Summer is a great time for outdoor activities like hiking, kayaking, and summer sports like tennis, softball, valley ball, and swimming at the lake!
These activities demand a certain amount of flexibility and strength to perform, which requires an adequate amount of range-of-motion (ROM) and mobility.
Mobility is the ability to move freely. In terms of anatomy and physiology, mobility allows structures (i.e. joints, muscles, tendons, etc.) to perform functional movement without restrictions to range of motion. It’s important to note that flexibility is not synonymous to mobility. Someone who is flexible may not have the strength and coordination to perform these functional movements without dysfunction. There are many soft tissue imbalances that can cause a lack of ROM, lack of mobility, and lack of flexibility.
For instance there could be a strength difference between the agonist and antagonist (visit our June blog for some definitions). Soft tissue structures could be hypertonic (tight) and could put undo stress on a joint or surrounding soft tissue. Hypertonic tissue can cause muscles to not lengthen back to their resting length after a contraction.
Think about trying to throw a softball if you are unable to lift you arm past 90 degrees! Makes a throw pretty darn impossible! The lack of mobility could be caused by an injury, of course, but often, it’s caused by tight muscles and tendon structures, which can ultimately lead to an injury.
At The Massage Space, we’re all about getting clients to their optimal health to be able to enjoy the activities they love and to perform activities of daily living, pain-free. We focus on the the soft tissue structure that may be contributing to a given symptom. If you have limited ROM at the shoulder, therefore, causing decreased mobility, we will muscle test and work the surrounding tissues to see if we can improve the health of the tissue. The clinical approach assists in restoring the area to its optimal mobility.
We often recommend exercises and stretches that can help mobility, ROM, and flexibility. In addition to massage (soft tissue work), yoga and chiropractic can be very benefit to strengthen and increase overall mobility.
Many of the exercises we may suggest are similar to yoga poses that are easily found online in videos. Check out the images below to see how you can improve shoulder and upper back mobility to get to optimal function of your shoulder girdle for your favorite summer activities:
As you may know, at the Massage Space, “we believe that just as we are multifaceted beings, wellness requires a multifaceted approach, one in which massage plays a vital role. True health is achieved when one is of sound mind, body, and spirit. We believe that mindfully applied massage is capable of addressing all three aspects, however the greatest results are seen when applied in combination with multiple wellness therapies.”
That’s why pairing massage with chiropractic (and many other practices and therapies) can help us find optimal mobility! Read more to learn about one of our preferred chiropractors!
Dr. Amanda Haeg is a Minnesota native who has been involved with athletics her whole life. A three sport athlete in high school and D1 volleyball player, Dr. Amanda also played professional women’s football for 7 seasons as part of the Pittsburgh Passion.
An injury while playing football left her unable to walk without pain for 6 months despite trying multiple forms of treatment, including massage, physical therapy and orthopedic care. Once a chiropractor identified and corrected the cause of her injury, within just two weeks she was able to jog again without pain. This incredible healing experience changed her life and drove her to transition from her profession as an athletic trainer and return to school to pursue chiropractic.
With her background in sports medicine and passion for utilizing advanced objective tools to evaluate the health and motion of the spine, Dr. Amanda strives to help individuals of all ages and activity levels improve their health and performance from the inside-out.
Cadence by definition is a measurement of rhythm and Cadence Chiropractic believes that “Motion Is Life”.
Resources not already referenced: https://www.mensjournal.com/health-fitness/fit-five-mobility-vs-flexibility/