MOBILITY

  mo·bil·i·ty   /noun

  1. the ability to move or be moved freely and easily.  "this exercise helps retain mobility in the joints"  
  2. the ability to move in one's environment with ease and without restriction "her mobility allows her to jog everyday"
  3. the ability to move physically "a knee operation has restricted his mobility"
  4. the combination of muscle elasticity, joint range of motion and the body’s freedom of movement “the ability to maintain posture and control movements freely" 

synonyms: ability to move, movability, 'restricted mobility' 

What is Mobility?

Mobility vs Flexiblity

  What is Mobility and why should you care? 

Even if you are not a regular exerciser Mobility has an impact on your daily life.  If you have restrictions in your general mobility those will have an effect on how you move, how your body functions, the wear and tear on your joints and may contribute to pain and discomfort when you move around. Add this to regular exercise or training under greater stress and intensity and this is how injuries occur.  

  • Mobility is much more than just stretching 
  • Mobility = How a joint moves  Flexibility = Length of muscles (stretching alone) 
  • Mobilization best described as “a movement based integrated full-body approach that addresses all the elements that limit movement and performance including short and tight muscles, soft tissue restriction, joint capsule restriction, motor control problems, joint range of motion dysfunction and neural dynamic issues. In short Mobilization is a tool to globally address movement and performance problems.” 
  • In our case, Mobilization is not what typically happens in a clinical setting with a Physiotherapist or Athletic Therapist, where they use a type of manual therapy to physically move the joint to help restore function or alleviate symptoms. 
  • Mobility should be proactive and practiced and consist of three main modalities:  

  1.  Soft Tissue Work with some form of ‘self myofascial release’ which may include foam rolling, stick massaging and lacrosse ball work.  (Active Release Techniques should only be performed by a Professional ie. Physiotherapist, Chiropractor, Massage Therapist etc. 
  2. Stretching which includes static and proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation (PFN). Static stretching usually involves holding a muscle in a lengthened position for a minimum of 30 seconds. PFN can be a combination of lengthening and contracting the muscle at intervals for a prolonged period of repetitions. 
  3. Joint mobilization may involve the use of bands, dowels and other stretching techniques and tools. These work by breaking up adhesion, stretching the joint capsule and gently coaxing the joint into a great range of motion.