71 minutes | Jul 23, 2020

212: David Grey on Barefoot Dynamics, Foot Actions, and a Joint-Based Approach to Relieving Tendon Pain | Sponsored by SimpliFaster

Today’s episode features biomechanics specialist and rehabilitation expert, David Grey.  David runs the Grey Injury Clinic and helps athletes with injury, pain, rehab, and performance.  David has learned under a great number of mentors, and is influenced greatly by the work of Gary Ward who is a 2x previous podcast guest and the creator of the “Anatomy in Motion” system.  David is also influenced by systems such as PRI and the martial arts. Through his diverse studies and experience, David is able to get athletes and clients out of pain who have previously been through months of traditional therapy with limited results.  He previously appeared on episode #160 of the podcast where he spoke on the link between pronation and using the glutes effectively. In training and rehab, we so often look to exercises that strengthen, before we put a priority on biomechanics and joint actions.  The problem is, that in treating pain, unless we fix the biomechanics, no matter how good the strength treatment was, the problem will eventually return.  We know that in performance training, we want to build a “base of technique” because the way our body forms from a myo-fascial perspective as a season of training unfolds is going to be based on our technique.  Bad technique can yield the result of muscles getting active and trained that shouldn’t, and other important muscle groups getting under-developed.  By training the right joint motions, and getting the feet to work properly, we take a huge step in getting athletes to reaching their highest potential. On the podcast today, David goes through a joint-based approach to working with those who have Achilles pain, and particularly, knee pain.  He gets into the necessary co-contractions needed to help stabilize the knee joint, and why calcaneus mobility is important for both Achilles tendon and knee tendon injury prevention.  We start out the talk with a chat on the feet, how barefoot training might not be all that it’s cracked up to be for some athletes, and the balance between pronation and supination of the foot in performance training.  All this and more is in the latest podcast. Today’s episode is brought to you by SimpliFaster, supplier of high-end athletic development tools, such as the Freelap timing system, kBox, Sprint 1080, and more. View more podcast episodes at the podcast homepage. Timestamps and Main Points 5:00 The importance of supination in human movement and athletics, as well as why it is more important to think in terms of pronat-ing and supinat-ing rather than pronation and supination. 12:00 How sensation on the sole of the foot is essential for pronating properly and why simply walking around barefoot may not be truly helpful. 26:30 Supination, and its relationship between running, jumping and power in propulsion 36:00 Why joint motion should be the root of our efforts in injury prevention, rather than simply treating the tissue through strength-based exercises 45:30 Major biomechanical issues that show up with those athletes who have knee pain 50:00 The importance of stiffness, when called upon, in preventing knee pain 54:30 Using isometrics to assist co-contractions to help improve knee function 1:04.30 Thoughts on a joint based approach to knee pain “I would be much happier with you having a flat foot that can experience some pronation and supination, versus a person with a neutral foot who can experience neither” “People saying that “pronation is bad” is like saying “you shouldn’t bend your spine to the left” “A collapse and a pronation are two different things” “I don’t sell posture as a way to fix pain, I only relate to posture as a way to access movement” “(In regards to tendon pain) If we are always going to presume that the tendon is the problem, then we are always going to assume that strength is the answer… but the problem is not always the tendon”
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