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Had a great couple of days teaching the PRI Integration for Baseball course in beautiful Port St. Lucie, Florida. It was my first opportunity to present this course with our new instructor, Ben Hagar, DPT, PRC and he did a fantastic job. You know things are going well integrating a new instructor when nobody in the room knew that this was his first time presenting and everybody did a great job connecting with the material. As a current MLB Physical Therapist and a long time protege of course author Allen Gruver, PT, ATC, PRC, Ben made the transition to Affiliate Course Instructor look pretty easy. Thanks for your high level of professionalism, your eye for detail and your commitment to making sure the course was a great experience for every single course attendee. It was truly an honor to mentor you and to get to work with you presenting this course Ben.

Also a big thank you to the New York Mets organization for being such a great host site for the course. We felt right at home with your staff and really sensed we were in an environment committed to getting better and working to help those around you get better. You were willing to learn with us, share so much of what you knew and contribute to a collaborative environment that really made for a great course. We look forward to being able to share more of our science with your staff in the future.

As for the highlights, Ben's slow motion video analysis of phases of throwing and hitting really set the stage for relevant and successful application of PRI to the patterned baseball athlete. The sitting trunk rotation test, the quadruped thorax on scapula movement assessment test and the standing eversion with abduction test were provided to help determine which components of rotational body function were deficient for both the right and left handed baseball player. The practical lab for each of these tests really gave the course attendee valuable insight into which components of movement needed to be addressed in order to restore tri-planer movement variability to the overarm rotational athlete. The Left AIC/Right BC pattern was presented in great detail, as well as the respiratory-driven Superior T4 Syndrome and the repetitive rotation-driven Superior T8 Syndrome, with treatment and training recommendations given for each presentation. Sidebar discussions about softball, volleyball, golf, handball and football, using the same conceptual model of analyzing rotational movement were very insightful to professionals working in these settings. It became clear to the group that the content of this course has application way beyond just baseball.

Posted November 29, 2016 at 10:12AM by

So grateful for the wonderful weekend in beautiful Scottsdale, Arizona at the Diamondback’s facility. The course was jammed packed with 55 Fitness and Movement Professionals. Ken and Ryan have an amazing staff and I would like to thank them and all their guys for their hospitality and participation. We had some great side dialogue promoting key discussion points and ideas to benefit and better further develop the course which was greatly appreciated. The affiliate course material was well received as it focuses on components of gait, biological foundations of posture and movement, and reminds us how to respect our asymmetrical axial design when upright working against gravity and external loads. One thing I continue to love about this course, is how we break down the basics of thoraco-abdominal mechanics and emphasis the value in integrating both ab walls and the frontal plane in fitness based movement patterns. Lets face it, if you can’t achieve some functional symmetry in your frontal plane when upright and integrate your thorax with your hips rotationally, your biological system will suffer. Our fitness training and conditioning programs only become as strong as our weakest link! I look forward to changing things up in the PRI Fitness course for 2017. We will be adding new activities, more videos, and strategically adding in more lab break-out sessions. It's going to be great! --- so don’t wait too long to sign up! Every course was sold out this past year and with the improvements we make I’m super excited for teaching in 2017 :) Happy Holidays to all!!

Posted November 29, 2016 at 9:54AM by

Greetings PRI Community,

I recently received an inquiry from a fellow PRI colleague who was unable to attend this past spring's symposium on the auditory system. The question related to the reasoning behind why one of his client's hearing improved despite a diagnosis of otosclerosis and accompanying prognosis that did not include the ability to get better. Below is my response that I thought was worth sharing with the rest of the PRI community. It was also posted on the Postural Restoration Google Group. If you are not yet a member of this group of practitioners where we have a forum to discuss PRI related topics please email me at HeatherCarrDPT@gmail.com to join. 

Our ability to "hear" is determined by a number of factors but here are the ones that are applicable to position and movement from a PRI perspective. 

The inner ear is composed of the cochlea (frequency/sound analyzer) and the vestibule (motion/position analyzer). Our cochlea receives auditory afferent sensory input via sound conduction through the air but also via our bones. The latter is particularly important in relaying the true fundamental tones of sound back to the nervous system. When our bones do not vibrate appropriately it is difficult for us to perceive authentic sound characteristics.  The vibrations created by the larynx are transferred to the spine and cranial bones providing important auditory afferentation.

Our middle ear is composed of 3 vibrating ossicles (hammer, anvil, stirrup in order from outer to inner) which transmit sound from the outer ear to the inner ear. Therefore, proper vibrational capability of these bones is important for sound conduction. There are two muscles within this complex. The tensor tympani is attached to the hammer and is a flexor. The stapedius is attached to the stirrup and is an extensor. Consistent with PRI's functional perspective of poly-articular chains of muscle, these muscles can also be included in these neuromuscular synergies. Therefore, if there is an excessive degree of extensor facilitation in the the body it will likely translate to the stapedius exhibiting hypertonicity. Likewise, stapedius hypertonicity can impact the rest of the postural extensor system. The same may apply with the tensor tympani. This could be extrapolated a step further when considering the asymmetrical tendencies of the cranial system (R typically more in extension and the L typically more in flexion). Therefore, when the system is not able to spend time in neutrality, it will likely have difficulty producing appropriate neuromuscular tone thus impacting position and vibrational capability of the skeletal system. 

The position of the larynx is important for sound generation and that forward head patterns, as described in Cervical Revolution, will negatively impact its ability to properly posture and thus vibrate appropriately. Furthermore, the length/tension relationships of the surrounding laryngeal musculature, ligaments, and tendons are concurrently providing additional somatosensory information also contributing to auditory perception. If these relationships are inefficient so will the corresponding sensory input.

Let's take this a step further and remember that a huge contributor to the position of the neck is the position and poly-articular patterning coming from the thorax/diaphragm and pelvis. Our diaphragm position exerts signficant control over the exhalation power behind the voice.

In summary, our bodies need to have the ability to vibrate. If one is locked into asymmetrical or bilateral patterns that do not allow appropriate range of movement, one's resonance is dampened. This will reduce important sensory input to the system further contributing stress as sensory deficits are ultimately stressors. 

Posted November 27, 2016 at 8:36PM by

The PRI office will be closed Thursday and Friday November 24-25 to celebrate Thanksgiving with our friends and family. We will return to the office with normal buisness hours starting Monday November 28. Happy Thanksgiving!

Posted November 23, 2016 at 4:00PM by

We are excited to announce the schedule and speakers for the 2017 Interdisciplinary Integration: Postural Destabilization: An Interdisciplinary Approach to Remodel Dynamic Perception and Behavior. For more information and to sign up click here. Be sure to sign up soon as seats are limited.

Posted November 23, 2016 at 9:59AM by

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