Joint health is dependent on having:
● smooth joint surfaces
● adequate joint space between the surfaces
● the presence of joint lubrication and
● good muscle control of the position andmovement of one joint surface relative to another.
Sounds simple enough – right? Maybe not simple but not impossible either.
The space between joint surfaces is largely influenced by your weight and the flexibility of your muscles, myofascial layers and other soft tissues. Tight muscles will fasten the joint surfaces close together and reduce the abilityof one surface to slide on another. Stretch, breathe and move on a daily basis to prevent such a decrease in joint space.
The position andmovement of a joint is determined by the strength, endurance and relative activation of all the muscles acting on a joint. Having some strong muscles while others remain weak can be more detrimental to the health of a joint than all muscles around the joint being weak. Train the strength and endurance of all the muscles acting on each joint in proportional ways. Furthermore, train your brain to use all the muscles available to it.
Balancing your muscle function will go a long way to maintaining good alignment of your joints, but in some cases braces, orthotics and supports may also be required. The indication for use of such products is on a case by case basis and we do not promote such products to all our clients.
Whether you are 20 or 80 years old, the principles of maintaining good joint health are the same. It is critical to put together an exercise program that covers all aspects of these principles and is also appropriate to your current fitness level, your availability (can be 5 minutes a day) and your exercise routine preferences. We are here to help.