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6.17.2013

Balance, Proprioception, Muscle Spindles

We unconsciously perceive our movement and spatial orientation from stimuli within the body itself, this is called proprioception.  For example when standing and leaning forward we feel an increased pressure in the front part of the soles of the feet.  Cues from the ankles indicate the body’s movement and sway relative to standing, as well as information about the quality of the surface whether it is hard, soft, slippery, uneven or other.  Sensory receptors respond by sending impulses to the brain to correct posture, thus balance.

The sensory impulses originating in the neck are especially important as proprioceptive cues indicate the direction in which the head is turned and how the corresponding postural balance must be adjusted.  Anatomical structures in the cervical spine responsible for position sense interact with the Central Nervous System and affect our ability to plan and execute effective purposeful movements.

Muscle spindles are the sensory receptors found in the belly of muscles that are sensitive to stretch and changes in the muscles length.  These receptors are in high densities and have complex arrays in cervical muscles and provide proprioceptive information for the CNS.  Muscle spindles play a key role in cervical sensorimotor function and are an important part of our abilities in athletics.  To have a balanced training program head and neck strengthening must be included. Balance your workouts with head and neck training as you Get Strong. 

Pendulum 4 Way Head and Neck

Pendulum Head and Neck Machine

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