Is your posture or mechanical movement up to par? If not, it can act as a traffic jam for your nervous and musculoskeletal system’s communication highway. If these two systems are affected my lack of normal range of motion, it could inhibit your ability to move affectively. Proper communication via these two systems with help in preventing injury; keeping the muscles the proper length; and prevents stress on our joints.
How do I know if I need to improve and where?
Postural assessments help us to see if there are any deficiencies or conditions by observing kinetic chain checkpoints. Plumb lines are grids are used to highlight alignment for clients. In many cases you can see what muscle regions are being strained from looking at how someone stands from the front, side and rear view. Injury, poor posture, muscle imbalance can cause deficiencies or conditions. Our bodies adapt to whatever we do most. If you sit for long periods of time, it will adjust to keep you in that position longer. Hamstrings, hip flexors and cervical flexors tend to be tight in this case. This can lead to lower back and neck pain and movements such as walking and running will be affected. Common conditions addressed by postural assessment are:
- Pronation distortion syndrome (Knees inward/ feet apart)
- Lower Cross syndrome ( Hips tilted forward/ excessive arch in lower back)
- Upper cross syndrome ( Head tilted forward)
- Shoulders and hip misalignments
Active assessments are used to see where the body needs to be addressed in functional movements such has a squat. If muscles meant to be prime movers for a body part are limited, the synergist (Supportive muscles) will be over worked. This can lead a multitude of issues. Our bodies will adapt and find a way to accomplish what movements we are asking. For example, if we cannot keep our arms straight up during an overhead squat due to tight latissimus dorsi muscles (lats); our lower back will arch forward, underusing out core and glutes. This puts our lumbar spinal health at risk for injury. We have three types of muscles rolls:
- Agonist (Prime mover used for desired movement)
- Antagonist (Opposite muscle being lengthened)
- Synergist (Supportive muscle for the movement)
These rolls can be affected by tightness and overcompensation. If so, the body will recruit other muscles to accomplish the desired movement, affecting the balance of these three types.
Get checked out today!
Here at The Institute for Functional Health you can get a variety of services including physical assessments. Many injuries and conditions can be avoided by building proper flexibility, Stability, strength and power. Set your body free, you will be able to better accomplish your fitness goals or stay out of pain.