Why, Why Not

Why does the Newtonian, mechanistic reductionist approach that focuses on minutiae and the parts persist? Why not a quantum approach that focuses on relationships and connections, flow and rhythm. I think the former is comfortable because it allows people clearer definitions, in some ways it simplistic because really all you have to do in that approach is be a technician. If you understand how all the muscles work, what inhibits, what lengthens, what you need to activate and then what you need to integrate it all fits into a neat clean little box. Just follow the algorithm and push a few buttons and everything is fixed. Unfortunately or fortunately it is not that easy. The body is a self organizing chaotic system that is highly adaptable. It responds both negatively and positively to use and disuse. It is definitely not a machine. As coaches, trainers, therapists and doctors we must recognize the wisdom of the body and train or treat accordingly. The best way to understand and assess movement is to get the body moving. Closely observe and feel how things connect and how they disconnect. Explore the dimensions that the wisdom of the body offers. As coaches we must prepare the body for the demands of the sport. We do that by stressing the body to and beyond its limits at times. If we do that in a systematic and sensible manner the body will adapt and be able to thrive in the competitive environment. If we train not to be hurt and put limits on the body in training then the body will not be ready for the extreme demands of the actual competition. We are doing a disservice to athlete with a benign approach.


At 10/9/07, 11:35 AM, Anonymous Web Designer said...

In light of this post I presume this is heresy? http://www.asrspeed.com/

I don't know if I'm drawing an incorrect conclusion here. But I agree with your thoughts on analysing technique.

For all the sports science degrees and literature being produced the standard of coaching has probably gone backwards (e.g. UK athletics). Knowledgeable eyeballs are the most precious coaching resource around.

At 10/9/07, 12:34 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very well said! I think it is human nature to want to "know all" and "control all", but realistically, the infinite complexities of human motion demand an understanding of "basic truths" (acknowledging term from Gary Gray) for a rehab or training program to be purposeful. After all we are working on a real body with real consequences, any thing less is malpractice!

Jeff W./Buffalo


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