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Clockwork Precision in Athletics Part 1

  March 09, 2016
By Alexander Germanis

The phrase ‘runs like clockwork’ has probably been used as a simile since cogs, gears, and pendulums replaced the stationary sundials of ancient times. The clock has subsequently been a symbol of precision and teamwork; each part, no matter how small, is vital to the smooth and accurate functioning of the overall timepiece.

With each organ, each muscle and every tendon performing a specific set of duties, a healthy human body could easily be compared to a smoothly running clock as well.

Unfortunately, very few people truly understand how the clockwork of the body actually functions; fewer still understand how and what it takes for the body to function efficiently. This means, whether spending two hours at the gym, running every day on the trails, or working out at home, too many people are putting in mounting degrees of effort without seeing the results for which they were hoping.

Dr. Joseph Norris, an orthopedic surgeon at McLean County Orthopedics, understands that very common, exercise-accompanying feeling of disappointment all too well. He has also come to understand the missing key to turning things around. “People want direction,” he states. “They want it scientifically driven with evidence and don’t want to go to the gym and wander around and never see gains because [they] don’t have direction.”

That scientifically driven direction, naturally, first needs a firmly established base of science from which to spring. And the main criterion upon which most true sciences are based is hard data — the more the better.

According to the doctor, however, exercise is not treated like a science to the degree medical science is treated, and therein lies the problem. “There are no data-driven outcomes anywhere in any piece of literature or propaganda for exercise,” Dr. Norris begins. “There is

“In medicine,” he continues, “when we need to make a medical decision, we need to point to some body of evidence from papers and research — previous procedures that have gone very well or very poorly. The government and the population demand that we understand that body of literature and evidence.”

Why then are the ways we strive to improve the clockwork of our bodies not also looked at with such scrutiny, he wonders. There is a need for hard data in order to establish a true science of exercise. “That is what we, at Method Sports Performance, endeavor to create,” Dr. Norris says.

As a drive behind this spring’s launch of the facility of his founded Method Sports Performance, Dr. Norris and his colleagues developed a model to collect the data. “That started our mission and vision to create a digital application that can prescribe an exercise program,” he explains. The data collected through the prescribed exercise programs include the results of the gains, risk of injury, and real time

“(That data is then) collected in a repository we can then analyze,” the doctor says. “Then we have true data driven outcomes of what worked better or worse as well as risk of injury and metabolic behavior of our clients.”

Dissecting the data will eventually lead physicians and trainers to help athletes of all ages to work out more efficiently — to see greater gains with less time invested and less effort expended needlessly.

But, as Dr. Norris points out, “That application to prescribe, monitor, collect, and then analyze data is only the first step.”

To find out what data is collected and to learn the benefits of treating exercise like the science of medicine, pick up next month’s issue of Healthy Cells Magazine®.

Method Sports Performance, developed by Dr. Norris and Dr. Newcomer, will be opening later this year as part of the Integrated Center for Wellness. Method Sports Performance will offer a science-based approach to improving the performance of athletes of all ages. For more information, you may contact Joe Norris at joe@norrises.org. Back to Top

March 09, 2016

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