Planes of movement
There are some basic kinesiology concepts that are extremely relevant in terms of training, performance and injury prevention and rehabilitation.
Let’s review the basic movements and the planes of movement in which they occur. Terms that you may have heard of, such as flexion, extension, rotation, pronation, abduction, and so on, are kinesiological terms and are associated with one of the three planes of movement.
We should all strive to move with efficiency and control the planes of movement as this can serve to enhance performance and reduce injury risk. The three planes of movement are:
1. Sagittal plane – this plane includes all flexion and extension (forward and backward) movements throughout the body, as well as hyperextension, ankle plantarflexion/dorsiflexion and anterior/posterior tilt of the pelvis.
2. Frontal plane – this plane includes side to side type motions such as abduction and adduction, side-bending or lateral flexion of the spine, elevation/depression of the shoulder blade and inversion/eversion of the ankle.
3. Transverse plane – this plane includes our rotational movements such as forearm and foot pronation/supination, spinal rotation and internal/external rotation of the shoulders and hips.
Most of us are pretty good with the sagittal plane since most of life occurs here (walking, running, squatting, bending, etc), but we don’t do so hot with the frontal and transverse planes, which are so often associated with impaired performance or increased injury risk.
So, examine your current training program, consider these three planes and ask yourself whether or not you are working on them.