How To Fix Your Pain And/Or Lack Of Range Of Motion (And Feel 10 Years Younger Too)
I want to help you to keep pain-free, injury-free and moving without restrictions, so that you can feel younger again, and be so much fitter and healthier.
I've experienced pain and stiffness in my knees for nearly 30 years now. This was a problem for me when performing squats, when I was trying to add muscle to my body, because my confidence was low through being a skinny teenager. My knee pain worsened over time, and I once had to jump off of a spin bike while I was taking a spin class, because I got a shearing pain under my right knee. I then came across an article by an author that I followed for weight training and strength. The article was about something called 'Trigger Point Therapy'. The author had been able to drastically improve his debilitating knee pain through using this therapy, which he learned from a book.
I started looking into it, and bought my first foam roller 11 years ago now. Foam rollers were few and far between at the time, unlike now, and video coaching and demonstrations were not available. I started to roll my IT band with a soft spiky massage ball 3x per day, for just a few minutes per time. The pain was excruciating. I could have cried, it was so bad. But I persevered. I progressed to using a foam roller and started to roll other parts of my quadriceps (front of thighs) also. After a couple of weeks I felt like I had a new set of knees. I was moving so much better, with much less stiffness, and was able to deepen my squat. I continued to study 'Trigger Point Therapy' which is also known as 'Myofascial Release', 'Self-Myofascial Release' and 'Foam Rolling' and found other books and apps that gave simple advice in laymen's terms.
As I rolled other parts of my body, and started using a la crosse ball for this, I found that I could eradicate pain and stiffness, and take muscles completely out of spasm, simply through 'rolling' trigger points.
Over the years, I've had my trapezius muscles (upper back just below the neck) go into full spasm, which limited my movement of my head and caused pain and stiffness up my neck, and tilted my head to one side.
I've also had piriformis syndrome, which gave me severe pain in one glute. I couldn't sit on that side of my butt, and was in agony.
I also once put my lower back into spasm and struggled to get up from a bed, and couldn't stand or walk straight.
Through using trigger point therapy with just a simple foam roller and/or la crosse ball, I managed to fix all of the above (plus use of the inversion table and a contract-stretch, that I show you in the videos below).
This has been my saviour for working in this industry for so many years, and has saved me a fortune in physio or chiropractic treatments.
Over the last number of years I've been fixing various clients too. I actually qualified in massage, Kinetic Chain Release and Chinese Cupping Therapy, just so I could help you and others.
The same issues arise time and again. Pain in upper back, shoulder joints, knee joints and calves going into spasm (tightening up and being painful). So I've treated the same things over and over. I've fixed 5x cases of piriformis syndrome in the last 18 months.
I figured that if I could put together video coaching content and some helpful images etc, then this could really help you in addition to the coaching that I give you in person, for dealing with your pain.
The important thing is to do the therapy CONSISTENTLY. You wouldn't go to a single Yoga class and expect to become flexible. It's the compound effect of doing trigger point therapy frequently that really pays off. Here are my recommendations:
You have severe pain/stiffness:
Do your rolling 3-6x per day. (It might only take 30 seconds to 5 mins per time, depending on the size of the muscle group that you're working on).
You just have to make the time. How about once in the morning, once when you come home from work, and once shortly before you go to bed?
Look at it this way. If if takes you 5 mins per time, 3x per day, and it's uncomfortable while you're doing it, then that's 15 minutes of discomfort per day. If you don't do it, you could be in discomfort for all 16 hours that you're awake per day, and maybe even waking up through the night in pain. is it worth it for 15 minutes of discomfort? Of course it is!
How much discomfort to apply:
7 on a scale of 1-10 with 10 being highest. If it's more than 7, you're going to avoid doing it. If it's less than 7, then you can go a little harder, applying a bit more pressure.
First signs of progress:
You go on the roller/use the la crosse ball, and you find that it's less sore when you apply pressure on your trigger points. Now you're progressing. You will then find as you continue to do it, that your movement improves (sometimes dramatically) and your pain disappears.
