What About Our Professional Athletes…their movement must be perfect?
The biggest little secret in elite sports, that the general public does not know, is that those athletes we see on TV and in the Olympics have the same problems physically that the general public have, they are just better compensators. Every medical staff in professional sports is trying to figure out how to keep their athletes healthy just as much as those on a high school soccer team for example. Owners and general managers in professional sports are learning that the most talented athletes in the draft may not be the best financial choice based on their skill of movement and injury history. If an athlete is making millions to sit on the bench due to injury, and can only perform half the season, this may not be the best financial decision regardless of talent of the athlete. Teams win as a result of resiliency and the product of resiliency is performance, it is that simple. The best athletes in the world are the most resilient athletes, interesting! If you can’t play, you can’t perform. Every sports medicine team at the university and professional level will tell you that their athletes are talented, but they will also tell you that some of those same athletes developed talent in the absence of skilled movement. Understand….poor fundamental movement does not discriminate regardless of talent, age, sex, race, body size, speed, etc. You don’t need to be considered an athlete to move well, you just need the tools and an environment to allow movement to develop naturally.
If I didn't convince you of the importance of physical literacy in elite athletes, then you need to read my next blog post. I will be introducing Ian McKeown, PhD, head of athletic development for Port Adelaide Football Club, as our newest "Movement Ambassador". He will be discussing his thoughts on physical literacy and athletic development in elite sport.
Jeff Moreno, DPT, OCS