The best moments in a chiropractor‘s career is really about creating meaningful change with and for our clients.
How does exercise help with chronic pain?
When Phase 2 (HA) started, a client decided to put her sessions with us on old because she was living with her senior, unvaccinated mother. We saw again this week as the COVID situation is improving and her mother had also completed her vaccination.
She was on all smiles. Full of good news to report about the improvements she had made. Despite having been two months since I last saw her, she was able to make progress. This is because with our approach to recovery, she can continue to keep working to help herself.
You may things it worked out well for her because she probably already loved exercise.
Recovery exercises can be painful.
In fact, most of the prescribed exercises were aggravating her symptoms. We had to frequently postpone her follow-ups so she could have extra time for rest.
Exercise was not easy for her.
This took a dramatic change for the better over the last two months. And it is not because she took a break from exercising.
She still kept up with the prescribed programme!
Pain isn’t always damage.
It’s not always easy to exercise while you are in recovery. When moving starts to hurt and exercising start to make you feel worse, giving up seems like the obvious option.
There was a lot of reassurance that pain doesn’t equal damage. We discussed lots about what pain really is and what does research tells us about painful exercises. They may all seem like arbitrary head knowledge but it did make a difference for this client.
Exercise it not always just exercise. There is an education and coaching aspect that makes all the difference.
Collectively, they empower you to keep moving despite of your pain.
Is getting a personal trainer worth it?
We started introducing personal training services at our practice because we see how it can benefit people.
One of our physically active client experiences frequent bouts of low back pain. It was obvious that his pain stemmed mostly from his lack of strength training. While we did prescribe him with home exercises, the was not very diligent at keeping up with them and his follow-ups.
What we ended up doing is to encourage him to sign up for our strength training programme with the personal trainer.
The results were phenomenal!
He could make session-on-session progress. He felt like he was in control of his low back condition. While his low back was sore, he understood that to be part of the strengthening progress. The movement drills and technique work he does with the trainer helped him understand exercise better. It empowered him with the technical skills to lift heavy weights.
It was an all-round winner!
Seniors can benefit from personal training as well!
One of our senior clients lifted 50kg the other day. It was impressive.
She was surprised by how light it felt (i.e., how strong she has become). Her son was impressed by how much he could lift!
The most impressive change of all was that she wanted to keep coming back to work with the trainer. She saw the wonderful effects exercise have on her. She was a total believer that lifting heavy weights would further improve her physical well-being!
Personal training created a safe space for her to do exercises that she would otherwise be uncomfortable with. Lifting 50kg for a senior who had lived with decades of pain is no small feat!
Imagine being told for your whole life that exercises are bad for your joints. You shouldn’t be carrying heavy weight cos it will make your low back worse, etc. How do you think these narratives will affect you?
Working with a personal trainer not only help a person exercise better. It also gives you the confidence and reassurance you need to move freely!
Research supports that exercises are good for seniors.
A paper that was just published last month found that supervise exercise is great to help prevent or reduce functional and cognitive decline.
It is a big deal because we sometimes just expect old people to exert themselves less. We give up our seats for them on buses and trains. We encourage them to move less and sometimes we create a false impression that exercise is bad for them.
This is not true.
The paper recommended that “physical trainers should be included in health-care systems” because of all the benefits that exercises can bring. Yet in modern medical training, exercise has been almost totally excluded!
I mean, many patients have testified to how exercises have helped them avoided surgery! It doesn’t make sense that exercise is excluded from core medical services (physiotherapy is considered allied health).