The End of Pain

I’m Done Treating Pain. Yes. You read that correctly. I’m over it. Several different thoughts have crept into to my mind sparked by what I have read and conversations I have had. I would like to share these insights with you. I remember when I was visiting Bill Hartman Dad a few months ago and we were talking about a specific treatment that is quite controversial in therapy today. He said something that really resonated with me: “Maybe they measured the wrong thing.” This sentiment was echoed in “Topical Issues in Pain 1” by Louis Gifford. Check out this fantastic excerpt: “Thus, pain can be viewed as a single perceptual component of the stress response whose prime adaptive purpose is to powerfully motivate the organism to alter behavior in order to aid recovery and survive.” Notice what I bolded there. Pain is a single component of the stress response. Not the stress response. Not a necessary component of the stress response. Just one possibility. Why do we place so much importance on pain? Many proponents of modern pain science (myself included) often use this statement against individuals who are over-biomedically inclined: “Nociception is neither necessary nor sufficient for a pain experience.” Agreed, pain is not always the occurring output when nociception is present. That said, pain is only one of several outputs that may occur when a tissue is injured. Just because pain is absent does not mean other outputs are also absent. Many different outputs can occur when an individual is

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Treatment at the Hruska Clinic: The Finishing Touches

For part 1, click here. For part 2, click here. A Low Key Day 3  Day three consisted mostly of putting the finishing touches on my quest toward neutrality. The morning began by tweaking my gelb splint so I was getting even contact on both sides. This way I would be ensured to not have an asymmetrical bite. I put a pair of trial lenses that fit my PRI prescription, and grinding commenced. We finished with this:   Once the splint was done, I had a final meeting with Ron to go over my exercise program. I was placed into phase one visual training with two pairs of glasses. My training glasses were to be used when I lift weights, perform my exercises, walk around, etc. I could wear these for up to 30 minutes at a time; making sure I maximize my visual awareness of the environment. While I was wearing these glasses, I was to be keen on finding and feeling my heels; especially when I turn my head. The glasses would help me find the floor, as well as help my eyes work together and independently from my neck. My second pair of glasses was to be used while performing any activities within arms reach. This pair helps my eyes converge better and promote less eye fatigue. Ron gave me several phase I vision activities as well as a few others. His main objectives were to get my eyes to move independent of my neck. We also

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Course Notes: PRI Integration for the Home

The Pilgramage One of the many reasons I was drawn to make the trek to Lincoln was to experience my man James Anderson’s original affiliate course. I always enjoy hearing James’ perspective on PRI, and he did not disappoint here. The course felt like an Impingement and Instability with a bias towards the geriatric/chronic pain populations. Some might argue that James is the king at implementing PRI here. I really admired James saying throughout the course that the Geriatric population houses his favorite athletes, and they really are.  High performance at any task, be it sprinting 100 meters or walking to pick up the mail, require similar alternating and reciprocal components. We still go after the same pieces to achieve different goals along a continuum. So let’s dive into this high performance course for some high performing individuals. PRI 101…or at Least the Pieces You Didn’t Get from My Other Reads  The affiliate courses have a huge introduction that gives an overview of PRI principles, namely the Left AIC and Right BC patterns. I’m not going to go through all the nitty gritty as this course did, but instead I’ll review concepts that James cleaned up for me. Think of this post as an in-depth FAQ. If you want to learn more about the left AIC, you might want to read the course notes on Myokinematic Restoration and Pelvis Restoration. If you want to learn more about the Right BC, then read my Postural Respiration notes. The Overviewing Overview The big keys

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Course Notes: Dermoneuromodulation

What? You Mean You Have to Touch Someone???!!?!? My gluttony for punishment continues. This time, I had the pleasure of learning Diane Jacobs’ manual therapy approach called Dermoneuromodulation (DNM). My travels took me to Entropy Physiotherapy and Wellness in the Windy City. These folks were arguably the best course hosts I have ever had. We had lunch!!!! Both days!!!!! That is unheard of, so a big thanks to Sandy and Sarah for putting the course together. I took DNM out of curiosity. I have been lurking around Somasimple on and off for the past couple years, and wanted to learn more about the methods championed there. Believe it or not, I have yet to take a pure manual therapy course, DNM seemed like a great way to get my hands dirty. That darn PRI has lessened the hand representation in my somatosensory homunculus!   One reason I haven’t taken a manual course is due to the explanatory models many classes are presenting. It seems as though few are approaching things with a neurological mindset, but I was pleased to hear Diane’s model. It is the best explanation I have heard yet. I know that I usually list my favorite quotes at the end of the blog, but I wanted to share the best quote of the weekend right off the bat: “I don’t know why.” I heard this phrase so much throughout the course and it was quite refreshing. Diane made few claims about her technique, admitted who she “stole”

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PRI and Pain Science: Yes You Can Do It

Questions You may have noticed that my blogging frequency has been a little slower than the usual, and I would like to apologize for that. I am in the midst of creating my first course that I am presenting to my coworkers. It has been a very exciting yet time-consuming process. It makes me excited and more motivated to someday start teaching more on the reg. Ever since I started blogging people started asking me questions. These range from many topics regarding physical therapy, career advice, and the like. Some of the more frequent ones include: What courses should I look at? Any advice for a new grad? Seriously, Bane. What’s the deal? But the one I get asked more often then not is as follows: “Zac, how do you integrate PRI into a pain science model?” A great question indeed, especially to those who are relatively unfamiliar with PRI. With all the HG, GH, AF, FA, and FU’s, it’s easy to get lost in the anatomical explanations. Hell, the company even has the word (gasp) “posture” in the title. Surely they cannot think that posture and pain are correlated. I think there is a lot of misinformation regarding PRI’s methodology and framework. What needs to be understood is that PRI is a systematic, biopsychosocial approach that predominately (though not exclusively) deals with the autonomic nervous system. The ANS is very much linked into pain states, though not a causative factor. But of course, that may not be enough. Perhaps

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