Movement has three planes of motion; Frontal, Sagittal, and Transverse. Most of our daily activities require the Sagittal plane. Movements such as walking, squatting, jumping, pushing, and pulling all take place is this plane. Movement that require side to side fall into the frontal plane, while rotation is done in the Transverse plane.
Moving through the transverse plane is a very important part of any training program, yet seems to be lacking far too often. Having strength and control through these movements will help reduce the risk of injury while performing movement in the other planes. Rotary stability is what allows for proper motor control during complex movement patterns like the snatch and clean and is also a component of basic developmental movement patterns like crawling.
Rotary stability is the ability to control rotational forces during activities like throwing, swinging, striking, kicking, and sprinting. It is needed to resist rotation through the torso during arm and leg movements. The bird-dog for example, requires stability through the pelvis, core, and shoulder girdle during hip extension and shoulder flexion.
Core stability is often confused with core strength. Charlie Weingroff defines stability as, “Control in the presence of change.” Core stability is different than core strength. Many people believe that because they can perform hundreds on sit-ups means that they have adequate strength and stability. Our “core” has a lot of functions, and the primary roles are to resist external forces and transfer force to our extremities. Rotary stability is needed for this to function.