De-conditioning of the body is a serious concern for those of us with chronic medical diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis and fibromyalgia; or recovering from treatments such as chemotherapy. We are often in a degree of discomfort and the natural inclination can be to “rest”. Sufferers may end up spending long periods sitting or lying in the mistaken belief this will help relieve the discomfort. All this type of resting does is make the problem worse. This is not to say resting appropriately is not important: it is. Too much resting, however, will increase our discomfort. When we spend all our time resting, our bodies de-condition.
None of these affects help us. The muscles, joints, bones and nerves are what I am concentrating on today. David Tom MD, an Arizona-based chronic pain specialist, says patients who are successful in managing their conditions see movement as medicine. I love that phrase. Movement is the one of the best drugs we can use.
Think about tennis players. Notice the muscles in their serving arm are always more developed than the muscles of the other arm. Remember back in primary school – when a classmate finally had the plastercast removed from a broken arm, that arm was smaller that the other arm. The old saying of “use it or lose it” applies. The tennis players are definitely using their muscles but I am asking you to think about the example in terms of the capacity for muscles to either be strong and support our quality of life objectives, or to wither away from lack of use.
In the fitness profession we talk about weak and tight muscle imbalances. Both will inhibit a client’s ability to achieve their goals. Those of us with chronic medical conditions often end up “guarding” an area of our body. I have a herniated disc and facet joint problems in my lumbar spine. I found my posture changing in a subconscious attempt to alleviate the pain I was feeling. In doing so, I caused an imbalance in my posterior chain (the muscles down the back). One side got weaker, the other side was doing all the work. That caused me more problems! I’m correcting my posture and strengthing the weak area.
When we lose muscle strength, our joints lack the support they need. We end up with stiff, creaky joints. We want to move even less as a result – it becomes a downward spiral.
I have found kyBoot shoes an invaluable part of my medicine kit. As soon as I stood in them I felt my posture improve. When I walk it is a pleasurable experience – so I keep walking. I wear kyBoot every day.
I had been suffering severe pain in my right buttock (stemming, we believe, from the aforementioned lumbar issues). This started in January this year. Last month I finally had an MRI and discovered the problems in my lumber spine. Even with those problems, I have just logged four weeks totally without pain in my glutes.
No only am I walking longer without discomfort, I am walking more naturally. My hamstrings are not as tight as they were, meaning I can actually touch my toes again.
Look at this video from the kybun Bewegung page (http://blog.kybun.com/bewegung/)
That is not how most of us walk, most of the time – rarely, in fact, these days. kyBoot replicates the natural gait meaning my muscles and joints are working as they were designed to. I benefit by reduced discomfort!
As for lack of movement, even without having a chronic illness, we move nowhere near as much as we were designed to. I love this little video comparing our past with our present. I can vouch for the present: in one management role I had, I would walk out of my back door, step into my company car, drive to work and park in the basement, get the lift up to my office, sit most of the day (2,000 steps was an active day!) then reverse the journey at the end of the day. No wonder I was in no condition to fight inflammatory arthritis when it arrived in my life.
Now my life is completely different. I make time to MOVE. I also do resistance training. Here I am working on my lower body muscle strength. With my kyBoot shoes, of course.
I can now walk 3.5 kilometres without a break, a major improvement. kyBoot shoes have definitely helped me in my goal to be more active, to have a better quality of life. I walk most of the way home from my classes at the Pain Management Centre program I have been attending and I enjoy the various sights and sounds I notice. Watching the canoes on the river is enjoyable.
I do love the sounds of fountains (Domain Gardents, Melbourne). Canoeing on the Yarra River, Melbourne, Australia. I can take my time, enjoy my surroundings as walking is now enjoyable.
Website from Robyn Dunphy: limberation.com