During our sessions at The Reinge Clinic, we often find ourselves fielding questions from curious clients. While many topics come up, one query seems to be a constant: “How do you remember all those Muscles?” This is an excellent question, considering there are approximately 600 to 800 muscles in the human body (though opinions on what constitutes a single muscle can vary), not to mention the complexity of 206 bones, the ligaments and fascia and the effect that posture has on firing patterns and availability! So, let’s delve into the intriguing world of anatomy and discover how we tackle this challenge!
First and foremost, let’s address the seemingly daunting task of remembering hundreds of muscles and bones. Surprisingly, once you’ve learned them all, it becomes somewhat second nature. Think of it as acquiring a specialised skill set. It might take years to fully grasp, but once you do, it stays with you. Every day, our work involves thinking about these structures, as they form the foundation of our practice. Interestingly, the human body maintains a consistent number and arrangement of muscles, regardless of gender or race, though due to improved scanning we do occasionally find new muscle and bones that cause us to go back and rethink the function of the surrounding muscles entirely. This daily engagement serves as a constant reminder, and as we like to jest, it might be easier than remembering all the intricacies of different car models!
Understanding the Muscle Dynamics:
The real challenge lies not in rote memorisation but in comprehending how these muscles and bones function and interact, especially when injuries occur. This is where our expertise truly shines. Each injury is unique, and no two are entirely alike. It’s akin to solving a complex puzzle, and this is where we truly need to be clever. In response to injuries, the body adapts and compensates, often leading muscles to perform in unexpected ways. We often liken it to peeling an onion: at the core lies the initial injury, surrounded by layers of adaptive muscle compensation that accumulate over the years. Our task is to peel back those layers and reach the root problem so we can effectively address and resolve it. This is where in-depth anatomical knowledge truly comes into play.
Understanding how one muscles affects another, how postural positions affect firing patterns and how muscles work together to create movement is something we excel at. Not just due to our experience, but also due to our Sports Science knowledge. Both Ian and Gina have degrees in Sports Science, meaning they spent 3 years learning about muscle firing patterns, forces and biomechanics, they incorporate this knowledge into every treatment, bringing the muscle to life and helping to understand what they are and how they function, or not as the case may be!
A Lifetime of Experience:
Acquiring this knowledge is a journey that requires years of hands-on experience and dedication. Fortunately, Gina and I have collectively amassed over 45 years of experience in the field. Throughout this time, we’ve encountered and addressed a vast array of musculoskeletal issues. The beauty of our profession is that, much like fine wine, our expertise only improves with age! We often see people with complex conditions and treatment protocols for these sorts of issues can’t be found in standard text books. So we need to use our understanding of the muscles to work out why this person is experiencing pain or discomfort. This is even more important when the “injury” came on for no apparent reason. That is when it gets really interesting and you will see us spending some time thinking in the corner!
We will often test a muscle, loosen a muscle or strengthen a muscle. Isolate a muscle or watch a dynamic exercise, all to understand how your muscles fire and which muscles aren’t performing correctly and at the right time. By understanding the function of a muscle we can create bespoke specific strengthening exercises to target one muscle, or restrict a muscle, to get the response in the body we need to retrain muscle firing patterns. This is only possible if you have a deep understanding of muscles, their anatomy and their function.
So, there you have it – a glimpse into how we navigate the intricacies of the human musculoskeletal system at The Reinge Clinic. It’s not just about remembering muscles and bones; it’s about understanding their actions and reactions, particularly in the context of injuries. If you ever find yourself facing a problem that seems insurmountable, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. With our expertise and dedication, you might just be pleasantly surprised at the solutions we can offer. Cheers to the art of healing and the ever-fascinating world of anatomy and biomechanics!
Find out more about how we fix injuries here.
Find out what our clients think about this approach by watching this client testimonial.