Today Tony talks about 3 Tips to Alleviate Low Back Pain NOW! Read below to find out how you can help your pain:
Recently, I just completed a certification course looking into the most recent and evidence based ways to treat low back and neck pain! In doing this, I earned my certification in Orthopedic excellence of the spine. During the course we discussed ways to group patients into different categories based on their pain so we can best treat them with specific techniques and exercises!
If you are someone that falls into one of the four categories listed below, I believe we can help you reduce your pain and get you back to doing the things you love to do!
1) Low back pain or neck pain with mobility deficits:
This category is for people who are suffering from either low back or neck pain that are also experiencing trouble with turning your head, bending forward to touch your toes, or twisting to reach for objects. Typically, the pain is localized to either your low back or neck region and does not radiate or linger into other areas of your body such as your legs or arms.
2) Low back pain or neck pain with coordination deficits:
This category is for people who have a difficult time contracting certain muscles in either the low back or neck that are responsible for stabilizing the spine. Typically we see this in patients who have just experienced a car accident. In the neck region, this is associated with whiplash that many would get from an impact collision. If you are someone who has recently been through an accident and has since been experiencing low back or neck pain then this category is something you may fall into!
3) Low back or neck pain with radicular symptoms:
This category is for people who experience low back pain or neck pain that is radiating into your arms or legs. Typically, the feeling is described as "numbness or tingling" and can be very debilitating. Some people may only experience these symptoms in the arms or legs and may not even report low back pain or neck pain. If you think this is something you are experiencing then this is likely resulting from a compressed nerve. But don't worry, we can help you with this!
4) Neck pain with headaches:
Many times, headaches can result from increased tension in the muscles located in the neck and/or shoulder region. Headaches can also be associated with increased stress levels and prolonged postures during the day. If you are someone who experiences headaches throughout the day, it could be a result of something going on in your neck.
If back pain prevents you from doing the stuff you love text BACKSCREEN TO 845-225-2000 and claim one of our 10 free back screens!
Tony talks about his 5 Running Essentials. In this episode he talks about 5 items he uses everyday for running. Here are 5 quick running essentials that you should be using!
Tony gets a lot of questions whether he does strength, resistance or weight training as a runner and triathlete. In this episode he talks about strength, resistance and endurance training for athletes. Here are 5 quick benefits of why you should be doing that if you are a runner or triathlete!
Graston technique is a unique, evidence-based form of instrument-assisted soft tissue mobilization that enables clinicians to effectively address soft tissue lesions and fascial restrictions, resulting in improved patient outcomes.
When you combine Graston technique with some of the exercises we give you in the clinic it’s going to help you improve your motion and function. This tool kind of looks like a butter knife, some are in an s shape and are different in thickness and size.
With this stainless steel tool It works in a way that your hands or other tools cannot. This helps Set Graston apart because the whole patten is inside the edge and curvature. You can purchase a tool like it on amazon, but you won’t get the same results. Tony feels like when using it on himself and on patients it works great!
Kinesio Taping is a stretchy, moveable tape. It comes in different colors and stabilizes the injured area lightly by adhering to the skin and applying pressure to the tissues the tape is wrapped around. This is very popular with Olympic athletes who use this tape to alleviate pain and improve blood flow!
They sell Kinesio tape at stores like CVS that you can purchase and use at home. It is important to make sure skin is dry, oil free, no lotion, and sweat free. You should try to not get the tape wet for an hour after it is applied. They say it's heat activated so you'll have a better adhesion if it is gently warmed up with a hairdryer- don't hold too close! Natural movement of the body will generate enough heat to give it a good stick as well! Mostly all tapes are water resistant. Just read the back of the box to make sure yours is! I believe they all offer water resistant tapes such as Kinesio, Kt and rock tape.
Cupping is supposed to draw fluid into the area; the discoloration is due to broken blood vessels beneath the skin. This is an ancient Chinese practice where the silicon cup will be applied to reduce skin-pressure by suctioning the air out. As this happens the muscle layer is going to be drawn into the cup and held.
We use Rock pods made by a company called Rock tape. These silicon cups stick to your skin to treat pain, mobility and movement function. Typically used on the neck, back shoulders, hips, thighs, lower legs, and upper arms. When the pods are applied they will use a negative or de compressive pressure. This will help treat chronic pain and relieve tension.
Rock pods help treat chronic pain and relieve tension. The cups will bend to your skin and allow you to move with them. Our pods can be moved, and you can slide them to wherever you want! With our pods they can be left on while laying, sitting and even in your movements you do for sports. They can be used in all different ways.
