Great question re How do I incorporate the SFMA screen into my physical therapy practice? I find myself using the SFMA prior to the FMS screen. The main reason for prioritizing the SFMA screen is that people are often coming off an injury and the SFMA brings out their mobility and stability issues.
A few years ago we offered free screen at Solepeppers Running store and was afforded an opportunity to screen a lot of runners. The runners presented with unique patterns regarding stability and a mobility. The screens were a great learning opportunity to observe if the client could incorporate their core and hips into their gait pattern. Runners with an “itis” injury had difficulty with an inline kneel position. Injuries could include “shin splints”, achilles tendonitis, and plantar fasciitis.
Runners and cyclists with overuse issues had moderate to significant difficuly holding the inline kneel position. The inline kneel position can demonstrate how well the core and the hips are incorporated into a persons stability.
One great aspect of the SFMA screen is that it has been incorporated with bike fits, and manual therapy. One suprising aspect of screening how much is tweens and teenagers respond to it. The assessment really shows an adolescent what they need to work on, and what is great is that a lot of the kids do their homework!
Re bike fits, I can get a lot of folks into a good position on the bike, but the underlying issues are their mobility and stability issues. So the combination of the fit and the exercises works well to get the client into an optimal position and fitness.
Re manual therapy, the first step is to get a client out of pain and they try to discern what is their pain generator. Often their squat and forward bends are limited to very limited and they are compensating around their loss of mobility. For example so many of us of sitting too much and when the hips lose mobility the lumbar spine tries to pick it up. The pain is in the lumbar spine but the issue is the hips and core.
I also use the joint by joint model by Michael Boyle to clear old injuries that may be impairing movement. The joint by joint model looks at joints from their individual design. The ankle affords or is biased toward mobility and the knee moves in a linear fashion. If the ankle loses mobility due to a old bad sprain then that movement loss influences the joints above it in a kinetic chain.
The FMS is used for people who have graduated from the SFMA and or request it. All the same principles are used.
One other aspect of screens that we have developed is a “Yoga Movement Screen” The “YMS” uses the principles of the SFMA and Yoga in concert. The Yoga Movement Screen looks at the dynamics of the breath, lifestyle, and movement to help the individual toward recovery.
All the screens provide the screener a great opportunity for patient education. So many folks learn through movement and observation that the screens become educational in themselves.
Thanks for your question!
Mike Kohm PT