Functional Movements - Why They Are So Important.
Posted on 18th February 2021
Functional Movements (FM) are movements based on real-world situational biomechanics. They usually involve multiplanar and multi-joint movements, otherwise known as compound movements, which place demand on the body's musculoskeletal and nervous system.
It all sounds quite complex, but the FM are in essence the most basic and common movement patterns we use in both every day and in physical activity scenarios. The 7 FM’s are Squat, Lunge, Hinge, Push, Pull, Brace and Rotation. These 7 movements cover everything from breathing, transitioning from lying to standing or being able to run or walk. In doing so, you would expect to be able to perform such movements without limited range of motion, sufficient joint stabilisation and appropriate muscle activation.
How Inactivity Impacts FM
Activity has been significantly reduced as a result of the current lockdown restrictions, causing muscle tension to increase, thus limiting range of motion, functionality of muscle and joints to be able to work together in symmetry and reducing the all-round performance of these basic and fundamental movements.
Research suggests that there is a direct correlation between an increase in muscle tension and an increase in injury susceptibility, in conjunction with a greater chance of developing lower back pain. For example, when was the last time you comfortably sat in the bottom position of a squat comfortably, when was the last time you bent over to pick something up, without feeling a twinge here or a pull there? Our ability to perform these movements naturally can deteriorate over time, but due to the catalysation of WFH culture and inactivity, this is becoming increasingly commonplace.
What Can Be Done?
At Fire & Earth we have identified this as a problem and recognise that it will be even more so in the years ahead. Therefore, we will be running a Functional Movement & Mobility Class, focusing on performing and mastering these fundamental movements.
These classes will allow you maintain your flexibility and enhance your ability to perform these correctly, if you happen to suffer with a reduced range of motion and a lack of flexibility, we can help improve your flexibility and subsequently allow you to move better. The content includes a mixture of mobility and stretching exercises, stabilisation, muscle activation and of course the fundamental movements patterns.
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