Our children are collapsing under the weight of gravity. Why? They look down all day at screens. For some, this is a major problem now, and for others, this will be a problem in the future. So this morning I’ll talk about Seth, whom I’ll call the amazing collapsing boy. For something new, I’ll also have Cole Bros Fitness weigh in on how they deal with the epidemic of collapsing children using exercise.
Houston, We Have a Problem
This is the first generation in human history that spends a huge part of the day looking down at screens. What does this cause? When you look down all day, your shoulders round forward and your spine does the same. This has effects all the way down the body as your hips and knees internally rotate and your ankles collapse inward. All of this adversely impacts the body. For example, the spine discs wear out faster as weight is transferred forward onto those structures. The shoulder joints aren’t firmly in their sockets, so extra wear and tear wreak havoc with the rotator cuff muscles. The hip, knee, and ankle joints begin to wear out. In essence, the body begins to break down.
The Amazing Collapsing Boy
Seth is like many kids and adults these days who have a forward collapsing-type posture. In fact, until my son, who is a computer kid, got his own exercise prescription, he was also a collapsing boy. For Seth, the first focus on his problems was on his feet.
Being an otherwise normally active kid with a family that loves to hike, Seth would notice disabling foot and ankle pain after a trek. His mother brought him in, and what was obvious was his flat feet and collapsing ankles. This fit with the rest of his collapsing posture.
The image above shows various foot positions. Seth’s feet were overpronated (image all the way to the left). So how do we fix this? What needs to be addressed?
The Deltoid Ligament
When most doctors think about ankle ligaments, they think about the outside ligaments that people sprain all the time. However, there are also ligaments on the inside of the ankle, and for Seth’s feet to be this way, he had to have lax inner ankle ligaments. In the image below, note that these are strong ligaments. In addition, other ligaments on the bottom of the foot (called the spring ligaments shown running left to right) also have to be lax to allow a flat foot to form.
So can this be fixed? Since Seth’s problem is one part postural collapse and one part congenital (being born that way), I would normally say, no, there’s nothing we can do. However, a recent experience with a woman who is now in her 70s changed my mind. She had had a lifetime of foot and ankle pain, and through repetitive platelet-based ligament-tightening injections, her ankle position partially corrected and she was able to shed the constant pain. However, there’s another part to this story that’s critical—the exercise prescription.
Introducing Cole Bros Fitness
I first met Kelly Cole a few years back when he was working at a local health club as a personal trainer. I was immediately impressed with his ability to help people work around old injuries and his understanding of the use of exercise as a therapeutic agent. In fact, I eventually hired him to be my personal trainer, and if you read this blog, you know I have a minefield of issues that Kelly needed to work around. Hence, Kelly and I will be doing more work together on the blog, which starts today.
Cole Bros Fitness and Fixing the Amazing Collapsing Boy
Here is an exercise you can do at home from Kelly Cole:
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Great morning familia 🙋🏼♂️🙋🏻♂️ rise and shine with your brothers, let’s chat about how we can combat the biggest structural issues in the body that too many of us are accumulating through life that end up leading to a lot of the pains and eventually injuries you hear people talk about 🤕 . If we can retrain your brain 🧠 how to communicate with your body, a lot of the poor posture related problems could be fixed and therefore injuries that happen due to muscle imbalances can be prevented big time. Since so many of us are looking at devices, screens and sitting at desks for long periods of time, our hips tend to get tight and eventually internally rotate, our spine starts to round because we are looking down too much which also makes our shoulders round forward as well. Since the hips get tight and internally rotate along with the thigh, the knees start rotate in as well which is the start of patellar issues. This eventually leads to pronation of the ankles. . This is something we are using for a 12 year old boy named Seth who is amazingly preventing surgery by strengthening his posterior chain and the collapsing inner spring ligaments of the inner ankle in which surgeons wanted to operate on by placing screws inside of his ankle which would have screwed him for life. Try this if you have any of the issues we talked about above👇: . Standing Hip External Rotation w/ Foot Inversion: Our goal here is to integrate your hip external rotators and foot/ankle inversion muscles back into the body which helps combat the knees caving in and ankles pronating. Place a mini band one inch above the knees. Relax knees and slightly sit hips back. Start with an excessive over exaggerated internal rotation of the hips, knees caving in and ankles pronating. Externally rotate hips, push knees out and move those ankles from a collapsed pronated position to flatter more neutral position. Repeat 10-15 controlled reps, practicing the picture perfect finish of the hip, knee and ankle aligned. . We don’t need more surgeries. We need stronger neuromuscular connections that’s have weakened or perhaps never developed to begin with. Ciao for now🙋🏼♂️🙋🏻♂️ #thedailyfitnessfind #legs
The upshot? We need to pay attention to our collapsing kids and family members! Seth is slowly getting fixed through a combination of treating loose ligaments and working with a trainer who knows how to fix a collapsing boy!