Rebuilding Khalipa: Part 4

By Kelly Starrett

In Medical/Injuries, Videos

March 25, 2010

Video Article

“Whoa! Whose hip is that, bro?”

Working on Jason Khalipa at San Francisco CrossFit, Kelly Starrett shows that a little therapy can go a very long way, and it can even get results in minutes.

After assessing the 2008 CrossFit Games champion, Starrett identified several issues and then worked through them. In Part 4 of this series, Starrett gives Khalipa a set of exercises he can do on his own to improve his mechanics. After coaching the champ through the exercises, Starrett re-evaluates and finds that the treatment is working.

That’s good news for Khalipa, who will no doubt be a favorite heading into the 2010 CrossFit Games.

8min 56sec

Additional audio: CrossFit Radio Weekend Edition 5, aired April 13, 2009.

Free Download


29 Comments on “Rebuilding Khalipa: Part 4”


wrote …

I would say this was the most useful video of Kelly that you've published so far, but all the previous work was necessary to lay the foundation for this. I wouldn't have believed that working the hip capsule could make so much difference. That's astonishing.

Thank-you very much for this series.


wrote …

Best part of the series so far! Very informative, thank you!

btw, does anyone know what the name of the song is played at the beginning of the video?


wrote …

"Holy Shit what is that about?" , for some reason that just made me burst out laughing.

Kelly is simply brilliant and funny.

Thank you Crossfit and Kelly for putting these together.


wrote …

Khalipa 'going faster' is a scary thought.


wrote …

What is the name of that song...


wrote …

This is just out of control. Awesome


wrote …

This is just out of control. Awesome


wrote …

Song is called Legend in the Making by Alpha and Omega you can find it on Youtube but i have yet to find it on iTunes or any other source to download.


wrote …

Nicely done as always Kelly. Pulling it all together. Song is on iTunes its the first one that comes up. The sound bite isn't the beginning of the song. The beginning is what is on here.


wrote …

This is borderline depressing- I have no idea what to do to fix myself with all this stuff he's doing here.


wrote …

Did they purposely not show us what KStar did on the first leg?


Not showing Kelly perform PT was a decision that I made at the editor. Not HQ.

I decided not to show Kelly perform PT on Jason for the following reason. I was concerned that people may attempt to perform PT on their athletes. While Kelly is a licensed therapist and a Doctor of physical therapy, we as CrossFit trainers and athletes are not.

This series is aimed at helping CrossFit coaches assess their athletes and provide tools for the athlete to self treat their dysfunction.

I hope you understand.


wrote …

Is there a book that Kelly recommends for the stretches an athlete can do on their own? If not, get to work on one!


replied to comment from Dave Borders

I'd like one of those too.


wrote …

With respect not really Hollis, as a trainee physical therapist it left a huge hole in the story. Anybody unwise enough to want to practice on other clients will now just go off and search for information elsewhere and possibly end up mimicking really poor practice. With showing Kelly practicing sound technique veiwers can make an informed decision whether that form of therapy may benefit them, Kelly obviously enjoys showing his expertise, please reconsider :-)


wrote …

I think these videos and Kelly in particular are great. Let me underscore that I would have liked to have seen the censored PT. It helps to understand the whole picture and to put the self practiced techniques in perspective. I was drawn to this site to learn about fitness and PT when I was recovering from a knee surgery. I have limited access to physical therapists and the ones I did see are severely limited in their knowledge of sports and the modern techniques that Kelly shows.

To summarize:
1) Although the videos may have a "target audience". There is no way to know who will ultimately see and benefit from them.

2) Many people have limited or no access to a good physical therapist. These videos may be the best information they will get. At a minimum they offer useful perspective in a larger plan.

3) Why censor all the people who both desire and would benefit from the information? For those that misuse it, that is neither your fault nor your responsibility. It is important for people to understand the risks, but let them make their own decisions. How often do Rip and Coach B get censored when teaching lifts that are potentially dangerous?

4) I personally think basic PT is fundamental to fitness and should be required knowledge for both trainers and athletes. Injury is a part of life. Why shouldn't we benefit from everything teachers like Kelly have to offer?


wrote …

He's a bit charismatic for physical therapist isn't he!! Please release a dvd series Kelly...its gold dust!!! I love taking in his adivce and laying it on the therapists I see. It's reassuring that you can take these reference points as so many therapist don't even bother explaining to you why they do something!!


wrote …

Yeah I am in chiropractic school right now and I think it would be awesome to see the techniques that KStar uses, but I respect the discretion of those who put this together. I am sure a lot of people would try stuff they have no feel for.


