Body Symmetry

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This past weekend when I was on a panel at the Perform Better Summit in Chicago several of the presenters referred to symmetry in the body. I left with the impression that when they detected asymmetries then they would then correct those. (Please keep in mind this is my interpretation and recollection of what was said) I have been down that path and it ended up in a very frustrating dead end. I think we need to remember that the body is fundamentally asymmetrical. We have the heart on one side body, both lobes of the brain are not equal size, in females one breast is lower than the other, in males one testicle is lower than the other. Even in elite sprinters step length is not even. There is a slight difference left to right and right to left. All of that being said, then should we try to make the body symmetrical and balanced? I really don’t think so. We need to look at proportional development and decide what is acceptable for the person relative to the task they are performing. A right handed tennis player who has played for a number of years will have a significantly bigger right wrist and forearm than the left. The body will adapt to the task demanded. As professionals we have to observe how it adapts and make sure all the parts are timed up and working in harmony. In my opinion the goal should be proportional development, otherwise we may be seeking an unattainable goal. Remember we want to create fully adaptable athletes not robots.

Vern Gambetta

Vern Gambetta

Director at Gambetta Sports Training Systems
Vern is the Director of Gambetta Sports Training Systems. He has been the a conditioning coach for several MLS teams as well as the conditioning consultant to the US Men's World Cup Soccer team. Vern is the former Director of Conditioning for the Chicago White Sox and New York Mets. He has lectured and conducted clinics in Canada, Japan, Australia and Europe and has authored six books and over one hundred articles related to coaching and sport performance in a variety of sports. He has a BA in teaching with a coaching minor and an MA in Education with an emphasis in physical education from Stanford University.
Vern Gambetta

@coachgambetta

Athletic Development Coach & Consultant. Founder of GAIN Network. Proud dad. Love to read everything.
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Vern Gambetta

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