1. Mobility - "If you move poorly, you will perform poorly."
Often confused with flexibility (the ability of our muscles to stretch) Mobility refers to movement throughout our body as a whole. It encompasses the range of motion at our joints, the movement in soft tissue and connective tissue and how stable we are within these ranges of movement. If you are stiff, tight and lack an optimal range of motion in areas of your body, it will effect how you move, how you feel and often lead to injury.
There is no point in working on developing strength until you start addressing your mobility as you will only be strengthening less that optimal movement. Unfortunately the combination of our daily habits such as sitting and driving, holding poor posture and the love of pushing our bodies to the max all contribute to poor mobility and regardless of whether you're an 'average joe' or an elite athlete it is equally important.
The bad news is that poor mobility won't sort itself out, the good news is that working on it doesn't have to be complicated or time consuming. We've seen clients transform the way they move and feel simply by going through a simple 5 minute routine on a daily basis.
Being the first step we can also consider it as the preparatory phase or warm up. We are often guilty of rushing warm ups, wanting to get onto the main session, but this will only compromise the quality and effectiveness of our workout or training session. The time spent on your mobility is a chance to find out how your body is feeling, which areas are tight, restricted and need a little extra focus.
test your mobility
2. Activation - "If you don't use it, you lose it!"
Our second step Activation is a necessary component of any effective training program. The human body is designed to work best when is it balanced. From front to back and top to bottom muscles work together so that we can carry out everyday tasks, and the hobbies we love without hinderance.
However, once again thanks largely to modern day life, the majority of us don't use what we've been given. We have muscles that become lazy and under-utilised, and as a result we find imbalances occur throughout the body. A common example is our Glutes (our backside!). Due to long periods of sitting; at a desk, computer, in the car or in front of the tele, what could be our most powerful muscle often becomes our weakest. This can lead to all sorts of issues, like back, hip, knee and ankle pain, and for the athletes amongst us - poor performance.
So it is really important that we start activating these areas. Again, the next step (Strength) is going to be a lot harder if we aren't even recruiting the right muscles. With certain exercises and tools such as resistance bands, Activation work will get you making the most of what you've got and moving more efficiently.
learn to activate
3. STRENGTH - " the ESSENTIAL FOUNDATION for health & performance"
So once we have prepared and primed our bodies with our Mobility and Activation steps it's time to focus on developing our Strength. Regardless of your age, ability or goals being strong is fundamental to our survival. Enduring the physical requirements as an athlete, preventing everyday injuries and falls as we get older are all reasons we need to develop and maintain optimal levels of strength.
Strength training can come in many forms and can often but overcomplicated and unrealistic. It's not all about lifting heavy weights, In fact the majority of our work at Strength For Endurance begins with bodyweight exercises, lighter loads and developing single side imbalances, all a lot more challenging than they sound. Most people don't realise just how weak they are and are amazed at how a simple strength training program can stop their aches and pains, transform their sports performance and improve their quality of life.