Sometimes you’ll see it creates those welts on the skin, that's the negative pressure drawing blood up to the surface. Cupping is usually always used with hands on techniques such as massage during your physical therapy session.
Today Tony talks electrolytes! Patients have been asking Tony what he uses to replenish and what they should be using.
Each person has about 100 sweat glands that are about a quarter the size of your skin which makes you have about a total of 2.6 million sweat glands. The amount of sweat you excrete will depend on gender, fitness level, weather conditions, and altitude. The importance of sweating is to cool your body down. When you work out your body temperature will increase and can rise anywhere up to 3 degrees and that will trigger your body to start sweating. When that happens you'll lose water and electrolytes.
What are electrolytes?
Electrolytes are substances that have a natural positive or negative electrical charge when dissolved in water. They help your body regulate chemical reactions, maintain the balance between fluids inside and outside your cells!
What do electrolytes do?
Magnesium, calcium, potassium and sodium are critical to body function. They help balance the amount of water in your body and help maintain body PH levels.
How much electrolytes do you need?
The amount of electrolytes you will need will vary by person. Tony’s favorite electrolyte supplement is UCAN Hydrate Powder. It comes with a scooper and you just add a little bit to your water!
What are the signs of electrolyte imbalance?
Signs of electrolyte imbalances can lead to decrease in performance, muscle spasms, weak, dizzy, tired, nauseous, constipated, dry mouth, dry skin,urine and pain. A large majority of muscle cramping can also be due to lack of muscle fitness too. So this could just mean you are overworking your muscles.
This is why electrolytes are so important! They regulate and control the balance of fluids in the body. Stay hydrated!!
Tony received one question in the clinic and on the website. The question was asking what kind of sneakers he would suggest for walking?! In last week's 5 minute Friday Tony talked about running shoe basics. So that will carry over into this week's episode!
There are a few differences between running shoes and walking shoes. Tony doesn’t see an issue in walking in running shoes, but some people say you shouldn't have that much of a heel toe drop.
Tony recommends these walking shoes:
Running Shoe Basics
Tony wore a different pair of shoes to work this week and got lots of questions on what shoes are good to use for running. So here are 5 tips on what you should consider when buying a pair of running shoes:
1. Shoe Size
Shoe size is important because it is very important to wear the correct size shoe. Tony likes to buy his running shoes true to size, but the size you buy is up to your personal preference. You want to make sure your toes have room to spread wide and they shouldn’t feel constricted where they touch the end of your shoe. It is important for your heel to feel comfortably cupped in the back of the shoe too, this will make it so your foot doesn’t slip! Try on different shoes until you find the ones that fit and feel the best!
2. Stack Height
Stack height is the amount of shoe material between your foot and the ground. This is expressed in the millimeter height of the heel and just below your toe. A high stack usually is 40 millimeters and has more cushion. Low stack height shoes such as track shoes are about 20 millimeters. Minimal and low stack height shoes are best for people who prefer feeling the ground over the cushioning of a shoe. Highly cushioned shoes are good for someone that prefers feeling the cushioning of a shoe instead of the ground. It depends on whatever you prefer!
3. Heel Toe Drop
This is the difference between the level of the heel and level of the toe from the ground. Take one and minus the other and that will give you your heel toe drop. The greater the drop the steeper the angle from the ankle to the forefoot. The lower the drop is considered by many to have a lower impact on the stride. The lower the drop the more the Achilles tendon is going to have to work. The best amount of drop is a personal preference. Anything over 7 is considered a high drop and under that is going to be getting closer to that barefoot feel. Most shoes are at a drop of 6, but it’s up to you what you prefer.
Tony sees it all the time when someone comes into the clinic and they just started running or bought a new pair of shoes. They feel like they get a new ache or pain while running and they aren’t sure what happened. This is because shoes have different stack heights so it creates different forces through the leg!
4. Stability or Motion Control
Stability running shoes are best for over pronators or if you have more of a flat foot. These shoes are often more rigid and are made to support the arch of the foot, which will provide greater support through the midsole that can also extend into the heel. Stability shoes are something to consider if you get aches and pains! Motion control shoes can be a little stiffer and heavier than a stability shoe. Sometimes motion control shoes have some additional heel cup support and other features in the shoe that stop the foot from rolling when running. Stability and motion control shoes are both great options for runners and should be based on what works best for you!
Dr. Tony Tanzi: Physical Therapist, Triathlete, Runner, Performance Coach