Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Develop a Movement Practice to Optimize Mobility and Athletic Performance

With weight loss, strength training, pain relief, and injury prevention being the core purpose for individuals embracing health and fitness, it is important to shade some light on importance of developing a 'movement practice.'

A movement practice is a simple way of defining a pattern of movements, motions and exercises that help to improve physical mobility and overall fitness. A movement practice can be used simply as means to stay supple as well as optimize athletic performance.

Indeed, success in exercising highly depends on the ability to schedule and adhere to a routine of movements. Here is a sneak peak of the importance of maintaining good mobility while practicing Yoga, Pilates, foam rolling and tissue work.


Yoga is a transformational exercise program based on ancient Indian culture that incorporates proper exercise, (Asanas), correct breathing (Pranayama), proper diet (Saucha), positive thinking (Dhyana) and complete relaxation (Savasana). It leads to physical and mental awareness, strong and balanced muscles as well as improved breathing system.

Yoga involves several awesome poses such as sun salutations, warrior poses, standing balances, seated, backbends, forward bends, twists and inversions. Most of these poses are done while standing and comfort enhancers such as props and cushions can be used to make the exercises comfortable and interesting.

These poses are important in facilitating good mobility, since they ensure that all the parts of the body are worked out. Moreover, our bodies always reject the changes we desire, and that is why exercising feels like a punishment. The yogic lifestyle also involves a complete life style change which may not be easy to adapt to, but which is crucial if the process is to be successful. This calls for scheduling a movement practice, to avoid disappointments.


Pilates is based on six principles namely: centering, concentration, control, precision, breath and flow. Each of these principles should be applied whenever practicing Pilates, since each of them serves a specific purpose. For instance, centering is mainly geared towards spinal alignment.

Remember that Pilates is an elaborate process that requires total commitment in order to attain the so-called noticeable difference threshold. Indeed, gaining fitness by losing weight and regaining it simply by failure to come up with a movement practice is self-defeating logic.

Foam Rolling & Soft Tissue Work

In addition to getting deep tissue massage, physical therapists and athletes mainly practice foam rolling and soft tissue work in order to inhibit overactive muscles. This form of self-massage therapy is mainly geared towards enhancing soft tissue extensibility and to relieve the muscle of knots and adhesiona.

The fact that these exercises are designed for the quadriceps thoracic spine, the hamstrings and the hip flexors among other muscles necessitates planning for a movement practice, to ensure that each muscle is worked out, in order to activate the antagonist muscle.

This is a great movement practice if you can't afford regular massage treatments. A professional massage can cost upwards to $100 for an hour, however, you don't need an hour to dig-into your tight spots. Seek out local massage therapy in your area, and see they offer 20-30 min massages that are deeper and more focal.

Tips for Developing a Movement Practice

All said and done, it is not easy to establish a workable movement practice routine. However, the following tips could be of help.
  • One should maintain a physically active lifestyle by experimenting on the various weight fitness programs.
  • The proper mix of moderate-intensity aerobic physical activity and vigorous-intensity aerobic activity should be emphasized.
  • Whenever practicing a certain exercise program, participants should ensure that they maintain the right posture at all times.
  • The movement practice should incorporate movement of major body parts (core, legs, chest, neck, etc)
Indeed, taking on a movement program haphazardly is a waste of time. A movement practice must be scheduled and followed consistently if goals are to be achieved.

No comments:

Post a Comment