What is it that makes us ignore the very clear signals our body provides? I talk about this without judgment, as I have been there. I know what it’s like to include “vitamin I” as part of my daily nutrition (in fact for me it evolved to Celebrex). But most of these long term injuries are completely preventable. If we listen to, and respect, the pain signals our body gives, we can avoid months (sometimes years) of pain and medical expenses. The irony of course is that our effort to not miss a few days or weeks of our beloved sport leads to missing weeks, months or even years of our beloved sport.
There are many causes of low back pain, and I’m far from an expert in most of them. But there is one cause in which I am quite well-versed: movements. As it turns out this is a very important one. Whether or not a person’s movement caused their low back pain, improving it often reduces their symptoms. I help people reduce their low back pain by training their movement: Stretching, strengthening, and ensuring proper form while they move. Considering that, it is probably starting to make sense for a personal trainer to be giving out advice about low back pain.
Today’s entry features the Functional Movement Screen (FMS). This makes my list even though it does nothing to get you strong. That’s because it is an assessment tool. I love this tool because it helps me to see where people have problems with the fundamental way that they move, and then that helps me to create a great training program for them that will not only get them “faster, higher, stronger”, but will also help fix movement dysfunction that they have developed in life.
I believe there is a significant link between asymmetries and previous injury as risk factors. When people return to play from an injury it is usually after being told by their doctor or physical therapist that they are “as strong as they were before they got injured”. But unless the injury was a contact injury, that initial injury occurred because there was a weakness or asymmetry somewhere, so getting back to pre-injury level is not enough.