What is Mobility?
What is Mobility?
Most of us have heard the term ‘mobility’ but don’t know what it actually means. Mobility is defined as the ability to move freely and easily. Now that we have the definition of mobility, then what is the difference between mobility and flexibility? Flexibility refers to a muscle’s ability to lengthen where as mobility refers to the range of motion at a specific joint.
How many of you like the sound of moving freely and easily without the constrictions of stiffness, tightness, aches and pains associated with it? If this sounds like you, know that mobility is KEY.
Most of us nowadays have a desk job were we sit for hours and hours. Some of us have a decent commute which means more sitting. The more we sit the more our pectoral (chest) muscles, shoulders, trap and neck all tighten. Don’t forget your curved low back, hips, hip flexors, glutes and hamstrings too. These muscles basically shut off due to not being utilized in our sitting position and they too become super tight. “Text neck”, forward head posture, forward shoulders, tight chest, hunch back, weak core, low back aches, tight hips, knee pain, pronated feet, collapsed arches can be all caused from the way we sit. When we are sitting we are constantly in a flexed, crunched, forward position. Our bodies will take shape to what we repeatedly do!
So what can you do about it? Every 30 minutes stand up and walk or stretch, perhaps invest in a standing desk or even use a yoga ball to sit on (it helps to engage your core and forces you to sit with proper posture) and be mindful of your posture throughout the day.
Adding in some simple mobility exercises everyday can be of tremendous help. Choosing 3-4 mobility exercises a day for 20-30 minutes will improve not only your posture but your body mechanics as well. These exercises can be done anytime during the day. Your body will thank you.
A foam roller is another great tool to use for getting into the tight spots. A foam roller is a self-myofascial release, or in other words, a self-massage of the muscles. It allows you to apply the right amount of pressure you want to roll your muscles over the roller helping to relieve muscle tightness, remove excess blood and other toxins in the body, remove lactic acid build up (this is what makes you sore), increase range of motion, improve circulation, improve muscle recovery and guess what, promotes better overall mobility. I must warn you, it is a love-hate relationship. Give the foam roller a try and you’ll understand what I’m saying.
We as humans are meant to move. Our amazing bodies thrive off movement. We are not meant to be still. Remember, a body in motion stays in motion.