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I love treatment. If I could, I would have treatment at least every week at one of the clinics. Especially massage, gosh I love love love massage. You'd think I would get massages more often, being married to a massage therapist, but whenever I complained to Josh about pain I am experiencing, he just tells me to " do the exercises".
But alas, I, owner of the clinics and consequently someone who genuinely knows better, really suck at doing my home care exercises. Oftentimes when I go in for treatment I tell the clinician, "I know, I know - what I really need to do is strengthen my glute muscles. I know that would relieve my back pain and prevent it from reoccurring. But I just can't seem to make myself do it! Can't I just lay here and you make me feel better? Please?!" 

Written for Logo SBRby Dr Nicole Barry, D.C. and Kevin Connell, P.T. of Energize Health

 

Starting a new season can be an exciting time, especially after a year like we have all had! It can also be a time where the likelihood of injury is higher, due to our bodies not being used to the demands of the sport. With this in mind, we have created a simple outline, focusing on 3 key areas, to prepare your body for a safe and healthy return to softball. Let’s get into it! 

Shin splints is a common condition that is characterized by pain on the front of the lower leg (shin). This condition can be triggered by irritated muscles on the back of the leg (the calf). In the springtime we often see a lot of clients with this condition: people who are excited to get outside and enjoy outdoor activity, oftentimes after being less physically active during the colder months. When we change our level of activity and/or the types of activities we engage in, we can experience discomfort as our bodies adjust to the new demands.  

Here are a few things you can try to help prevent shin splints so you can enjoy the outdoors without pain!

Recently I was talking with my brother Mike who said, “my lower back starts to ache whenever I see snow in the forecast.”  If you too can relate to Mike’s pain, know that you are not alone. I hear this statement all the time in the clinic, and in a city like Calgary this can make it hard to get through the long and snowy winter. To help make this winter a bit more comfortable keep reading to see my top 6 tips for spine-friendly snow shoveling.

1. Lighten the load

Avoid the temptation to load up that snow shovel. Keeping the shovel light will reduce the load on your lower back and help keep you feeling your best. Yes, it may take a few minutes longer to clear the snow, but your spine with thank you the next day.  

2. Keep the shovel close

The further you reach a loaded shovel away from your body, the greater the sheer stress in your lower back. An easy way to reduce this stress is to keep the shovel close to your core and tilt the shovel to unload the snow.

3. Avoid the “bend and twist”

Nothing makes my back hurt quite like watching someone bend and twist their spine while lifting – “ouch!” To keep your chiropractor from cringing, please remember to hinge from the hips and avoid spinal twisting whenever lifting or moving the shovel.

4. Engage your core

Gentle core engagement will act as a support brace for your lower back, providing extra stability when performing a challenging task. To create this abdominal brace, gently tense your core muscles, thinking of lifting your lower abdomen in and up.

5. Take breaks

A simple way to reduce lower back stress is to take frequent breaks. This may mean going inside to warm up, pausing to have a socially distanced chat with a neighbor, or merely stopping to enjoy some fresh air in the beautiful wintery wonderland.

6. Ask for help

If your lower back hurts before you even step outside, then consider asking a family member or neighbor for help. Pain is an important signal that the body uses to get your attention. Listen to your body and avoid pushing through the pain.

Written by Dr. Caitlyn Cameron BSc(Hons), BSc, DC

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