Updated: Mar 1, 2019
Many of us are walking around with muscle imbalances that are potential cause of injury. It is easy to aim for a better waistline, losing weight and etc... these are the main reasons why someone grabs a gym membership or works out. But functionality should be your number one goal as it helps minimize injury, with injury comes goal disaster! who wants that?
What is it?: Every joint in your body is surrounded by muscles, responsible for your movement. If the muscle on one side of the joint becomes overuse (tighter with knots), muscle on the other side of the joint are not able to maintain balance, consequently affecting the position of the joint at rest and change its path of motion during movement. That creates a problem and WILL! overtime affect the joint's ability to stabilize which in turn will create pain and in worst case scenario INJURY!
Runner's knee, sciatica, poor posture, tennis elbow, golf elbow, rotator cuff injury, runner's hip, all of those are results of muscular imbalances, and boy they hurt!
How it happens?: Repetitive motions or actions are the most common cause of muscular imbalances. When muscles shortens they create force and overtime can become overused and remain in a state of semi-contraction, which can change the position of the joint. Doing the same movements in a work setting or performing the exact same exercises in every workout are two examples of repetitive motions that can be a potential cause of imbalances.
Sedentary lifestyle (couch potato), sitting for extended periods of time (corporate), shoes (heels, dress shoes), same workout every time, runners/walkers or any job with repetitive actions or movements are all common ways to create imbalances.
How to fix?: The same focus placed on your exercises must be placed on restoring muscular imbalances by relaxing the tight muscles via static stretches, foam rolling patterns, and by tightening their counteracting muscles. Another great way is to also create variety in your workout! The way we do it here at aNF is we break up the muscle groups in an antagonist way, so as one side works the other relaxes (chest / biceps & back / triceps).