Over Gary Ward

inventor of Anatomy in Motion -AIM- and the Flow Motion Model. Author of 'What the Foot?'

Small adjustments solve pain

When Gary had his first unconscious learning experience with biomechanics through fitting ski boots during a holiday job, he noticed how a person's pain experience can be moved throughout the body with tiny adjustments to foot mechanics via a ski boot orthotic. At the end of his job, Gary wanted to dive deeper into this. He qualified as a personal trainer, massage therapist and took courses in Scientific Back Care, Scientific Core, Exercise Coach and Holistic Lifestyle.

What makes gait dysfunctional?

In 2006 Gary decided to stop taking courses. He saw that the courses were not able to explain or even acknowledge the role of the foot in our body. WHY were adjustments to the foot able to shift the client's perception of pain? WHAT was the influence on the bio-mechanics of our whole body?
He went on to investigate. Walking was the model he could observe and the only movement we all have in common. Here it started to become clear that "dysfunction" usually treated by manual and medical therapies, can naturally occur or be functional in our gait cycle. So the question is, what makes walking "dysfunctional"? He meticulously studied all movements in all joints during the gait cycle and mapped them out in his Flow Motion Model. His method is called Anatomy in Motion -AIM-.

Gary has "mapped" what the skeleton does in 0.60 - 0.80 sec of human gait. He is recognised worldwide for his work on 3D foot mechanics, 3D gait and 3D motion.

Problem or solution?

How do your muscles, fascia and joints work when you are on the ground? How is your relationship with gravity? Different from the treatment table... I find the concept fascinating because it teaches me to observe very precisely how and where I move (or don't move). And to ask myself the questions:
Where is my centre?
Why am I not there?
For what 'problem' is this the solution for?

AIM enables you to solve your movement problems by simply moving better with all your joints. Because your feet are the foundation on which you stand, you start there. A set of three-dimensional movement tests that you carry out regularly is the basis for reorganising your entire movement system. For that, there are the...

 AIM Five big rules of motion

  • Muscles lengthen before the contract
  • Joints act, muscles react
  • Everything orbits around centre
  • perceived centre dictates movement, posture, pain and potential
  • Perfection is hardwired en comes pre-installed
What the Foot?

Let me explain it to you:

Muscles need the awareness of your entire range of motion to know where the centre is. So don't contract from a 'neutral' position. Muscles actually start working when you start stretching them. They then slow down your movement somewhat.... Think of throwing a ball: you first bring your arm back with the ball, so that there is a stretch on your pectoral muscle. Then you throw much more effectively because your muscles contract more powerfully.
Muscle weakness, or stiffness due to too long or too short muscles, comes from the position of the skeleton and the movement of the joints; the reaction that takes place leads to the inhibition of the muscles.
Healthy movement relaxes the muscles, promotes joint integrity and stimulates the nervous system. Any movement inhibition causes the opposite effect.

Balance is weight management and how you manage your centre of gravity.
When all the focal points (head, ribcage, pelvis) are aligned, finding your centre becomes easy.

Your perception of what is optimal determines the posture you take and the movements you can (not) make. Compensation is the way your brain adapts to new circumstances, such as an injury, surgery or stress.

Your body naturally has the capacity to distribute pressure and tension to facilitate all movements. Your brain will choose a position that appears negative and yet provides support for a temporary or perceived problem in the entire system. Your body knows how to position itself to overcome its limitations and access its most optimal state for NOW.

Gary Ward

Creator of Anatomy in Motion

I never really see anything as a problem, I see things as information.

I'm not a big fan of the word dysfunction, because it becomes something you want to fix, rather than something you want to understand.

If I see that someone is turning their foot out, instead of thinking that I have to turn that in to correct it, it is the information I get from that person that they are turning that foot out to be able to generate that pronation.

You don't want to fight (against the body) because we know that fighting creates conflict.... you have to remove the obstacles and encourage things to do as they are meant to do.

I say joints give muscles something to do.

The brain will always find a 'tripod', if you can't get weight on the first metatarsal, you have it in the second.

The spine is the same as the foot, we have to get movement in every bone of the foot.

The more we explore the extreme possibilities in our movement, the more we strain the tissue. The more we give the tissue something to do, the more that tissue can respond, and when the tissue has an equal response to the movement on both sides, then you can stand in a calm, centred position.

Is AIM iets voor jou?

Tell me what appeals to you... 
(introduction is free)

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