Do past injuries matter? Remember that old shoulder issue you had? Do you think it’s playing into your back pain which isn’t getting better? I do. Or that old ankle sprain? I have had MANY of those!
Think about it…. you are a runner and your knee, hip or low back hurts. You rest, get some treatment to the local area of pain. You go out for a run and BAM! you hurt again. Why? That is the ultimate in frustration. Think about some old injuries you may have had. Any foot issues?
Looking at your foot and seeing how you load your leg when you run can give you incredible insight here. Seeing a skilled physiotherapist who thinks out of the box will open your eyes to other potential sources to your current symptoms.
Simply put, you need effective push off from your foot when you run (and even walk!) and if you are not getting that propulsion, you will compensate somewhere else.
I suffered from chronic left hip pain for some time and it turns out that my old ankle sprain from years ago was causing me to run a certain way that was not really great for my hip. I compensated for a bit until I could not…
In my book “Why Do I Hurt” , I discuss a patient of mine who had chronic foot pain, but was not getting full relief of his symptoms. His foot was a player for sure, but he had an issue in his mid back that was perpetuating his foot pain. Go figure!!
Past injuries and old habits (aka “poor movement patterns”) play a BIG role in chronic pain.
You’re into martial arts and all of a sudden that right jab causes you INTENSE low back pain. You are really sore to touch and have a hard time bending over. You rest, ice, and get some treatment. You return to your favorite sport and then your pain comes back. Why?
True story-it’s because the low back is not the source of your problem. It’s the poor victim. When you have a sudden and intense injury like this, think about the mechanism of your injury. In this scenario, my patient was punching and jabbing, while her body was turned to the left.
We did not treat her low back; but we did treat her thorax. That is the part of the body in between the neck and abdomen (think rib cage). When you have rotational injuries you must consider that area of your body as a potential source.
Here is a free chapter of my book where I discuss common culprits to persistent pain issues. Click here for the download.
If you’re starting something new or just living with an injury, please know that there is hope. Looking at the body from a holistic standpoint can take you a long way!