Greg Rose: Fix Function First

Just because you have the capacity—tons of strength and power and you have all these great things— does this tell me how well you’re going to do on the PGA tour?

No, it just tells me that you’re a good athlete.

To specialize, you need more than just that. We’re going to have to check your sport-specific skills. I put a question mark there because I’m asking, “ what athlete are you?” What are you trying to do? If you’re trying to be a javelin thrower, then I need to check your javelin skills.

If you’re trying to be a golfer, this is where I’ve lived for a long time.

At TPI (Titleist Performance Institute), we have a screening system that we do with our golfers. Everyone is always asking me, “Where does your TPI screen fit in with FMS?” We have golfers who are getting injured and we’re moving through SFMA and FMS. People confuse these and they use these in different places but I hope that kind of clarifies where all of these things go.

We’re going to show you how we start. Let’s say that an athlete walks in and says, “I want to get bet­ter.”

Where do you start? You have to have a system . . .

Everybody argues FMS scores.

“Oh, I was a 15,” or “No, I thought they were a 17.”

The only thing you’re arguing about is 2s and 3s. Would you agree with that?

Everybody knows if it’s a 0. Everybody knows if it’s a 1. You spend all this time on 2s and 3s. I don’t care if it’s a 2 or a 3. My triage tells me where to start if it’s a 0, 1 or a 2. It doesn’t matter if it’s a 0, a 1 or a 3, or 2s or 3s.

It tells me where to go. If you’re a 2 or a 3, I’ve got to go check your capacity because you’re func­tioning well enough. If it’s a 1, what do you think I’m going to do? If you have a 1 on the FMS, who am I going to blame first, the organism or the environment? I’m going to blame the environment first. If you can’t squat, I’m thinking that I need to change your environment.

Do you know how to change an environment? I hope so. That’s what you guys get paid for. You control their environment, their workout. I’m telling you right now. When you take people in the FMS who have a 1 and you change their environment, their world is going to change.

Instead of saying, “There’s something wrong with your ankle,” maybe you’re adapting. You’re adapting to the demand that’s getting put upon you and that demand is forcing you to have a bad pattern. Do you ever think of that? It happens every day.

We use these screens as our navigation. It’s our triage to tell us where we need to go. For example, let’s say one of my golfers comes in. This guy walks in and goes, “Hey, can I get a golf les­son?” I literally have people who can barely walk and they say, “I would love to get put on a golf-specific program.”

“Dude, you can’t walk.”

I’m going to tell them they need to get healthy. I am going to assess them using the SFMA. That’s what they need. If they’re not plugged into the power source, what does it matter how far they can throw a medicine ball?

If another guy, he doesn’t have pain but he doesn’t have basic function, walks in and says, “I want a golf lesson,” I say, “Hey, you’ve got to get functional first.” I’m going to check their fundamental movement skills. I’m going to try and correct that first to get rid of all their 1s. I want to make sure they connect to the environment.

If a guy walks in who’s a pretty good athlete but you can tell maybe that his capac­ity or endurance isn’t where it is, we guys need to get him fit. We’ll work on getting him fit. I’m still not really giving him a golf lesson yet. I’m basically going to use my Fundamental Capacity Screen to see where that capacity problem is, really check their range and their endurance to see what’s going on.

Then finally, hopefully, this guy comes in and says, “I want a golf lesson.” What am I going to do? You’ll get a club and we’ll go give a lesson because you earned it.

By the way, you’ll hit it farther when you fix function first.

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