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Almost every person has some sort of muscular dysfunction or imbalance that can lead to pain and injury. The NASM Corrective Exercise Specialization (CES) delivers a proven method that reduces dysfunction and helps people move, feel and live better.  The CES is founded on the principles of the NASM Corrective Exercise Continuum (CEx); a simple, yet highly effective four-step process to improve, and ultimately, correct movement compensations.

NASM Corrective Exercise Continuum
NASM Corrective Exercise Continuum

First, self-myofascial release (SMR) is used on areas that have been identified as being overactive or shortened through assessments. When SMR is performed correctly it can reduce tension in a muscle and help to restore length.

Following SMR, the second step is to perform lengthening techniques. This is done with static stretching or neuromuscular stretching. Combining SMR with these stretching techniques has a synergistic effect that allows optimal length to be restored to a muscle.

After inhibiting and lengthening overactive areas, the third step is activating muscles that are underactive or weakened. This step uses either isolated strengthening exercises or positional isometrics to focus on intramuscular coordination. The completion of steps one through three prepares the human movement system to learn new optimal movement patterns.

The fourth and final step of the CEx is integration. This step is important for creating lasting change by reintroducing integrated dynamic movement. The use of a total body exercise, once proper muscle length is restored and underactive muscles have been strengthened, will create better intermuscular communication. The improved communication will allow the nervous system to properly activate all muscles, resulting in, correct movement patterns.

By following this simple CEx four-step process, a fitness professional can quickly improve, and with time, correct a client’s movement compensation(s). This will lead to clients feeling better, moving better, and performing at higher levels!

NASM strives to update programs for professionals who seek to always learn and grow professionally. NASM recently enhanced the Corrective Exercise Specialization to increase your ability to apply the principles of corrective exercise. As the cornerstone for exercise professionals, the Corrective Exercise Specialization now contains more application based learning opportunities, including new cueing videos, interactive learning modules, and client scenarios.

To learn more about the new enhancements or to purchase the new NASM-CES, visit