Is surgery for back pain really your best option?
Suffering from back pain is one of the most common reasons people go to their doctor. According to a study done by the Mayo Clinic from 2005 to 2009, almost 24% of all doctors visits was low back pain. Many of those trips to the doctor will end with a recommendation of surgery. But is that really the best option? When 1 in 5 surgeries results in a second surgery, the answer may be “no”.
Instead there is growing evidence that non-surgical interventions are equally effective and since less invasive, there is a reduced risk of any unwanted consequences. This article from NPR describes using back strengthening exercises to de-sensitize the pain receptors.
Shameless plug: GYROTONIC® training is excellent for strengthening the muscles of spinal stability and movement. In my opinion it’s a better option that the exercises described in this article. Back extension as described in the article is good, but it’s only one of the six spinal ranges of motion. If you want strength and stability in all the ways the body can move, you want to use them ALL in your workout, with resistance.
Everyone should squat but everyone can’t squat the same.
There are certain movements that are the foundation of all human activity. Some trainers, myself included, call these motions “primal movements”. Squats are one of these primal movements. This can be easily proven:
Sit down in a chair.
You’ve just done a squat. Sitting down in a chair is the perfect example to show that everyone squats. When I’m working with clients who have mobility challenges or joint degeneration (especially the knees) I work with them to have a correct squatting movement because they’re going to sit down in chairs, pretty much every single day. And a proper squat motion can help reduce pain and prevent increased damage to the knees.
But not all bodies are the same. How you squat isn’t simply a matter of the “flexibility” of your big muscles like the hamstrings or hip flexors. Your movement is also determined by the structure of your bones and in the case of squats, the structure of your femur and pelvis. This great article from The Movement Fix shows very clearly that you have to take your structure into consideration when determining yours squat form.
The best promotional for GYROTONIC® training I’ve seen.
To me, video is the best way to answer the question “What is Gyrotonic?” I’d rather show the movements that try to describe them.
While seeing what GYROTONIC® training is doesn’t necessarily help someone understand the “why”. Why should someone choose Gyrotonic training? How will it benefit me? No matter how wonderful, flowing, graceful or strengthening Gyrotonic movements can be, people need to be able to relate the movements to their own physical challenges or goals.
This video from InJoy Movement Studio, a GYROTONIC® studio in in Wilmington NC is the best client testimonial video I’ve seen, not only in the way the client talks about how the system has benefited her, but the video production is excellent.
GYROTONIC® is a registered trademark of Gyrotonic Sales Corp and is used with their permission.