back painI have been seeing The World’s Best Physical Therapist for a little over a month about my chronic back pain. Over the years I have seen doctors, chiropractors, an acupuncturist, a personal trainer, and another PT to no avail; the back pain has slowly gotten worse over the past 30 years. It got significantly worse after I spent the better part of 2 months in a wheel chair after breaking my ankle in 2008.

This physical therapy thing was probably my last chance. Happily, after the first visit I got a PT who is wonderful. She is beyond competent; she actually listens carefully to what I say, then selects exercises specifically for those pains and weaknesses.   She has been working to, among other things, strengthen my abdominals — particularly the ones that got sliced in the two C-sections — and relax my lower back muscles. While I have seen definite improvement in abdominal muscle engagement, there has been zero, zip, nada, improvement in back  pain.

Until today.

In addition to doing my exercises once or twice a day, depending on how my exercised muscles feel, this morning I did a couple minutes of abdominal stuff before I even got out of bed. My thinking was that I needed to *wake up* those muscles and remind them of their job. I knew it worked because I could feel those muscles when I got up.

This experiment stemmed from a couple of experiences this weekend.

One morning I leapt out of bed, let the dogs out, fixed their morning meds/treats (Lucy The Formerly Intrepid But Now Senior Dog gets a ground-up pill in a scoop of canned dog food, the other two get a scoop of that yumminess so they don’t feel left out), and started the espresso maker. By this time my back was screaming, and I had to go lie down until the coffee was ready.

The next morning I did a few exercises before I got dressed, and I found that my back hurt somewhat less.

Today, after the morning routine — the aforementioned exercises (more than I did that other morning), let the dogs out, fixed their meds/treat, made the coffee, got dressed, drank the latte and ate a granola bar while checking my email, brushed my teeth, read a few blogs — I took Misha The Rescue Dog and walked to the ~1/10 mile tomailbox to get the mail.

My back did not hurt at all on the way to the mailbox!

It did start to bother me on the way home, but I was so jubilant about the back pain-freesmilefirst leg of the walk that I could ignore it.

I have something wonderful to report to TWBPT at my next appointment on Thursday!

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10 Responses to Yippee!

  1. highlyreasonable says:

    Hooray for lessened pain! I went to PT for a torn tendon about eight years ago, and I used to wish I could have Bill move into our guest room as my personal physical therapist to help me manage all my aches and pains. Hoping for much less back pain for you in the days to come!

  2. zeneedle says:

    This is my experience exactly! Only with strengthening all my muscles have I had any hope at all of lessening the pain in my back that radiates down my leg. A good PT is worth their weight in gold! Good work!

  3. loreen j clayton morrell says:

    How wonderful for you! Nothing like pain to slow our lives down. Good work Kathy.

  4. gayle says:

    Hugs! Well, gentle hugs so as not to start up the pain, But hugs! anyway!

  5. Jocelyn says:

    This is soooo HUGE! I’m delighted for you, friend. Living in pain, as you have been, bleeds into every hour of every day–it’s so hard to “shelve” pain. Bless the therapy.

  6. connies56 says:

    I’m curious what her technique is, or if it’s a combination of techniques? Sounds similar to one of the clinics where I worked where they used a combination of several techniques but taking the time to actually detect the little things was key. A lot of places rely on crappy reimbursements and thus try to see as many patients as often as possible. Assembly line style PT.

  7. scraggyjack says:

    Know how you feel! Glad you can get some partial relief.

  8. Cathy-Cate says:

    Awesomeness! Good thoughts coming your way for it to keep up!

  9. Chris says:

    Yay for being able to see some progress!

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