This week the Mobility and Corrective Exercise class at CrossFit 5885 (Saturday January 9th, 2016 10:00 am - 11:00 am) will focus on addressing dysfunctions, fascial restrictions and alignment issues in the tissues surrounding the Foot and Ankle.
The foot and ankle complex is an often overlooked and under addressed area in overall posture, injury prevention and improving athletic performance.
When the foot or ankle joint is out of position, it's function is compromised which can cause a myriad of misalignments in the muscles and joints above.
In order to perform activities of daily living and athletic pursuits without repetitive stress or pain, an athlete needs strong and flexible feet, ankles, and calves to provide both full range of motion AND a stable base to move from.
You may not be aware of how important foot and ankle mechanics are to your overall posture and performance. If you have chronic lower back, hip, knee or ankle/foot pain issues like plantar fasciitis, achilles tendonitis, neuromas this mobility and corrective exercise session IS FOR YOU! [To learn more see The Foot and Ankle Connection to Low Back Pain]
In this week's class, we're going to focus specifically on restoring proper dorsiflexion. In my experience as a Corrective Exercise Specialist, the vast majority of individuals I work with have poor to severely restricted dorsiflexion (extension of the ankle, in which the top of the foot moves closer to the shin). Normally, the ankle should dorsiflex 10-30 degrees and is brought about by all muscles whose tendons pass into the foot anterior to the ankle joint including the:
Poor dorsiflexion can arise from a number of factors, some of which include:
- Previous injury/surgery causing a tight joint capsule or build up of adhesions or scar tissue in the joint
- Poor daily postural habits such as standing with the feet turned in, out, rolling the ankles in/out and tucking the feet back behind you (to name just a few)
- Wearing footwear with elevated heels. Most footwear for women AND men have heels that are higher in the rear of the foot than the front. This includes running and workout gear. Excessive wear of elevated footwear will result in a loss of range of motion and other postural changes.
- Other postural imbalances in other major joints such as the knees, hips, shoulders and pelvis. The body works as a whole, so often if there is an ankle issue, you'll have corresponding kinematic problems and/or chronic pain in other areas of the body. Very often individuals who have knee, hip, or back pain, have an unidentified joint dysfunction in one or both of the ankles and muscles that act on and cross the area.
We'll be using a:
- double lacrosse ball taped together (like a peanut)
- single lacrosse ball
- yoga block
- yoga strap
- yoga mat
If you own any of those pieces of equipment, please bring them along to class. I will have the set of 3 lacrosse balls available for purchase ($10 for all), and yoga straps ($5).
Remember, addressing your muscle and joint balance and function is important for all human beings, not just CrossFit or recreational athletes. The activities you do the most (sitting, working at a computer with your head forward and using a mouse or texting) creates your day-to day posture habits and function. Repetitive stress of these daily postures DEMANDS that muscle and joint imbalances be corrected BEFORE you take that posture into repetitive strength building movements that require excellent body position and human kinematics.
Come and undo the damage from faulty form/bad technique and poor/incorrect posture and learn how to do some basic maintenance and repair work on your beautiful self. I hope you can make it!
This class is open to both CrossFit 5885 members and the public.
To attend, simply purchase a 10 class punch pass (come on in early, and we can help you before class starts). Punch passes include CrossFit WODs, CrossFit Swimming, Spin class, Barbell Club, Yoga for Athletes AND the Mobility and Corrective Exercise class.
Questions? Please contact Deb. Hope to see you there!
Stock Photo Credit: Shutterstock.com
Head Photo Credit: Melissa Thome Photography
Author: Deb Preachuk is a Certified Foundation Training & STOTT Pilates Instructor, Corrective Exercise & Posture Alignment Specialist, and the founder/owner of Pain Free Posture MN. You can follow Deb on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, or subscribe to her YouTube, Pinterest or Instagram pages.