Monday Memo 1/8/18

Movement Analysis


Human movement is amazing as there is always more to it than meets the eye. For instance, a squat is more than just a squat. It’s the ability to coordinate:


🔹Total Body Stabilization


🔸Hip Movement


🔹Knee Movement


🔸Ankle Movement


🔹Breathing & Abdominal Pressure


🔸External Load Management


The above list isn’t comprehensive, but it serves it purpose. It shows us that movement is composed of smaller parts, or base components, that work together to create the final product. When we analyze dysfunctional movement, it’s important that we identify in which component the dysfunction shows up. When we do this effectively, we’re provided insight into where we need to intervene or, at the very least, what to break down for further evaluation.


This concept really shines in the motor control phase of rehabilitation, as it can be applied to everything from the most simple to the most complicated movement pattern. Breaking a movement down into separate components allows us to utilize drills that work on specific areas of dysfunction. With intelligent programming, a training effect should take place, and we can re-test and shift our focus towards integration.

Take a look at the video below for one example:


  1. Single-Leg Rockback

🔹 We can use this drill to improve our backside mechanics. The rock helps us load the posterior hip on our “support leg” while moving into deep hip & knee flexion, ankle dorsiflexion, and toe extension. At the same time, the opposite leg should be cued into active triple extension (hip/knee extension & ankle plantarflexion) to ingrain propulsion mechanics and aid in tensioning the system. Taking away the rear toe support by adding in the leg lift takes away some external stability & fully loads the support leg.

  1. Transitional Kneeling Drill

🔸 This drill helps us improve our frontside mechanics and mainly focuses on the swing phase. We want to encourage as much pure hip flexion as possible, avoiding compensatory hip abduction, rotation, or contralateral trunk lean that allows for circumduction in the swing phase. Once the leg has completed the swing phase and is acting in support, we can modulate our foot placement and anterior lean to increase or decrease the hip extension stretch we receive on the rear support leg.



The bottom line is that movement is nuanced. It’s complicated. But it can always be broken down into simpler, easier to digest, components.


  • Charlie Badawy SPT, CSCS, USAW


January 8, 2018 |

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