Any sports fan knows – it’s not necessarily the team with the strongest individual players that wins the game – it’s the one that best manages both predictable and unpredictable situations on the field. Of course, all athletes are fine-tuned machines in their own right, but at the end of the day, it’s good team play, timing, and communication between the players that turns a strong team into a winning team.
That’s not just true for sports. Movement generally works much the same way.
Just like the individual players work on their athletic performance independent of the team, improving the performance of any one muscle that contributes to movement is not a bad concept. In exercise we often focus on a specific muscle when strengthening isolated areas in our body – to be able to manage higher loads and offset higher impact, or simply because of cosmetic reasons. But movement is more than the sum of conditioned muscles. The body needs good team play, timing, and communication between all muscles and systems involved in order to move well.
In sports, there is a clear distinction between conditioning for the individual players and team drills. Why not train our bodies that way, too?
Train your muscles for strong play – then train your movement to bring home the cup.