When our mobility Increases, our strength Increases. Get yourself stronger without lifting a weight.
I didn’t know this. I didn’t know how important mobility was. During one of my first meetings as a personal trainer we had the opportunity of listening to Thomas Plummer. Anyone who has interacted with Thom knows he is a no bullshit kind of guy and demands respect. I raised my hand to be a volunteer for a movement demonstration. I performed a squat and apparently had major mobility issues to address I didn’t know about. Well, Thom let me know. I sat down afterwards and swore to myself I was going home to work on my mobility right away. He was not the first to tell me this but it took a few opinions and research on my own to finally get it. I hope to prevent anyone from not taking action on this for so long like I did.
So you want to get stronger and leaner but you’ve maxed out your time at the gym this week? This is where mobility training comes in. It will not only increase your strength but also enhance your recovery and prevent injuries from ever happening. Don’t be one of the many people who are reactive to their mobility—meaning they wait until they are injured in some way. Be one of the proactive people who don’t miss out on the powerful benefits of mobility training!
… but why?
When you don’t have full range of motion there is a lack of muscle activation. How flexible/mobile you are governs the way you move and determines the efficiency of your exercise regimen. The more mobile you are the better ability you have to control how you contract/ relax your muscles. You are also able to better coordinate with other muscle groups and develop skills. Our body gains more awareness and proprioception when we are more supple. We all have proprioceptors in our muscles that give feedback to our motor system on how to move depending on our muscle length, tension and joint angle. The more we train mobility the more efficient the feedback becomes.
Ever felt out of alignment? Training mobility also has the ability to re-pattern the musculoskeletal system. Many people are restricted in their bodies and it effects the way they move in daily life. Quality of movement is determined by how flexible we are. Since we learn movement and skills through repeating them, then repetition of mobility integrates new patterns in the nervous system which turns it into an automatic way of moving. A balanced muscular system will perform better and be stronger on a daily basis then one with compensational shifts.
Not only will you be able to activate more muscle fibers and re-pattern your muskuloskeletal system but it is also a safe guard from injury. With this type of training, you develop a reserve that allows you to execute movement without excess tension. It helps you to recover because of a decrease in muscle tension. It will also bring circulation and neural conductivity to aid in removing wastes, repairs damaged tissue and breaks down scar tissue. The less recovery time you need, the more time spent doing what you love.
3 ways to incorporate mobility training:
Do 1 stretch/foam roll/ mobility drill every day
Incorporate it into your strength supersets
Commit to a yoga class 1x/week -even if you have never tried it- there is no better time to start!
If you’re like me and love strength training , prioritize mobility as a part of your routine. You will be amazed at how much stronger you become!
Yours in health,
Foran, Bill. “High-Performance Sports Conditioning.” Google Books, 2001, books.google.com/books
Bompa, Tudor. “5 Basic Laws of Strength Training by Tudor Bompa PhD.” 619, 2012, 619sandiegopersonaltraining.com/5-basic-laws-of-strength-training-by-tudor-bompa-phd.