Sports Medicine
Sports Injury Prevention & Rehabilitation

+1-650-815-6552 / +33784264352

Voted Best Sports Therapy Clinic in the San Francisco Bay Area 2010-2018!

Biomechanics & Posture

What if we told you, that we could predict injuries by analyzing just a picture?

Here at Athletic Edge we have done just that. One of our therapists noticed some postural and biomechanical issues with one of the top athletes in the world. She used a couple photographs of the athlete out of pure curiosity to do one of our assessments, which resulted in a full write up of her findings. A year later our therapist used new photographs to do the same assessment finding that the issues increased by about ten percent. Our therapist was shocked with the increase that she found because this athlete has not had any known major trauma, is very active and is still young. All signs point to this detriment should not be happening. Within six months of her second assessment the pro-athlete who was at the peak of his career was exhibiting the exact muscle and nerve issues that she predicted a year and half earlier. It was not only feared that he would not be able to participate, but that there could be permanent damage. Our therapists believe that all of this could have been easily prevented with a few minimal changes with the athlete's posture and biomechanics.

Pictured: Sebastian Vettel, Four Time Formula One World Champion, Scuderia Ferrari. According to our analysis, Sebastian's head is shifted 1.8cm left, and his head is tilted 8.4 degrees to the right, it is shifted 19.4cm forward, 35.9 degrees off vertical. Based on physics, and our findings, his head effectively weighs 40.4 kg, instead of 4.7kg. His shoulders are shifted 2.0cm to the right, and 10.9 degrees to the right. They are shifted 2.6cm forward, 2.4 degrees off vertical. His ribcage is shifted 0.3cm right. Hips are shifted 5.7cm right, and tilted 2.9 degrees to the right. His hips are shifted 36.5cm backward, 33.2 degrees off vertical. His knees are shifted 2.7cm forward, 20.7 degrees off vertical. 

Pictured: Tom Brady, Five Time NFL Superbowl Champion, New England Patriots. According to our analysis, Tom's head is shifted 0.3cm to the right, and is tilted 1.4 degrees to the left. His head is shifted 11.5cm forward, 31.6 degrees off vertical. Based on physics, and our findings, his head now effectively weighs 42.4kg, instead of 7.7kg.  Tom's shoulders are shifted 0.5cm to the left and 1.7cm backward, tilted 1.7 degrees to the left, 1.8 degrees off vertical. His ribcage is shifted 1.4cm to the left. His hips are shifted 0.3cm to the right and 10.3cm backward, and tilted 2.0 degrees to the right, and 12.9 degrees off vertical. His knees are shifted 9.1cm forward, 11.6 degrees off vertical. 

 At Athletic Edge we provide baseline, and post-injury biomechanical and postural assessments to aid in the prevention of orthopedic injuries, and aid in return-to-play decision making after an injury has occurred. Athletic Edge wholeheartedly believes that non-contact injuries are one hundred percent preventable, and we strive to put an end to preventable injuries from affecting or stopping participation at all levels of sports.

Pictured: Lewis Hamilton, Four Time Formula One World Champion, Mercedes AMG Petronas. Lewis' head is shifted 0.4cm to the right, 12.4cm forward, and is tilted 7.4 degrees to the right and 39.3 off vertical. Based on physics, and our findings, his head now effectively weighs 30.3kg instead of 5.1kg. His shoulders are shifted 1.6cm right, 3.0cm backward, and are tilted 5.5 degrees right and 3.6 degrees off vertical. His ribcage is shifted 1.9cm right. Lewis' hips are shifted 4.3cm right, 6.3cm backwards, and are tilted 1.9 degrees right and 7.7 degrees off vertical. His knees are shifted 4.6cm forward and 6.3 degrees off vertical. 

Pictured: Usain Bolt, Nine time Olympic Gold Medalist, Jamaica. Usain's head is shifted 2.1cm right, 9.7cm forward, and is 22.9 degrees off vertical. Based on physics, and our findings, his head now effectively weighs 34.1kg instead of 7.1kg. Usain's shoulders are shifted 2.5cm left, 2.9cm backward, and are tilted 1.1 degrees to the right, 2.8 degrees off vertical. His ribcage is shifted 2.1cm right. His hips are shifted 1.5cm right, 3.1cm backward, 3.8 degrees off vertical. His knees are shifted 3.3cm forward, 5.0 degrees off vertical. 

