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Functional Range Conditioning (FRC)

Developed by Dr. Andreo Spina, the FRC (Functional Range Conditioning) system is a comprehensive system of joint health and mobility training based on scientific principles. Having many applicable uses, this system is continuing to be utilized in the rehabilitation, performance, and sports medicine worlds.

What is Functional Range Conditioning (FRC)®?

FRC works by systematically expanding the body’s ranges of motion, while simultaneously teaching the nervous system how to control the newly acquired ranges.

Mobility Vs Flexibility Infographic

Flexibility is the ability to passively achieve an extended range of motion, whereas Mobility is the ability to control ranges of motion. The definition of mobility is what Functional Range Conditioning is all about.

As our ability to generate force across the joint decreases, we lose the ability to actively control the range of motion. Thus these long, and short ranges are only accessible to us via passive means and are therefore essentially useless from a movement, functional perspective.  Further, because the longer and shorter ranges are not utilized, the joints tissues never develop the ability to absorb loads at those ranges leaving them more susceptible to injury.

The goal is FRC is to improve the ability to control and move one’s own body through means of active and usable joint ranges of motion. This is done through improving articular/joint mobility, strength/resilience, and neurological control. Through specific and safe methods we can ‘convert’ passive ranges of motion and convert them into usable, active ranges.  In addition, during the development of improved mobility, the system ensures the simultaneous development of tissue strength and resilience in the newly acquired ranges.

In essence, the Functional Range Conditioning system improves the ability to control, and move one’s own body.

Benefits of Functional Range Conditioning (FRC®)

Frc

  • Mobility + Flexibility
    The main focus of FRC is to both improve flexibility, as well as to simultaneously teach the nervous system how to control the newly acquired ranges. Further, it is to develop the ability to generate power, strength, and co-ordination, in the new ranges.
  • Joint Strength
    Progressive loading leads to adaptations in the connective tissues of the body, including fascia, bone, ligaments, capsules, tendons, vessels and 80% of nerves. The FRC system considers each of these subtypes as targets, improving tissue quality and resilience in ALL of the components making up the joint complex.
  • Articular Joint Health & Longevity
    FRC has been safely and effectively utilized with several patient populations and ages to preserve movement and function, optimize joint health, and slow the progression of the degenerative process. Some of the components of the system, Controlled Articular Rotations (CARs), were specifically created with this goal in mind.
  • Rehabilitation/Prevention and Performance Enhancement
    Due to its versatility, the FRC system can be utilized in both the rehabilitation, and the performance/athletic populations. Improvements in mobility unlock greater ranges of motion with which to develop force output. Improved mobility is also a vital component of agility, defined as the ability to rapidly respond to change by adapting its initial stable configuration. Agility can be thought of as utilization of one’s mobility in all life, sports, and functional activities.

Closing Thoughts 

Functional Range Conditioning (FRC) is a safe and versatile tool, and can be excellent additions into your active routines. More info on the FRC system can be found here.

As always, it is highly recommended to consult with a licensed healthcare professional whether the FRC system is appropriate for your needs and goals. At Studio Athletica & Push Pounds, some of our Physiotherapists and Chiropractors are certified in utilizing the FRC system into your treatment plan.

If you have questions regarding FRC, or would like to inquire/book a consultation, please call (416) 722-3393 or e-mail hello@studioathletica.com

References

  • About FRC® – Functional Anatomy Seminars. (2021). Retrieved from https://functionalanatomyseminars.com/functional-range-conditioning/
  • Oranchuk, D. J., Storey, A. G., Nelson, A. R., & Cronin, J. B. (2019). Isometric training and long-term adaptations: Effects of muscle length, intensity, and intent: A systematic review. Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports, 29(4), 484–503. https://doi.org/10.1111/sms.13375
  • Noorkõiv, M., Nosaka, K., & Blazevich, A. J. (2014). Neuromuscular Adaptations Associated with Knee Joint Angle-Specific Force Change. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 46(8), 1525–1537. https://doi.org/10.1249/MSS.0000000000000269