The First Principles Approach

About FPM

Give a positive experience with movement by finding a safe, relatable starting point for your clients to explore the benefits of movement, then progress & challenge them by finding the hardest thing they do well.

“You’ve learned the skill set, now learn the mindset.” – Craig Liebenson

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A Systematic Way of Thinking

“First principles thinking is the act of boiling a process down to the fundamental parts that you know are true and building up from there.”

The Problem We Are Facing

We are in the midst of an inactivity crisis which accelerates the challenges of a rapidly aging population & growing inequities in the social determinants of health. People are actually getting older at a younger age. As Stephen Hawking said “The cause of most disease is we eat too much and move too little. Why more people don’t realize this is beyond my comprehension.”

FPM’s Mission

To challenge the status quo & provide a science based & personalized approach to getting people back to activity.


FPM’s Vision

“Movement as Medicine” is the benchmark for our community of coaches & clinicians who promote both self-management & independent functioning. Every person is entitled to:

1. Healthy longevity (prevention of non-communicable diseases (NCDs)) &
2. Sustainable athleticism

We empower coaches to leverage client expectations about weight loss & aesthetics towards these lifelong goals. Similarly, clinicians can bridge the evidence-practice gap by utilizing the “gift of injury” to promote these same aims rather than merely symptom management.

Over 2000 years ago, Aristotle defined a first principle as “the first basis from which a thing is known.”

“When we’re faced with complex problems, we default to thinking like everybody else. First principles thinking is a powerful way to help you break out of this herd mentality, think outside the box and innovate completely brand new solutions to familiar problems.”

Elon Musk, the founder and CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, says there’s a better way to innovate: start with a blank slate and use first principles.

“Don’t be a slave of the methods. The methods should serve the goals.” Dr Karel Lewit

“Time spent in assessment will save time in management.” Pr Vladimir Janda

— Dr. Craig Liebenson, D.C., Founder

“First principles thinking is one of the most effective mental tools you can have in your toolbox. It also explains why some people are far more innovative than others.”

"It’s comforting to have a snappy answer or the certainty of knowing not only how it is, but how it happened and precisely what happens next.

But sometimes we don’t know.

And in those moments, we are left with our first principles. To focus on possibility, on the change we seek to make, on showing up as an even better version of the person we hope to be.

Especially when it’s hard."

  1. Interview with Katie Dabrowski DPT Sports Science Dudes Podcast 57:49
  2. Katie Dabrowski - Understand Pain & Be the Voice that Makes a Difference Move Without Limits Podcast 37:48
  3. Dr. Ryan Chow - U Are Not Fragile The Coach U Podcast 1:01:24
  4. Interview with Dr. Liebenson 21st Century Physio Podcast 58:15
  5. Donald Mull - Playing Within the Constraints Be A Better PT Podcast 44:08
  6. Dr. Liebenson - The Motion is the Lotion The Coach U Podcast 1:17:29
  7. David Joyce, Dr. Craig Liebenson, & More - "Most Underrated & Most Overrated Method Or Exercise." Athletes Authority ON AIR 50:54
  8. Dr. Don Berry | Strength Is Life RAW with Marty Gallagher 1:33:22