This was done for another site, but it seems like a good re-post here:
1. What’s your favorite movement assessment and why?
For me, this has evolved a lot over the years. Nowadays, I really just watch basic movements and how I see people moving tells me where to test further. However, one thing I always do is a head to toe assessment of basic joint mobility. Do the joints work like they should, or do other parts of the body compensate and try to do the work instead? This involves basically having the athlete do joint circles or articulations.
For example, most folks have no control or sensation as to what their scapula is doing. Ask them to move just the scapula and they move either their spine or their elbow instead, or maybe both!
I use assessments from many different systems that I’ve studied over the years, plus a few of my own, but those interested further I’d direct to the FRC system (Functional Range Conditioning) to learn more, as I feel this is the best resource.
Now, let’s look at the top of the performance pyramid – special abilities. This should be the icing on top of the cake, but instead is the starting and ending point for many people.
What I mean by special abilities is a singular focus on one physical quality such as strength, or a program of sport-specific or occupational specific movements. The human body can be trained to do some amazing and very unique things. Some of these abilities are more along the lines of developing a certain physical quality to the max, such as sprinting 100m as fast as possible or running a marathon. Others are more highly developed skills – think professional golfer or circus performer.
By nature, a very narrow focus on certain abilities requires an imbalanced approach. It often takes an incredible focus of time and energy to get great at something, and this leaves little left to train toward being well-rounded. Now, this doesn’t need to be a big problem if specific work is done to minimize imbalances and you have your foundation in order.
This post, we look at the second tier of the pyramid – movement. How well can you move, how many movement options do you have available, how relaxed are you when moving, and are you moving in the appropriate way in which the body is designed?
Someone with good range of motion AND control in all joints will have access to a great level of fitness by virtue of that. But, just like when we explored the first tier of being human, most people are far off the mark in this category also. Why?
The body adapts to any posture you adopt regularly to make it easier. The body always looks for ways to conserve energy, and we become distorted over time due to our unnatural lifestyles, eg: sitting all the time for work and relaxation.
In this mini-series, I’m going to talk about fitness, health, and longevity. We’ll also look at why the conventional approach is pretty far off base.
The first concept that it is important to understand is why we need to exercise at all: it’s essentially because in the modern world, we lead our lives completely unlike what a human being is designed for. We are supposed to be outdoors and move a lot, doing light physical activity daily. We’d do this year round, no matter whether young or old. Occasionally, we’d need high output bursts of activity. We wouldn’t sit much, squatting instead as a resting position.
Welcome to Scott Hagnas Training! Over the next few months, I’ll be adding new content regularly. However, I have written many articles over the last few years, some of which you’ll find re-posted below. Some have been updated from the originals. They cover a wide variety of topics and will give you a good idea of some of my basic philosophies of training and health.
In the future, I’ll be building more content specific to a couple of different populations:
I’ll be writing on how to train to have great health & physical function as you age, and why the way most approach this is wrong and may actually detract from your overall well-being. There will be articles specifically for coaches. And, I’ll also write on training for individual “flow” sports, particularly my lifelong love of BMX.
For now, enjoy the re-posts and if you have any questions, feel free to reach out.