Exercise Healthy Joints Matter


Healthy Joints Matter

When talking about health and fitness, we usually direct it to weight-loss or muscle-building. These days Zumba is getting in there somehow.

Sorry Zumba fans, there is always room for you all.

Anyway, we almost never hear in the gyms or outdoor activities the conversation of one’s knee joint being able to move effectively or the importance of the mobility and stability of the ankle joint just for us to move properly.

In this post, my aim is to create more awareness and understating that healthy joints do matter. Humans have 360 joints and these joints are connected by 600 skeletal muscles, a lot of muscle, and a lot of joints right! Therefore, these movements are done in different ways or different ‘Planes of Motion’.

Planes of Motion

‘Planes of motion’ is the term we use to understand how we are designed to move. There are 3 Planes of Motion:

A Look At Birds

We can observe these planes of motion in birds.

Some birds fly…

Some walk on the ground, they don’t fly (when last did you see an ostrich fly overhead)…

And, some are adapted to spend a lot of time in the water, so their feet are webbed.

Notice that each bird has its movement and they stick to what they know best to do. The movement of humans has however evolved and continues to evolve from ancestors who hunted, who walked for miles, ran, climbed, crawled. What do we see today in the western world? What are our dominant movements?

Kinetic Chain

In 1875m Mechanical Engineer, Franz Reuleaux created the term ‘Kinetic Chain’ to understand human movement.

He proposed that rigid, overlapping segments were connected via joints and this created a system whereby movement at one joint produced or affected movement at another joint in the kinetic link. This simply means that the system of movement in the body will be affected if the joint above or below it does not function to its full capacity.

In our next post, we’ll further delve into the ‘Kinetic Chain’ and take a deeper look at ‘joint mobility’ and ‘joint stability’ in humans and we’ll reveal 5 important ‘checkpoints’ that everyone should know.

Stay tuned!


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