Functional Movement: An Antidote to Chronic Pain

The human body is designed to move freely at every age. But unconscious neural patterns can interfere with the body’s natural self-healing process that ideally keeps us youthful and active. 

What Is Functional Movement?

Functional movement is when each body part is being used optimally, resulting in organic ease physically, joy emotionally and clarity mentally. In other words, enhanced functional movement accesses a wide range of direct benefits, including: 

  •   a balanced, aligned, pain free body,
  •   fluid and flexible movement
  •   clear thinking
  •   comfortable and pleasurable emotions
  •   a peaceful, purposeful, powerful Self

Functional movement hydrates, nourishes, and revitalizes by restoring  mobility, increasing oxygen and blood flow, and eliminating physical and emotional pain in a holistic, integrated way.


Somatic re-education begins with the brain, the body’s operating system, and the brain-body connection. Practitioners work from the understanding that physical, emotional and mental habits are responses to one’s unique personal history.  When a person unknowingly creates repetitive movement patterns to compensate for childhood experiences, injuries, or stress, habits are formed. 

Habits can restrict a person’s movement options. As habits continue, parts of the body may be mis-used, over-used, or under-used. Pain is often the result of these habits. Fortunately, this type of dysfunction can be unlearned. 

Who most benefits from a functional movement perspective?

Ultimately, any individual who wants peak use of their body at any age and in any capacity can benefit from a functional movement approach. This include those who are:

  • Sitting at the Computer, which places an 80 percent more load on the spine than when standing
  • Sedentary which can increase risk for arthritis, as movement is necessary to encourage blood flow and oxygen-rich circulation
  • Physically active, but who walk, stand or run bearing weight unevenly, unconsciously wearing out the tissues and the joints

When is it time to learn functional movements to heal my body?

Arguably, functional movement should be as much a part of our self care as exercise and brushing our teeth. Helping the brain and body function better after a day of habitual activity gives it a “reboot.” Anytime one notices sluggishness, fatigue, frustration, lack of clarity, negative emotions, sleeplessness, or pain, functional movement can offer relief.

Where Can I Learn More About Functional Movement? 

Those interested in learning more about this cutting-edge, non-invasive approach may choose to read “The Brain’s Way of Healing,” by Norman Doidge, M.D. This recent New York Times bestseller offers a deep dive to the viability of using the brain’s neuroplasticity for healing and stopping pain permanently without pills, shots or surgery. 

Or, you can reach out to me personally with your questions. I will be happy to help.


Judy Ban Greenman

Judy Ban Greenman is a Natural Pain Relief and Empowerment Coach. She helps people access physical and emotional freedom, so they can transform struggle, reduce symptoms, move freely, and live fully with ease, choice and connection. Learn more about her work at Body Brain Freedom,