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Mobility: 10 Do’s and Don’ts

Many of us encounter difficulty in doing one particular or almost all the similar exercises. These rules are the fundamentals for improved mobility which will carry forward the benefits for years!

Ever joint in the body is made to perform certain movements and has got its limitations. The more stretching and mobility drills you do, the more flexible they get. Mobility drills and exercises are like motor oil for joints if you consider your body as the most invaluable machine on the planet!

Mobility exercises effect your muscles, blood circulation and strength apart from flexibility. Of course, they lack the zing of glamour brought in by machines and weights, but they gain full-marks on preparing your body for that.

Have you ever wondered why you are not able to perform an exercise with full-range of motion, why it becomes difficult to lift heavier and you are forced to think that you must go back to the previous weights, decreasing the weight on the bar? This ‘difficulty’ and the process of pushing yourself further sometimes becomes the cause of injury that further affects your growth. The problem is indeed with the mobility of your joints. How can you improve it? Here are the indispensable dos and don’ts for you.

1. Don’t harp on fast results

This is a process which requires patience and persistence. You will not improve overnight and don’t just jump further pushing yourself for heavier, faster and more challenging exercises without carrying out mobility exercises over the period of time. You must understand that you have been exercising or using your joint without full mobility for years in succession and you cannot hence, expect a rewarding performance in one session.

A deft trainer can help you mobilize your joint in one session itself but the results won’t come until you have been consistent in mobilizing them over the period of time and your joints and muscles can take the change in level very easily. Keep doing and keep improving again and again because there is not limit to improvements, even if your think that your are able to perform your best, you need to maintain that, don’t you?

2. Don’t stick to one method only

Yes, it is important to add variant exercises to your mobility drills because there are many types of movements which you can perform with your joints. After you have gained expertise in one movement, try another and then another, this way you will be surprised at the capacity of your body and will get to know how many stretches and movements it can adapt with time.

3. Don’t make mobility exercises complicated or long

This might contradict with the above point of adding variety to your mobility sessions. But you must understand that difference between adding variety and making it complicated. Instead of doing all the stretches together, choose simple exercises and perform one at time.  Add gradually and change gradually.

4. Don’t compromise on full-range of motion

The structure of joint, especially, ligaments and muscles around it, everything is made to support at set of movements in definite directions. If the potential of this configuration is not utilized fully, your mobility exercises are worthless. You must concentrate on performing exercises to the full-range of motion and never cut that down.

Even if you think there is stiffness beyond a point, you can try to push a little further, and then furthermore, until gradually your reach the required range. Don’t focus on doing it fast, not paying attention to the range of motion because after all, it is the ‘movement’ or ‘motion’ for which it is being performed!

5. Don’t put your mobility out of your priority

The improvements you see in your mobility takes longer than improvements your strength or cardio performance. Also, it is not as flashy as improving your bench press! Hence, you need to be consistent and keep patience without losing focus. You must not take your mobility for granted in any case. Thinking that you can do wonders without doing it will not take you anywhere and all your results will be short-lived. Not to mention the possibility of getting injured will increase if you don’t prioritize your mobility and warm-up exercises.

6. Do it consistently instead of doing at length

You don’t need to work on a specific movement, joint or muscle more than 20 minutes. It is advised work for 10-15 minutes on each movement instead of giving it one day a week with 30 minutes at one go. The key is to do it regularly instead of in bulk together. Mobility exercises hence need a different approach in workout plans.

7. Do your mobility assessment

You are the person who knows what is troubling with your movement. It can be stiffness and tightness but you must know where and how much. It is not enough to know about the problem, you should be able to analyze it to further plan your exercises and work there. Further you must assess how you have progressed and won over the stiffness earlier, this might work with similar movement blocks later.

8. Adapt your exercises according to your performance

If you wish to perform squat effectively, don’t load it up with weights and unnecessary putting pressure with your bodyweight. The best way to improve performance is to practice it against a wall, taking support props to exercise effectively and improving your performance gradually is the key. The focus is on improving your mobility performance first and then come other challenges. It has been said throughout the article to go slow with strategic moves.

9. Yoga will help you drastically

Yes, yoga infuses your whole body system with better mobility as it works with stretches in all its asanas. Even if you are not doing yoga daily, doing it once or twice a week will give you substantial mobility benefits over the time. There have been instances in which people doing yoga as less as once a week for an hour have shown improvements in in their performance of other exercises and reported better mobility. Dedicated one or two hours once or twice a week to practicing yoga as it works wonders for your fascia stretching which in turn makes the movements better.

10. Don’t take unnecessary stress

Well, stress is a game spoiler in almost all the performances and specifically, when it comes to your health and fitness. If you are stressed out, your body will reflect unnecessary tightness and stiffness and will not respond well to your efforts during exercises. Physical activity may improve this situation to a certain level but not beyond it. So you have to pull the trigger in the mind. The best way is to take 5-10 minutes off in silence every day - put off your gadgets and disconnect to the world, think nothing and relax for few minutes.

About The Author

Rajul Tiwari

Rajul Tiwari is the Editor-in-Chief at bodyandstrenth.com and has 18 years of experience in media, content, publishing and education. She has worked with media houses like Daini.... Read More..

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