Are you Built To Move?

Over the long weekend, between soccer games and time with friends, I grabbed a new book. Kelly (and Juliet) Starrett recently released Built to Move, a book that focuses on helping people build a simple movement practice into their daily schedule to help them improve their quality of life.

The first chapter focused on one simple test, and what we can do to improve. The Sit and Rise test. We have discussed this simple test in the past. The test was developed in Brazil, and involved attempting to get from a standing position down to the floor, and back up with the fewest points of contact with the floor. The original study suggested that there was a correlation between the number of contact points and morbidity and mortality rates.

Obviously, this test is a good way to measure our leg strength, our core stability, our balance... this list can go on and on. What do those things have to do with our morbidity and mortality?

Many are skeptical (including me) regarding the assumed correlation between the findings of this test and the subject's morbidity and mortaility rates. Was the relationship between the Sit and Rise Test and the morbidity and mortality rates of the subjects a coincidence? Or is there an actual correlation? The ability to get up from and down to the floor is a skill that is often lost as we age. Why is it lost as we age though? Most likely because we tend to stop doing the movement. Just like anything else in life, if we stop doing something we will become less proficient at it. 

When was the last time you saw a grandmother or grandfather sitting on the floor? 

Even if we believe that the predictive ability of this test is slightly questionable, that does not mean that we should ignore the findings. The Starretts recommend that we do exercises to increase lower body strength and flexibility, which will likely result in increased core stability and improved balance, and would likely improve the outcomes of our Sit and Rise Test.

Time to ask yourself a question... Is there a downside to improving your strength, stability, and balance? Even if they have no direct impact on your Sit and Rise Test or your morbidity or mortality. Improving those things will still help to improve the quality of your life.

That combination will help you to maintain your independence! 

Isn't that what it is all about?         


Movement is my medicine,
Dr. William "Chip" Bleam

Dr. William "Chip" Bleam


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