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  • Matt Ferrara BS C.S.C.S

The Central Nervous System Runs The Show

The central nervous system runs the show. Everything else is just along for the ride…


All systems that get results including PRI, FRC, DNS and any other effective 3 letter acronym, all are built around the importance of the central nervous system (CNS).


Let’s take DNS as an example.


DNS, or Dynamic Neuromuscular Stabilization, is an approach that emphasizes the fact that certain movement patterns are “hard-wired” into us upon birth. Examples of this being that infants don’t need to be taught to lift their head, grasp a toy, or roll over and crawl.


Instead, as the central nervous system matures, these movement patterns develop automatically. Maturation of the brain and CNS leads to development of these patterns, which in turn influences structural development of the body including soft tissue and joint development. The combination of these phenomenons creates joint positioning, and what we call posture.


What this really means is that the CNS is in control, something that you may or may not have already known.


So if your posture or positions suck, the central nervous system is the key to unlocking the changes you desire.


So how do we create changes in the central nervous system? Well first we need to interrupt your baseline and provide a new input.


When my clients come to me, it’s typically in a heightened state of awareness. If I threw a heart rate monitor on them right when they walk in the door to train (which sometimes I’ll do), you can bet your ass we’re typically getting an elevated reading.


Why is that bad? When in an elevated state, the body is ready to perform work and conserves energy to do so. It finds the most efficient way for you to move and position the body without expending energy, which is typically not the ideal positions and postures to train in.


So the first order of business when starting a session for me is changing the client’s neurological state to one more conducive to learning new patterns and positions. That’s why I will almost always start with some breath work that simultaneously drills a good position, and then move on to ingraining this position in the movements that I want to train for the day.


Training is learning, not just mindlessly following the leader. If we want to make lasting changes with our clients and ourselves, we need to remember that.


It all starts with understanding the central nervous system.

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