Friday, November 13, 2009

Neuromuscular vs. Muscular

This month's Journal of Strength & Conditoning research:

Relationship Between Hip and Knee Kinematics in Athletic Women During Cutting Maneuvers: A Possible Link to Noncontact Anterior Cruciate Ligament Injury and Prevention
Imwalle, Lauren E; Myer, Gregory D; Ford, Kevin R; Hewett, Timothy E

Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research:
November 2009 - Volume 23 - Issue 8 - pp 2223-2230

placed biomechanical markers liberally on the upper & lower extremities & had them do 45 & 90 degree cutting maneuvers. At least in this study, frontal plane adduction moments at the hip were the biggest predictors of how much the knees abducted. They site Brent's research from a study published 3 years ago in "medicine & science in sport & exercise" that showed steady increases in hip abduction strength in adolescent boys; with no such similarity in girls. The authors recommend strategies that increase hip abduction control, & include protocols that include plyometrics, dynamic stabilization, & trunk neuromuscular training.

Much like in Hodge's work on spine stability, we have to be careful on the application side of this. Resist the temptation to run to those 4 way hip machines. Neuromuscular is a lot different & complicated than muscular. Neuromuscular adaptation takes longer. Neuromuscular integrates myofascial slings throughout the body that contribute to hip & knee stability. Neuromuscular understands the foot is on the ground dealing with artificial turf, or wet grass, or improper footwear; that the eyes are driving movement from above with the head & shoulders reacting.

Dave Tiberio, P.T. uses the term "resonent frequency" to describe tendon & ligaments (that includes the ACL) ability to react to changes in load intensity & velocity. Re-setting that resonent frequency is the key. We forget the ACL is living tissue & loaded with proprioceptors! It will tell the rest of the body what to do, provided the body has been trained to work in what G2 calls, "the transformational zone".

Neuromuscular takes planned performance training-muscular does not.

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