Do you have an old injury that just won’t go away? Parts of your body that feel eternally tense? Or do you have a goal or yoga pose that always feels out of reach? It might be handstand, crow or wheel. Often we hit a point where it seems that we just can’t move past a sticking point, no matter what we try. The question is why? The answer is more often than not that the joints required to get into the desired pose do not have the full range of motion and strength through that range to safely and effectively get you into the desired movement pattern without creating undesirable and sometimes compensatory patterns in the body.
Udersh from Yoga Works is teaching a Maximise your Mobility workshop in the park on Sat 24th Oct. Book your spot here: www.yogaworks.co.za/events
It is useful to use the analogy of thinking of the body as a chain, with the joints being the links of that chain. The efficacy of the chain in terms of expressing movement is dependent on the quality of the links, in this case the joint health. A chain is only as strong as its weakest link. This is also quite a smart chain, so it will attempt to compensate for parts of the chain by shifting load to stronger links.
This is great right?
Wrong! If this is done on a long term basis, the strong links take on too much load and the weaker joints just get weaker because we aren’t using them as they as nature intended. This is a precursor to injury or chronic dysfunction.
What can we do about this? Quite simply we can look to actively condition joints in a way that makes them stronger on an individual basis. In doing so we enhance the movement capacity of the chain and more importantly reduce the likelihood of injury and dysfunction.
By far the most powerful modality that I have found for conditioning joints is known as Functional Range Conditioning®. It is steadily being adopted by professional sports organizations, including Nike, in preparing their athletes for competition.
FRC uses a structured process that begins with a practice known as Controlled Articular Rotations (CAR’s) as a diagnostic and conditioning tool to ascertain individual joint health. From there it moves onto isometric loading (PAIL’s and RAIL’s) followed eccentric loading to improve joint function and then cultivate strength through the current full range of motion.
Here’s some more info on it:
In this workshop you will learn a simple daily joint care routine, and lots of other tools to maximise your mobility.
Yoga Works offers mobility workshops, both in-person and online. Check out online yoga and mobility sessions here: www.yogaworks.co.za/onlineyoga