Maybe you’ve heard about this concept as “Dynamic Neuromuscular Stabilization” (DNS). The basis of DNS is on developmental kinesiology; early in childhood your movement patterns are automatic and predictable and are formed as your nervous system matures.
This article will show you how we can take advantage of the pre-programmed postures we possess to improve your quality of movement patterns.
DNS is necessary to optimize the movement system for both pre-habilitation and rehabilitation of athletic injuries and performance. This is not achieved by having strong abdominals, spinal extensors, gluteals or any other musculature; rather, it’s accomplished through the precise coordination of these muscles and intra-abdominal pressure regulation by the central nervous system.
Supine 90/90 position (4.5 month old)
If we fail to activate our deep core muscles before movement, our body will compensate by typically overloading superficial muscle groups, this can cause excessive loading of spinal joints, discs, and muscles.
In this developmental kinesiology exercise, I’m focusing on maintaining control through my deep core muscles. The ball is used as a cue to make it easier to recruit your core muscles. The second example is a progression using a resistance band to challenge your core even further.
High oblique sitting (7.5 month old)
Oblique sitting occurs when the shoulder joint is strong enough to support this position, this occurs to children who are 7.5 months of age.
In this video, I demonstrate a high oblique sitting followed by its progression. This exercise will improve scapular stability, core strength, hip abduction, and work on your hip external rotation mobility.
Supine to low oblique sit
In this exercise you will work your shoulder stability, hip abduction, and core strength. Make sure you’re keeping your chin tucked to help improve your cervical spine stability!
Once you achieve low oblique sitting, you can try the following variations:
In this video I’m reaching out with my arms and continue to reach further and further away from me. To challenge your core, hips, and shoulders even more, lift the leg up and continue to reach as far as you can.
Bear crawl (14 month old)
The bear crawl corresponds to a 14-month-old child.
A key prerequisite to lifting heavy in a safe and effective style, as well as helping you excel in your sport, is having great core stability. Core stability is your ability to control your torso to prevent excessive movement of your spine.
In the first part of the video, I begin with 4 points of contact (both hands and feet). I then progress to 3 points of contact by elevating 1 hand or 1 leg. Once you feel comfortable with this, you can progress into a 2-point contact bear crawl. Hold this position isometrically first and once you have that under control you can begin to crawl. The main thing you want to consider is to maintain a neutral spine, try and resist rotation, flexion and extension.
These exercises will help strengthen and optimize your movement patterns through purposeful movement. If you feel limited while doing any of these exercises, don’t be too worried, the exercise is just demonstrating the weak link in the kinetic chain.
If you want a more comprehensive approach to improve your movement patterns, get rid of pain, prevent injury, and optimize athletic performance, come see one of our Registered Kinesiologists!
Written by: Franco Floris, Registered Kinesiologist