Range of Motion vs. Flexibility

Everyone  knows the words mobility and flexibility, they are buzz words in the fitness community. Many people mistakenly use the terms interchangeably, and although flexibility is a component of mobility; they are different.

  Flexibility is the ability of a muscle(s) to lengthen.

  Mobility is the ability of a joint to move actively through a range of motion.

 An example of this theory is people who claim to have tight hamstring and can’t touch their toes. We get them to lay on their back lifting their leg up to almost pas 90 degrees. Now does this mean you have no flexibility or lack of range of motion in your hips and lower back?

 I believe it is the later, this is a classic example of how someone that demonstrates normal, or even good flexibility may not have the necessary mobility to get their body into a certain position. In this case stretching your hamstrings would not help improve your toe touch flexibility. You would need to address the mobility of your hips and spin to get in this position.

Flexibility is passive, it’s a person’s ability to move their connective tissue with the help of another person or tool.

Mobility is our ability to take our body through a range of motion, without being restricted and with control.

The bottom line is…..Mobility is having strength within your flexibility!

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