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The Outer Unit- Slings

Many factors contribute to non-optimal pelvic stability control, which can result in pelvic girdle and lower back pain. Today I was lucky enough to take a lecture from the Chek Institute on SI joint pain. I loved what Dan Hellman said about "SI" pain, as I have said the same thing. It is an ambiguous term for a generalized feeling of pain in the lower back area. I always say "SI" pain is like "IBS" to me- it's a very non-specific description of symptoms.

One thing he discussed today in regards to assessing and strengthening to eliminate SI joint pain was sling systems. The posterior sling is comprised of the glute maximus and the contralateral latissimus dorsi. Another consists of the working relationship between the gluteus medius, gluteus minimus, ipsilateral adductors and contralateral QL. These (and other) slings comprise the functional "outer unit". Understanding the functional relationship between muscles across these slings can help to assess the real cause of lower back or "SI pain", and pelvic discomfort.

The "inner unit" Hellman described as the Core 4- diaphragm, PFM, TVA and multifidus. You can imagine my giddiness in that class! Ahhhh preaching to the choir, Dan. I love when other learned respected fitness and wellness professionals reinforce what I teach and practice!

Another thing Hellman discussed was how the entire body is really all one big muscle, crossing joints, connected together using tendons and ligaments. He said that it becomes apparent once you dissect a cadaver. We only break the body into smaller muscles to study and understand it, but like connective tissue it really is just another "jeansuit" that is tied together and functioning as one. I think that's all pretty cool stuff!

I have a lot to digest and apply from this class. We'll all benefit ;)


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