Body Basics & the G-Word
"When the human energy field and gravity are at war, needless to say, gravity wins every time." – Ida Rolf
What that statement above all boils down to is that we are in a constant battle with the effects of time and gravity every day. So whatever training, strength and conditioning or fitness program you ascribe to unless it in some way addresses weakness, stiffness, and alignment then you won’t get the long-term results you desire.
Example of an Injury Scenario:
- Athlete’s hamstrings become tight and painful
- Athlete gets treated for their symptoms, limited Range of Motion (ROM) and pain reduces
- Athlete’s hamstring condition continues to erode and then gets worse during training and the season despite treatment regimen
- Athlete is put on Injured List and rests a few games
- Athlete’s symptoms and pain subsides during the rest period and modified training
- Athlete returns to their sport & full-time training
- Athlete’s hamstrings become tight and painful again
Obviously, if you stop doing certain movements that hurt, then that associated movement pain will go away. However, if the pain returns once you return to sport or regular activities, then this is a clear sign that something isn’t right. The design of our body is not flawed. It is what we do or don’t do that causes pain and discomfort.
Before you randomly determine that something is basically wrong with your shoulder, back or knee or worse decide that you are predisposed to ‘fall apart’ after a certain age, let’s consider the opposite. Something you are doing or not doing is making your shoulder, back or knee hurt. Before you are so quick to cut, replace, and generally cut out a body part as obsolete, consider the contrary…your strength, range of motion, and postural alignment have eroded over time which is not allowing your shoulder, back or knee to function properly.
Our necks, shoulders, wrists, backs, hips, knees and feet are not randomly thrown together. They are parts of a very sophisticated interrelated system that is very well designed. If we are really prone to having shoulder pain, bad backs or knees, and weak ankles…then how did humans ever evolve in the first place?
So what went wrong? To poorly paraphrase Mr. Shakespeare…”the fault, dear Brutus, is not in the design of our bodies, but it lies within us.”
Any intrusion to the human body, such as injuries and surgeries, upsets the body’s natural neurological processes and also leaves residual trauma and scar tissue behind. This remaining scar tissue from surgeries, injuries, and continued repetitive motion negatively impacts neuromuscular motor control. Many times surgeries and injuries healing outcomes are positive. However, even when an outcome is considered good, it often leaves an athlete with a new set of problems later down the road.
It’s simple. If you aren’t doing the exercises with the correct alignment, then you won’t get the maximum benefits. The key to health and fitness is postural alignment. There’s more to it than just do it.