By: Anthony Campo
Also see Fall Prevention blog by typing in “fall prevention” in the search engine at top of the blog page on our website riverwalkac.com
Believe it or not, there is much commonality between serious head injury prevention in the average individual and concussion prevention in athletes.
The latest research has shown the importance of strength and protective coordination in concussion prevention for athletes of all ages. Many concussions in sports occur when an athlete goes hard to the ground and is unable to protect himself/herself properly and/or have the strength to prevent their head from snapping against the ground.
These are the same things that can occur during a fall in everyday life. Although the specific level of skill and strength required differs between athletes and the average individual looking to prevent a serious injury from a fall, the basic fundamentals are the same.
In both situations the individual must demonstrate
– Adequate strength necessary to decelerate themselves to alleviate the impact
– Adequate protective reflexes to help absorb the impact
– Proper protective coordination/balance to prevent falling in the first place
– Adequate strength and coordination involved in bracing the head and neck
– The ability to utilize optimal inter/intramuscular coordination required to recruit the largest amount of motor units and muscle groups possible
To train these areas properly it would be optimal to focus on compound movements that train strength, coordination, and balance all together. Compound movements such as squats, lunges, and pushups not only train the multiple areas mentioned above, but specifically transfer over into preventing serious injury from a fall in life or in a sport. Pushups specifically work the areas necessary to catch yourself during a fall. Squats build overall strength and coordination needed to decelerate your body. Lunges help build balance and the strength needed to safety get up and down from the ground. All three of these exercises require you to brace the core and head/neck, which can help prevent falls, or a serious injury from a fall.