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Longmont Chiropractor

New Parents

     Those of you out there with newborns be sure to get them screened regularly for neurological developmental stages. It's important to monitor their progress physically to confirm the proper neurological progress. It's important you stay on top of this aspect of development so you can catch flaws early and correct them. No one wants to think their child is anything but perfect but the truth is that you have to acknowledge when something isn't right and the sooner you do so the better off the child is. If caught early you can find the proper care and help to decrease the deficit while the child is still moldable, if you wait too long their ability to rehab the deficit is substantially hindered. They are absolute sponges and much like Play Dough in the first 5 years of life, after that they have a foundation of mental and physical competence that is significantly harder to un-train. At the end of the day a birth defect isn't a reflection of your parenting it's just a fact and the sooner you acknowledge its presence the sooner you can seek treatment and provide the child with the life tools needed to be successful in life. We can't be there to take care of them forever so do them a favor and give them the skills they'll need when you're not around to do it for them anymore.

Heres a few things to look for an approximate time you should notice it:

- at 4-6 weeks: optical fixation, primitive reflexes diminish, Co-activation of muscles, Postural activation of phasic muscles, the fencer's stance.

-3 months: when face down they are head up with weight on the elbows and pelvis, Galant reflex and grasp reflex diminish, lateral grasp, foot to foot touching when on their back.

-4.5 months: tripod support (elbow, hip and opposite knee) in prone and grasping object, asymmetrical trunk lengthening.

-5-6 months: rolling (back to front only), grasping across the midline, they push up onto their hands and thighs, hand to foot coordination, most primitive reflexes should be gone at the end of 6 months.

7-9 months: rolling (front to back), quadruped position (hands and knees, 7 months), grasping a toy in quadruped in month 8, crawling by month 9, pincer grip (thumb and forefinger opposition) 9 months.

Hope this helps. For any clarification please don't hesitate to make an appointment and clarify. --Cheers

See the Forest for the trees........

See the Forest for the trees........

   When rehabbing an injury it's important not to lose sight of your goals.  Many time in traditional, old-school thought of rehab, the clinician and patient get so focused on individual muscles to be activated they fail to recognize the dysfunctional system, hence the "forest for the trees" comment.

   Rehabbing individual muscles does not make a dysfunctional system functional.  that sort of thinking would be no different than thinking a replacing the engine of a rundown old junker suddenly makes it a hot rod! There can be some muscular rehab for some injuries but to apply that to all scenarios and limit rehab to isolated muscle activation would be ineffective.

    The emerging trend in rehab is to train the system.  The muscles you would normally rehab have to function appropriately within the system they are a part of in order for the system to be efficient.  Therefore it only makes sense to train the system as a whole.  

   In order to do so, you have to remove the stress of being upright, weight bearing.  If/when the system fails in weight bearing you take it down to non-weight bearing, like kneeling or sitting.  If that is still too much for the system take it down further to a suspended spine (hands and knees).  And if this is still unstable then you take it back to the most basic of positions, on you your back.  From here you are in the simplest of position and have removed all postural stability requirements.  In this position you can perform any exercise without a need for postural stabilization, allowing the brain to focus on the unimpeded motion in the joint.  Once you can perform proper ranges of motion without pain with stability, you start climbing the ladder back to standing.

   For some people even laying on their back is unstable.  For those folks, we focus on breathing, because when the diaphragm isn't being utilized as designed, nothing can be stabilized.  It may not seem like much but relearning to breathe with the right muscles is the foundation of spinal stability which is necessary to achieve extremity stability.

   Anybody can get by without stability for a period of time but eventually, the compensations will fail and the system fails.  This is where you start noticing pain, some worse than others.  At the point of pain you know has dysfunction, to postpone rehabbing said dysfunction means you move in pain regularly which also means you move differently in an attempt to reduce painful movements.  These compensation further destabilize the system and only prolong the road to recovery.

 

Carb or Fat Burning..... which to train in


     What's the difference?  What does it matter?  Why should I care?  For some of you out there looking to lose a few pounds or training lingo is a foreign language, this is an important concept to understand.  The two ideas were introduced many many years ago to help differentiate workouts.  The Fat burning zone was meant to be for those looking to lose weight.  The Carb burning zone was meant for those looking to maintain a healthy weight.  

