By Matthew Nolan of P2K
Ever looked at a crack in the wall of your house and wonder when did that happen? For some people the fix is quick and easy, patch it and forget about it. A few months go by and lo and behold another crack needs mending. Maybe a few more months later and you wonder when did that door become hard to open?
For the average person, the thought that they need to deal with their foundation doesn’t hit until well after every room in the house is impacted by the shifting forces. Left unattended, we have all seen old houses whose walls are gone and roof is so pitched, it would be unsafe to walk under it!
Ever have a moment getting out of a chair or up out of bed and wonder, is that a new pain? When did that start? Well your body has a foundation also, the pelvic girdle.
It connects with the legs at the hips and also the spine at the SI (sacroiliac) joints. So if the hips have “shift”, it is not unusual for the forces to be off all the way up the spine! Your body has a goal, for your head to remain facing forward and to keep your eyes fairly level. So if one side of the pelvis changes position, there is an alteration in the “foundation” and the rest of the body has to adapt by shifting as well.
You may experience this anywhere in the kinetic chain; meaning that you may feel tightness and pain in your shoulders, neck, head or even the jaw. Yes, your “TMJ” issue may be coming from your hips and pelvic girdle. Think about it, your “foundation” shifted and left unattended your “roof” can no longer handle the change in forces.
Most of the time these “compensatory” injuries show up on the opposite side of the body. Try a little experiment, stand up and place all of your weight on one leg. Feel how the rest of you has to move to keep the balance? Why would anyone not notice? In the course of a life you have to get things done so you keep going.
Most of us wouldn’t recognize this shift as an injury. We begin to consider it “normal”, and don’t seek to correct the foundation problem. So the next time you get headaches a few days in a row or your shoulder “suddenly” doesn’t want to do what you ask ~ have a professional check your hips/pelvis to make sure you don’t need a “foundation repair”. And, oh, by the way, taking a pain killer is like patching the crack, sure you don’t see it anymore but that doesn’t mean you’ve fixed the origin of the problem!
Mr. Nolan has been an educator for over 25 years and in the massage and health fitness industry for the past 23 years. He received his Bachelor of Science (Magnum Cum Laude) from the State University of New York at Cortland in Physical Education with a specialization in Exercise Sciences.He has taught a number of massage and fitness courses over the last 25 years. He maintains a private practice specializing in working with power athletes, body workers and people with chronic pain.