Movement is a fundamental requirement for life. From the rhythmic nature of our breath, to the perpetual movement of atoms, to the health of our joints... Movement is an inescapable component of living.
In fact many neuroscientists believe that the human brain evolved primarily as a means to create more (and increasingly complex) movement... but more on that another day.
When it comes to injury recovery and building resilient bodies, re-establishing movement (quality and quantity) is absolutely essential.
Moving often and in varying ways brings with it many potential benefits (and risks of course).
Below are a few of the benefits associated to moving your body often, and differently. Whether your goal be to re-abilitate from an injury or to simply live well, well into your life... the following applies to you.
1. Movement keeps your joints healthy
The stress of alternating compression and decompression that comes with normal joint and muscular action is essential to joint health. Contrary to popular belief joint compression isn't a bad thing - in fact when dosed appropriately, and with certain conditions (ie. Ehlers-Danlos syndrome) joint compression is quite useful and often therapeutic.
Other than being useful with specific conditions, alternating between periods of compression and decompression creates a process called "imbibition" within our joints. Imbibition is the name of the process in which synovial fluid (the body's equivalent of WD-40) is released into the porous joint space, and then upon decompression gets reabsorbed by the synovial membranes.
This circulation of WD-40 is what keeps our joints healthy - without it our cartilage withers away.
So quite literally, at the joint level we not only require movement for our joints to thrive, but to stay alive.
2. Movement helps you experience less pain
The less you move, the weaker you become.
The weaker you are, the more vulnerable you become.
The more vulnerable you become, the less it takes to get hurt.
The less it takes to get hurt, the more often you get hurt.
There will come a point in your recovery where you cannot tolerate the avoidant strategies that occur naturally post-injury. We all must learn to lead ourselves through the acute discomfort of reeducating an area post-injury, otherwise it becomes inevitable that you will experience further discomfort and less function in the months and years to come. It becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.
(Note: Don't go about this on your own - always consult with a professional prior to embarking on a fitness routine. Failing to do so could worsen your current condition)
So move more, get stronger, and nip the vicious post-injury cycle in the bud. 💪🏼
3. Non-linear movement makes you more resilient
We tend to get hurt in positions that are unfamiliar to us.
An exercise program that leverages varying loads, speeds, positions and levels of fatigue can help us become increasingly resilient to the unpredictable nature of life. When we only work within what is deemed as "perfect form" we can inadvertently open us up to risks the moment we deviate from that which is familiar.
Moving into "bad form" or positions that currently feel a bit risky (in a controlled manner) can be very useful strategy to develop strength, skill and efficacy in positions that may be associated with greater injury risk than others.
So move often and move differently if you're looking to live a long vibrant life unhindered by pain.
If you'd like help with this, have questions or don't know where to start, send me a quick email at: email@example.com and I'll get back to you within 24 hours.