Muscle Imbalance

Written by Dan Barrett

Your muscles are designed to allow you to move, run, jump, lift and are working even when you are standing still.  Your body needs a combination of movement and strength to function correctly.

If a muscle, or group of muscles, become too tight, strong, long or weak in relation to the other muscles in that part of your body you have a ‘muscle imbalance’.  This can result in inefficient or  incorrect movements and ultimately, pain.

The image shows a hip that is too tight to extension, a common finding that causes the pelvis to tip forwards and the spine to stiffen up.

A muscle imbalance can be due to:

  • posture  –  such as sitting at a desk with your shoulders rounded resulting in tight muscles across your chest
  • exercise –  such as strengthening the front of your shoulder at the gym but not the back or becoming too tight along the outside of your thigh from frequent running
  • injury – often following an injury a muscle does not regain full strength and therefore is not able to function correctly (even if the injury was not specifically to the muscle itself).  Sometimes your body has to adapt following an injury, increasing the load on other areas.
  • nature – some people simply have a tendency to be tight or weak in certain areas.

 

The physios at WPB are skilled at finding muscle imbalances through biomechanical assessments and at helping you to correct and manage them.