Mobility for better movement

The purpose of mobility training is to increase the range of motion at a particular joint.

Most people think of mobility training as sitting down and reaching for their toes (ie. static stretching) to increase their flexibility.

But mobility also has a strength component, which aids in holding certain positions or movements.

An example might be someone who wants to have the mobility to squat to the ground with their heels on the ground.

They might have the ankle flexibility to do it, but if they don’t have the strength through the calf and tibialis anterior (shin muscle) they won’t be able to hold themselves at all/for long.

A well-designed resistance training program tends to increase mobility provided there is a balance of movement patterns.

Bulgarian split squats are a great example of this, as they open up the hip flexors, improve balance and single-leg strength.

I have never prescribed stretches to clients - and it’s not my area of expertise - but most clients improve their mobility during a training program.

So whilst it might not look like we are training to improve mobility in the traditional fashion, there is a stimulus for improvement in the design of the training program itself.

There are also often mobility gains from improvement in body composition, strength and endurance, which will be gained from adherence to the training program.

For most people, they are more likely to implement a personalised training program than they are some mobility exercises.

Just think back to the last time you saw a physio - how many times did you do the exercises they gave you?

Tom Fitzgerald