Wisdom from the Orthopedic Office: focus on movement

Hi Friends,

How are you this fine first Sunday in February? A lot of folks up here will be watching the super bowl today, which means the trails will be prime for MTB!

As I sit this morning, I am thinking not of football or biking, but of the ways in which our ideas around movement and injury may inhibit our movement capacity and health.

I was in a dance class yesterday and the teacher was speaking about her injuries. She said she had seen a doctor who had told her she should not do squats because they were damaging her knees.

In situations like these, I take a deep breath and relax my mind. I have been working in orthopedic physical therapy specializing in movement instruction and observation since 1995. I immediately want to switch into my professional role. The clinician within me wants to collect more information like “did your doc watch you squat?” "what is his/ her training in movement analysis?"“are you loading (using weight) while you squat?” “what depth are you squatting to?” “what is your ankle and hip mobility like?”

The truth about squatting, is that it is the same movement pattern as getting in and out of a chair- something that we all need to maintain the ability to do well into later life. Squatting, like all movement, is not good or bad. It is a potentially extremely helpful movement depending on the nuances of how it is performed.