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View Full Version : thoughts on functional movement screen and similar tools?


xi xia
11-07-2007, 04:24 PM
Hi all,

I've been watching the Mike Boyle seminar dvds and they are pretty interesting. The first one starts with the Functional Movment Screen (http://www.functionalmovement.com/SITE/index.php) created Gary Gray and other people. If you know what it is, you might want to skip my crude explanation of it. It's a physical movement tool to find weak motor patterns in athletes and take that information to tailor their training progressions and/or exercises so that they do not get injured, reduce the risk of injury in the future, and generally make them all-around better athletes. 7 tests, small controlled movements, very hard to score perfect scores, at least for me. Strongly advises using this with every client to screen out their weak points and that into consideration during training.

Has anyone had experience with using this system what do you think? Does it help find likely faulty motor patters that have been masked by an athletes natural ability to compensate and reduce injury? Mike Boyle swears by it and I was wondering what others thought about it.

I wander how many CrossFitters could pass the screen...

xx

Mike ODonnell
11-07-2007, 04:41 PM
Used them years ago and do think there is value. The premise is to identify weak or imbalanced muscles. Since you are only as strong as your weakest muscle (CNS-muscle recruitment checks & balance), people definitely need to work on the small things (esp athletes). Case in point...my bench press (which I do not do on a regular basis) increased not by doing bench, but by doing more dips, ring pushups and handstands...helped to fix my shoulder imbalances/scapula weakness from many injuries and so forth....especially when I did more explosive movements and eccentric controlling (slow negatives off the explosive concentric motion).

On the other hand, from a marketing point of view the tests are made impossible so noone will pass....reason being so you can say to the person "See...you are weak here and now need my help....for $100/hr"..or something like that. They will believe it because they didn't pass the test. True or not, it works.

In the end...use the tool if you want...most imbalances are the same for everyone so I could guess it without the screening tool or just by watching them do one overhead broomstick squat facing a wall. Some people will never believe they trained wrong or have weaknesses unless you show them. Maybe make up your own tests. If people don't use machines and focus on multiplanar/directional and one legged/armed based exercises...they will fix their imbalances. Remember the old Boyle stuff was heavy on the whole "core stability functional" sales pitch....even he now thinks differently on his approach. Cook has some good stuff. Use what is practical....get rid of the rest.

Scotty Hagnas
11-08-2007, 08:59 AM
They can be a good tool, but when you know what to look for you don't really need to put someone thru the specific tests. I find I can watch someone during standard warmups and get a pretty good idea of where they are at in all of the FMS movement patterns.

I did get some useful information from the FMS material. Haven't seen the Boyle DVDs yet, though.