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Muscle Imbalance

Posted on April 1, 2012 at 9:36 PM Comments comments (15732)
Even a conditioned athlete like David Haye can have a muscular imbalance, seen here his left acromioclavicular joint is higher than the right his sternoclavicular joint on the same side is higher and  his sternocleidomastoid muscle on his opposite right side is larger and slightly pulling his relaxed head to his right,the main culprit here is the larger trap muscle on his  left causing a counter clockwise superior rotation of his left scapula as we look on  which more than likley involves his left levator scapula muscle also  ,that muscle inserts into his cervical spine which when compromised causes lots of training issues for a top athlete or any one using one side of there body more than the other, just looking at his left shoulder i can see his humerous is internaly rotated in his relaxed state and this points to upper pec involvement along with front delt hypertonicty. Im sure these things wont bother him though as he has a team of Britains finest physios and a full medical team realizing that his stinging left jab is to blame. Any person attending thepain andmuscleclinic  also get the chance to sort out there issues and fine tune themselves without the added expense. 

Pain and movement

Posted on May 15, 2011 at 5:00 AM Comments comments (2288)
rectus femoriship flexor image3d gluteals imageThe most common injuries seem to be universal in the sense that  lumbar pelvic discomfort and the usual sacroiliac problems (SI Joint) seem to trait towards  our age, activity levels and our chosen hobbies and work practice. Modern research is suggesting that common patterns we use while walking could be somewhat  responsible for lower back pain, we are  like a lot of animals  2 legged, but people that get SI joint pain seem to walk using their hip flexors contracting first as the prime movers. While walking quickly, the pelvis is frequently in anterior tilt and/or there is a distinct forward lean of the trunk, and very often the person with the dysfunction is "pulling" their legs forward rather than "pushing" them.  Walking this way puts added pressure on the hip joint and its ligaments.  The only way to heal  is to take control of our actions and ask ourselves why this unwelcome problem arrived in the first place So stand up, and pretend that your pelvis is a bucket and you are pouring water out the front.  You should feel like you are sticking your butt out behind you, and you have a big arch( lordosis) in your low back. Now try walking while maintaining this pelvis position. Notice how you have no choice but to use the front of your hips to move your legs? Notice how effortfull this is? Its Not good biomechanics its  hard  on your SI joint ligaments, hip joints, low back, and it turns off your stabilizing synergistic muscles and your gluteus maximus, and way over uses the hip flexors and quads. Particularly the rectus femoris which originating from your anterior inferior illiac spine at the front of your pelvis is in the perfect position to tighten and pull you forward . If you have SI joint or hip pain or if this is how you tend to walk, it may be worth your while to try a different way where you pretend your pelvis is a full level bucket of water and try to walk without spilling any,  any body who has low back disc trouble or at least the common posterior displacement version will get instant relief from just standing more upright when walking and making sure the large powerful gluteal or buttock muscles contract first .These powerfull muscles our ancestors used  are diminishing in some walks of life and its no surprise that the athletes we admire all seem to use this simple biomechanic system today.
Anybody that has had hip problems with the hip inominate bones rotated forward or anteriorly in particular and had them treated, would have a better chance of keeping there level pelvis with a few simple changes, and in the first 7 days at least the corrective movements explained by your physical therapist are crucial to lasting pain free movement .  

Muscles and Stretching.

Posted on April 22, 2011 at 8:13 PM Comments comments (1971)
Pain free stay that wayWhy do physios always voice on about stretching and the importance of everything moving together in the perfect kinetic chain of movement. Its because of the importance of freely mobile muscles. The only work a muscle can do is contract, called flexion. When they do this the cells actually contract and slide between one another. Because they are attached to tendons which are attached to bones this action pulls the bone in the direction of the contraction. When one half of the pair is doing this, the other half is relaxing or extending, (stretching). When you bend your arm at the elbow, as in doing curls, your biceps and related muscles are flexing and your triceps are extending. When you straighten your arm, the muscles trade off and the group that was flexing is now extending, (stretching). So why should we stretch ? The purpose of stretching is to increase the elasticity of muscle, tendon, ligaments, capsules and fascia and quite simply encourage our bodies to lay down collagen in the proper fasicular alignment which in effect has a calming on our neuromuscular system.  An increase in tone ( hypertonicity) when the muscle is constantly overheated and abnormally contracted in its relaxed state will often lead to pain caused by the irritation of nerve endings or an increase in pressure in and between our muscles, which causes a slowing of our metabolism a build up of noxious waste and taut painful bands forming, inhibiting our cleansing ( lymphatic ) system from working properly and a viscious cycle of pain begins . 
If your talking about stretching before working out, although the muscle cells are relaxing and elongating, the related tendons and ligaments are actually benefitting more from the stretching than are your muscles, stretching a muscle thats not warm and vasculated with oxygen rich blood is pointless. Physical therapists seek to find the muscles that are not performing,  the ones making mild osteoarthritic conditions painful instead of slightly uncomfortable by pulling on an already degenerating joint, or that tight fourth layer muscle in your back that wants to lock your spine facet closed or open every time you sit or bend or play that round of early golf. If your musculoskeletal system is out of sync rest assured it can be corrected .

The importance of proper biomechanics

Posted on April 18, 2011 at 5:54 PM Comments comments (1661)
posture check
First of all, what is considered to be good posture? To put it simply, having good or correct posture means having each part of the body in alignment with its neighboring parts. Looking at a person from the side  one should be able to draw a straight line from the earlobe through the middle of the shoulder, hip, knee and finally the ankle. Maintaining good posture promotes health, reduces stress and lessens pain and fatigue. If you trancend this good posture in to a simple exercise like the bicep curl you will notice the next time your in the gym that most people have a forward head posture to start with and some with there humerous upper arm bone actually resting on there chest with the neck flexed forward , this primarily stops the humerous from heading backwards in the first few degrees of the exercise and actually gets the front delt shoulder muscles to do  the work at the start of the contraction instead of the bicep its these reasons and more that people get shoulder impingements and your actually training your neuromuscular system to essentially breed a forward head position and teaching the synergistic helping muscles  that this abnormal firing sequence is normal,  simply letting your arms head slightly back at the start of the exercise stops this, so simply put proper biomechanics, the way we recover and reset our nervous system is detrimental to athletic performance
proper postureConversely, poor posture and faulty neuro receptor routines when we dont lift anything where the body is out of alignment, puts unneeded stress on the neck and back,  increasing the risk of complications, such as headaches, back and neck aches and of course fatigue. It can also  increase the chance of constricted blood vessels and spinal nerves. In addition, the degenerative effects of poor posture can take its toll on bones, discs, muscles and joints. Physical therapists have seen proper resistance postural exercise change lives and its amazing to see the same postural adaptions go hand in hand with the major problems in the musculoskeletal system.

Spinal Damage

Posted on April 18, 2011 at 3:31 PM Comments comments (2483)
spinal damagespinal damageOur modern lives are causing serious damage to our posture. This constant flexion addiction is responsible for many anti-nflammatory and pain killing prescriptions. Weak tight inhibited para spinal muscles, have by no means won the battle . Coupled with ageing, gravity and our sedentary lifestyles however it's never to late to change. There is a painless solution for every body in as little as 10 minutes a day. When you are pain and injury free stay that way. The easiest way to change your posture and release the upper cross syndrome that causes your shoulder tendonitis to ache after sport despite the fact your fit and stretching regularly, or the lower cross syndrome that makes you walk with your hip flexors contracting  first instead of the gluteas maximus contracting first  is the proper use of corrective exercise .