   What's the difference?

     First,  the Fat burning zone is a work rate that requires a lower heart rate, 60-70% of heart rate max, slow and steady.  Where fat stores in the body are broken down into glucose in order to fuel the activity.  The slower pace of the work allows the body to breakdown energy stores outside the muscle in order to maintain the work rate.  When possible the body prefers to maintain glycogen stores in the muscle.  When its a slower intensity workout the body will call on fat stores from other parts of the body, adipose tissue mostly found in the abdominal area, instead of using up the local energy stores in the muscles themselves.  This is the main reason its considered the "fat burning zone".

      The Carb burning zone requires a higher level of intensity, +70% of heart rate max, where the energy is taken from glycogen muscle stores.  All muscles maintain energy stores called glycogen, long chains of glucose molecules strung together for storage purposes.  When these local stores are full the remaining glucose in the blood will be stashed away into adipose tissue.  When the intensity of the work exceeds the speed at which the body can breakdown, glycolysis, the fat reserves it is forced to use the local supply until it is exhausted.  The local supply includes the local muscle glycogen reserves as well as glucose already present in the blood.  This threshold is around 70-80% of heart rate max or higher.  

     On a side note, yet very important, if you're curious about heart rate max....... take 220 and subtract your age.  For me, my max heart rate would be 220-39= 181 beats per minute.  This means, for me I'd need to get my heart rate up above (181 x .7=127) 127 beats per minute to maintain a good cardio/carb burning workout.

      The important concept to understand is that your burning calories REGARDLESS.  The biggest difference is how much time do you want to spend, or even better, how much time do you have!?  Not many people these days have 4 hours to spend on the treadmill to burn the calories they need, NOT THIS GUY!!

    Why should it matter?  It matters because you should be aware of what your goals are and how you can be both effective and efficient in your workouts.  For those folks that are high risk of a cardiac event (older, more obese, previous history, etc.) the high intensity workouts should be done for less time and be closely monitored.  No point in hitting the gym hard just to keel over with a heart attack a couple weeks into the new workout regimen.  Checking with your primary physician and using a heart rate monitor are both good starts.  Consulting with a dietician or nutrition expert are also good choices.  
   

    You should care because if all you ever do is the slow and steady burn, you're missing out on much needed cardio.  The Carb burning zone (higher intensity) gets 2 birds with one stone in that it burns calories faster and it also pushes the heart to work hard!  Making the heart push to its upper limits, based on age and ability, are what keeps it healthy.  Keeping active (fit bit, pedometers etc.) is good but it doesn't ever really push the system to get stronger.  High intensity workouts, which varies from person to person, is where you get stronger in the heart and cardiovascular system.  So don't be satisfied with walking 10,000 steps each day where your heart rate never gets above 50% max, push for more!  Push your body and you'll be pleasantly surprised with how it reacts!

Block vs. Random Training

Block vs. Random Training

Agility ladders are a good example of Blocked training, which can be beneficial for introducing and refining basic movements that are the basis for developing more complex movements.

An Ounce of Prevention...

   ...is worth MORE than a pound of cure or all the Chemo in the world! Please, PLEASE adopt a preventative strategy as you get older. Even after you've had the prostate removed, as a male, it doesn't mean you are immune from cancer in the future! If you were ever diagnosed with cancer, regardless of the stage, there is a very distinct chance they didn't get it all. One cancer cell is all that's necessary for it to come back and if you go more than a couple years between checkups it will most likely be too late.  It is no different for you ladies out there that have been through and defeated breast cancer.  Anyone out there that has been diagnosed with cancer it is never over!

    For example, a 74-year old patient 10+ years after he's had his prostate removed, only one follow-up after the surgery, goes in for a hip pain in September.  Tests come back with a PSA level above 7.  Nothing else is done, that he shares with me.  Come December hip pain is even worse, he is sleeping much more than usual and has experienced unanticipated weight loss.  He is urged to go back to the doctor for more testing; PSA is now 11+.......  Following a prostectomy the PSA levels should remain less than 1 for the remainder of that patient's life, presuming all the cancerous tissue was removed in the initial surgery.  With a prostate intact the allowable levels for PSA shouldn't exceed 4.  In order for the PSA levels to be that high means that either during the biopsy or the removal some tissue escaped the prostate itself and was left behind.  Had he been diligent following the surgery with his follow-ups every 6-12 months this would have been discovered much sooner and appropriate steps could have been taken (Chemo, diet changes, radiation etc.) to prevent it from getting out of control!  

