Injury Prevention & Rehabilitation
Injuries keep individuals from living active and healthy lifestyles, and they can shorten or end an athlete's career. Thus, Dr. Joel Seedman prioritizes injury prevention and restoration as critical components in his training approach.
Despite significant advancements in kinesiology over the last decade, many sports have seen an alarming increase in injury rates. While all sports carry some risk of unavoidable injury, a large majority occur for no apparent reason other than improper muscle activation and recruitment patterns. Non-impact injuries—ACL tears, rotator cuff injuries, ankle sprains, and herniated discs—have become more frequent despite the “latest and greatest” strength and conditioning protocols.
Many injuries can be prevented if the athlete’s body is functioning properly. An athlete’s potential for injury is very much contingent on whether their muscles are performing one of their key roles, namely “force absorption.” When the nervous system properly activates and recruits the appropriate motor units and fibers, it places the athlete’s limbs and joints are into the most biomechanically advantageous position for performance and safety. However, when forces and torques act on the body without correct neuromuscular innervation, other structures such as tendons, joint capsules, ligaments, and connective tissue absorb the force. This creates exponentially greater potential for both chronic and acute injuries as well as increased local and systemic inflammation.
Although increasing muscle strength is critical for preventing such occurrences, it is only a small piece of the puzzle. Proper biomechanics, joint positioning, motor unit recruitment patterns, arthrokinematics (movement of joint surfaces), muscular symmetry, mobility, and joint stabilization are paramount to injury prevention, performance, and overall health. Simply put, an athlete may be exceptionally strong yet still have an incredibly high injury risk.
Like athletes, aging individuals and trauma patients, experience joint pain and deterioration, which often leads to therapy, surgery, and joint replacements. Again, this results from improperly functioning muscles. For example, if the various muscles surrounding the hip joint are not performing their roles correctly (absorbing force and producing biomechanically sound movement), stress will inevitably be placed onto the hip joint and surrounding connective tissue. Over time this leads to capsular issues, soft tissue abnormalities, osteoarthritis, and overall joint degeneration. While a physician may label this as “overuse” or genetically predisposed structural deficiencies, “improper use” is more accurate. The body’s joints and connective tissue are incredibly resilient as long as appropriate muscles are performing their roles correctly and absorbing impact.
Proper muscle function not only prevents joint and tissue trauma but it can also enable individuals with even the most severe pain and injuries (including tears, osteoarthritis and joint degeneration) to avoid surgery and eliminate most if not all associated symptoms (pain, swelling, inflammation, incapacitation, debilitation, and further injury). Although many injuries may never fully repair particularly if extensive surgery and procedures are not administered, these injuries and inflammatory-related issues can be overcome and essentially inconsequential as long as surrounding musculature are performing their roles.
For example, an individual with a significant rotator cuff injury could avoid surgery and medical treatment almost indefinitely (regardless of whether or not the injury healed on its own) if in fact that individual’s neuromuscular system could be properly re-programmed to innervate surrounding muscles (which would essentially absorb incoming forces and torque alleviating most if not all tension from the injured site). In essence this individual could continue to play their sport, move efficiently, and maintain high functionality of the upper extremities. Although there are extreme cases where surgery and medical treatment are the only viable options, many injuries can be overcome by re-educating the nervous system and instilling optimal muscle function.
Most physicians will recommend surgery (typically as a first line of action), medication, or at best physical therapy, which often times provides little relief and in some cases only exacerbates pre-existing injuries. Dr. Seedman’s approach although resembling various forms of physical therapy transcends these approaches by teaching the body to move correctly using movement patterns and activation strategies inherent to the human body’s genetic makeup. This generates natural healing, restoration, and health to the injured site as well as to the entire body via reduction of inflammation and oxidative stress.
Contact Advanced Human Performance today to set up a meeting with Dr. Seedman and begin the process of natural healing and movement restoration.