Roll this. Smash that. Stretch this way. When it comes to mobility the list is endless in terms of what we should and could do in order to become a more mobile human beings. A lot of the times it can be overwhelming, and we do not know where to start. Should I foam roll? Use a lacrosse ball? Do band distraction? All are great options in terms of a starting point, you just need to get started! But thats really just what they are, a starting point. It is great if you can spend an extra ten minutes doing some kind of mobility work after class but just laying on the roller or lacrosse ball is not quite enough if we want permanent changes in our range of motion. After performing some kind of mobility work to alleviate a tight muscle or open up a joint, we then need to own our new found range of motion.
What I mean by owning the new range of motion is you need to integrate your new found range of motion in to your movement patterns. Thats basically a fancy way of saying you need to perform a movements in which you can actively use your new found range of motion. Lets say you have limited range of motion in the squat due to hip tightness. You’re smart, and you use the megatron hip distraction series to create some space in the hip and give yourself more range of motion in the squat. Boom! You feel like a million bucks so you head home with your lossey goosey hips. You repeat this process a couple times a week over the course of a month, but do not notice any permanent change in your squat range of motion. Thats because you need go through an active range of motion in order to make permanent changes. So instead of hoppin in your car and jammin over to stadium pub to grab a cold one and catch the warriors game, spend an extra five minutes performing some air squats, goblet squats, or very light back squats. Try to focus on pushing your range of motion while still maintaining quality technique and you will find that the changes will start to become more permanent!
I found this great video that talked about the various mobility techniques that have become very popular over the years with the rise of CrossFit. It discusses the different techniques and what has been found to be the most effective. To give you a TLDR (too long didn’t read) on the video, various mobility techniques (f0am rolling, lacrosse ball, static stretching) are not effective in making permanent changes to range of motion on their own. That is why you need to then perform the movement you want to get into a better position in after doing your mobility work if you want the results to stay. Another important thing the video talked about was being patient. Changes in rang of motion do not occur overnight so be patient and put in the consistent effort and you will be rewarded in the end.
Your time is valuable and we want you to get the most out of the work you put in the gym. So be sure to just to take a little bit extra time to focus on owning your new found range of motion and you’ll notice in improvements in not only your mobility, but also your workouts. Please feel free to talk to myself or any of the coaches if you have any questions about mobility!