     I IMPLORE you to be proactive in your later years. If you wait till it hurts, it's too late! Don't rob your loved ones of your company for your pride. No one is invincible, even Superman met his match!  Don't presume you have nothing to live for and just let it go.  If not for your children, do it for their children!  Don't be in any rush to leave this world any sooner than you absolutely must.  Make sure to get every ounce out of this life before you go to the next!

Child Development

Child Development

A healthy baby at the 3 month phase of postural progression; upright head with independent rotation, weight bearing in the arms and pelvis, legs free to move and ribs elevated from the floor.

Efficiency in Heavy Lifting: Squats, Deadlift, and Others

Efficiency in Heavy Lifting: Squats, Deadlift, and Others

So as you can see we learn proper form innately but somewhere along the line theres a disconnect.  

So as you can see we learn proper form innately but somewhere along the line theres a disconnect.  

     Are you thinking about getting into heavy lifting?  Already doing a good bit of heavy lifting?  Maybe you are a competitive weight-lifter and you can't quite get over a hump?  Well then, this article may be of interest to you.  

    Many of us that played sports in middle school or high school were introduced to squats, deadlift, snatch and/or clean and jerk.  For those of you just starting to learn what these movements are all about, the last 2 being the fundamental movements of Olympic lifting.  For most of us, regardless of when we were first introduced, we were just thrown to the wolves with a bit of coaching on form and plenty of peer pressure to "go big or go home"!  There were a few that got sufficient coaching, but that may not even have been as good as we thought.  Yes, some are better than none and they had good intentions but these old/current coaches may not fully understand the most efficient stabilization techniques.

I'm sure plenty of you have been told to practice this.  Stop!! This only encourages posterior chain overactivity putting you in a position of weakness.

I'm sure plenty of you have been told to practice this.  Stop!! This only encourages posterior chain overactivity putting you in a position of weakness.

    Think back to when you first stepped into the squat rack, what were your cues? Shoulders back? Head back? Arch your back? Stay on your heels? Squeeze the shoulder blades together?  Keep your knees behind your toes? I'm sure there are more, but these are the most popular.  Unfortunately, all are INCORRECT.  These are all extension patterns that take you out of neutral.  A neutral spine position is the most efficient means of weight bearing.  All of these are also requiring the posterior fascial chain to crank into overdrive, which results in compression of the posterior elements of the spine.  Long term this stabilization pattern can cause ruptured disks in the lumbar spine.

    If you look at the worlds best weight-lifters you may see these men and women in extension during competitive settings.  Considering the weights that these folks are moving there will be a little loss in form.  When pushed to extremes there will be some loss in form.  I challenge you to find videos of these folks during practice, they will have perfect form.  But what does that mean?  That's easy: a neutral spine, the foot is equally loaded in the 3 arches, maximal abdominal stabilization, knees in good position (varies based on athlete and type of lift), head in neutral (not extended or flexed).  Not very descriptive, I know but I'm trying to keep it simple!

Keeping the diaphragm parallel with the pelvic floor is key! This requires the obliques to keep the ribs from flaring upwards.

Keeping the diaphragm parallel with the pelvic floor is key! This requires the obliques to keep the ribs from flaring upwards.

    The Idea of maintaining a "Neutral spine" is fundamental when pushing the body to the limits.  For those of you not looking to become an olympic level athlete that;s ok, the concept applies to you as well.  When you train a movement long enough it becomes habit.  Which means it becomes subconscious.  When an activity becomes subconscious you do it without having to think about it.  Like walking, talking, chewing gum; when was the last time you thought about how to walk?  We've been doing it for so long we don't think about contractions necessary to stabilize the body to create the movement.  Ideally when you begin your weight training you start with proper form and maintain said form throughout and if you do it long and enough times it translates into your daily life, helping you maintain good posture in all movements.  

Notice the attachment to the ribs for the oblique abs, this allows for that pulling down to keep the torso in neutral.

