Saturday, November 3, 2007

Anatomy Trains and martial arts

Anatomy Trains? What the heck is that? Well, this weekend I've been attending a bodywork class of the same name and it's an introduction into a form of bodywork known as Kinesis Myofascial Integration. Huh? Let's begin by talking about fascia. Fascia is this thin connective tissue that covers organs, muscles. It's found in the brain, it's found everywhere. It basically connects the entire body (muscles, organs, etc.) underneath the skin like a wet suit and when injury or bad postural habits affects this system many dysfunctions can occur within the structure as a whole. Anatomy Trains are a series of fascial meridians throughout the body. They cover the front and back of the body, both sides, spirally and in the arms. There are a few more but we haven't covered them yet, so stay tuned. So, how does this in any way pertain to the martial arts? Because of how we move in the martial arts. Each of these meridian affects the way we move and when there is dysfunction we do not move in efficient ways. Have you ever experienced a stiff neck, pain in the lower back, headaches? Well, those pains are most likely due to fascial restrictions, which in turn affect the muscles, nerves, circulation, you name it. IT'S ALL CONNECTED! Getting proper bodywork to release those restrictions in the fascia will open up a whole new world of movement in your martial arts practice. Until we learn to move in ways that don't cause habitual restrictions in our tissues we cannot move efficiently therefore cannot put our best behind each punch, each kick. We put what we have available to us into our practice, which can be good enough. But wouldn't it be so much better to move freer? Personally I have not gone through the series of KMI sessions. KMI is Rolfing focusing on the Anatomy Trains. KMI views the body by seeing where the restrictions are along those Anatomy Trains. It is an incredibly efficient bodywork system and I highly recommend it to any martial artist wanting their body discomforts to stop. Of course after the 12 sessions you must own your new "you", change your habits and make new, better ways of moving. The thing is, when all of the Anatomy Trains are moving in concert with each other you get a beautifully functioning body.

1 comment:

Ben, LMT said...

I really love Myer's Anatomy Trains approach. It's a unique and "correct" way of looking at structure via fascia.

Ben, LMT