Before you start any exercise program, it's important to get a postural and core assessment. A body assessment shows how your muscles and joints work together and if there are any imbalances to be corrected.
Your trainer or fitness expert does a "needs analysis" to see what muscles are short and tight versus long and weak. If a person has an ankle sprain on the left side, an assessment will show if his or her walk has been altered. This will also show how the person compensates one side versus the other side. The body naturally wants to use its stronger side, which can cause torsion in the pelvic musculature and core stabilizers.
The body functions at its best when it's in correct posture. When the body is in correct postural alignment, it moves evenly and distributes weight appropriately. The muscles, joints and spine work together help you perform your best at any sport without pain. If something is out of alignment, injury can occur and you'll have to spend time recovering from the injury.
After your body assessment comes a base conditioning phase. This will help prevent injuries. A base conditioning phase is where your trainer or coach watches you do basic exercises to look for any imbalances and how your body moves during exercises. This is when your trainer or coach can correct and teach you proper form. Think of this as a foundation for your workout. You wouldn't build a house without a foundation. The house would just crumble down. It's the same thing; you need to get the foundation of your body's movement down first before you can move onto more advanced moves. This will help you prevent injury.
Many times people take group classes and perform advanced moves, like the Olympic snatch, and do the move completely wrong. The body remembers bad form. According to corrective and high performance expert Paul Chek, this is called a motor engram. Motor engram is defined as a "neurophysiological phenomenon" that contains the motor information necessary to perform a complex movement. "If motor engrams are developed by performing repetitions of an exercise while in a position of poor posture, poor posture will be tied to the engram," says Chek.
Make sure your get a body assessment before you start any new fitness program to avoid injury and perform your best.
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