Notice the attachment to the ribs for the oblique abs, this allows for that pulling down to keep the torso in neutral.

   Neutral spine and abdominal pressure allow for optimal "Joint Centration" which is the key to optimal muscle activity.  Joint centration is the process of aligning the articulating surface of the body in a position allowing for maximal surface area in contact.  Without joint centration the pressure of the weights is increased on the joints causing premature degradation of the joint surface resulting joint replacement surgery at a much younger age.  

    Maximal abdominal pressure is achieved through diaphragmatic and abdominal co-contraction.  This means your breathing into the belly and contracting ALL your abdominal muscles (Rectus, obliques and transverse) equally.  This only occurs when you can maintain a neutral spine.  An extended spine puts the abs on stretch and stretch reduces the maximal contractility of a muscle.  The diaphragm is fundamental to lumbar spine stability.  Sucking the abdomen to the spine doesn't increase stability.  Contracting the diaphragm, pushing down into the abdomen, with the abdominals engaged drastically increases intra-abdominal pressure resulting in lumbar stability.  

    The point of all this is to help you stay healthy and active.  Improper stabilization patterns can and do lead to dysfunction and pain.  When in pain we move differently, causing further dysfunctional movement and substitution patterns.  If you'll take the time to commit good movement patterns to your subconscious you'll be able to stay active longer today and 30-40 years down the road.  So if you have any questions about any of the above material please feel free to schedule a free 15 consultation and I'll be happy to clarify.

  

     

Dynamic Neuro Stabilization

Dynamic Neuro Stabilization

Postioning of the diaphragm relative to the pelvic floor are key to trunk stabilization, resulting in more efficient movement. 

Postioning of the diaphragm relative to the pelvic floor are key to trunk stabilization, resulting in more efficient movement. 

Effective vs. Efficient:
    Although they can be synonymous they are not always the same.  When using the two terms while describing human movement they are rarely the same.  Many times we get things done without thinking about how efficient we are in the process.  Efficiency can also be somewhat subjective.  for example when on a road trip is it can be more efficient to be faster by using more gas to go faster or more gas efficient to go slower requiring less gas.  With human movement its pretty straight-forward, effort!  Not every movement is the same therefore you can train everyone to be efficient for everything.  A shorter person, regardless of training, will never be quite as fast as a taller person in the pool, all else being equal, its just physics.  We can, however, train efficiency on a person to person basis to more efficient in general.  The side effect of this efficiency is improved function and health.  Whether you're an athlete or a "weekend warrior" efficient movement patterns allow you to enjoy your chosen activities more.  Less time catching your breath and more time enjoying the scenery.  

The Prague School's approach to Trunk stability is based on 60+ years of clinical application.  They have worked with numerous international weightlifting programs producing dozens of medalists in that time.

The Prague School's approach to Trunk stability is based on 60+ years of clinical application.  They have worked with numerous international weightlifting programs producing dozens of medalists in that time.

    Like any other system, efficiency starts with a good foundation.  A good foundation for quality, efficient human movement is a stable trunk or core.  Although this may seem cliche, in this case its a new take on an old concept.  This is because of the starting point.  Most people think core stability starts with sit-ups or planking.  These are nice but they aren't the foundation.  The foundation is in the breath or the diaphragm to be exact!  Without proper breathing patterns, by that I mean expansion of the diaphragm into the abdomen, you cannot properly stabilize the lumbar spine or the trunk.  Second to that is a loss of stability in the extremities.  When you lose stability you become inefficient in your movement.  Peripheral stabilization is then required, recruitment of other muscles.  In other words, when unstable you use 2x the energy to accomplish the same action as someone with proper stabilization.  Do you think these world champion weight lifters squat 1200 pounds without stability and efficiency?  HECK NO!! 

movement rehabilitation is based on human developmental stages.  

movement rehabilitation is based on human developmental stages.  

    So if you are one of the thousands of folks out there that can't seem to get rid of that nagging low back, upper back, neck pain, etc.; perhaps its time to stop the insanity (def. insane: repeating the same action and expecting different results) and get properly assessed and learn how to be more efficient.  Pain shouldn't be a part of your every day routine.  If it feels like you aren't as energetic as you used to be, maybe its not "low T" or old age, maybe its inefficiency?  You're wasting half your mental and physical resources just trying to stabilize!?  I'm here to help, make an appointment and lets talk about what you want to improve!

