Does this sound like you?
Hamstring injury every soccer season
Knee pain creeping in after a day on the greens
Achilles pain after a long run
A niggling shoulder during your CrossFit sessions
Neck pain after a morning in the surf
I could go on and on, but these are all examples of injuries that can occur from poor movement patterns.
Let me introduce you to a concept that completely changed my understanding of movement and human performance. In February 2018, I flew up to the Gold Coast for a DNS surfing course. At this point, I had been studying DNS for over three years, but when Dr Michael Rintala introduced this concept, it changed my approach and understanding of rehab and prehab.
This is the concept of the “Functional Threshold”.
The functional threshold is when the athlete can no longer maintain ideal movement patterns and has to revert to poor, more primitive movement strategies to accomplish a task.
In other words, the functional threshold is the point at which the athlete can no longer maintain ‘good posture’ on a given exercise, but they still find a way to get it done.
Once the athlete or performer moves beyond the functional threshold, they move into the functional gap. In the functional gap, the athlete completes a task with poor posture and form.
It is in the functional gap that the risk of injury is significantly increased.
Whenever I think of an athlete that has a high functional capacity, Roger Federer comes to mind. Professor Pavle Kolar, the founder of the DNS, recently stated that Federer “has ideal movement”. Numerous athletes have worked closely with Professor Kolar and the DNS method, including famous ice hockey player Jaromir Jagr (for context, Jagr has the second-most points in National Hockey League history, after Wayne Gretzky). Jager has stated,
"If it wasn’t for Dr Kolar, I would have been done playing hockey long ago” (1)
So how do athletes and high performers enhance their functional capacity to decrease their functional gap? By training in movement patterns focused on core stability and innate human movement.
That is what DNS is all about.
DNS is about training the quality of movement.
It’s about training with proper intra-abdominal pressure and core stability.
It’s about training with joints that are centred.
It’s about training to decrease the potential of injury.
While this may sound complicated, DNS teaches us how to move the way we are already programmed to move.
If you’re looking for more information from Dr Michael Rintala or Dr Kolar on DNS, I suggested you check out these three resources
1. The Secrets of Movement Medicine https://rehabps.com/DATA/dns_pdf_tema_AN.pdf