I’ve been working with a client for over two years. She is 47, still quite overweight due to poor food choices, but her strength is pretty good and she is proud of herself for all her gains. We do mostly free weight exercises with dumbbells, kettle balls, HIIT, circuit training. She CANNOT do tricep dips. She keeps her fingers tented and just cannot bend her elbows. Some of it might be fear of falling, but I just can’t figure this out. She is able to do other tricep exercises without problems. Any ideas on how I can help her? thanks
short answer is: she is still too heavy for dips. the delts are triceps are fairly small and the weaker of the muscle complexes.
I am not surprised that she is having issues.
Dips would simply be off the menu so to speak.
I would focus your attention to accelerated weight loss and delt, tricep cable & band work so that when enough weight comes off the client can do a set of proper form dip. This will also help immensely with their self-esteem as you can make the dip a SMART goal and explain that the weight loss is the main factor. This will allow you to reinforce the POOR FOOD choices you mentioned.
Sometimes it is how you frame things. Remember the psychology of goals.
It has to seem relevant to them (goals you want them to hit like body fat %) and it has to seem attainable. The reality is we as Trainers are very highly educated consultants.
I assume you took your client on because you had shown the best path to health and in their case it was weight loss. If they show a desire to do dips because they see others doing them with ease and THE CLIENT has shown that dips are important to them….then you need to present the carrot of the dip to them. The stick (motivation) for the dip should be weight loss. Less weight to dip, easier the dip!