Functional Movement works on the philosophy that in order to maximize your body’s performance and prevent injury, your body must be functioning properly on all levels. It uses 7 movements that test functional movement, mobility and stability. This idea has been put into effect by numerous groups, including those among the ranks of the NFL, NHL, NBA and various collegiate teams. So what does a Functional Movement Screen (FMS) measure and how can it help you?
1. Identify physical imbalances and limitations
According to Gray Cook, who developed the FMS, the primary cause of athletic injuries is not overall weakness or tightness, but rather muscle imbalance that causes areas of specific weaknesses in the body. Raw strength does not translate into equal functional strength. Strengthening muscles in isolation puts your body in much higher risk for injury. Just because someone can put up big numbers on the bench press does not mean they are not at risk for a serious shoulder injury.
2. Establish a functional baseline to mark progress
Through FMS standardization it allows you to measure performance, set realistic goals and mark progress. Starting with a benchmark of where your current functional strength and mobility is, helps show what exercises are working and which are not.
3.Improve fundamental movement patterns with simple corrective exercises
A FMS screen does not just help identify dysfunctional movement patterns, but it can help you set a course to correct them. Simple corrective exercises can easily be implemented into your everyday routine that trains the brain as well as the body. Correcting dysfunctional movement patterns requires retraining your brain from poor to correct movement patterns. Getting out of bad habits is a challenge, but sticking to the corrective exercises will eventually turn correct movement patterns into muscle memory.
4. Develop an individualize training and conditioning programs for specific results
Once imbalances are identified, a physical therapist can develop a customized program to correct any limitations or imbalances you may have. Because FMS helps find your specific limitations, a program can be implemented to elicit specific results.
5. Reduce the potential for training and sports injuries
FMS offers a preventive step to stop an injury before it happens. We never think we are going to get injured until something does happen, and only then are we forced to correct it. Studies have shown that individuals with an FMS score of 17 or less were almost 5x more likely to sustain an injury.1 Though FMS is not a stand alone test in preventing injury, taking the FMS before an injury or dysfunction presents, finding imbalances & limitations and implementing corrective exercises can lower the chance of injury, as well as optimizing athletic performance.
Did you know you can contact Viverant without a doctor referral to schedule an appointment regarding a Functional Movement Screening and other services that may help you?
1. Letafatkar, A., Hadadnezhad, M., Shojaedin, S., & Mohamadi, E. (n.d.). RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN FUNCTIONAL MOVEMENT SCREENING SCORE AND HISTORY OF INJURY. Retrieved April 26, 2016, from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3924605/
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