posted on June 2, 2022
Within the past year, mobility has become a large part of my training. It started to become very prominent when training legs, due to tight hips, and back issues. Once I noticed the difference I felt during and after my training sessions, I started incorporating more and more mobility prior to exercising. So why should anyone care that I do mobility, and why should others start adding mobility into their workouts? The main benefits you’ll gain from increasing mobility is a decrease in joint pain, reduce risk of injury, and allow you to move easier throughout your day.
Joint pain is one of the leading work disabilities in the United States. This type of pain can be caused by an array of reasons; majority of it pertaining to inflammation of the joint, or overworking of the tendons surrounding a joint (tendinitis). So how does mobility fit into this? We’ll have to look into the definition of mobility first. Mobility can be defined as the ability to passively move your muscles and joints through their full range of motion. The fun thing about your muscles is that they can be conditioned through lengthening (stretching) and by contracting (shortening). Conditioning of these muscles and tendons surrounding your joints will drastically improve the way you move inside, and outside the gym. The best way of completing this is moving all your joints through their full range of motion. Resistance can be added as time goes on, as your mobility and flexibility increases, in order to strengthen the muscles surrounding your joints to encourage joint stability.
When starting mobility, everyone should be referencing their end range of motion, or the length of your passive range of motion. To improve your passive range of motion, you can begin actively training to where your body’s specific end is. The important thing to remember is that every body is anatomically different from the next. My mobility can be completely different from everyone else in the gym due to how deep/shallow my hip or shoulder sockets are, how high of a valgus angle I have, and the amount of joint stability I have. Taking your muscles and joints through their full range of motion on a daily basis can decrease joint pain and risk of injury because it allows everything to become accustomed to this movement and that way whenever the unfortunate happens, it’s not as much of a shock to the affected muscles or joints.
I have listed a few mobility exercises that can be completed in the gym or at home below:
Wall/ floor angles
90/90 hip rotations
Open books to windmills
3 way lunge
If anyone has any questions about mobility or any additional stretches/ exercises they can do to increase their mobility and strengthen their joints, feel free to ask me!