Since becoming a kinesiologist, everyone from my parents to my friends have been curious about what it is I actually do.
Like most things in life, the answer can be either simple, or quite complicated, depending on how you look at it.
Kinesiology is a broad science covering many aspects of human health, and a kinesiologist may be involved in a wide array of activities related to healthcare. An ever-growing personal goal of mine, as well as a general treatment attitude held here at Tall Tree, is to try and keep things simple without exploring their inherent sophistication.
So, put simply, the word kinesiology comes from the root words kinesis, meaning movement, and logy, meaning "the study of." Hence, Kinesiology is literally the study of human movement!
However - this is where the sophisticated part comes in - there's a lot that goes into the movement of your body. Many different systems are involved, most notably the nervous system, musculoskeletal system and cardiovascular system.
When things are functioning well, we use our bodies to move us in an efficient way and go about our lives effectively, often working towards specific physical goals that come in all shapes and sizes.
Whether it be lifting a 200 pound barbell, scoring on a penalty kick from 12 yards out, or simply getting in and out of a car or reaching the cookie jar on the top shelf, our bodies move us to perform these tasks. When movement is optimal and healthy, we're able to complete these tasks comfortably; but when movement is compromised, it may be a struggle to function without occasional or ongoing pain.
A major part of my work as a kinesiologist is to help assess, correct, and optimize movement.
I love to see patients moving well, in a strong, stable way that allows them to execute their desired task. It's my job to assess the quality of your movement, search for imbalances, inefficiencies, or compensatory patterns, and then come up with a plan that will help correct these imbalances for much more efficient and effective movement.
Kinesiologists use a variety a methods to create more fluid human movement, like exercise, guided stretching, strengthening, neuromuscular training, as well as some gentle forms of manual therapy. We also have expertise in other broad factors that influence the way we move, including diet, pain management, stress relief and health education.
We also work closely with other health professionals such as physiotherapists, chiropractors, occupational therapists, massage therapists, and naturopaths to ensure that your treatment plan is comprehensive and suited to meet your needs.
As a kinesiologist at Tall Tree, my focus is on helping you achieve your movement goals, regardless of whether you're recovering from an injury or simply looking to tweak your exercise routine.
The part I love the most about my work, though, is the focus on prevention.
We function best in life when we're proactive rather than reactive: when we see things coming and do something about them before they arrive. Our current healthcare system is generally reactive in nature, which isn't necessarily a bad thing: there's certainly an element of health care that needs to react in a timely matter to unexpected issues, as not everything in life can be planned for or prevented.
However, there is another element of health care that, if we take seriously and put a measure of effort into ahead of time, can have tremendous results in the long run. Seeing a kinesiologist can fall into either category, and, sometimes, both: even if you come to me to recover from an injury, my focus is to tweak and adjust your movement and keep you healthy and active for the long haul.
So whether it be unloading the groceries from the back seat of the car, feeling confident moving up and down stairs, or achieving a higher level of performance in elite sport, chances are changing your movement patterns will have a big impact on your life.
Come into Tall Tree for a chat, and start exploring the sophisticated, simple movement of your body today.