Movement analysis is centuries old. The earliest attempt to create a classification system was started in the 18th century by King Louis XIV with the idea of preserving dances. Another lurch forward occurred during World War II, as engineers sought to improve worker’s contributions to the rapidly growing industrial economy. This evolution of movement analysis is like any great coach or general; their approaches improved efficiency, reduced fatigue, and increased quality of life. Improving this efficiency is at the core of our existence and happiness. Athletically, the path begins with analysis of your Movement Signature™.
Ground Reaction Force
A Movement Signature™ is the ground reaction force (GRF) profile used by an athlete as a neuromuscular solution to move more efficiently.
- GRF is the force exerted by the ground on a body in contact with it. For example, a person standing motionless on the ground exerts a contact force on it (equal to the person’s weight) and at the same time an equal and opposite ground reaction force is exerted by the ground on the person.
- The brain controls the movements of skeletal (voluntary) muscles via specialized nerves. The combination of the nervous system and muscles, working together to permit movement, is known as the neuromuscular system.
Moving efficiently is the ultimate goal of any human being. Efficient movers are:
- less susceptible to fatigue because each movement costs less energy
- at lower injury risk because joint and muscle stress are dispersed appropriately
- higher performers, because the body is able to produce more power. Greater power production results from less interference from opposing muscle groups, called antagonists.
What plays a role in your Movement Signature?
This Movement Signature is dictated by your history, genetics, and regeneration strategies.
- Training and sport history both affect your GRF profile. For example quick, short movements like soccer, or heavy, abbreviated strength movements create abrupt curves on a force plate
- Genetics play a role, best classified by ethnic findings such as African-American athletes producing higher rates of force, and Asian athletes possessing higher levels of flexibility.
- Regeneration strategies have a host of effects on the Movement Signature, generally due to the resulting body mass which obviously influences GRF.
With our database, hosting Movement Signatures alongside injury data from our 30+ partners over the last 7 years, we have specific insight into injury risk, the preferential success in certain skills/sports, and you body’s sensitivity to adaptations.
As a coach, you aim to provide the most efficient plan for your athletes to optimize performance and decrease risk of injury. As an athlete, you aim to get the most out of your body. The Movement Signature™ provides a road map to getting there.