Core Mobility - What it is and why it matters
What is Core Mobility?
The Chest, Abdomen, Pelvis and Spine/Skull are sometimes called the ‘Great Cavities’. Our Internal Organs (brain, liver, spleen, kidneys, etc.) reside in the Great Cavities.
Movement is essential to organ function, wellness and longevity. Core Mobility is a measure of mobility and stiffness along the axis of the spine, affecting the Great cavities and their organ contents.
Let’s Examine how Core Mobility Affects Health
Cerebrospinal Fluid (CSF) flows around and through the interior of the brain as well as down the length of the spinal cord. Breathing related changes of spinal cavity pressure creates a pump like effect that propels CSF. Every day the brain produces over ½ liter of CSF. The total volume of CSF in the brain and spinal cord is replaced 3 to 4 times per day. Circulation of CSF past parts of the brain that secrete and resorb CSF is essential to good brain health and brain function. With aging and reduced Core Mobility, CSF circulation slows, cognitive and emotional functioning is impaired and cognitive decline begins.
The Liver, Spleen and Kidneys are sponge like with many millions of tiny canals and blood filled spaces. These organs are located immediately under the diaphragm muscle and have a curved upper surface that allows them to fit snugly against the diaphragm. With each breath the liver, spleen and kidneys are compressed and then released by the diaphragm. Just like sponges being squeezed and released, fluids are expressed and then drawn into the organs. This induces flow of blood through the interior of each organ, allowing the organs cells to perform their life sustaining function. With reduced Core Mobility these organs have decreased internal circulation, impaired function and longevity is affected.
The other abdominal and pelvic organs, such as the intestines and uterus are influenced by Core Mobility. The pelvic floor is a muscular area supporting the pelvic organs. With reduced Core Mobility there is less stimulation of the pelvic floor and weakening of the pelvic floor follows. This can lead to incontinence and other changes.
With increasing stiffness of the spine, rib cage, and diaphragm there is less spinal and diaphragmatic motion with each breath. As noted above this leads in many ways to impaired organ function, decrease in organ function and reduced longevity of life. iHeart is a fingertip pulse sensor able to determine Core Mobility using pulse wave analysis and objectively show that with exercise, good diet and stress management Core Mobility improves. iHeart assesses Core Mobility by measuring stiffness of the Aorta, the large blood vessel located immediately in front of the spinal column and passing through the diaphragm muscle. The way iHeart measures Aortic Stiffness is by measuring Pulse Wave Velocity, a measure of Aortic Stiffness. iHeart does this by measuring distinct spots in the pulse shape. The fingertip pulse has a characteristic three wave pattern as shown below.
The second wave is called the Aortic Reflected wave and speed with which the Reflected Wave travels depends on Aortic Stiffness. By characterizing the Reflected Wave iHeart is able to precisely measure Aortic Stiffness. Aortic Stiffness is a simple and effective way to measure Core Mobility. iHeart is the first and only device that lets people see their lifespan extending with attention to exercise, good diet and stress management.
To improve Core Mobility today try any of the following:
- Sit Less - sitting for extended periods of time will help the body stiffen up quickly, so try not to sit for extended periods of time.
- Move more - increase movement each day, even if it's just getting up from your desk and going for a 10 minute walk, that will help and is a great start.
- Stretch! Stretching will improve mobility of the entire body, including the core and the organs that live in the Great Cavity. Try these stretches you can do at work!
- Hydrate - Hydration will help improve core mobility, try to drink at least 2 Litres of water/day