Addressing Muscle Imbalances To Improve Your Performance In The Human Race

Athlete Jesse Owens once said, “We all have dreams. But in order to make dreams come into reality, it takes an awful lot of determination, self-discipline, & effort.”

As the winner of four gold medals in the 1936 Berlin Olympics, he proved himself to be the fastest man alive. This was in spite of the open hatred expressed from Hitler & his evolving governmental socialist regime with all its tyranny & arrogance.

It also was a huge victory for America. Jesse later shared, “The battles that count aren’t the ones for gold medals. The struggles within yourself … the inevitable battles inside all of us … that’s where it’s at.”

What’s Holding You Back?

In this light, consider what’s holding you back from being the best you can be? How can you perform better in your journey in the human race?

As a young athlete, I learned the importance of active preparation. I came to appreciate how specific warm up exercises & stretching prior to a competition significantly improved my racing performance while reducing my risk of injury.

As a doctor of physical therapy, I have since gained a much deeper appreciation of how important appropriate exercise is to enhance & optimize my functioning in life, as well the lives of individuals I have the privilege to treat.

Exercise is Good Medicine

Exercise can be thought of as a drug; if we use the right medication (exercise), under the appropriate conditions, it can be of tremendous value in enhancing health & wellness.

Among many benefits, our moveable joints adore adaptive movements as this helps to keep joints lubricated, keeps cartilage healthy, & keeps the nervous system optimally responsive.

However, under the wrong conditions, exercise can do more harm than good. Faulty muscle imbalances are impairments which often become drivers for pain as well as dysfunctional & inefficient movements.

Abnormal muscle & connective tissue lengths can lead to restrictive mechanical joint & neurological conditions. I’ve seen many elderly people & cars functioning well. However, poorly maintained people & vehicles both eventually break down.

Body Maintenance

How well do you care for your vehicle as well as your body?

In the early 90’s, I was reminded how important balance & alignment is after driving my Corsica on Highway 1 in California. I finally discovered my tires had been unbalanced to the point the insides of the front wheels had unevenly worn away. On a positive note, the tires had not blown; still, it was expensive to get new ones as they no longer were safe for driving.

Similar to my car situation, muscle imbalances in our back, shoulders, forearms, hands, hips, knees (& other regions) can create maladaptive problems with movement & function, in some cases even causing falls.

Such imbalances can eventually lead to reduced joint mobility, poor posture, & debilitating weakness; this can evolve into cycles of instability & restrictive pain & fear of movement.

For those needing assistance, a doctor of physical therapy is uniquely qualified to evaluate & treat movement disorders.

Through professional care, one can function better with an effective program to restore strength & stability often reducing or eliminating the need for medication or surgery.

Many also are discovering the value & tremendous cost savings with direct access & cash-based physical therapy. Depending on individual circumstances, a PT may use (among other clinical tools) therapeutic exercise, neurological re-education, manual therapy & functional equipment to meet goals.

Specialized Tools

One very unique & effective innovation is the Backsmith Selective Stabilization Support™. This clinical tool can help relax & calm down the nervous system, improving posture & strength, & enhancing movement & exercise potential.

In summary, we are designed to move & how well we move can impact our wellness & vitality. Our nervous system needs appropriate adaptive movement to stay healthy & function well.

Help is available for those in need. A doctor of physical therapy can greatly improve one’s quality of life & get them back in the race. It’s a move in the right direction!


Dr. L. Voigt Smith, PT DPT CredMDT

About Dr. L. Voigt Smith, PT DPT CredMDT

Dr. Smith is a state licensed Doctor of Physical Therapy, owner of the Backsmith Advanced Physical Therapy clinic in Weston, Wisconsin, and inventor of the Backsmith Selective Stabilization Support. Dr. Smith prides himself on advanced and high value physical therapy care. He has been exceptionally effective with many outlier chronic pain patients. Dr. Smith is often able to save patients significant time and money, while restoring mobility and reducing chronic pain. Dr. Smith can be reached at the Backsmith Advanced Physical Therapy Clinic in Weston, WI (by appointment) or at (715) 298-5888.

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