Are you still renting your skill set?

We often hear from people who like and appreciate our movement screening concept, but who have a hard time selling the idea to a coach, an athlete, a client, a manager, a supervisor or a boss. They’ll call and ask for more information to help them sell the idea of screening.

I have one piece of advice here: You can’t sell something you don’t own. Most of the people asking for this are just renting the movement screen and the Functional Movement System’s technology. They don’t really own it.

What do you have to do to own it? You have to use it. You have to train a bunch of people.

Just remember, before guys like Jon Torine and Jeff Fish became experts on the screen, they didn’t sell it to their general managers or their football programs.

They slowly chipped away at developing a skill set, screening an individual, following the algorithms and seeing what they could change. They developed proficiency and personal ownership in the Functional Movement Screen as it applied to the NFL…and had some success. They didn’t try to sell something they didn’t own.

People are excited when they leave a Functional Movement Screen workshop. They eagerly run home to explain it and start fumbling over their words. They don’t have a lot of personal experience. They don’t have a lot of anecdotes.

For every bit of research I give in a Functional Movement Screen workshop, I try to provide a life lesson or an example that hits close to home. I brush over professional athletes and tactical training with the military and fire service. I get into the rehabilitation client, the personal training client and the weight loss client.

I give everybody in the room a little taste off their home turf to let them understand that we have certain levels of expertise in every one of these populations. If you’re more specialized having one population, take the screen home and develop your expertise there.

I think a lot of the questions and opinions floating around about our work are by somewhat unqualified people who haven’t read the Movement book or haven’t really pulled any time in the trenches applying the technology.

The first time I threw a football, I wanted to change the structure of the football because it’s not aerodynamic. Then we turn around and watch what these NFL guys can do with a football. You’re thinking, ‘Maybe before I redesign the football, I should spend more time working on my spiral.’

The same lesson applies to the Functional Movement Screen. Spend some time. Be good at screening. Be good at corrections. Don’t ask your questions of the internet. Ask your questions of the screen. Use it; you have a baseline now.

If you want to know that a corrective works and that you did it right, recheck the success and see if the nervous system, the body and the individual you’re working on is changing before your eyes.

I don’t know if we’ll ever be able to explain why every one of those changes occurs, but if we have a command over those changes, we’re going to do just fine. I don’t know how the microwave works, but I heat my coffee every morning.


  1. Richard Ferrigan says:

    I did a few screenings today the first on a lady who is 87 yes, thats right at my club and it was great ask her if she wanted to do a test of sorts, she said fine, did the squat passed, the hurdler step kinda had trouble (I actually used duct tape) so more my fault than hers, did the lunge alignment pass on right an not so good on left then the rest of the screening was pretty good, the point being she was open to and basicly led me to where she wanted to go. I’m not sure I own the “skill” yet but am sure happy to have it in place to lead a path where I can help the right changes occur.

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