|What is Proprioception?
n. The reception of stimuli arising within the organism [from Latin proprius,
one's own + (re)ception.]
Proprioception as it relates to exercise
is the ability of the brain to recruit the proper muscle groups needed
to counteract any outside force. Walking, for example, is an activity we
take for granted, but within the second that it takes to take one step,
the brain is recruiting and orchestrating many different subcomponents
of the leg to contact the ground, transfer energy from heel to and back
up through the hip, push/pull the body forward, etc, all while making sure
you don't fall flat on your face. Any robot designer will tell you what
an amazingly complex task it is to simply walk. The brain is able to propriocept,
or assess, how the body is positioned and properly process that information
in order to control the body into the next position. For proprioception
the brain gets its stimuli from the muscles and also from the eyes and
Proprioception is often synonymous
with balance. Challenges to proprioception or balance happen in every day
life such as slipping over a banana peel or tripping over a misplaced
object. Any time you get thrown off balance is an instance where the brain
is especially challenged to propriocept. The stimulus suddenly changes
and your brain needs to counteract and compensate. Hopefully, your brain
processes these new stimuli quickly enough, to recruit muscle groups which
hopefully will respond.
|Hopefully is the key word here.
If you're brain isn't adept at propriocepting, or your muscles are sluggish,
you fall and possibly get hurt. If you're an athlete, the risk of injury
increases as the length of playing time increases, as fatigue significantly
decreases your ability to balance. All too commonly, an ACL tear or a twisted
ankle happens without any contact, but just by landing wrong from a lunge
or a jump. The appropriate muscles were incapable of contributing to proper
proprioception because of fatigue.
Therefore, proper conditioning of
the lower extremities, especially the muscle groups surrounding the knees
and ankles is of utmost importance. Your athleticism - running, jumping,
agility - not only depends on it, but without properly conditioned knee
and ankle muscle groups, you run the risk of serious injury. That's why
Jumpsoles Proprioceptors™ can be one of your most valuable training tools.
Used properly, Proprioceptors™ both enhance your athleticism and decrease
your risk of injury.