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Fitness Friday: Muscle Mobility

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“All human beings should be able to perform basic human maintenance on themselves.” – Kelly Starrett

Steadily flexibility training has changed over time. We’ve gone from ballistic type stretching (the bouncing type which isn’t safe) to static stretching where you hold a stretch for 30-60 seconds hoping to restore range of motion to the area. What you may or may not have heard about is this new idea of self-massage using balls or rollers. This is formally known as Self-Myofascial release and may also sometimes be referred to as the poor man’s massage.

What’s the deal with SMR? Think of your body as an interconnected chain between your muscles. Between those muscles lies this connective tissue called fascia. When fascia gets tight it restricts movement. When movement is restricted pain may occur, which can the lead to injury. It’s that one chink in the chain that can throw everything off. Check out the Injury Cycle by TP Therapy. Does this seem like something you’ve gone through? Not too much is out on the CDC as to studies behind this stuff, but many physical therapists continually implement these techniques with their clients.

One of the biggest names out there is a CrossFit Coach by the name of Kelly Starrett.  He’s written a solid book called The Supple Leopard. Coach Kelly Starrett received his Doctor of Physical Therapy in 2007 from Samuel Merritt College in Oakland, California. Before starting his own physical therapy practice he practiced performance-based physical therapy at the world-renowned Stone Clinic. Kelly has with the help of others gotten these techniques much more mainstream through his blog www.mobilitywod.com. If you’re ready for a little knowledge check it out!

We’ve recognized the benefits of these SMR techniques so about 3months ago we added a new fitness class called “Muscle Mobility.” Within this class, we teach the most common techniques using lacrosse balls so with a $2 investment our guests can unglue their muscles at home.  Remember that SMR should only be performed on soft tissue never bone or spine. Muscles feeling like beef jerky today? Get on that SMR.

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