There are a lot of myths and outdated research on what it takes for the body to feel and move optimally. This makes it challenging as a patient to know what’s right for you when you’re experiencing pain or injury.
I’d love to say our approach is simple, but like the body itself, it’s really quite complex. We can’t just do that “one thing” and have everyone feel better. No two patients are ever the same. Even two people with lower back pain may have completely different treatment plans. For example, one could stem from instability in the core and the other from an acute disc injury.
In saying that, there is an approach to sports injury recovery and performance that I’ve honed over the last decade that works well. It’s the same approach I have used with athletes of all levels from my Olympic wrestlers, to middle school Volleyball stars and recreational hikers.
My entire approach is based on creating and empowering a lasting change without relying on medication, surgery or never-ending treatment. The body is resilient.
HOW DO WE DO THAT?
1. Follow functional movement and not pain – That means how and where we deliver care isn’t necessarily based on the location or level of pain. It’s based on how the body is moving (or not moving) because, while pain is important, it’s an unreliable indicator of what may actually be going on. Think of pain like a fire alarm. It is crucial to notify people of a potential fire, but it doesn’t provide critical information about the severity, location, duration, or most importantly WHY the fire started. How you are moving can tell us these things.
2. Clinical examination and functional diagnosis – Because no two cases are identical, we use a variety of tests and assessments to determine two things: 1) The Diagnosis – what is the objective dysfunction. This is a structural diagnosis such as ankle sprain, inflamed bursitis, muscle tear, disc herniation, etc. and 2) The Functional Limitation – what is the actual reason for that pain or injury and how can we modify that movement behaviour. From here, we can create long-term and short-term goals and a treatment plan to fix both.
3. A varied toolbox of treatment techniques – We want to rehab and treat both The Diagnosis, so you feel less pain, can move and return to your activities, and The Functional Limitation, so you don’t continue to see this same injury over and over. We do this using DNS (Dynamic Neuromuscular Stabilization) where we can retrain the brain to essentially “remember” how to move optimally and reduce dysfunction. We also use chiropractic adjustments, acupuncture, gentle soft tissue therapy, and rehab exercises to help alleviate symptoms, improve performance and create real, lasting results.
You can learn more about some of the different assessment and treatment tools in our toolbox below.
If you’d like to experience our approach firsthand, we’d love to see you. You can book an appointment here.