The range of motion of the joint you often hear is the angle of motion that a certain joint or part of your body can do in our body. This angle indicates how far we can bend, rotate, or open our arms. But do you know why exactly range of motion is important?
Our body is made up of joints that can move in at least one direction, from our knees, feet, and ankles to our backs, neck, and wrists. During range of motion changes, that is, during movements such as walking, jumping, running, stretching, the bones meet at the junction points formed by the joints, providing support from the muscles, ligaments and tendons and providing the mobility of the body.
Restricted range of motion also means restricted joint mobility and can be a possible cause of joint or spine problems, as well as negatively impacting your quality of life. Restricted range of motion reduces unaided activities and can contribute to muscle atrophy, in other words, a decrease in the volume and strength of non-working muscles.
There are 3 main factors under the reasons for the limitation of the range of motion in the joints;
Among the mechanical causes, factors such as muscle injuries, ligament injuries, tendon injuries and muscle pain can be shown. As a result of injury, the joints cannot perform their movements at full capacity, causing the limitation of the range of motion.
Among the neurological causes with limited range of motion, proprioception, also known as the 6th sense, nerve injury or deformation, brain damage, contractures due to abnormalities in the nerve pathways can be shown. Infectious causes can be defined as swelling, pain, rheumatoid arthritis, and joint infections resulting from infection.
Ranges of motion are considered in two different types, active or passive. Active range of motion is the range of motion that individuals initiate and end through muscle action and control. Ranges of motion such as walking, running, jumping can be considered among active range of motion types.
Factors in decreased active range of motion can often point to pain, muscle weakness, or problems or deformities in joints or muscles. In such cases, movement restriction can be prevented by doing regular exercises with the help of a physiotherapist.
Passive range of motion is the whole of the movements that occur outside the control and intervention of the joints. Generally, the situations that passive range of motion is observed are the actions performed by the physiotherapist during assessment or therapy. Passive range of motion may be reduced by intra-articular structures, swelling, and bone abnormalities.
Restricting the range of motion can lead to strains even in the simplest daily activities, negatively affecting your quality of life, and can cause various joint problems by causing deformations in the joints if no precautions are taken. The limitation of movement in the joints can be improved with many different physiotherapy methods.
Physiotherapists can help restore joint movements by identifying the causes of limitations in range of motion with a detailed evaluation and examination. With manual therapy techniques and accompanying therapeutic exercises, the restricted range of motion, called joint blockage, can be healthy and well-rounded in postural balance.
Physiotherapists aim at the following with manual therapy and various therapeutic exercises;
As a result of regular physiotherapy, manual therapy and therapeutic exercises with a physiotherapist, you can open the doors of a healthy life by making some adjustments in your daily life routine in order to positively improve the joint and range of motion and increase your mobility.
By exercising regularly, you can increase the flexibility of your muscles and joints, thus strengthening your body and protecting you from possible injuries and tears. Injuries are not limited to tissues only. For example, an injury to your back can prevent you from developing flexibility in your hamstrings and calf muscles. An injury to your hip or knees can prevent you from developing flexibility in your shoulders or upper back.
The most important step in increasing your joint range of motion and improving your mobility is to make a habit of stretching at certain times during the day and to warm and cool your muscles and joints with stretching and stretching movements before and after exercise.
Many different types of stretching exercises are practiced. Some are better suited for warming up, some are better for injury rehab, and others are great for athletic development. You can learn the most suitable stretching program for you to improve your range of motion and mobility by talking to your physiotherapist.
Static stretching is by far the best form of stretch for improving your flexibility and range of motion. Long-term static stretching, especially applied for more than 30 seconds, is the most efficient stretching exercise done without moving. Static exercises;