Do you have knee pain?
Do you have a sore knee?
You start to notice that you are having knee pain, however it’s not bad enough to consider going to a doctor.
If you are an athlete or do a lot of walking and moving around, you might decide to wear a band around your knee to keep it feeling more stable. However; as time moves forward you might start noticing that the knee pain becomes more constant and gets in the way of certain activities. You begin to wonder if something is torn? You go to a doctor and they decide to do an X-ray or MRI. They tell you to go to physical therapy. All the while looking at the knee as the problem, which from that perspective, it is.
Postural therapy is going to look at this situation from an entirely different perspective. Let’s examine what has happened and how to address the pain.
We have 8 loading joints. The joints are shoulders, hips, knees and ankles. It’s optimum if they are equal, however when one joint changes, it will affect both sides of the body and all the other 7 joints. When your knee begins to hurt, you are going to favor the knee and stop putting as much weight on the affected side. Now the opposite site begins to work harder and tighten up due to excess work load. During the process of dealing with a sore joint, the other joints will shift to keep the body upright and able to move. This is very smart on the part of the body, however will play havoc with the other joints and muscles. When approaching just the issue with the knee without looking and working with the other muscles and joints, compensation begins to take over and additional issues can arise. A common example is low back pain. This can go unnoticed until pain starts and now there is a second problem. I’ve heard this over and over where clients will start with an injury on one side and later well after the injury is better they begin having problems with other body parts. Maybe you are wondering why low back pain would occur months later? The compensations that occurred during the time of pain and injury changed your movement patterns. One side is still working harder, while the other side may be less strong and a bit inactive in certain muscles. How this happens goes back to the nervous system and survival. Your body learned a different way to survive and keep you upright with more weight on one side. Unless this is addressed, your body doesn’t know you need to re-educate how to move. It’s just doing what was necessary to help you get around during the painful knee issue. This is a simple and brief explanation of what happens.
How do you fix all of this? When assessing the posture, we look for misalignment’s and compensations. Maybe one shoulder is higher than the other, or you notice one arm looks longer. Maybe your upper body is rotated in one direction, or a kneecap looks lower than the other side. Using stretches and exercises we can begin to straighten out the misalignments and when this occurs, pain reduces, and you begin to move freely without restriction from a painful joint. A simple morning routine around 20 minutes per day will reduce pain and improve movement. Its really empowering to have control over your pain and experience it diminishing.
Carolyn Vanzlow Postural Therapist
CHEK Practitioner Level 4
AET Certified through Egoscue Institute