Unraveling your Movement Story

This week I have been using the Functional Movement Screen (FMS) to assess foundational movement for new members and re-assessing current members to determine training effectiveness.

I don't always use the FMS when someone is brand new because it can be frustrating for your first experience at a new gym to be 'tested.' Even though it is not a test, that's how people often view it.

But after a short time of teaching you kettlebell lifts and watching you move in class, I like to put some numbers around your foundational movement skills so I can plan your programming accordingly.

In a way, I am unraveling your movement story to help you reach your full potential.

I work corrective exercises into the regular class programming, your personal warmup, and I may give you some extra stretches to do outside the gym.

Current members continue to see progress as they eradicate pain (many come to MSK with prior sports injuries). They are also becoming more conditioned and seeing improvement in core stability and overall strength as indicated in movements such as the squat and pushup.

The FMS tells me if the training we are doing is working well with your body.

We all come from different fitness and movement backgrounds and that greatly impacts how we move and use kettlebells and the other tools in the gym.

Learning what you do well, and where you can grow, is important for me to know to safely challenge you.

Kettlebells make that fairly easy as we can change up the movements and lifts, reduce or increase weight, reps, sets and regress or progress the movement depending what you need.

There is another piece too ... your fitness personality.

Some of us naturally push ourselves to the edge of our ability -- maybe just enough or maybe too much. Others move forward more cautiously -- or perhaps we've been injured too many times to take chances.

Some of us thrive under high intensity and others like a balance. Some like to move fast, others slowly.

I learn all of this about you as we train in class and it impacts how I program and coach you.

I use my best judgement to try to push you or pull you back and program to meet your needs -- but I depend on you to listen to your body and be open with me about how it is all feeling inside your body and in your brain.

Factors such as food, stress, work, family, life all impact our movement story and how we move.

Getting back in the swing of moving like we did when we were kids -- balancing, running, lifting, carrying, jumping, climbing, reaching, stepping, rolling, crawling ... can be just what you need, and for others, it can be a little frustrating.

We explore it all, stop where we need to, and move forward when and where you are ready.

Your movement story has chapters that reflect the specialized sports, general physical conditioning and hobbies you enjoyed as a kid, and what you are doing currently, whether you do a lot of sitting, standing, or working in a physical job, your current hobbies, stress, how you eat, sleep and hydrate, any medical issues are you dealing with now or in the past. It all impacts how we move.

Crazy that our movement story is the history of our lives that unravels a little at a time as we begin learning a new physical skill like swinging kettlebells.

It will be very interesting to see where this new movement chapter leads you ... some to a kettlebell certification, others to new successes in specialized sports. For others, more confidence, mobility and strength for the challenges presented in everyday life.

No matter where you are, delivering life-changing progress is our goal.