Hey party people!
Today, I'm going to talk about one of the most important movement pattern tools we have. It has literally had my back in tough and painful times. It has soothed my spasms and allowed me to enjoy the day.
Specifically, the last day on my vacation.
It's true. On the second to last day of our time in Greece, we were planning on traveling to our favorite beach spot Kamari in Santorini and walk around to shop the stores. On the way to the beach, I thought my bathing suit was hurting me in the back against the seat. What's funny is I even thought "Has it been like that the whole week?" We got to breakfast at a restaurant in Kamari and towards the end of the meal, I was noticing that my muscles in my back were feeling really tight... in a starting-to-become-really-painful kind of way.
I know that keeping up thoracic spine unlocked is important in a healthy spine so I tried to twist a little but it just didn't quite feeling like it was helping. Of course, I worried that I was making it worse (because it was not making it feel better), so I stopped doing that. We started to walk in the direction of a pharmacy to see if I could get some Advil for it.
Before we could get there, I could hardly walk. My chest and back were so locked up that it was hard to even breathe. I actually hobbled to the beach and dropped my towel down and immediately tried to breathe in the Cow position (arched, looking up). And I felt like I could. Hallelujah.
I took a breath and tried the cat position.
It was really hard to get into the cat/hollow position. My back was really tight. It was definitely a spasm. My back was tight in all sorts of place. Taking a painful exhale and being patient. I could feel which parts of my back were tight.
Cow, and then back to cat. The tough one is usually the one that you need. It was tough and it was tight but it felt better than the first one. And better the third time, and the fourth time. Soon, my back felt so much better.
I can't possibly say that it went back to 100% because it had just had an extreme contraction. BUT it felt so much better, like 90% better. I could breathe, I could walk around. By the time we got to the pharmacy, I really didn't need anything. And they had an over-the-counter muscle relaxer. Which based on how I felt, I'm sure I would have used if I had it at the time of the pain.
I'm really glad that I didn't take the muscle relaxer because I didn't need it.
We often want the pill that will fix us or the take pain away without realizing that we have the power to in many cases.
So here is my personal testament and why I start ALMOST EVERY TRAINING SESSION with Cat/Cows. Be sure to add this to your day and workouts if you don't do them already... because they're life changing!
Have a great week!