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What is the FRA?

Updated: Apr 29, 2023

by Patrick Hageman FRAs FRCms BSME

The FRA or Functional Range Assessment is a detailed joint by joint assessment, detailing the current movement capacity of your neck, spine, shoulder blades, shoulders, elbows, wrists, hips, knees, and ankles. The goal of the the FRA is to provide a detailed insight as to what the current state of your body is. The FRA can be broken down into the Full FRA or the Full Physical Physical, the Partial FRA, and the Single Joint FRA. The FRA consists of the CARs assessment and the Table Test.

full physical physical or full FRA, is a detailed joint by joint assessment and takes around 3.5 hours to complete. As a coach it helps me to understand and prioritize the work for every joint in my clients body. We assess passive range of motion ( how far can this joint be moved) and active range of motion (how much control does the client have over that in that range of motion). This helps to distinguish between articulations (joints) that need more range of motion (workspace) and joints that need more strength and control.

As a client, knowing where your body moves and doesn't move will help you to understand what movements are safe and contribute beneficially to your goals. This will also help to distinguish the movements that don't contribute to your goals. These movements or lack of movement may be causing the discomfort or be leading towards an injury that you have yet to sustain. "You can't move where you can't move" -(Dr. Andreo Spina, Chicago 2019 FRC seminar) Knowing this as well as how to re-establish the necessary workspace will help you to train in a manner that mitigates the risk of injury. The goal is to teach you as much about your body as possible.

The Partial FRA is a broken down assessment that focuses on the joints specific to your goals, ie. if you want to squat, you need hips, knees, ankles, feet, and a spine. This could take around 2.5 hours to compete and will help me as your coach to provide the interventions necessary to improve any limited ranges of motion found during the assessment.

The single joint FRA offers a deep dive on one joint, this could be a joint that is causing acute discomfort, or one you want to specifically learn more about. This can also be a great starting point to learn more about yourself and the importance of mobility.

Practical example of a client after an FRA:

Client: Came to me with pain in her hip, she had a pinching sensation whenever she squatted to depth. Through her FRA we found that she was limited in Internal Rotation, External Rotation, Hip Flexion (raising her leg), and Hip Adduction (bringing her leg across the midline). Through specific inputs focusing on restoring rotation to her hip as well as daily movement through CARs (reference blog entitled, Do your CARs!) After 8 weeks of hard consistent work, she is reporting zero pain. She has added muscle mass, hit numerous PRs, and has reported dramatic increases in strength.

Book your FRA today and find out what personalized strength and mobility training really feels like.

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