 

New year, New you! Planning for the New Years resolution.

New year, New you! Planning for the New Years resolution.

New Years resolutions are coming soon and after the gluttony of Thanksgiving and Christmas, they are well overdue! So I thought I might throw a little info out there for you to help succeed in the diet changes you are looking to make.

1. Plan ahead: Going "cold turkey" on anything is setting yourself up for failure. Take the next couple weeks to clear the pantry. If you want the new diet to take you have to get rid of all the temptations in the house. You also should start tapering the "bad" out of your diet the month leading up to the new diet.

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2. Eliminate Bags, Boxes or Bottles from your diet. Anything coming in the above packaging contains preservatives and aren't quality food. Everything in a container must be pasteurized for health purposes. this involves heating to kill bacteria, this also kills the nutrients found in raw foods. Processed foods also have loads of salt and/or sugars.

3. Choose nutrient-dense foods. Calories and nutrient levels are inversely proportional. As the nutrient level increases the calories decrease and vice versa. Raw vegetables have trace amounts of calories, the brighter (green, yellow, red, orange etc.) the color the better.

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4. Up the cardio. Muscles are nice but cardio is where the calories are burned! You want to lose weight, get on the cardio! If you insist on hitting the weights, thats fine. Implement a circuit workout where you are hitting all your lifts in succession with minimal rest in between sets. You'll want to drop the weight but this will keep your heart rate up, burning more calories. Optimal calorie burn is around 60% of your max heart rate.

5. Cook less. Too often the vegetables we eat are overcooked, heat kills the good stuff in food. Vegetables are most nutritious when eaten raw. If you need to cook them, brussel sprouts, do so minimally. We have a hard enough time getting proper nutrition these days, let's not cook out the small amount of nutrients left in the foods.

6. Cut out the dairy and wheat. Yes, they can be good for you, but they are calorie dense and not necessary. Everything you get from dairy you can get from meats and veggies with a fraction of the calories. For you fitness athletes, you don't need as many carbs as you think! 

7. Eliminate the sugars. We eat too much sugar as it is! Diabetes (symptom) is the biggest issue with kids these days.... SUGAR is the root problem! Regardless of the source (honey, granular, fruit, etc...) we eat too much sugar. I know I eat far too much, we all need to decrease our sugar consumption!!

8. reduce the alcohol. Yeah, I said it... booze has a TON of empty calories! I'd challenge you to eliminate alcohol for 60 days and see how much extra weight you lose. I lost 15 pounds last year when i did it. It wasn't fun but I felt 10 years younger in the morning!!

9. Hydration!  Drink water, not tea, diet soda, coffee, Red Bull or GATORADE etc..  Water is what keeps your muscles, skin, and heart healthy.  It's not sexy but it works!  It's what is needed.  All the others have sugars and toxins.  None of it helps at game-time like you would be lead to believe.  Do you want to prevent cramping?  Drink water.  Do you want to feel energized regularly? Drink water.  Do you want to perform at your best? Drink water!! Water! Water!! Water!!! #rantoverlol

If you liked what you read, have questions, please feel free to make an appointment to discuss more. Have a safe and very merry Christmas!

Hot vs. Cold

Hot vs. Cold

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   People are regularly asking me what to use, heat or ice?  So I thought I'd take this time to give a little feedback, for the record.  Before I do, I need to explain a thing or two.  First, There is no research that has definitively linked heat or ice to any significant change in recovery.  Considering that most research design has an inherent flaw, some more flawed than others, there is just as much research supporting hot/cold therapy as there is refuting it.  Most research suggest neither manage to effect tissue more than 1/8-1/2" deep, the skin is normally about 1 sheet of paper thick.  There will be body parts it can be more effective than others, ankle v. gluteals, but overall the research is inconclusive.  Secondly, considering that half the game is in the athletes head, if you think it helps..... IT HELPS!! haha!  Seriously though, this isn't the only treatment out there that science has failed to confirm or deny that is still widely used.  So with that said if you like to take contrast baths after a big game to prep for the next game, be my guest.  One thing science hasn't done is prove it hurts to ice or contrast!  So if it provides you a mental edge, then don't hesitate!  I know I used to do it all the time when playing, I'll be the last person to tell you "stop".   So with that said, on to the point of this article.

