Over the next few weeks I'll be answering some frequently asked questions about posture alignment therapy and corrective exercise. Today we'll start with one that I get asked on a daily basis.
Is Corrective Exercise a Quick Fix?
No. If it were, we'd be just like everyone else offering symptomatic pain relief. Corrective Exercise programs including Posture Alignment Therapy are not a quick fix.
You will feel better fairly quickly, but it is a PROCESS.
Your body didn't deteriorate over night, nor should the solution be as fast. You WILL almost always experience a reduction in pain and an improvement in mobility from your first menu (which is GREAT) and it may last for a long period of time - often days. THE DANGER IS TO STOP HERE doing just one menu.
There is much more to posture alignment therapy than just pain relief. And that's what makes us special and unique.
We will help you eliminate pain by identifying, addressing and correcting the ROOT CAUSE or origin of what caused the problem in the first place.
Keep in mind that repetitive inactivity, motions (sitting, standing, sports, technology use), one sided-activities, everyday injuries and gravity have had an effect on your current joint position.
Over the course of years you've developed muscular imbalances which have created compensations and dysfunctions in the load joints. This has allowed your body to shift out of it's proper blue-print design and function and you've taken those imbalances into all of your day to day activities up to this point. It was only a matter of time until the pain came.
When you do your first menu of posture alignment corrective exercises you will immediately experience a reduction in pain and the benefits of better posture doing right away. We don't promise to completely get your pain down to a zero (on a scale of 0 to 10), but we can tell you that you will feel better, and it will continue to improve each and every day.
After your initial session, you may also feel a sensation of walking and standing taller, feeling more/improved balance, have an easier time doing daily activities and a reduction in pain to complete pain relief (remember - every person is different).
However, it is very important that you understand that right now your body is strongest in the imbalanced positions. That's where you've been living over the past decades until the pain made you stop and listen!
Your new postural alignment, muscle balance and load joint positions are not currently your day-to-day normal just yet. Just like it took time for your body to get into the condition it is currently in, so too will it take time to transition to all of the new stimulus and demand to create the new postural changes in your body.
Your symptom relief may only last for a short period of time without continued intervention.
This is why we ask you to do your menu of corrective exercises on a daily basis. When you do your part by committing AND actually doing your menu on a daily basis (to introduce the correct position, stimulus and demand to your body) along with follow-up appointments to continually increase the demand, re-training and re-educating your posture, you will become more and more functional and get long lasting and permanent pain relief.
Another common question similar to the first question that I get here at Pain Free Posture MN is "HOW LONG BEFORE I FEEL RESULTS?"
You Will Feel Better Right Away Doing Postural Therapy
In my professional experience, most clients feel a real difference immediately at the first session. Results do vary from client to client as each person is unique (level of pain, location(s) of pain, length of time pain has been present). By working with your Certified Posture Alignment Specialist to identify the postural imbalance, compensations and dysfunctions, and simply addressing your posture you will feel better immediately. In that first session alone, you will learn how to sit and stand in a better postural position and then learn a menu of corrective exercises designed to realign the body and relieve pain.
HOWEVER, that's just the start of the pain relieving process. The key is to re-train your postural muscles so that they keep your body in the newly aligned position, without you having to think about it. This is why you are asked to do your menu of exercises on a daily basis for a period of time to help your brain create the proper muscle memory that transfers into achieving a pain free lifestyle.
Our APPROACH is to help you re-establish your ideal "blue-print" muscle and joint position. In order to do this we have to identify, address and unravel muscular compensations through the application of properly sequenced corrective exercise programming.
The muscles will be stimulated to return to and maintain their proper muscle-length tension relationship. This allows the load joints to properly re-align themselves, allowing the pelvis and spine to return to their proper position and function, and ultimately causing the body to move freely and efficiently.
The wear and tear and joint inflammation will be reduced and over time eliminated, cartilage will have a fighting chance to regenerate, and you will be able to sit, stand, run, jump and do the activities of daily living better than you have in years.
When you partner with a specialist, you have a highly trained eye and coach to help you conquer existing and impending problems within the muscular, fascia and nervous systems of your body. And, because all of the systems of the body are interrelated, you may also experience relief of symptoms in the digestive, circulatory, or other organ systems.
Corrective Exercise is a Process
Corrective exercise menus which is for the average client completed over 8 - 16 visits which can be spaced out over time. This is not a hard and binding rule, simply the average.
We begin by mitigating your symptoms (pain relief), reducing the rotation in your body and neutralizing the pelvis and spine. But from that point forward, we will help you straighten out your posture and structurally strengthen you to better preform your activities of daily living, and athletic pursuits. This will require some time, patience and perseverance. Then we work towards leaving the body in neutral.
Otherwise, we fall back into the cycle of mitigating your symptoms, which up until now wasn't working well for you!
Remember, it has taken you a lifetime to develop these specific muscular and mechanical compensations, it will take some time to unravel it all. But the best part? It is well worth the investment in your overall health and wellness.
Do you have a question? Want to chime in on the conversation? We'd love to hear from you! Remember, we're in this together, and I am here to help!
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Head Photo Credit: Ruby and Roxy Photography
Deb Preachuk is a Chronic Pain Pain Relief, Posture Restoration and Athletic Performance Enhancement pro specializing in corrective exercise, applied biomechanics, STOTT Pilates and functional movement patterns.
Founder of Pain Free Posture MN, Deb helps real people transform real-world chronic pain challenges into achievable results. Deb infuses her teaching with an honest, open and down-to-earth mix of chronic pain relief therapeutic modalities training techniques to make the concepts of pain relief and body/mind transformation accessible and achievable!