“I want to be more mobile and more flexible.” “I want to move better as I get older.” “I don’t want to be stiff and tight when I move.” A lot of well-intentioned health conscious people say things like this on a regular basis. But it can be hard to know what exercises and stretches are best to stay mobile or become more mobile.
Mobility is important for sports; recovering from various sports injuries such as low back pain, hip bursitis, or plantar fasciitis; athletic function; for daily activities; and it’s a big part of physical therapy after surgery.
There are a lot of misconceptions about flexibility and mobility though. Training for flexibility or mobility can look at a lot different for those that are generally pain-free and for those that are suffering through an injury that may be related to their job or a sport. When most people train mobility, they typically do a few exercises or stretches once a day or a few times a week that are designed to give you a good stretch or pull in certain muscle groups.
This may be perfectly fine to maintain mobility whenever you are pain-free. However, this strategy will likely not work if you have an injury such as cervical radiculopathy (neck or shoulder blade pain with shooting pain down the arm) or a grade 3 tendonitis. Those with low back pain or a sports injury need specific mobility to have optimal recovery and healing from their injury in a timely manner.
Move Better in Saint Johns, Florida
This is why we are starting a mobility series here at St. Johns Chiropractic & Performance! We will be providing a mobility video on our social media pages for the next several weeks. However, we do not want people to get the wrong idea that these exercises will solve all of their aches and pains. Dr. Grant Speer has spent a lot of time and money learning about the ins and outs of the human body and how mobility relates to injury prevention and recovery.
Though he will be sharing an exercise and his knowledge each week as a sports chiropractor, we want you to know that pain and injuries need a thorough assessment to know what exercise will help you the most. Please follow our mobility series through our facebook and instagram accounts @STJchiro !
Become More Flexible Near Jacksonville, Florida
We enjoy seeing people exercising and trying to stay mobile. Especially whenever people are in pain and they are still trying to be active and work on their flexibility. But there are two major mistakes that people make when stretching or doing mobility exercises while trying to recovery from injury (this can be yoga, Pilates, or any other flexibility routine).
The first is that people tend to do random mobility drills. Unless you have properly evaluated the injury and your range of motion, you have no idea that you need that certain range of motion that this certain stretch is giving you. It does not matter if it is the hip joint, low back, shoulder, or any other joint or muscle group in the body. We need specific movement at the specific joint in a specific direction that the affected joint is limited in. Your area’s best sports chiropractor, physical therapist, or athletic trainer should be able to do an evaluation and tell you what you need.
The second major flaw we see is incorrect dosing when doing mobility. You could be doing the right exercise but if you are not doing it enough or if you are doing it way too much, you won’t be getting optimal benefit from the exercise. Typically, people are not doing the stretch enough. This also has to do with people doing too many random exercises. We would rather have someone spend more time doing the one specific exercise that will help them the most. People often spend 20 minutes doing random mobility drills for their low back but in reality they need to spend 2 minutes doing a specific drill 10 different times a day.
The only way you can find this information out, is to get evaluated by a sports injury rehabilitation professional in your area! Mobility and flexibility is a tricky topic and there are a lot of different questions. Overall, it is better to air on the side of being active than simply resting and expecting to get better. In some cases, resting can help ease the pain but it is not doing your body any favors in the long run and it certainly does not prevent future episodes of pain.
Be on the lookout for our mobility series starting soon and if you have low back pain, sciatica, or a sports injury that needs mobility, give our injury rehabilitation clinic a call today at 904-217-7078 or schedule at the button below!