Here’s why movement assessments matter
With the recent launch of our new movr Assess product, we thought we’d share a little more information about why proper assessments are so important to movement health.
What are assessments, anyway?
In a nutshell, a movement assessment is any type of data or information collected about how your body and joints are moving. Exercises, questionnaires and simple yes/no activities can all qualify as an assessment.
The goal of an assessment is to understand how different areas of your body are moving in relation to one another, based on expected norms of movement function.
For example, can you touch your toes with your legs straight? This simple assessment gives us a lot of information about your posterior chain mobility, hip flexion, spinal curve and core stability.
The more assessment information we have, the more accurately we can connect how one area of the body is moving in relation to another. This is one of the best ways to understand why dysfunction may exist when we see something not moving the way it is supposed to.
If we strip back the layers of muscle all the way down to our skeletal system, there are some universal foundational movement requirements. We know that our body segments move in specific ways to create a whole body that works together.
For example, ankles and hips are mobile, while our knees are stable. This pattern continues: while our hips are mobile, our lumbar spine should be stable. Our thoracic spine (mid-upper back) is expected to be mobile, while our scapula needs to be stable so our shoulders can move freely in space. Elbows are stable and wrists are made to be mobile.
Problems arise when our health, lifestyles, posture or training volume send mixed messages to our body. When imbalanced, muscle tone or function can actually negatively impact how our skeletal system is designed to move.
Sitting all day at a desk reduces hip mobility, but that doesn’t mean the need for movement disappears. In this case, the lumbar spine (where we want stability) can adapt to the lack of movement in the hips by becoming more mobile, therefore creating dysfunction.
To flip that on its head, if someone lacks core stability (and therefore lumbar stability), muscles around the hips can tighten to try and compensate; but we know hips are made to be mobile.
The complex interactions between our body’s individual parts and our unique lifestyles demand movement solutions that are unique to every individual.
The first foundational step to understanding whether imbalance or dysfunction exists is to assess. Movement assessments enable us to recommend the appropriate intervention or prescription to balance our body, improve movement function and in many cases, reduce negative impacts such sub-optimal performance or even pain.
“The complex interactions between our body’s individual parts and our unique lifestyles demand movement solutions that are unique to every individual.”
In short, assessments matter because they:
- Give an informative snap shot of different segments of the body
- Provide understanding of mobility versus stability function
- Enable accurate interventions to improve range of motion and control
What’s the best way to assess movement?
Assessment information collection can be done in a variety of ways. We believe the best assessment information is any and as much information as possible.
We don’t claim to own the best way to assess movement, but we have built a simple innovative system for interpreting movement behaviour.
movr’s assessment capture system enables us to interpret and communicate with information collected from products, companies and trainers who are using their own unique methodologies.
Whether it’s passive capture with computer vision software, an FMS screen, surveys, or self-reported movement scores – our “assessment agnostic” mapping framework gets to the core of what matters: making best in class exercise recommendations with the information provided.
Why does it matter?
Assessing, prescribing and improving movement has been a staple of in-person professional screening and personal training for years.
Our technology helps overcome traditional physical and financial barriers to receiving personalized physical intervention by making it accessible for everyone in the digital landscape.
Our mission is to improve movement health at scale and help people better understand how to move in ways that connect with the specific needs of their body.
We know that assessing and understanding individual movement is the foundation of any good movement solution. movr Assess is our first step toward collecting movement data from a variety of sources in order to enable generating individualized exercise insights and prescriptions at scale.
movr is a health technology company focused on measurably improving movement health. We do so through our end consumer app and by integrating our assessment and recommendations logic with fitness and health technology companies who are innovating the future of movement health.
Want to learn more?
Find out more about assessments, movr Assess and how to incorporate them into your own offering.