Effective vs. Efficient:
Although they can be synonymous they are not always the same. When using the two terms while describing human movement they are rarely the same. Many times we get things done without thinking about how efficient we are in the process. Efficiency can also be somewhat subjective. for example when on a road trip is it can be more efficient to be faster by using more gas to go faster or more gas efficient to go slower requiring less gas. With human movement its pretty straight-forward, effort! Not every movement is the same therefore you can train everyone to be efficient for everything. A shorter person, regardless of training, will never be quite as fast as a taller person in the pool, all else being equal, its just physics. We can, however, train efficiency on a person to person basis to more efficient in general. The side effect of this efficiency is improved function and health. Whether you're an athlete or a "weekend warrior" efficient movement patterns allow you to enjoy your chosen activities more. Less time catching your breath and more time enjoying the scenery.
Like any other system, efficiency starts with a good foundation. A good foundation for quality, efficient human movement is a stable trunk or core. Although this may seem cliche, in this case its a new take on an old concept. This is because of the starting point. Most people think core stability starts with sit-ups or planking. These are nice but they aren't the foundation. The foundation is in the breath or the diaphragm to be exact! Without proper breathing patterns, by that I mean expansion of the diaphragm into the abdomen, you cannot properly stabilize the lumbar spine or the trunk. Second to that is a loss of stability in the extremities. When you lose stability you become inefficient in your movement. Peripheral stabilization is then required, recruitment of other muscles. In other words, when unstable you use 2x the energy to accomplish the same action as someone with proper stabilization. Do you think these world champion weight lifters squat 1200 pounds without stability and efficiency? HECK NO!!
So if you are one of the thousands of folks out there that can't seem to get rid of that nagging low back, upper back, neck pain, etc.; perhaps its time to stop the insanity (def. insane: repeating the same action and expecting different results) and get properly assessed and learn how to be more efficient. Pain shouldn't be a part of your every day routine. If it feels like you aren't as energetic as you used to be, maybe its not "low T" or old age, maybe its inefficiency? You're wasting half your mental and physical resources just trying to stabilize!? I'm here to help, make an appointment and lets talk about what you want to improve!