Hurt But Not Disabled: How To Navigate Injuries and Improve

In May of 2019 I completely tore my ACL while wrestling. Within 10 seconds I continued grappling (from the ground only) for about an hour. Next day the swelling and pain let me know something was wrong (I had not confirmed the tear via MRI at that point). I started rehabilitating the knee and cautiously grappled. Within a month I worsened the injury while grappling. Unfortunately, the next day, I was scheduled to run the Tough Mudder at Whistler in British Columbia. I taped my leg up like a mummy and ran the 16 K trek up and down the world famous ski resort. About one and a half months after this, while grappling, I dislocated the medial meniscus and it shot out the back of the knee joint. Not having x-ray vision, I did not exactly know this at the time, but a later MRI revealed it. Finally, at that point I stopped grappling completely and turned simply to rehabilitation while I await surgery. Continue reading

What Is Myofascial Release?

Myofascial release is basically an uncomfortably — often painfully — deep massage-like procedure that focuses on properly finding and breaking down scar tissue inside your body’s soft tissues. 

What Are Soft Tissues?

Muscles, tendons, ligaments, fat and fascia are all examples of “soft tissues.” Essentially if it’s not bone, fluid or internal organs, it qualifies as soft tissue.

What Is Scar Tissue?

Scar tissue is a thin, dental floss-like “cobweb” that weaves itself into, around and even through your body’s soft tissue. It is triggered by inflammation. Inflammation is triggered by injury. Scar tissue formation strengthens torn muscles, tendons, ligaments, skin or any other soft tissue.

Scar tissue between muscle ribbons

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Everyday Self-Care: Changing Your Life with Minor Routine Tweaks

This article was submitted to us by guest contributor Jennifer McGregor

A recent article by Energy Fitbox notes that busy people are the most likely to neglect self-care and suffer from burnout. As the world around you accelerates, it can be difficult to even think about slowing down. Fortunately, you can practice some well-needed self-care by making simple tweaks to your daily schedule, as opposed to adding more things to it. Let’s look at some ways you adjust the little things and reap big benefits.

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The Shoulder

Few joints are as multipurpose as the human shoulder. We can walk on our hands, crawl and do push ups. The shoulder is a very sturdy join. Yet no joint in the human body is as mobile. Known as a “ball and socket” joint, the shoulder is essentially a pool ball freely rotating in a tea cup saucer. This allows for free rotation of the arm in all directions. You can literally wave your hands and arms in perfect, large circles as though they were helicopter blades. In comparison, your knee only folds and straightens. It is called a hinge joint for that reason. Even your cervical spine (neck), which does allow for tremendous free movement, does not have as much range of motion as the famous shoulder joint.  Continue reading

Intelligent Core

Many people who struggle with low back pain are prescribed core exercises that focus only on core strength. Although it is important to have strength and endurance (phase one of any core rehab program) you must also develop core “intelligence.” This has to be incorporated into the second phase of your rehab.

“What does core intelligence mean?”

Simply put, this is your core’s ability to respond to balance challenges. By doing the following exercises, you will develop your core’s ability to manipulate your centre of gravity to remain in balance under challenging circumstances. This fires different muscle fibers than simply endurance exercises (e.g.: planks) and improves your body fluidity and overall mechanics. Continue reading

The Science Behind Treating Chronic Low Back Pain

 

When low back pain persists for more than 3 months it is officially chronic. Many of my chronic low back patients however, have suffered for 2 or more years. Many of them have given up on ever overcoming their condition.

Almost inevitably, patients only suffer chronic low back pain because they have never encountered a practitioner that is willing to treat them properly.

Chronic low back pain should never exist. It is ALWAYS the result of NOT RECEIVING PROPER TREATMENT.

Many doctors and therapists are happy to give temporary relief to their patients and accustom them to continually seeking care for the foreseeable future. And often, the notion of depending on your doctor/therapist for the rest of your life is encouraged.

In this article I hope to show some of the science behind the proper treatment of chronic lower back pain. 

I pick chronic pain because it is usually trickier to fix than short term back strains. And it requires more work than simpler forms of low back conditions. Continue reading

Self-Care 101: Understanding the Basics

this entry is by guest author Brad Krause:

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We’ve all heard the term self-care in conversations with friends, doctors, co-workers or family members—but do we really know what it means? Self-care is more than just managing our health by taking the time to practice good hygiene or exercise regularly—though those are important parts. Self-care is about taking deliberate action to show compassion and consideration to ourselves, making healthy choices for our physical and mental well-being.

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The Most Common Type of Dizziness

 

The most common form of dizziness (i.e.: vertigo) is a form of peripheral vertigo known as Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV). Symptoms of BPPV include:

– nausea and sometimes vomiting
– a form of dizziness that, to the sufferer, feels like a spinning motion
– dizziness brought on by sudden movement (often getting up from laying down)
– vision blurriness
– eyes spinning (nystagmus)
– quick bursts of dizziness that last only seconds (although BPPV can also last several minutes)
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The Newest Neck Injury: Text Neck!

 

In our modern world of mobile devices, a new neck injury has arisen. Referred to as “text neck,” it results from the forward flexion of the cervical spine as you look downwards on your mobile device. As you can see in the above picture, the individual’s neck is bent forward as he or she spends hours per day perusing work emails, apps, games and social media. This places the spine in a position that is unnatural and places undue pressure on the spinal discs as well as the muscles running from your upper back to your neck and skull. Evenutally one or both of these systems will begin to be symptomatic. Continue reading

Ankle Sprain or Peroneus Tendonitis? How To Tell

First things first, let’s show you where the peroneus longer and brevis are (peronei tendons). See the picture below. The two tendons come down the outside of your calf and ankle and are tucked behind the big ankle bone that sticks out on the outside of your ankle. As you can see, they then travel down in an L shap and plug into your foot bones. On the other hand, the ligament involved in an ankle sprain is the anterior talofibular ligament. It is right in front and below the big ankle bone.

So, if the pain is not in front of the outside ankle bone, it can’t be a peronei tendonitis. 

Now, the way in which you hurt your ankle also tells you what’s going on.

If you hurt your ankle by rolling it, most likely you have a sprain AND the pain is right in front and below the big outside ankle bone, you most likely have a sprain. It is possible to strain the peronei with an ankle roll, but much less likely. When rolling the ankle affects the peronei and not the ligaments, the pain is usually where it plugs into the bone of the foot (see pic above). This will not be right next to the big ankle bone, but in the tip of the bone of the foot.

Most of the time you have a proper peronei tendonitis is when you didn’t hurt yourself instantly, but started developing pain for no known reason. And the pain will be behind the ankle bone and sometimes even up the outside of the calf.

How you treat the injury depends on what the injury is. So make sure to have your ankle region pain properly diagnosed!