Dane Thomas wrote …

Hollis, FWIW I understand and respect your decision. The self-stretches that Kelly showed Jason were also shown to be effective, and can be attempted by anybody without having the same potential for misapplication of force, tissue damage and subsequent liability exposure.

Folks, you really don't want somebody who doesn't know what they are doing cranking on you the way the Kelly cranked on Jason. Unless you are very large and very strong and have the same type of hip capsular restriction, Kelly himself would be very unlikely to crank on you the way he cranked on Jason because it would be likely to do more harm than good.


replied to comment from Hollis Molloy

So, to clarify, we have multiple videos of Kelly performing shoulder PT, hip PT, etc, which you think shouldn't have been posted? And you think he should pull any certs or seminars he might have planned? PLEASE!!!

I'm plagued by tight hamstrings and quads. I might have the world's worst butt wink. I get back spasms every time I run. And we have canned video to fix that, but you don't want to let it out?

This series have been driving me mad. I think it has exactly what will make me a better crossfitter in there, and it's taken 4 weeks for me to find out that you aren't going to release the beef. Even though you've released the beef in every other Kelly video.

I'm really struggling to keep polite here.

If you want to promo Jason, then you should be making this free-to-air, and leaving the beef out is a judgement call.

If you want to promote Jason at the games, you should be making this free to air, and leaving the beef out is a judgement call.

If you want to infuriate (and understand the roots of a carefully chosen word. The people I speak of are in pain) a subset of your PAYING SUBSCRIBERS, leaving the beef out is precisely the right thing to do.

I really wish this series hadn't been posted. It's really going to color the way I view the journal in future.


wrote …

Kieran, it's too bad you have a coloured view of the CFJ from a respectable decision. I'm not sure which videos you are referring to that show him doing much more on the shoulder and knee than he did here, but maybe I need to go back and look. PT is a licensed profession. My guess is that it would be inappropriate for him to divulge to much info in such a forum. Similarly, it would be inappropriate for a doctor to make a diagnosis over this forum. If you gives you specific advice, it implies that he knows what your problem is, and maybe what you have is caused by something different. Anyone can correct me if I'm wrong, but it seems ok on his behalf.

Kstar gives some good advice in this series and demonstrates how tight hips can hold you back. There is another video series showing him doing some exercises on an athlete(I forget who). He demos the same exercise as he does here. The exercise he shows Khalipa - front knee across the midline, then drive femur into hip socket - is supposed to imitate what a PT would actually do (but not as effectively as a PT could do it).

Kstar wrote this great article a few years back:

If I remember correctly, it includes ways of testing and improving your hamstring flexibility on your own. If that doesn't help, you may want to consider getting professional advice.


replied to comment from Matt Solomon

Thanks Matt. I know about that hamstrung article. I was just hoping that I'd get to see all this stuff put together.

I also tracked down a few other leg/hip stretches from Kelly that are good, and which other people might be interested in:


replied to comment from Kieran Barry

The best solution for all the demands for footage of how KStar performs these techniques is to GO TO ONE OF K STAR'S MOBILITY CERTS! I've been to one and must say it was the best cert i have attended; worth every bit of $225. He spent the whole day getting his hands on us, showing all the techniques in all the videos published in the journal plus more. He gave us mountains of knowledge to take and use as coaches and athletes. Pus, K Star is a hoot! It was worth every penny and the 5 hour road trip it took to get there!
When Jason mentions that his self-mobilization isn't as effective as when K Star was mobilizing his hip (yet it still produces astounding results,) K Star says "Of course not, thats why we pay doctors." I believe the same applies to this thread on the forum. A $25 journal subscription ain't gonna buy you doctorate level therapies and techniques. There are tons of seminars and certs out there that cost thousands of dollars to learn how to do these high level therapies; yet K Star asks only $225 and his content blows any other seminar/certs away! Trust me, I've been to a few of them and not to mention 4 years of sports medicine/athletic training curriculum at university.
And call me crazy, but i believe that part of the purpose of dojng these videos are to give us a little taste to get people to see how going to a cert can greatly benefit their coaching and training.
So please stop complaining about content that K star & the journal have every right to withhold and go to his cert!


wrote …

I did an experiment:

Last night my son (age 18) was lying on the couch watching tv and I said lie on the floor and I picked up his leg and did the femur vertical and see how much I can extend your knee test and got a rubbish result. I then had him do the knee on the couch and work to your impingement thing I saw on the video. Then we did the test again and wow much improved!

