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In America, we tend to go to “extremes” when it comes to our kids. If little 4 year old Katie shows elegance in her flexibility while playing around in the living room, BAM! Her parents put her in gymnastics with her own personal coach. Katie is not allowed to run around the community like the other neighborhood kids because that would detract from her ability to give her all in gymnastics practice. She eats, sleeps, and dreams gymnastics for the next ten years until two stress fractures to each tibia and two broken wrists permanently put her out of the sport. Katie retires at the age of 14.
Or what about Joey, who at the tender age of 6, was tossing the ball with his father at the park one day when a little league coach spotted him. “I’m telling you,” the coach said, “your kid could be a star pitcher in the majors someday!” “Gosh, you really think so?” The dad asked. The next thing you know, poor Joey is rushed from one baseball camp to the next. And when he’s not in a baseball camp, he’s participating in the baseball season. On top of that, his mom and dad are taking him to a personal trainer to work on increasing his strength so that he may improve the speed of his fast ball. At the age of 13, Joey has blown out his right shoulder capsule as well as had surgery on his right (throwing arm) elbow to remove “loose bodies” of cartilage that had broken away from the rest of the tissue and were tearing up his joint. Now, he’s done forever.
My point is that when a child is young – whether that be 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, etc. – he or she should be involved in general physical preparation programs that stimulate the equal development of all motor tasks and systems optimization – i.e., jumping, running, stretching, climbing, swimming, cycling, et cetera – to ensure that the youngster has developed a sound training base in which to build from.
A general physical preparation program implemented during the pre-pubescent years ensures longevity of the athlete as they age naturally across the performance spectrum.
Matt Elam, MS, CSCS, NASM-PES, LMT
Elam Sports O`ahu wishes to acknowledge all our military men, women and their families this May, 2013, during Military Appreciation Month. Mahalo to all military men, women and dependents who served and are serving still! Remember all those who sacrafice and have sacraficed in the past to keep our nation free and safe. We greatly appreciate what so few Americans do – serve our great nation in our armed forces. This May is Military Appreciation Month…may we never forget!
Manual Therapy for Ankle SprainsOne of the most common injuries in all of sports is the ankle sprain. A Doctor of Physical Therapy will often use manual therapy techniques to improve mobility to get a sprained ankle (which is injury to the ligaments surrounding the ankle joint) to move freely without pain. This technique requires expert mobilization of the ankle joint and surrounding osseous (bony) structures by a skilled Physical Therapist in directions that are in synch with the normal biomechanics of the human body…such as demonstrated in this video.
PT In MotionA slide presentation from the American Physical Therapy Association highlighting technological advances in human motion facilitation.
Tags: preventing falls among our elderly population