Massage & Bodywork

JANUARY | FEBRUARY 2015

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Sir Isaac Newton (1643–1727), English physicist, mathematician, alchemist, biblical chronologist, and surfer. Let's say you want to build a human body capable of movement. Aside from needing the obvious anatomical structures—fascia, bones, muscles, and more —you'd also need to incorporate some basic physics. That is to say, you'd need to explore the biomechanics of movement. Now, you might be thinking, "Joints and nerves are one thing, but physics? Come on, Biel!" Yet, before you turn the page, please remember that biomechanics —the mechanical principles that directly relate to the body—is just another way of talking about everyday stuff. Washing your hands? Friction. Trying to open a pickle jar? Torque. Beelining across a dance fl oor to meet that special girl or guy? Vector. Even lifting bags of concrete (Newton's Second Law of Motion) or raising a water bottle to your mouth after all of that heaving (third-class lever) is biomechanics in action. Whether you are in motion or at rest, these principles illuminate your ordinary actions. So, let's keep it fun and simple, and explore how laws of motion and levers relate to mobility and stability in your life and bodywork practice. LAWS OF MOTION When Isaac Newton set out to explain (one could say invent) his Three Laws of Motion, he didn't exactly have muscles and bones in mind. Celestial bodies were his focus, not human bodies. Yet, it turns out that his pronouncements pertain to our tissues just as well as they do to the earth, moon, and sun. As the basis of classical mechanics, these three physical laws describe the relationship between forces which act on an object and the motion resulting from those forces. (Human movement, anyone?) F r e e m u s i c d o w n l o a d s f o r C e r t i f i e d m e m b e r s : w w w. a b m p . c o m / g o / c e r t i f i e d c e n t r a l 75 6 Short Stories about the Biomechanics of Movement Sir Isaac Newton (1643–1727), English physicist, mathematician, alchemist, biblical chronologist, and surfer. of Movement By Andrew Biel Illustrations by Robin Dorn, LMP.

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