Then today we went to the rugby club gym and did the same test pre-warm up with the same rubbish result. Then he did some Burgener warmup stuff followed by 2 circuits of:

Snatch grip stiff leg dead lift x 5reps @ 40kg
Snatch 1st pull x 5 reps @ 40kg
Split squat with front foot on 150mm box x 5reps unloaded
Overhead squat x 5 reps @20kg

Then re-test and same wow much improved!

OK it's a bad experiment!

The main thing I got out of the article was the importance of where you have the end of your femur in the socket. Let it slip forwards and you make your hamstring pre-stretched before you even start to flex at the hip. My son said he could feel where the end of the femur was in relation to the socket and understood pushing it to the back and working the areas of impingement. So that's all good.

Altogether a very interesting article. Thanks CFJournal.




wrote …

I've developed hip and hamstring tightness from a not quite ideal recovery from the knee surgery I underwent a couple of years ago and years of knee pain I suffered before the surgery. As with Duncan, it's a revelation to me to discover that hip impingement is such an important factor, and just knowing I should be more attentive to it is a leap in knowledge for which I'm appreciative.

I also wish I could have seen what Kelly did instead of seeing the cut version. I could totally understand it if Kelly didn't want to put the content up here because this is his livelihood, and he wouldn't want to give the information away for free. To me, that's totally legitimate.

But the idea that it should be withheld because people might try to perform those techniques on their athletes doesn't seem like a good reason to me. There are a lot of things covered on CFJ that are complex, potentially dangerous, and shouldn't be attempted or taught unless one has had some hands-on training with them from an expert, yet they are demonstrated fully. Why trust people's judgment there but not here?

I would have liked to see Kelly's process just to get an idea of the tack he takes with fixing JK's issues--not so much so that I could try those techniques on myself or anyone else but because just seeing the kinds of things Kelly was working on and the way he was going about it could have led to more a-ha moments for me.

I don't think I exaggerate when I say that the vast majority of PTs have no idea how to treat people for whom returning to normal activity involves more than getting to the car, climbing the stairs, and maybe doing a little jogging. Watching someone like KS do his thing gives me some understanding and information to work with that I could, say, take to my orthopedist, or discuss with a PT to see if he or she knows her or his stuff.

This isn't to say I'm upset--I understand that editing is sometimes justified, so it's not the policy of editing per se that is the issue for me. I'd just ask the editor to reconsider her rationale next time. Unless it's a matter of protecting KS's intellectual property, which is something he has a total right to do.


wrote …

(Sorry Hollis--I first read your name as "Holly" and therefore called you "she". My bad. Not that it's an insult to be called "she", but some people are sticklers for these things.)


replied to comment from Stephen Jones

Go here and download both videos.

The second video shows Kelly performing PT on the guys hip just after the 10min mark. The information is there if you want look for it. However, once you watch it, you'll probably agree that, while Kelly is practicing sound technique, there are still nuances to that technique that aren't conveyed in the video.

IMHO you'd be crazy to let an unqualified person try any hip PT on you after they'd watched it in a video. Stick with the self mobilization or see a professional.

Now a question for Hollis. Are we going to be seeing new techniques in this series? Or is this just a rehash of the old videos, with Khalipa on the table instead of some random guy that no body knows?

I don't mind if it's a combination of previously shown techniques (hips/hamstrings/quads) performed in one session on Khalipa. It'd just be nice to know that from the start. Some countries (like mine) have caps on their internet plans. Speaking for myself, and possibly a lot of other people in a similar situation, it can be frustration to realise that you've just wasted a few hundred mbs on either something that's been covered slightly differently before or a 'teaser' video that leads up to the usable information. Just be up-front about what is being shown in each series/parts and you'll limit the resentment for wasted megabytes.


wrote …

Like Jason, I have trouble getting my fingers anywhere near my toes. I have tried simple stretches over many years but with no results.

I tried the self-mobilisation technique on my couch at home last night, as shown in Part 4. Took about 2 mins. Then I tried touching my toes. The gap between my fingers and feet reduced from roughly 10 inches to about 4 inches. I tried it again tonight and I actually managed to touch my toes (albeit with a little discomfort in my hamstrings). This is after trying the self-mobilization technique only twice.

I have been trying to fix this problem for years with my own methods to no avail. With Kstarr's advice I have made massive steps forward, very quickly. Hopefully, with continuing self-mobilization, my Crossfitting will improve too.

Cheers Kelly.


wrote …

Is Kelly the only coach for the mobility cert? I really want to attend but I want to make sure I'm getting the genuine article (kelly) if I'm travelling from Florida to New York to take the cert.
Anyone know?
Oh ya... and big money big sexy was hilarious (look at his face when he realizes he's saying it. Lol)

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