Coach Chesty speaks on some mobility training philosophies.
Training your mobility may require stretching and increasing flexibility. It helps create access to the ranges of motion we plan on controlling. A lot has to do with creating tolerance at those end ranges, by spending time in them. Think of it as opening the door to an empty room, we still have some furnishing to do. That furnishing is adding strength to that range of motion. We need access first before we can comfortably build the strength we need.
Control or strength becomes the centre stage of the training. Now that you have access to the range of motion, let us create some control so you’re confident and resilient. That way you can take a hit and deliver one throughout that range of motion. You want to be able to produce force and take it. The brain and muscle tissues become more connected, and that range of motion sticks around. It’s also something you can use now.
You need to build the mobility you use, plus a small buffer; as in we’re not going to just hammer away at creating more and more range of motion that you need to control. That’s a lot of work, followed by way more work. You can always travel down that rabbit hole when you make time for it, but let us focus on making the day to day more manageable.
Consider the ranges of motion you need access to. Simply, put you have things like sitting at a chair, reaching for a bowl in the cupboard, or practicing martial arts. For many of you, this could include gym stuff. Narrow it down to the root action of the joints. For example, healthy hip function includes flexion, extension, abduction, adduction, external and internal rotation. Those tasks require certain levels of those hip motions to complete without issue. You need access to those ranges, strength in those ranges, plus a little extra.
The extra is a buffer. It helps deal with the overflow. You’re likely going to find yourself going overboard every now and then. It could be accumulative loading from the weeks, months, and years. It could also be due to too much in one particular moment. Having the buffer of range and control ensure if something does happen, you don’t default to injury.
If your goals and tasks happen to change, that’s where we’ll reevaluate how much more you need. Build that out, plus a little buffer, and you’re good to go. It’s not about creating contortionist levels of range. Control what you have, build out more of what you need, plus a little.
If you ever want to climb down the rabbit hole of possibilities, note that I’m already down here waiting.