Saturday, April 23, 2011

Take a look and let me know what you think

Thanks to Vern on the heads up on this.  It is a free kinematic analysis tool.  This could be very useful.  The only problem is, the way I understand, you would first need to build a calibration structure.  And, that structure would need to be placed where you plan to do the filming.  So, it would be best for those who have a dedicated area put aside for this purpose.  What do you think of the idea of building a portable one that you could take apart and put back together?  Would it be worth the effort?  Otherwise, I wouldn't even have the room to store something like that.  Oh, one annoying thing.  You have to convert your video into .avi before you can download it.  Weird but do-able.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

What is pathological and what is adaptive?

Two studies in the 4-11 edition of the AJSM provoke this question:

"High Prevalence of Pelvic and Hip Magnetic Resonance Imaging Findings in Asymptomatic Collegiate and Professional Hockey Players"- Silvis et al.

"Magnetic Resonance Imaging of the Throwing Elbow in the Uninjured, High School–Aged Baseball Pitcher"-Hurd et al.

In a previous post I spoke of this issue regarding the finding of osteophytes in athletic knees.  Some researchers felt this was a pathological change, others felt is was a strategic reinforcement that the body does.  The same was discovered in the elbows of healthy high school pitchers and the hips of healthy collegiate and professional hockey players. What was really interesting was the presence of  asymptomatic adductor–abdominal rectus enthesopathy in hockey players.  The body self organizing?

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Does anyone know why all of a sudden my images started distorting?

PBS Frontline: Football High

This edition prominently features one of Joe's Training Room frequent contributors-BJ Maack, president of the Arkansas Athletic Trainers Association.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Enhancing play low with pelvic drivers.

Play low.  A lost, necessary part of blocking, tackling, fielding.  It requires good T-spine, hip, knee, and ankle flexibility.  The first picture is typical, with the ankles splayed because of poor dorsflexion.  Permit no more than a 30 degree ER.  Have the athlete squat as low as possible while maintaining good posture.  Once there, instruct them to move the pelvis as described in the images.  4 to 5 sets of 30 seconds is good.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

A great research journal that bridges the gap...

"Human Movement Science".  This month's edition is a little off topic as far as A.T., but do a journal search on "knee" or "ankle".  Outstanding.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Ramblings on the "Isolate before Integrate" Philosophy

"Effects of muscle strengthening on vertical jump height: a simulation study."  Bobbert et al, MSSE '94.

In this study, isolation training caused a 20% increase in knee extensor force, BUT caused a 9cm DECREASE in vertical jump height.

Orchard, J., Walt, S., McIntosh, A. and Garlick, D. (2002) Muscle activity during the drop punt kick. In: Science and Football IV. Eds: Sprinks, W., Reilly, T. and Murphy, A. London: Taylor and Francis. 32-43.

Australian footballers have been having a real tough go of it with hamstring strains.  But its a lot more than a strength/flexibility thing.  This study shows they (hamstrings) are not particularly active in the follow through of a kick, as you would think.  They seem to have more of a timing sort of purpose.

I don't mean to beat this topic to death, just saying how tough it is to rock a rhyme thats right on time.

Friday, April 8, 2011

...but, compared to what?

I was just reading a research article on the use of electrical stimulation to enhance vertical jump height.  There was a lot of this stuff  back in the 80s.  There were two control groups, one that did no training, and another that practiced jumping without the electrical stimulation.  The electrical stimulation showed an advantage over both groups over a 6 week training period.  But what if they compared it to a group that went though a functional leg strength progression.  One that included progressive loading.  Would it still show an advantage?  And would that technique be practical in the context of a team setting?  Don't just read the abstracts, they can be misleading.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Getting back inside the envelope

This athlete is returning to softball from a sprained right knee.  I didn't like the way her single leg hop looked- too much valgus.  I could get that knee back into the envelope of function by removing the exercise or doing mini jumps on two feet.  What I chose was to continue single leg training, but modify the same exercise.  The athlete is doing the single leg hop up a 30 degree incline, with no more knee valgus.  Handicap ramps typically found around schools are perfect for this purpose.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Do your work at the edge of the envelope of function

This athlete is in the early stages of rehab for a right groin strain.  To be specific, a right rectus femoris origin strain.  Here we are using integrated integration as Gary Gray calls it; using top down drivers to influence the groin & enhance the healing process on both a myofascial & neural level.  In the first picture, the athlete is in a right stride stance, swinging 6 lb. powerballs from the hip to posterior @ overhead.  In the 2nd, he's doing alternating frontal plane swings, the emphasis on creating frontal plane pelvic movement.  In the 3rd he's again in a right stride stance doing R/L rotational swings @ shoulder height.  By selecting my stance & arm swing pattern I'm protecting the lesion from injury.  The athlete can be pretty aggressive with these without any pain what so ever. 

The lower extremity exercises I'm choosing are lateral lunges, right stagger squats, and right/left posterior lunges with a bilateral upper extremity reach anterior to knee height.  No need to be concerned with "proper firing patterns" here, the body is self selecting according to the task.  Because the exercises I chose are within the envelope of function, there is no need to be concerned with compensatory movement patterns.  Those who choose an isolated, open chain approach are a lot smarter than me.  Remember in function, an individual muscle may have to work isometrically, concentrically, and eccentrically all at the same time.  Not only at each particular joint, but in each individual plane at that joint.  My hats off to them.