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Description: Standing on both or just one leg, reach over and touch the floor.

Motions trained: Torso flexion

Main muscles used: Glutes and hamstrings
   Other muscles:Abdominals

How to do it:

Two-legged: Stand upright, weight an the
balls of your feet and keeping your back
straight reach for the floor, trying to touch your tummy
to your thighs. As you reach, your weight moves back
to your heels. Yes, your butt goes back too.
Bad form! Rounding your back will eventually
get you hurt. Don't do that.
One-legged: Lift one leg, keeping your back and
leg in a straight line. Balance is trickier, but this
is one to do if you have back trouble. Be sure to start with
your weight on the balls of your feet and transfer it back to
your heels.

How to work up to it: If your muscles are really weak or you aren't sure if you really are using the legs rather than the back, put your hands on your thighs for support. To get out of this position, bend your knees (which swings your hips back underneath you) so that you can just stand up.

The same advice goes for trying it one-legged. Have a wall nearby for stability.

Ramping it up: the best way is to hold onto a weight.

Do's and don'ts: If you do it wrong so that you back rounds you will be using your erector spinae group, which cannot take the load. A 'bad back' often means that people are using these to try and lift loads, rather than their hamstrings and glutes. Some form training in deadlifts will give you a great payback in terms of less back ailments. Do consider having your knees bend slightly while doing it. Keeping them completely straight is probably not possible, just don't do a squat.

Comments: This motion is very close to the throw osoto gari found in most jujutsu systems.

This is also referred to as the stiff-legged deadlift and has a deservedly bad reputation in powerlifting circles. The reason is that most people have awful form with it and even if they have the strength in the back to do it wrong, the fact is that when the spine is bent with a heavy load, the pressure on the discs is enormous. The cumulative effect is long-term back trouble. Doing this with low weights and on one leg makes back injury all but impossible. As a side effect of my hip trouble, I had a really bad bout of back trouble. This, windmills and swings effectively fixed it.

Another big reason for back trouble is having tight hamstrings. The reason is that tight hamstrings prevent the hip from being under you (polite way of saying they make your butt stick out). As such loads in the upper body do not get transferred to the lower body and the back tries to make up the difference. Stretch your hamstrings daily. See the section on stretching for a good sequence.