By Jenean LaRoche, Certified Posture Alignment Specialist
Your pain is sending you a message. That pain in your knee, back, hip, neck or shoulder is trying to get your attention. It's saying that something in your body isn't quite right.
Now that might make you say “DUH” if you’ve recently had a sports injury. But what if you didn’t have a recent injury? What if that pain is associated with something as simple as driving in your car, sitting at your computer or walking your dog? What if that pain is from an injury months ago that should be well healed? What if that pain has been with you for so long, you don’t even know where it is coming from?
Now I know I’m asking a lot of questions and you’re reading this to get some answers. So here we go. There is a good chance that the chronic pain you are experiencing is telling you that your body is out of alignment. Yes alignment, like your car.
Our various body parts, shoulders, knees, hips etc. are like our car tires. They need to be properly aligned or pressures can build up on structures like ankles, knee joints, vertebrae, etc. When they are not, the various body parts start talking to us. First maybe it’s a twinge, then it’s soreness, then inflammation sets in and when it’s gone too far, changes to the actual supporting structures start to happen. Cartilage gets worn unevenly (“bad knees”), tendons get chronically inflamed (carpal tunnel), nerves get pinched (sciatica) the bursa get irritated (bursitis) and when it’s severe or chronic, bones can start to change shape (bunions). In all these cases, the body part is sending out a signal to you: HELP ME!
What can help us feel better? Many things; rest, anti-inflammatories, massage, etc. But think of this: If we took that unevenly worn tire off the car and had it retread, when you put in back on the car, yes, the ride would improve for sure. Problem solved, right? Ah not so fast… Since the wheels are still out of alignment, the retread tire is just a temporary fix. The same thing happens in your body. Without really looking at the cause of why a pain exists, it may just be destined to continue or happen again in the future.
This is where treating the posture comes in. By realigning the body so that the various parts are balanced and centered, the body “wears” more evenly and can move more effectively and efficiently. The body will then stop talking to you through pain.
So, you may be thinking, oh my gosh, how do I do that? I’ve tried to stand/sit up straighter. I’ve tried a special chair, brace, cushion etc. and it helps a but it does not go away. But you see it’s the body that you are bringing to the chair, brace, cushion etc. The body that is out of alignment needs to make a change from the inside out, not the outside in.
The way that you can change the body is through specially designed easy-to-learn posture exercises known as Egoscue. And the good news about that? The body will respond very quickly. It wants to move to a position of correction and comfort. Clients working with this system often report noticeable changes in their pain levels after just a few sessions and with continued use of the exercises can make big time changes to their posture leading to cessation of pain, increased energy and improved sense of wellbeing.
If you would like more information on help with your pain and posture or have other questions, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jenean LaRoche is a Posture Alignment Specialist certiﬁed by Egoscue University®. She holds a BA degree in Dance Education and past licensure in nursing and massage therapy. Her broad background in health and wellness spans three decades. Jenean offers Align Posture sessions at SenSpa and she is also the director of SenSpa Wellness Center.