Posture is the position in which someone holds his or her body when standing, sitting or lying down. Postural assessments look at your static posture to see if there are any imbalances that could cause or are causing pain and discomfort. Our postural assessments also include tests that check how well your muscles and joints are working together and if there are any imbalances to be corrected.
Pictured: Cristiano Ronaldo, Five Ballon d'Or Awards, Four European Golden Shoes, Portugal. Cristiano's head is shifted 1.4cm right, 8.1cm forward, is tilted 1.4 degrees left and 21.2 degrees off vertical. Based on physics, and our findings, his head now effectively weighs 26.2kg, instead of 6.3kg. His shoulders are shifted 0.2cm right and 1.6cm forward, and are tilted 4.5 degrees right and 1.8 degrees off vertical. His ribcage is shifted 1.9cm right. His hips are shifted 8.8cm right, 17.0cm backward, tilted 2.3 degrees right, 22.8 off vertical. His knees are shifted 0.4cm backward, 1.0 degrees off vertical. 
Pictured: Fernando Alonso, Two Time Formula One World Champion, McLaren F1. Fernando's head is shifted 0.8cm right and 14.3cm forward, 49.1 degrees off vertical. Based on physics, and our findings, his head now effectively weighs 33.8kg instead of 5.1kg. Fernando's shoulders are shifted 3.5cm left, 4.8cm forward, and are tilted 1.6 degrees left and 7.0 degrees off vertical. His ribcage is shifted 1.1cm left. His hips are shifted 9.9cm left, 6.7cm backward, tilted 5.2 degrees left, 8.7 degrees off vertical. His knees are shifted 4.1cm forward, 5.8 degrees off vertical. 

What is a biomechanical imbalance?

Biomechanics is simply defined as how and why the human body moves in a particular way. Opposing muscle groups allow for movement to happen. Take walking for example, as you life your leg to take a step there are multiple things happening, the muscles on the front of your leg tighten while the muscles on the back of your leg stretch. As the weight shifts through the step, these forces reverse, the muscles on the back are now tightening while the muscles on the front stretch. Ideally these muscle groups provide the same amount of force resulting in balance, but when they provide varying tensions it causes a muscle imbalance. Muscle imbalances can be caused a variety of things including tightness or weakness.

Proper postural alignment is when the body moves and distributes weight evenly while allowing the muscles, joints, and spine to work in conjunction to allowing the body to move effortlessly. When the body is out of alignment is when injury or pain can occur.

Our biomechanical and postural assessments consist of multiple phases, which include examining how your body moves and functions at your baseline. Our therapists also observe for any abnormalities and if your body is compensating. Athletic Edge aims to discover and treat any underlying causes. How many times has chronic injuries kept a key athlete on the sidelines possibly resulting in the teams performance decreasing from their full potential? There is a good chance that many of these times are caused by faulty posture. Proper posture is a cornerstone of optimal performance for all athletes.

The staff at Athletic Edge believes that before any substantial strengthening occurs, it is essential to identify and correct every faulty movement pattern that an athlete presents. The system designed by the therapists here is intended to identify any movement patterns that could cause injury. After the initial assessment is preformed and our staff identified the areas that are at risk, or need improvements we develop a treatment plan. Our therapists not only develop plans for individual athletes which includes; tools needed to increase strength in affected regions, exercise programming, and personal follow-ups with our staff, but they also develop plans for teams as well. The plans for teams include everything that is provided to individuals along with data that athletic trainers and strength coaches can utilize to correct biomechanical imbalances during training sessions.

Benefits of Postural and Biomechanical Assessments

Benefits may include but not limited to:

• Muscle lengthening and increased flexibility

• Ensuring bones and joints maintain correct postural alignment (to support the muscles)

• Improving reaction time

• A decrease in the amount of infrequent wearing of joint surfaces (too much of this could result in arthritis)

• Preventing the spine from becoming locked into an irregular position

• Preventing strain and overuse of muscles

• Preventing backache and other muscular pain

• Improving proprioception/balance and weight transference

• Improving core stability and muscle balance around the pelvis

Frequently asked questions about Biomechanics and Postural Assessments

Who can get assessed?
Everyone. We provide individual and team assessments.

What does an athlete wear for the assessment?
Athletes can wear any close-fitting athletic apparel.

How long will an assessment take?
A typical assessment takes about 15 minutes to complete our biomechanical and postural assessment suite. Typical output is 70-100 athletes per testing day.

Do you provide follow-up assessments to assess progress or re-evaluate after injury?
Re-assessing is an essential step to evaluate an athlete’s adherence to the program, biomechanical progression and improved movement patterns. We encourage a follow-up assessment in approximately 12 weeks following the initial baseline assessment for healthy athletes. If the athlete has deviated from their baseline, continual re-assessment every 24 hours is suggested and can be used to help track the recovery process.