as you can but if you have what you would consider weak areas then definitely spend some more time there, do some extra TLC in those areas because you want to feel strong everywhere. If you have those areas that you don’t feel as strong or you’re not as confident moving in those areas, then definitely you want to up your game in that regard. I mean it just depends on what you’re doing and what you’re training for, like you’re doing some hardcore training right now with your Triathlon training and everything. I would put extra focus on the areas that are really going to be taking a lot of that heat during your training. Spend a little bit of extra time in the areas that are really going to be getting after it with the other training that you’re doing.
Zach: Like my knees for example
Hayden: Knees, absolutely, your knees or hips, your shoulders so pretty much across-the-board. Everyone should really take care of those things because they’re going to so easily translate into a healthy long life. If you have your knees functioning properly, your hips moving well and your shoulders feel strong and protected, I mean you’re quite literally going to increase your percentages of living a longer happier healthier life. Also you’re going to perform better in all the things you do.
Zach: Absolutely it really comes down to that for me is just quality of life. Why do I do yoga? Why do I train for this Ironman? Because I want to feel good in my body. And I think it’s really important for us to take care of our shoulders and our knees, so many people have shoulder issues. I feel like everyone in the world has shoulder issues we’re just using them so often. It’s important for us to do that prehab like you mention, you know we don’t have to dive all in on mobility and do it for an hour a day but being conscious and being aware about how we can strengthen our joints and strengthen our muscles and our knees and our shoulders like that is something that we should all be aware of. Whether you do Mobility for 45 minutes a day, or not, just learning about mobility and being educated on the benefits and being aware of how it can help you. I think it’s just super beneficial to everyone and I think that’s something everyone should try.
Hayden: Absolutely it’s just kind of like we briefly touched on. Your mind-body connection and at the very least to be aware of it and to just practice it a little bit and whatever that means for you is quite literally going to make you happier. That’s what’s going to translate into a more well lived life. So my training partner Robbie, the thing that we’ve been talking about amongst ourselves is how do you feel well, you know? You’re only given one body in this life and you want to be as well as you possibly can. This is just one of those things. So why not try to be healthy, be happy and live long.
Zach: Yeah that’s awesome man. I’ve been training for my Ironman Triathlon. I’m sure you’ve heard it before. Believe it or not I’ve been practicing my hand stand a lot and I’m so good at handstands, I’m going to send you a video. Actually if you go to my Instagram I posted a video about a week ago just walking on my hands. But I was at the gym and this guy was like “you really got to warm up” and you know, “you’re jumping in your hands and you’re going to f****** your shoulder” and I’m like this guy’s probably one hundred percent right. I’m just kind of going all-in and I need to not only warm up and not only focus on my shoulder strength because I do have bad shoulders. My left shoulder is awful. My right shoulder is not as bad but pretty bad as well. Because I’m doing so much training I think that Mobility Training is something that I need to absolutely incorporate into my daily routine. And like I said about 5 minutes ago, I don’t have to do it for an hour a day, you know, maybe like two exercises in the morning or two exercises in the nighttime.
Hayden: Yeah, just be aware of it and definitely do it. How much time you want to put towards it is going to be totally dependent on your schedule and the other things you’re doing in your day. absolutely spend at least a little bit of time on it and for the handstand that’s awesome. Doing a handstand and handstand walks is such an incredible level of fitness. I would say in regards to mobility and what that guy was telling you in the gym. One of the things with mobility talk, I subscribe to this company FRC functional, range, conditioning and when I went to their very first seminar of theirs that I went to what they told me and this will come back to what this guy told you is like okay you want to warm up and everything. But really you just want to be comfortable, confident and strong in the ranges of motion you’re about to put yourself in especially with exterior load-bearing. What that’s going to mean is like do handstands and handstand walks provided that if you can just be sitting or standing and put your arms up in that same position you’d be able to handstand walk in and if you can’t put your arms up that high and in that same position you would be handstand holding or walking in, that’s a sign you are probably pushing past your limits of range of motion. Not necessarily dangerous but you’re definitely pushing your bounds a little bit so as long as you are comfortable putting your arms without exterior load where they are going to go, with exterior load you’re good. You still want to spend time working on it but especially if you are not quite there do some extra TLC, work your way up to that point where you can put your body into the position without any assistance because when you put it there with assistance or with extra objects its just going to be harder and put more stress on your body
Zach: Yeah that’s a really good point I just put my arms up like I was going to go into a handstand and even though I feel pretty strong, there is a point where my left shoulder rotates that I do feel a little weaker.
