At a time when most of our daily activities are completed with the click of a key either on our phones or at our computers, exercise has become a purposeful act.  Many people make the honest effort to begin an exercise routine or do a chore that requires physical strength and stability, because that might be their only chance for exercise on that given day. However, this often comes at the expense of proper movement patterns.  This can lead to pain, injury and disability.  Functional Movement Screens™ (FMS), created by clinicians Gray Cook and Lee Burton,  can identify weak links in movement patterns that are specific to each person and often identify potential for future injury.   Health professionals trained in FMS can help identify individuals at risk for injury, assist in creating a set of corrective exercises to reduce that risk, and create a baseline for an individual to use for progression and evaluation.  The FMS shows the fundamental movement patterns, motor control and an individual’s ability to perform these basic movements.  The FMS screening process can be used on athletes , as well as those engaging in simple activities that require repetitive movements.

In seven simple movement tests, a clinician can assess mobility and stability.  This can be evident in the inability to perform one of these tests or visible asymmetry while performing the test.   When pain is provoked with any of the movements, a potential injury can be revealed.  Pain can be a sign of dysfunction and when treated early, can help prevent future injury.   Learning when to seek the advice of a clinician, such as a physical therapist, to remedy those painful areas instead of pushing through it can be priceless.

Seeking an FMS assessment from a trained professional can greatly enhance your chances of starting a new activity or continuing to improve your overall strength and stability in your current activities.  Whether you are an athlete looking to improve performance, or a “weekend warrior” training for your first marathon, the Functional movement screen™ can be a tremendous asset to your training program.  See the 7 exercise test below:

Physical Therapy & Sports Medicine Centers (PTSMC) has licensed Athletic Trainers in numerous high schools throughout the state and many of our PTs can facilitate screenings as well.  For more information about Functional Movement Screening, contact us here.