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From The Trainer’s Room: Flexibility and mobility not the same thing

 

chris_phillipsFlexibility and mobility typically get mistaken as the same thing, but they are very different.

Flexibility is the range of motion of a single joint or the ability of a single joint to move freely. Mobility is the ability of one or more joints to move freely during movements.

According to Mike Robertson of the International Youth Conditioning Association, flexibility is a component of mobility.

A few examples of mobility exercises are:

Ankle Rocks: Stand in front of a wall with your foot flat on the ground and toes pointing towards the wall. Bend your knee and move it towards the wall, flexing your ankle and then moving back to your starting position. Repeat for ten repetitions on each side for two to three sets.

Lunge with a Rotation: Lunge forward getting your knee slightly over your toes and thigh just above parallel to the floor. Reach across your body towards the leg in front of you. Extend your arm during the trunk rotation so the arm is now perpendicular to your front thigh. Alternate sides for each lunge and perform two to three sets of ten.

Overhead Scapular Rotations: Stand up against a wall with your back flat against the wall from your waist to your shoulders. Raise your arms to shoulder height with your elbows bent at 90 degrees. Extend your arms overhead until your arms are straight and elbows are next to your ears. The goal is to maintain contact of your elbows and wrists to the wall while moving your arms overhead and maintaining your original back position flat against the wall.

Chris Phillips ATC, CSCS, is a former athletic trainer in the NHL with the Anaheim Mighty Ducks and Washington Capitals and currently owns Compete Sports Performance and Rehab.