It’s a fair bet that at some point in your life you have dealt with pain. I sat down with Coach Tom and discussed the common causes of injury in our bodies. Read on to learn what I discovered!
Most often, pain is related to either overuse or underuse. Overuse can happen while playing sports, where you are operating at your max capacity and putting that load on your joints, like ankles, knees, and hips. It can also include old injuries, where you have either never let them fully recover, or have developed compensation movements that put stress on the body. Underuse happens when everyday life cramps the style of our bodies’ natural design. For instance, it can be things like sitting at a desk for 8 hours a day, or just the tendency to do less active things as we get older (at least gym class was good for that!). The most common complaint in individuals between the age of 30-50 is lower back pain! During those years, most people are ‘adulting’: lugging children around; doing maintenance within a dwelling; sitting at work; and the other regular life stuff that needs to get done. If you constantly pick up your ever-growing toddler with bad posture, can you blame your back for protesting?
In order to treat the pain that you are experiencing, Coach Tom likes to base it on your specific cause. In the case of overuse or a previous injury, the recommendation is for mobility training (often retraining). Consider a hockey player—their ankles are secured in a solid skate boot. They give maximum effort during a game with explosive movements, all while the ankle is held securely in place. This often results in knee pain in players. In order to address this, retraining the ankle to move and flex appropriately during daily activities can significantly reduce the knee pain experienced. In the case of underuse, the recommendation is resistance training. This trains you to be mindful of your movements by learning proper body mechanics, therefore allowing you to implement that knowledge into your daily life.
A great resource in back pain education is Stuart McGill (https://www.backfitpro.com). He worked with Bryan Caroll after he crushed his spine, and was able to help him recover using progressive overload and mobility training… AND AVOIDED THE NEED FOR SURGERY!
To read about this amazing story check out: https://www.powerrackstrength.com/destroying-my-back-was-the-best-thing-that-ever-happened-to-my-lifting/.