What does a Movement Coach do?
In the world of Personal Training, we can all choose to follow different paths attaining L3 Personal Trainer certification is just the start and like all careers, there are opportunities to follow a path or diversify into various areas of interest.
My passion is movement. Why? From the day we are born each and every single beautiful human moves. It really doesn't matter if you are tall or short, thin or fat, healthy or unfit, rich or poor, an exercise junky or a sofa surfer, we all move.
One could argue that all personal training involves movement and, of course, it does. Exercise is movement. I would posit, however, that I could set a program that includes cardio, squats, deadlifts, planks, carries, presses and rows and we could bang through it in the allotted hour and you’ll feel exerted and maybe even in DOMS related pain the next day affirming that you worked hard… all good right; for some yes, if that’s what you want.
A different approach to health and fitness
In my experience, the approach, described above, will run into problems in the long term. The reason for this is that none of us, me included, is the epitome of the perfect human. We are pretty perfect between birth and school age as we learn to move and explore our environments. After that we adapt to new environments and, as a result, we all begin to develop a level of immobility, instability or lack of strength. One could argue that the above approach will build the strength part but building strength on an immobile or unstable frame is not the best way to begin; many shaky foundation metaphors could be inserted here about houses, relationships and the like.
Coaching, and focusing on patterns of movement, is fundamental to sustained development and increasing performance which, in this context, could be any client goal be it weight loss, toning up, adding muscle or general fitness, health and wellbeing. This is the reason I chose to learn about, and become certified, in the Functional Movement System (FMS).
Isn’t functional movement just functional training?
The health and fitness world had a lot of hype around functional training a few years ago and this seems to have subsided a little as, presumably, a new trend has replaced it to drive gym memberships and the purchase of the latest innovative products. Functional movement is different from functional training in that functional movement, and the system it employs focuses on movement patterns specifically helping individuals rehabilitate from the various adaptations their bodies have collected over a lifetime of work, sport, injury or lifestyle.
There is one component of life we are all prone to and that is sitting. Sadly this is where it starts going wrong for us all when we are children when we start at school. Sitting for long periods of time, at school, working, commuting or relaxing, contributes to some of the largest health issues humans can have not to mention the physical adaptations that result in back, neck, shoulder or hip aches and pains. Don’t just take my word for it. the NHS has recognised this in the article below. The video is from a personal favourite in the health and fitness world.
Do no harm.
Using the Functional Movement System (FMS) enables me to assess clients’ movement literacy and prescribe very specific training, to address and correct any adaptations their body has collected, in a very safe, methodical way. This enables clients to begin, or resume, exercise with the right set of mobility, stability or strength exercises that will enable them to achieve any goal they may have set themselves. Importantly the system is sustainable over the long term as it significantly reduces the exposure to injury as demands are increased as we are training both the brain and the body. The brain governs what right feels like, and is safe, the body becomes more able to access, and control, a wider range of movement than it could before.
The Functional Movement System works hand in hand with sports rehabilitation, sports therapy, and physiotherapy. Arguably movement works to enhance the treatment that each of those professions prescribe by focusing on movement patterns, not just the injured parts.
If you would like to know more, feel free to book an introductory chat or movement assessment to see how well your body is coping with the demands you place upon it.