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All Posts in Category: ACTIVE RELEASE ENHANCES PHYSICAL THERAPY

“Walking is not a very good back exercise” mentioned on PBS this weekend, not a very good opinion

I was slightly shocked listening to a show on PBS this weekend discussing all forms of exercises to help with aging.  On the the show they were discussing a wide variety of exercising from a large panel and the topics of discussions were yoga, pilates, stretching routines, swimming, cycling, running and many other forms.  A statement was made on the show however that “Walking is not a very good back exercise” and I almost dropped my pain brush in the garage, loaded with white paint!

Hold on and prepare yourself  on why this is a poor attitude to have towards “talking a walk”.  While I feel the person making this statement was comparing walking against pilates or aerobics and basing their statement on muscle activation and stretching, walking is actually a good exercise for the back.  When you look at walking from a stance of worrying about the deepest areas of the spine, and not just your “back muscles”, then you realize quickly that walking is very essential to spinal health and is actually a good exercise for the back.

Spinal mobility is intimately related to the health of the spinal discs.  If you take the flexibility out of the disc itself, spinal mobility and flexibility will be decreased greatly.  This means, the discs help to provide a great deal of rotating levels and bendable materials so that we can move.  If the discs in our spines were not flexible, we would feel like we had a stiff board for a back and not a system of joints that permits movement.  Disc hydration is what allows the discs to remain mobile.  Around ages 18 – 22, the spinal discs ability to self hydrate starts to steadily reduce.  This means that about the time you truly become a skeletal mature adult, lets say by age 25, the only way that the core of your discs can be lubricated, watered, and fed with nutrients is through a process known as imbibition.

Bare with me on this in relation to the original point that “Walking is not a very good back exercise”.  The opening and closing action of intradiscal spaces (space the disc resides in between two bones known as vertebral bodies), applies and then releases pressure on the disc causing a pumping process with feed and nourishes the disc with water and nutrients.  This pumping motion sucks fresh spinal fluid in and compress old spinal fluid out.  This process is very critical to the health of the discs, keeping them soft, compressible and flexible.  To take this point even further, when a person sits still, the process of imbibition is stopped completely.  So yes, sitting in an office chair for long periods of time does negatively impact your spine in most cases when looking at the spinal discs.

So my response to the idea that “Walking is not a very good back exercise” is that the statement is completely false and while walking does not strengthen your back musculature, it is imperative to discal health deep inside the spine.  Furthermore, when compared to a daily activity of sitting in a desk chair for long periods of time, walking for a sore back can be just what the doctor ordered.

Looking for more information about your spine or need some old low back looked at?  Give us a call and we will try and help you as much as possible.  856-228-3100 

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660 AM WFAN Rick Wolff’s 5/15/16 Show – Jeff Passan Author of The Arm – Pitching Injuries

This past weekend while preparing myself (psyching myself up) to go into the gym, I found myself listening to 660 AM WFAN out of New York (yes, go ahead and boo me Philly) but an interesting interview was done with Jeff Passan, Author of The Arm and the title of the segment was:

Why So Many Young Pitchers Suffer Arm Injuries: A Candid Interview with Jeff Passan, author of THE ARM

You can find the podcast at:  http://newyork.cbslocal.com/audio/wfan-audio/

Jeff Passan is a baseball columnist at Yahoo! Sports ( http://sports.yahoo.com/author/jeff-passan/ ) who is also the author The Arm: Inside the Billion-Dollar Mystery of the Most Valuable Commodity in Sports which has been pulling in some great reviews at Amazon.com.  While the interview itself was only about 20-25 minutes long discounting commercials, Jeff’s attitude was that Major League Baseball’s help in trying to push for better protocols and awareness is needed strongly at this time.

Outside of Jeff’s new book and his large speaking platform on throwing related injuries, we see a great deal of baseball players in our office for throwing related injuries, sore shoulders, back pain and stiffness, and many other issues.  One of the very best articles on throwing and baseball related injuries and prevention is authored by Dr’s James Andrews, Mary Lloyd Ireland,  and Glenn S. Fleisig at STOP Sports Injuries.  The tip sheet discusses when to throw a fast ball, a curve ball, a screw ball, a knuckle ball, and much more important information young pitchers need to know.

