Strengthening, Stretching, and the Importance of a Good PT

I was asked to share some resources that were passed along to me over the years for folks who may be struggling with some strength or stability issues with their shoulders. So first the disclaimer:

This article is not intended as medical advice. It is intended as an educational resource only. This post is not intended as being a replacement for sound medical advice and we highly suggest that if you are experiencing pain or instability in your joints that you seek the advice of a medical professional. See a medical professional…we are not medical professionals….

So, I have used some of these below resources over the years in addition to advice and prescriptions from my physical terrorist….errr….therapist. These folks are incredible resources and have an astounding background of how everything in your body is interconnected. Just recently Lydia and I paid a visit to Liz Koch at Blue Ridge Biomechanics to just check in and make sure we were starting our strength and endurance training from a solid platform before just aggravating or making bad motor patterns permanent. I was literally blown away by what I learned, even though I think I have a pretty firm grasp on how things work in the body. But I am a hobbyist with medicine, and that became apparent.

I have been suffering from some chronic knee pain and “popping” in my left knee for nearly a year now, but without any specific trauma. Liz put me through a full body assessment and found some of my problem areas in regards to the range of motion, strength, and flexibility. Overall, I was in pretty good shape! But, my knee problems actually stem from stiffness in my thoracic spine which in turn affects nerves that “talk” down the chain. What was amazing is that the left side of my body has now been compensating and causing discomfort in my left leg, because of inflexibility in my back! Which probably stems from my increased time sitting behind a computer. Diagnosed, prescribed some preliminary exercises, and I’ll be back for another assessment soon.

Lyd has been suffering from what has felt like a muscle/ligament tear in her shoulder, and again, after her assessment, it was determined that is was again related to nerves. Amazing to determine what we thought was catastrophic damage was nearly a nerve not being able to communicate and misfiring muscles. This is also a testament to preventative maintenance. Once bad motor patterns are established, you actually have to re-teach the good ones to work again. Sound like something familiar?

So all said, I highly recommend talking to a physical therapist if you are suffering from chronic pain…don’t just do these exercises without some guidance from someone who truly knows how a musculoskeletal and nervous system work if you are experiencing chronic pain. These exercises in totality are preventative for someone who is healthy and ready for these exercises, as a physical therapist would prescribe only specific exercises based on your ailments and with a progression.

If you are in the Asheville region, check out Liz Koch at Blue Ridge Biomechanics. She’s a doctor in PT, a paddler, and a mountain biker, and the visit was downright fun and highly educational. Your insurance should cover the cost of physical therapy. I know ours does and it is nothing extremely special. Feel free to give her a call or email and mention that we referred you… no, we receive(d) no benefit of doing so other than helping pass the word for a remarkable service.

(828) 338-3054


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