When to stop doing it:
When your pain while rolling is around 3-4 out of 10, and your pain when not rolling has gone, and your range of motion has returned fully.
Once your pain has gone:
Perhaps do a little maintenance work on those same problematic muscles, once per week. If you notice any regression and pain returns, then get back to rolling again and get those trigger points deactivated.
I hope that this really helps you. If you have any questions or want any advice at any point, then contact me asap.
Lower Back Pain
So many people suffer from lower back pain these days, that we could devote an entire page to this topic.
Below you will find some fantastic decompression exercises and some stretches too, that can really help.
I think the best thing to do is try out all of these ones below. If you can keep doing these consistently, you will find that you get more relief from certain moves than you do others. Once you find out what works best for you, keep on doing them.
Once your pain is gone, it would be worth doing a few of these moves each week to have a proactive approach to preventing lower back problems rather than waiting until you're already stiff and in pain before you take action.
Frequently do these spinal decompression exercises at home, and you will make some great progress in alleviating your pain.
We've had really good feedback about the final one in the first video in particular, where you're doubled over the back of a chair.
While your back is stiff, you can use the three stretches in the pdf document below, via clicking on the green button. Be sure to also follow the advice in the 3 videos below to get the extra benefits of decompression, which can really help to loosen up your back.elps,
Shin splints are a common problem for those who run regularly.
Here's how to eradicate them.
You can use this simple foam rolling technique to eradicate your shin splints.
Make sure to roll your calves also. I made a separate video on how to roll your calves. You can find it above.
Hope this helps you.
Here I take Sharon through a session on using the foam roller to alleviate her knee pain.
Sharon had been through a session of foam rolling the quadriceps for knee pain, in-person at Rezults. But she was having further knee pain a few months later.
So I asked her to show me what rolling she had been doing, and what specific areas she had been targeting.
She had been hitting some areas but missing some key areas including the hip flexor muscle (in the pocket area) and also up the inside of her thigh.
Once she rolled the hip flexor she immediately felt excrutiating pain, which clearly showed that she has active trigger points in her hip flexors.
Neck and Upper Back Stiffness, and Headaches
For headaches, upper back and neck stiffness, follow the advice in the two videos below.
You can use a tennis ball or a la crosse ball for your trapezius muscles and you only need your hands for your neck (sternocleidomastoid) muscles.
If you need a la crosse ball, let me know as I have some @ Rezults.
Hope this helps,
More on elbow pain and stiffness
Do you ever suffer from pain to the outside of your elbow?If you pick something up and your elbow hurts on the outside, then you have tennis elbow.
Here's a fix for you.
Sometimes when you have the symptoms of sciatica (pain in lower back and numbness down the leg) it can actually be coming from your piriformis muscle, in your glute.
If so, here is a contraction and then stretch for the piriformis muscle, that will immediately release your pain.
If these don't work for you, then scroll further down, to the spinal decompression exercises, because these are for your back, where sciatica originates (unlike piriformis syndrome, which comes from your glutes, not your back).
Shoulder and Lower Back Decompression (Frozen Shoulder or Shoulder Impingement Issues)
This one (below) also works great for decompressing your lower back, and is awesome for decompressing your shoulder joints too.
Or you can use an inversion table to decompress your spine and hips. This works really well for lower back pain and stiffness and for sacroiliac joint disfunction.
We have one that we can loan to you for you to frequently use at home if you need it.
If you have a shoulder issue, then the two best solutions that I know of, are the two below. These are:
- Treating your trigger points in your scalene muscles in your neck (notorious for shoulder issues and also causing numbness down your arm, into your finger tips).
- Hanging therapy, hanging for a bar (fantastic for impingement or other shoulder issues).
You can use this stretch if you have numbness down one arm, or have shoulder pain. This stretch also works for lightly stretching out your lower back. When your lower back is stiff, use this stretch. Hope this helps you. DT
Below are comments from others who have used hanging therapy to fix their shoulder issues. There are dozens of these comments online. Have a read, and then get to your hanging for fixing your shoulder.