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Are you suffering from poor ROM?

We have all seen athletes suffer either season-ending injuries or being sidelined by nagging pain and difficulties performing at a high level expected of them. From Tiger Woods – with his back issues to football players, basketball players and track and field athletes. They can all benefit from doing one thing on a regular basis.

A lot of their problems could have been avoided with proper warm-ups and using correct range of motion (ROM) when training.

In the same way, we as amateurs exercisers must use correct form when doing our routines.

Many of us may not notice the effects of poor body mechanics until well into the future when it may be too late to make the adjustments. And as a consequence, we end up having to endure unnecessary joint aches and pains. I will raise my hands to this problem. Lately I have been experiencing minor joint issues as a result of using improper form in the past.

What is range of motion

If you ever try to touch your toes and can only go so far . . . then you know the effects of being inflexible. Practicing range of motion exercises regularly will improve your flexibility  and to allow you to extend your body further than you currently can.

It means how far you can move your joints in different directions – such as reaching high over head (shoulder joints) or reaching down to pick up you child (multiple joints).

Why is ROM important? 

We develop problems with our flexibility in various ways. From an exercise standpoint – we may be doing a movement using the wrong form for months or even years. It’s only when you make the correction that you notice the effects of improper range of motion. (This makes it doubly important to consult with a personal trainer before starting any workout program.)

Additionally . . .

  • Living a sedentary lifestyle can lead to poor range of motion. Maybe you are stuck at your desk for hours at a time and your knee joints become stiff and inflexible.
  • If you have been ill for extended times your muscles and joints get used to fewer movements.
  • Muscle tightness from training too hard.
  • Injuries related to certain activities that can result in swelling or inflammation.
  • As we age we naturally become less flexible; we even get shorter since we start losing the compression in our spinal discs.

Benefits of proper ROM

Take heart. By doing ROM exercises regularly we can maintain flexibility in spite of the causes listed above. Let’s look at some of the benefits of keeping our joints and muscles limber.

  • This is excellent for rehabbing your body from the effects of  medical procedures, injuries . . . and the need to stay flexible.
  • By doing proper range of motion movements often . . . your circulation will improve.
  • Injuries from over-exertion and poor stability are a problems many amateur exercisers experience.  Doing a complete a flexibility routine at least three days per week will improve your balance.  It will also remind you of your limits as to how far you can push yourself.
  • As we age, our muscle and joint strengths become even more important. Injuries from falls and bumps and bruises are a problem for the elderly but by doing ROM regularly we can avoid most of these.
  • Proper range of motion will help to restore normal movement after a hard training session.
  • Arthritis is a joint ailment that usually attacks the elderly, but more young people are developing the condition today. By practicing range of motion exercises often you can avoid or delay being affected by it.

Make a schedule to do a complete flexibility program at least three days per week. It doesn’t have to be more than ten to fifteen minutes.

There are anywhere from 200 to 400 joints in our bodies depending on our age. We can’t exercise them all but by practicing regular ROM movements we can have a positive impact on most of them.

Keep in mind that we don’t get a full range of motion in our normal daily movements such as walking, sitting, standing, climbing the stairs, making breakfast in the morning, having sex, etc.. It must be done in a methodical way to get the full benefits.

How to do ROM correctly

In addition to the flexibility program in my guide I have contracted with Mike Westerdal to offer you his best-selling guide on how to fix lower-body range of motion that is the Key to Eliminating Joint & Back Pain, Anxiety and Looking Fat . . .

Visit with him here.

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