The Pain Loop –
Neuro-Muscular Weakness/Imbalance > Faulty Movement Pattern > Shearing/Wear and Tear/Damage/Inflammation/Injury (Chronic or Acute) > Structural Changes (Temporary) > More Shearing/Wear and Tear/Damage/Inflammation/Injury (Chronic or Acute) > Continued Compensatory Changes in Movement Patterns > Additional Shearing/Wear and Tear/Damage/Inflammation/Injury (Chronic vs. Acute) > Structural Changes (Permanent) … Repeat
It all begins with some type of imbalance. Most imbalances involve a neuro-muscular weakness that can be brought on either by genetics or exposure to an environmental stimulus. If you can identify imbalances early and improve them you will be able to better avoid major issues down the road.
Weaknesses and imbalances lead to faulty movement patterns. When these faulty movement patterns occur repetitively over time such as in functional activities like squatting and walking then improper stresses are placed on the body. If these issues are not addressed then the improper stresses begin to break down the body, which could result in injury.
The body adapts based on the demands places on it so faulty movement patterns over time will lead to structural changes that are much harder to fix. Once structural changes have set in you are really at danger of losing function, so it in imperative that fixing imbalances and movement patters become a priority in your everyday life in order to prevent further breakdown, and the spread of dysfunction to other areas of the body.
If you have gotten to the point in the Pain Loop where permanent structural changes have set it, your goals might need to be re-assessed. Once permanent structural changes have set in you most likely will never go back to 100 percent. However, it is still critical to address the imbalances and movement patterns that have gotten you to that point thus far. By doing this, you will “stop the bleeding,” so to speak, and prevent the spread of further dysfunction. The Pain Loop will continue to spread throughout the body until the imbalances and movement patterns are addressed.
Many individuals resort to surgery to help with structural changes that are contributing to their pain and dysfunction. Surgery can help to restore the damaged structure, but without proper training to improve weaknesses and movement patterns the issue will just resurface, or move to the next weakest link in the chain causing further injury. If surgery is indicated then it is imperative that you work hard to address imbalances and movement patters in order to give you the best chance at a successful recovery.
• More information on training imbalances/weaknesses and movement patterns can be found in the book Do This, Eat That available at the Riverwalk Athletic Club and www.Amazon.com