The Evolution of Mobility Training

Traditionally mobility training has been linked to our bodies ability to move, and thus linked to an individuals physical and biological capacities with very little thought to the cognitive sciences. The DHF Team aligns with the principles of Applied Functional Science* with an understanding that the physical, biological, and cognitive sciences need to be integrated to optimize an individuals mobility profile.

Physically, mobility looks at our ability to move within our surrounding space. If we think of the 360 degrees of space around us, we begin to become aware of the different movement demands:

  • types of moves we can perform (squats, lunges, reaches, jumping, lifting, locomotion, pushing, pulling)
  • different angles of movement
  • various heights from ground to overhead
  • varying distances of motion needed
  • ability to accelerate and decelerate movement

Biologically, mobility needs the bodies soft tissue system (muscles, fascia, tendons, ligaments, nerves), and the articular system (bones, joints) to work together with our nervous system to perform the physical demands we noted above. Mobility training looks to enhance the circulation of our body, and activate our muscles for proper sequencing to move effectively and efficiently.

Cognitively, mobility looks at the bodies ability to self regulate our Autonomic Nervous System. In order for the bodies soft tissue system to perform optimally we need to have “relative balance” between the two major branches of the ANS – Sympathetic and Parasympathetic. If the individual is out of balance, my practical experience has shown a disruption in the unity of the fascial matrix of the body (think you are uptight/stressed and your shoulders are elevated) that inhibits the mobility needed to move efficiently.

When the nervous system is in balance, the bodies soft tissue and articular system integrates to create purposeful driven physical movement.

There is no one type of mobility training system that fits all, at the core of mobility training is the individual, their bodies needs, designed for their conditioning goals. Below is a list of potential mobility activities associated with the above sciences.

Mobility training can be utilized as movement prep prior to a workout, recovery for post workout to restore the body, or independently on their own.

Jay Morgan, FAFS

*AFS by the Gray Institute

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