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Pressure Waves & Smash/Floss (ungluing sliding surface dysfunction)

(Episode transcribed directly from the video)

Hey guys coach Mike here at MROC with the third edition of MOB of The Week. In today's episode we're going to talk about the second of our three mobility systems, sliding surface service dysfunction. Now in last week's episode we talked about joint capsule restriction and how to use mobility bands and monster bands for banded distraction. So once we've cleared that joint capsule then we want to address sliding surface dysfunction. Now what does that mean exactly? Our tissues, skin, ligaments, tendons and nerves should all be able to move harmoniously across one another in a nice fluid movement. If we were looking at the back of your hand you should be able to place your fingers over your hand and see how everything slides and glides nice and smooth. The same can be said about the tissue on the back of the elbow when the arm is flexed, the outside of the knee when the knee is flexed, even in the back of the Achilles tendon when the foot is in dorsiflexion and the toes are pulled back. So our goal is to make sure we have that sliding surface function. If we do not we have to unglue the sticky surfaces and that's where a Myofascial release technique will come into play or if you're doing it yourself, self-myofascial release. Now there's two different techniques we're going to learn today, we're going to go over a smash and floss which is a great technique and then a pressure wave. So let's go ahead and take a look at those two techniques and the tools you'll use to go ahead and unglue yourself.

So the first technique that we're going to talk about is pressure wave. Now this is your more traditional or standard foam rolling technique but we actually explain what should be happening and we should be focusing on. So the way a pressure wave is going to work is, for this one will use a foam roller that any device would work, a pipe, stick, or lacrosse ball. But what we want to do is want to place it under the tissue that needs to be addressed. So in this position we're working the IT band which is the area between the knee and the hip. So I'm going to turn my body facing forward and I'm going to apply slow gentle pressure from up the side of my leg to right below the hip bone to slowly right above the knee. Now our goal is to put as much weight into this area as we can withstand and go nice and slow to give this time to relax. You don't want to keep your muscles tense, you don't keep your breathing tense or your facial expressions too tight, allow your whole body to relax. I can't tell you how many times I see people come to the gym and they start sawing away at their tissues. Or I see this one all the time, two calves and just rolling, this is doing nothing for you. If you're going to roll your calves take the time to actually put some weight on it allow your body to disperse and sink into the object that you're rolling across and go nice and slow. You have to take your time on this one. This is how we create a pressure wave.

The second technique we're going to talk about is smash and floss. This is a great way to introduce you to lacrosse balls. Probably the cheapest and one of most effective tools that you can add to your mobility bag in your little bag of tricks to help mobilize yourself. The way a smash and a floss works is once you've identified a particularly tight or sticky area something that's really sensitive and you can just feel it's knotted up and it needs to be released. What you want to do is you want to smash into that area completely fall your way into it and then floss your body through range of motion. So move your limbs and extremities through different range of motion while that area is tacked down. So where's the pressure wave is gliding pressure across the surfaces from point A to Point B we want to find point C, the sticky point dialed in on it and then work around it. So for me personally I have this tendency to lock up in the back of my right hamstring in the belly of my hamstring when I do track work. So I have this gnarly spot right here and exactly where it is. So, I found when doing the hamstring or the glutes sitting on a box really helps and allows you to put your pressure specifically on the ball. So I’m going to find that spot and there it is going put down some weight relax my face relax my breathing allow myself to start sinking into that trouble spot okay. If I really want to get intense with this I'll just pick my body weight up so all the pressure's coming down on that one spot on the ball. And instead of pressure waving which would be moving my body across the ball or moving my ball across the body I'm going to flex the knee and then relax the knee. So now I'm flossing the joint. So by moving this limb I am pulling tension across that tight area and we can do this any which way. So I could bring the foot up this way, I could just sit here and simply extend the foot. That's still going to get some action going on but the simplest thing is just flossing right through that pain point and you can apply the technique of smashing flossing on the foam roller, on the ball, on anything really. But it starts with getting a nice easy pressure wave and then you do identify a hot spot and man I'm on it right now. You want to just go in and start flossing across your tool that you're using to unstick that surface.

So there you have two guys’ two different tools, two different techniques for the second of our mobility systems checklist sliding service dysfunction. Now there are dozens of different ways you can use these things and where you can use them but you really have to understand first well what are they and what is the main principle of how I get this work done. How do I unglue myself? And we will continue to give you more techniques and more tools in our next episode of MOB of The Week.

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