Baseball Injury Tip Sheet:  http://www.stopsportsinjuries.org/STOP/Prevent_Injuries/Baseball_Injury_Prevention.aspx

If you or a young athlete need a baseball ache/pain/injury looked at  this baseball season, please give us a call at 856.228.3100.  We use many of the same techniques that professional baseball players seek out for treatment for all sorts of baseball related issues, including Active Release Technique, Chiropractic Manipulation, and Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Manipulation just to name a few.

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LA Times Article — Surfing icon Laird Hamilton shares his 10-point plan to live

Anyone that hangs around the office long enough knows that Dr. Kemenosh gets a little bit excited about surfing, paddle boarding, tropical storms, and just being around the ocean in general.  When this article went live on the LA Times website, I knew immediately we would have to link to it.  While a few of his theories are pretty strong, possibly even a bit over the top, you have to admit that at least some of them make great common sense.  In the article Laird talks about keeping up right and moving no matter what and that every day you must perform at least some level of moderate exercise.  He jumps into the importance of eating healthy fats to some extent.  Later in the article he talks about not being afraid to run around barefoot from time time to help keep the muscles in your feet healthy and mobile as well.

LA Times Article: http://www.latimes.com/health/la-he-0521-laird-hamilton-20160521-snap-story.html

While we don’t support everything in this article because Laird operates at the level of a well paid professional athlete, it is important to give this article a look on how to improve yourself!

Oh, and just so you know he can surf, and his doggie Jack can to.  #OCNJ

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What causes that pain in my butt, could it be Sciatica!

A lot of the pain we work with in our office has to do with pain that seems to radiate towards the gluteal region from the low back and even in some cases down into the thigh and lower leg.  The pain in some cases is often tooth-achy pain in nature while in other cases of more sudden onset it can be sharp pain that stops you in an instant.  These are pretty common signs of sciatica.

In a lot of cases, dull, achy low back pain with some mild sciatica is relieved with stretching, changes in position, and going from a sitting position to an upright position.  Some common causes of sciatic pain are spinal stenosis.  Spinal stenosis is a decrease space in the spinal canal which is usually caused by arthritic changes and bone formation to help support the spine.  Spinal stenosis is often a slow progressing problem that does not simply strike overnight.  A disc herniation is more of an acute problem very commonly causing pain to radiate down the leg from the low back.  When a disc has a herniation, it either bulges outward onto a spinal nerve root or leaks on the spinal nerve roots and causes high level pain which usually comes on after an known event like picking up something aggressively, bending over a lot, being in some form of traumatic accident, etc.

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Another common cause that we are referred patients to our office from all types of healthcare providers (Orthopedics, Physiotherapists, Physical Therapists, Family doctors, etc) specifically for Active Release Technique is piriformis syndrome.  The piriformis muscle is a muscle in the buttocks region which controls rotation of the femur and when this muscle tightens abnormally or spasms completely, it often times puts a good deal of pressure on the sciatic nerve, causing a “pseudo form of sciatic” that often times gets better short term with self stretching and less sitting, but never completely goes away in this manner because often times other structures in the gluteal and hamstring regions will not let you stretch enough to solve the problem completely.

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Lastly, pregnancy can actually cause some issues in around the sciatic areas in the gluteal region due to a pelvic girdle which is opening to better accommodate the birth of a child.  These changes in hip angle, pelvis shape, and overall postural changes can in some cases cause increased pressure on the sciatic nerve as it passes through this region.  The good news for all you expectant mothers is that it often times improves once the child is delivered and the pelvic areas fall back to a normal position and the anterior pelvic tilt caused during pregnancy improves greatly in weeks postpartum.

If you or someone you know is suffering with the any of the issues discussed in this blog post, please reach out to our office!  These are issues we deal with week in and week out!

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