Hayden: Yeah, that’s exactly it. Everyone has it, so don’t freak yourself out. But that right there is a basic test that anyone can do. It will be a sign of like, am I ready for this move I’m about to try? To put it in an easier term, if I want to do a squat press, I’m going to put some weight on my shoulders, squat low then I’m going to press over head. If you program that into your workout, the first two things you would want to test, with thrusters is first. Can I squat to the depth that I want to be squatting with my weight, without the weight. Second. Can I get my arms up overhead without anything, without weight, can I hold them there and feel strong in that position. So then you’ve confirmed you can squat that low without weight, I can press that weight over head without weight, I”m good. Okay, then you will feel comfortable adding weight to the move.
Zach: That’s something I need to focus on. Tell all the listeners where they can learn more about mobility and get in contact with you so they could try to focus more on their bodies and feeling good.
Hayden: I don’t want people to stray away from their training and all that. I do a bunch of other different kinds of training as well, just don’t want to discourage anyone from like stopping whatever training they’re doing right now but more than anything just encourage them to add it to their routine. Where you can find me and the Gym I run with my co-owner, were called vs. It’s just VS. Like say someone vs someone and our Instagram @vs.chicago. A lot of the mobility stuff that we do comes from a couple different sources but the one that I really subscribe to is functional range conditioning but I don’t want to leave them out of this. I like to give them a shout whenever I can they’re just so great. Instagram or email me, wherever you want to get hold of me.
Zach: absolutely. Sounds good man, thanks so much for stopping by and I’m going to give you a shout at some point later this week so we can focus on my mobility on my knees and my shoulders a little stronger. Especially my knees because you know the other day I ran 8 Miles and I’m putting in like 30 miles a day you know three times a week on the bike
Hayden: That’s really already such an accomplishment that you’re up to that level of training. I just want to say man keep it up.
Zach: Thank you. I appreciate that. I couldn’t even run 3 miles you know six months ago and now I’m putting in. I mean I ran a half marathon 3 weeks ago at a 9 minute 30 second pace which isn’t really fast but I’m 13 miles without stopping is pretty crazy. I just don’t want to overdo it and my main goal is to not get hurt.
Hayden: That is such a good goal to have man always keep in your mind don’t forget it you know. Congratulations to where you are, it’s incredible and you just want to just keep climbing that mountain.
Zach: slow slow slow process. As long as I can cross the finish line feeling healthy literally like my only goal is to not get hurt. I just want to feel good you know and like I said in one of the videos I posted this is a very mentally challenging race and training it’s not all physical. It’s what are you telling yourself when you feel like you’re at your peak or when you’re at your wall and you can’t go another foot
Hayden: You have to have that David Goggins mentality. If anyone would have it, it’s you.
Zach: Thank you I appreciate that I appreciate that a lot. Well my man, you got anything else for us before we wrap it up?
Hayden: I’m good. I appreciate you giving me the time and the opportunity to talk about Wellness. Mobility is like where my personal training is focussed but if you ever want to jump on and talk about anything else in the wellness world I’d be more than happy to do anything with the mental health stuff you’re doing, anything with meditation, I’d be happy to jump on and join the conversation. We’ve been doing a lot of even with our vs. membership a lot of talk about meditation and breathing especially in conjunction with mobility and eating well. As we’ve talked about before before, like I was saying briefly, being well is a circle and you have to have, you want to seek the full circle because with a missing part, the circle will not be completed. Doing everything in conjunction is just such a beneficial way to live life and you know more than many people and I’m glad you’re pushing that info out. I’m glad you’re giving people like me and a bunch of other people the resources to talk about it.
Zach: Dude I love you bro. I mean that. Let’s let’s try to jump on another podcast at some point maybe next week
Hayden: Yeah I’m way down for it.
Zach: Hayden, well have a great week. I hope you and your family and your friends are all safe and healthy and I really appreciate you coming on.
Hayden: Thank you man