There are numerous forms of heat that can be useful.  Just make sure to be aware of too much heat.  Too much can cause burns that can complicate your achy muscles.

There are numerous forms of heat that can be useful.  Just make sure to be aware of too much heat.  Too much can cause burns that can complicate your achy muscles.

     Heat should only be used on a subacute injury (old or chronic injuries) before activity.  Heat is something you would use to start the day or before your workout.  The body responds to heat by sending more blood to the area, through vascular dilation, increasing blood flow to the area.   The additional blood to the area helps increase the core temperature of the muscles of the area of application.  The increased muscle temperature helps to prevent muscle damage like strains and/or tears.  Its the same principle behind dynamic stretching.  They both are used to increase blood flow to the area.  With increased blood flow comes increased temperature and increased elasticity.  To get a nice visual, try taking 2 rubber bands, freeze one and put the other in a warm water bath then try stretching them and see which one snaps first.  Although a little exaggerated, this is very similar to how your muscles work.  cold muscles are fragile and warm ones are responsive and adaptive, which is key in injury prevention.

Old school bags of ice cubes or frozen veggies are out of style these days with all the different colds packs made these days but they can be expensive and don't work any better than your "old reliable"!

Old school bags of ice cubes or frozen veggies are out of style these days with all the different colds packs made these days but they can be expensive and don't work any better than your "old reliable"!

     Ice should be applied at the end of the day when all activity is completed.  Ice will aid in lower the core temperature of the muscles/joint over the area applied.  Cold causes vascular constriction in the area of application, this reduces the amount of blood that makes it to the area.  This is the bodies response to cold in an effort to maintain core body temperature, much like when you are outside in the winter and you feel fine but your fingers and toes go numb.  Its the bodies natural response for staying alive.  The use of ice helps decrease inflammation in the area.  Its especially helpful in the event of an acute injury (new), like an ankle sprain, to prevent/limit secondary injury due to excessive swelling.  With a new injury tissues are torn, including capillaries, causing blood to flood into the muscle compartments.  If the swelling is left unchecked it can overfill these compartments resulting in rupture of the fascial dividers and further injury.  It can also cause compression of other structure restricting blood flow and sensation, which can lead to necrosis (death) of compressed tissue (muscle and nerves alike) if left long enough.  It's imperative to make sure the PRICE (Protect, Rest, Ice, Compress, Elevate) guidelines are implemented immediately following injury.  Here's a general rule of thumb for ice usage is 20/40 (20-minutes on followed by 40-minutes off) with compression till bedtime.  Some people like to use contrast baths for recovery.  As mentioned above, the research is inconclusive but if that's part of your routine and you feel it helps, by all means, keep it up!

    I hope this was useful.  Please don't hesitate to reach out with any questions or concerns.  Hope to see you soon on the field or in the office.  Until then take care and best of luck!  Cheers!

About Your First Visit to Our Longmont Chiropractic Facility

About Your First Visit to Our Longmont Chiropractic Facility

     First, Observation!   It's important to understand movement is a big key to your function or dysfunction.  When in pain movement is altered to reduce the pain.  These altered movement patterns can contribute to further dysfunction.  I want to see how you walk, stand, sit, lay down and breath.  Ever think about breathing?  I find dysfunctional breathing in most patients with pain.  proper breathing is key to trunk and core stability, so if your breathing pattern is off, makes sense you'd be in pain! 

    Secondly, we'll have a lovely little chat.   This is where we get to know each other while I get a little history.  I want to know what you do every day, what you used to do and what you want to do going forward.  Are you an accountant trying to make it through tax season, are you a high-level athlete trying to recover from a nagging hamstring that won't stay healthy or are you somewhere in between.  I'm happy to help wherever I can but I'm not trying to make you something you aren't.  I am not for everyone and I cannot fix everything.  There is a limit to what I can do.  One of the best indicators for care is your patient history.  While we talk we will get to know one another and whether or not you are in the right office.   This is important so we can be as efficient as possible while in the office.  We all got things to get to so I'm not interested in keeping you here any more than necessary.  Let's get you patched up and on your way again!

