Managing Hypermobility: when to stretch less
Stretching past your limits can stress your joints and erode your stability. About one in 30 people have a condition called Hypermobility Syndrome, making extreme yoga positions, or showing off double-jointed shoulders, seem like a piece of cake.
Those with diagnosable Hypermobility Syndrome have a connective tissue disorder. It can be caused by a hereditary combination of collagen structures, bone shapes, muscle tone, or a function of the nervous system’s process for relaying information about the body’s movement to the brain. Functionally, the ligaments that hold the joints together and keep them from moving too much or too far out of range are loose or weak. Hypermobile joints no longer have the protective tension necessary to signal over-extension.
There’s no cure for joint Hypermobility Syndrome. Treatment mainly focuses on improving muscle strength to provide stability and protection against over-extension.
Ditch static stretching and prioritize soft tissue work and stability drills. Because your connective tissues are looser than they should be, muscle strength is more important. Your muscles can do what your connective tissue cannot: build and improve stability.
Increased muscle strength will give you more control over your body movement and help to safeguard against sprains and painful dislocations.
Working with a physical therapist, functional movement specialist, or chiropractor can help you with the postural therapy and low-impact strength training necessary to counteract hypermobility.
By Dr. Bryen A. Bell, a Board-Certified Chiropractic Physician with over 20 years of professional experience. Contact Dr. Bell at True Potential Chiropractic family care facility. Call 503-574-4872 or visit tpcportland.com.