All in coordination

Predictive Coding: Why Expectation Matters for Movement and Pain

Predictive coding is a hip new model for perception that I have been studying lately. In some ways it is very common sense and intuitive, and in others it is very challenging and mind expanding. I see it as a useful bridge between conventional ways of thinking about perception and something completely new and different. Here’s a post describing what I’ve learned that I find interesting and practical

I recently had the privilege of attending a continuing education class at Athletes Performance in Arizona, which is one of the top athletic training facilities in the country, run by Mark Verstegen. It's a beautiful facility, with a nice grass field, an amazing workout room, and lots of elite athletes walking around and training. It was a very fun atmosphere and I was all geeked out. There are many things that I would like to write about from this experience (including the excellent DNSclasses that I was attending while there), but for now I just wanted to make a few brief observations about the way the athletes spent their time.

In the previous two posts, I discussed two basic ideas. First, that the developmental movement patterns learned in infancy are building blocks for the more complex movements that we use in our daily lives as adults. These simple patterns are combined to form complex movements, just as words and letters are combined to make sentences. If someone is limited in performing a basic movement like squatting or rotating, there are a very wide range of everyday movements that will be compromised. Therefore, if we are going to spend any time working to improve our movement, it is these fundamental patterns that should get most of our attention.

Infants develop movement by progressively learning a series of fundamental movement patterns, which form the building blocks for more complex movements. For example, while lying on the ground and sitting in various positions, an infant learns to stabilize her head so she can see the world. Her head stabilization skills are a building block for the postural control required in standing and walking. While reaching to grab interesting objects, she learns the arm/trunk coordination patterns that are also used to crawl and walk, and eventually throw and climb.

Moshe Feldenkrais said that to "correct is incorrect." He was referring to efforts to correct someone's movement patterns. Which is kind of a strange thing to say for a guy whose method was largely about making people's movement more efficient. What did he mean and what does this say about efforts to correct movement? I think his message is that it is preferable to show clients different options or choices for how to move, than to tell them their current movements are wrong and require correction.

Welcome to the third and final installment of my best athlete in the world series. In this post I will actually name the winner. But first a quick review of my existing ground rules, and the addition of two additional criteria that will narrow things down to our winner pretty quickly. As I discussed in parts one and two, my best athlete must have strength, speed, stamina and skill, with skill being the most important quality.

Welcome to part two of my argument for who is the world's greatest athlete. Here is a brief summary of part one. First, I concede there is no way to arrive at a truly objective answer here, because it necessarily calls into play subjective preferences. However, after starting with some admittedly arbitrary ground rules, I think I can logically proceed to a defensible conclusion. I know this sounds more like a legal argument than a bar room sports debate, but believe me, this analysis will go far beyond what you probably guessed!