How to Teach Kids to Skip

I’ve been seeing a lot of kiddos lately who have leg injuries. Once we’ve gone through lower level rehab activities, it’s time to start our jumping program. Need to expose these young ones to some explosive activity after all. Typically, I start most jump programs skipping. The reason why I start here is because the jump itself is not very high, is relatively low impact, and is a low risk exposure to the stretch shortening cycle. The problem I’ve noticed with most kids nowadays (#getoffmyporch) is that no one learned how to skip. Like, at all. It’s like they’ve skipped skipping or something. Below is the typical problem solving sequence I see kiddos go through when I ask them to skip: Look at left and right hand look at left and right leg Look up and to the side thinking “how am I going to put this together?” Try to move one arm forward, and shake their head no All of a sudden, try to go for the skip and do the same side Phil Collins’ “I Can’t Dance” skip For those of us who are visual, it looks like this: I am deeply saddened at the lack of movement competency our kids have. Our very own CDC tells us that most kids should be able to skip by the age of 5, yet The unskippable kids I work with range from 11 to 16 years old. Can’t skip. What the heck happened? This fundamental movement is essential for our

Read More

Movement Chapter 13: Movement Pattern Corrections

This is a chapter 13 summary of the book “Movement” by Gray Cook. Back to the Basics Mobility deficits ought to be the first impairment corrected. Optimizing mobility creates potential for new sensory input and motor adaptation, but does not guarantee quality movement. This is where stability training comes in. In order for the brain to create stability in a region, the following ought to be present: Structural stability: Pain-free structures without significant damage, deficiency, or deformity. Sensory integrity: Uncompromised reception/integration of sensory input. Motor integrity: Uncompromised activation/reinforcement of motor output. Freedom of movement:  Perform in functional range and achieve end-range. Getting Mobility There are 3 ways to gain mobility: 1)      Passively: Self-static stretching with good breathing; manual passive mobilization. 2)      Actively: Dynamic stretching, PNF. 3)      Assistive: Helping with quality or quantity, aquatics, resistance. Getting Stability In order to own our new mobility, we use various stability progressions to cement the new patterns. There are three tiers in which stability is trained: 1)      Fundamental stability – Basic motor control, often in early postures such as supine, prone, or rolling. 2)      Static stability – done when rolling is okay but stability is compromised in more advanced postures. 3)      Dynamic stability – Advanced movement. We progress in these stability frames from easy to further difficult challenges. Assisted → active → reactive-facilitation/perturbations Since stability is a subconscious process, we utilize postures that can challenge this ability while achieving desired motor behavior. We can also group the various postural progressions into 3 categories: 1)      Fundamental

Read More