Is the standard movement screen adequately evaluating swimmers?

The Functional Movement Screen (FMS) is indeed a valuable standard operating procedure used to rate and rank movement quality on an ordinal scale, prior to the start of a sport season, in efforts to pin-point injury risk. Per the athlete’s score, corrective exercise strategies are then prescribed to address any presenting asymmetries and/or mobility/stability deficits. However, movements examined within the FMS may be most applicable to field and court sport athletes, thus begging the question — should there be screens that capture movement complexities respective to one’s sport?

Take swimming for example, which involves many intricate motions through the shoulder girdle and core, while demanding high degrees of hip, knee, and ankle mobility. Accordingly, in efforts to bridge this gap, a movement screen specific for swimmers, would not only help spot dysfunctional patterns and potential injury risk, but provide vital feedback to optimize energy efficient stroke mechanics and conditioning platforms as well as minimize and/or prevent injuries that could otherwise sideline one’s season, and instead maximize the longevity of their competitive career.

No matter what kind of athlete you are, your training, preventative care, and rehabilitation following injury should take into account the complex motions of your sport. We’ll be discussing specialized movement screens right here on the BGPT blog!