What Do Successful Movements Have in Common?

We’ve all heard the phrase ‘movement is medicine’. But we tend to forget that ‘the dose makes the poison’! Too much of one medicine can kill a person, just as too little won’t have any impact on an illness or disease. Balance is key but when it comes to our health, it matters a whole lot more.

And the same thing applies to movement as well. Too MUCH, as we risk a flare-up of our pain. Too LITTLE, and the loading is not enough to create lasting changes. So what does it mean to have ‘successful movements’ that aid our recovery processes?



Here are 4 themes of successful movements that are guaranteed to progress your healing journey!

1) Have a clear purpose

Knowing your END GOAL when starting the rehabilitation journey to get out of pain is just as important as knowing HOW the pain started. All chiropractic adjustments and rehab exercises MUST fulfill the criterias to get you to where you want to be:

  • Planned after a complete assessment of what is causing the pain/movement restriction
  • Explained to you so that you have a complete understanding of what is going on and how recovery will look like
  • Follows a common goal and purpose so that both you AND your clinician are on the same page, having the same expectations, and working towards the same goals!

2) Focused on value instead of hype

Lots of things are hyped up. Even dry needling services, which we DO provide here. But guess what? Not everyone needs dry needling. Not everyone needs that fancy cryotherapy machine. Not everyone needs kinesiotape. 

We focus on value – what you actually need, you get.

3) The strength of a movement is NOT in large attempts, but small groups

It’s not always in the huge deadlifts or squats! Sure, they look amazing for the ‘gram and it feels good getting validation from your peers about how heavy you can lift, or the Personal Best records that you’re beating. 

But strength actually comes from the SUM of small parts to create that big attempt – small muscle groups that work together as one unit to push, pull, and load. And any one part of that chain of small muscles which aren’t loaded effectively can set you back a couple kilos of lifting weight, or even worse, injured.

4) Overcome increasing resistance

The goldilocks rule – not too little, not too much; just right. Slowly increasing tolerance to load/resistance will bring you far. The general rule of thumb that we follow is an increase of 10%-15% each time you feel like you’re ready to go further. What this can look like:

  • If you finally have no pain walking or exercising for 20 minutes, then progress your next session to 25 minutes the next day
  • If you’re jogging on a Level 5 incline and finally aren’t feeling that knee pain, push it up to a Level 6 (if increments to 5.5 aren’t possible) instead of going right up to 7

If you’re still feeling some discomfort but have been managing it well (your physio or chiro should be teaching you strategies to self-manage flare ups at home), and are ready to see if you’re ready for the next step – an increase of 10% intensity should give you a good idea if you’re ready for it or not. Monitor for the next 24 hours and if discomfort levels reduce back to baseline, that’s a good sign.

So, having a clear purpose, ignoring the hype and focusing on value, strengthening smaller muscle groups, and loading progressively are all constituents of movements that will set you up for success.

… The best part about all these points?

They’re EXACTLY the same as what makes HISTORICAL movements successful ().

If it was good enough to cause changes in history textbooks, then they’re good enough for your body!