    Third, I'll conduct a thorough physical exam that will include vitals, neurological exam, orthopedic exam, muscle testing, a movement screen, and reflexes.  Before treatment is rendered it is imperative to make sure you are physically fit enough to do so.  These exams are designed to ensure there isn't something more sinister going on that would necessitate a referral to your PCP.  Without a physical exam, I could miss something that could cause me to hurt you even more.  At the same time, they provide clarity to a foggy picture of dysfunction.  Every step of the process provides more insight to the root of your problem.  Although we do not perform imaging here (X-ray or MRI) we do have referral privileges at Health Images, located just south of town, and can have you seen, imaged and results in our office in the same day.

     Fourth, appropriate treatment will be rendered.  Depending on the primary complaint it may include some or all of the following: Chiropractic adjustment, palliative care (e-stim, heat, ice etc.), Soft tissue work, taping (k-tape or the like) and home exercises.  I am a chiropractor and will always adjust when indicated and safe but its not adjusting for the sake of adjusting.  I try to adjust with specificity, to make a change in the nervous system.  Hearing a "pop" is good but if it doesn't improve function then what was really done?  The first visit won't involve much adjusting of the spine.  The focus will be making sure a few key areas are aligned.  When addressing a problem you start with a narrow focus and get broader as you eliminate variables.  Treatment on the first visit will be more soft tissue, extremities, breathing and exercises than adjusting.  

     Lastly, care plan.  I like to see my new patients 2x/week for 2 weeks to make sure you're responding appropriately to care followed by 1x/week for 1 month to reinforce care and modify home exercises as needed.  Home exercises are imperative to improvement.  Dysfunction involves faulty motor patterns.  In order to change them the patient MUST do the work, this is called active rehab.  The treatment I perform (adjustments, e-stim etc.) are all passive.  Passive therapies are helpful in reducing inflammation and correcting misalignments but they do not create new motor stabilization patterns for the joint.  Therefore, if you want a change, you'll have to make it!  Nothing new there, just thought I'd remind you.  

    At the end of the day, we were designed to move, pain-free.  If pain causes you pain something is wrong and the sooner you have it looked at, the easier it is to fix.  Pain shouldn't be a part of your day and I look forward to making sure it isn't but I can't do it by myself.  So call for your appointment and let's see what we can do together to get you moving pain-free.

The Importance of Your Diaphram

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Do you know what your Diaphragm muscle is, or where and what it does?  So that we are all on the same page, its the muscle separating the intestines from the lungs.  a thin sheet of muscle attached at the bottom of the ribs that's designed to be the primary muscle for respiration.  On inhale it pushes down into the belly and on exhalation is pulls back up into the chest forcing the air from the lungs.  You know what else it does...... CORE STABILITY!! If you are not a belly breather, most of us are not, One of the biggest and best core muscles isn't being utilized which will eventually lead to core instability and low back or pelvic dysfunction.  So how do you work that particular muscle, I know I've never seen a "diaphragm" station in the gym!! Breath, yes, just breath! Lay flat on the floor with your legs elevated and just breath in and out of the stomach.  On a side note, if you have a problem with acid reflux, this may help with that as well.  The cardiac sphincter, meant to prevent acid backflowing into the esophagus is connected to the diaphragm.  If the diaphragm is weak would it not make sense the cardiac sphincter could be weak as well?  So if you get the diaphragm working right you could in-turn, stifle your acid reflux.  

Pre-season Injuries

Pre-season Injuries

One of the benefits of being a patient of a sports specialist is finding your weaknesses and getting accurate information on how you can train them into strengths to keep you on the field of competition instead of on the side-line with recurring injuries.

Our Philos in Rehabilitation and Performance Enhancement

Our Philos in Rehabilitation and Performance Enhancement

We have an athlete care approach to your healthcare problems. But many don't realize the difference between rehabilitation and the term “performance enhancement” in terms of our attitude toward addressing your health care issues.

Are you getting the most out of the gym?

Are you getting the most out of the gym?

Let us help you understand your best approach to accomplishing your goals in the gym. We blend a sports medicine, physical therapy, chiropractic, manual medicine principles in solving your health issues.

The Sports Medicine Approach

The Sports Medicine Approach

Dr. Ray writes about the modern day sports medicine approach and how a more tailored treatment plan is far more effective.