The sagittal plane is like a southwest plane - its cheap, easy, most used and will leave you all kinds of achy afterwards!
There are three directions, or planes of motion, that our bodies can move in.
- Sagittal Plane - forward, backward, up and down.
- Frontal - lateral, side to side.
- Transverse - twisting or rotation.
Most of what we do in every day life occurs in the sagittal plane - even most exercises (squats, deadlifts, benchpresses)!
What's the Issue?
Only moving in one direction can lead to mobility restrictions because you're not exploring the full range of motion your body is capable of.
Its an over-use scenario. Only moving in the sagittal plane can increase injury risk when you're moving in every day life, and especially if you play recreational sports.
Benefits of getting out of the sagittal plane:
- Develop more balanced musculature supporting the hip and shoulder.
- Improve joint mobility and stability, while reducing injury risk.
Morgan has some creative ways of exploring other planes of movement with his clients, Ted and Sharon.
Ted has some hip imbalance issues and plays golf recreationally.
Morgan gets Ted in the frontal plane by doing crossover sled drags instead of just doing the traditional push and pull.
Sharon plays tennis recreationally and although she has no issues, Morgan has her working in different planes to prevent injury and enhance her performance.
He has Sharon do press out lateral lunges on the slide board to get into the frontal plane. Shifting her weight into her hips and moving side to side helps support her hips and prevent injury when she's playing tennis.
Both golf and tennis require a lot of twisting so the transverse plane is really important for Ted and Sharon.
Great ways to get in the transverse plane are medicine ball throws, and rotational pressing and pulling movements using cable machines you can find in an every day gym.
Try some of these moves out and let us know how it goes!