13 Apr, 2018

Shoulder pain and the thoracic spine

by Tom Ham

The shoulder and thoracic (mid) spine are correlated to each other. They are two regions that are adjacent to one another, however they also have regional interdependence, which means that seemingly unrelated impairments in one region (such as the thoracic spine) may contribute to, or be associated with, a primary complaint in the shoulder. You need optimal amounts of thoracic extension to create an optimal ribcage surface for the scapular to move effectively and efficiently. If there is a lack of extension or increased kyphosis (hunched back), the surface of the ribcage will make overhead motion much more difficult.

Here’s a test you can do at home to show you how thoracic kyphosis/ extension mobility affects overhead movement.  Stand with poor posture- head forward, shoulders rolled forward and round your upper back, now try doing an overhead press. No very good huh? Now fix your posture- pull shoulders back, tuck chin, straighten upper back and try the shoulder movement again. Much easier huh? Hence with poor structure/ posture and lack of extension, overhead movements are impossible to do efficiently!

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29 Mar, 2018

Scheuermann’s

by Tom Ham

Ever wondered why you’ve been hunched at a very young age? You could have something called Scheuermann’s disease.

It is a developmental disorder of the spine that begins usually before puberty.

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23 Feb, 2018

Suprascapular Nerve palsy

by Tom Ham

Do you have sudden weakness in certain shoulder movements? Sudden weakness in external shoulder rotation with or without pain may be related to irritation of the suprascapular nerve. It’s a nerve that comes from the neck and travels through the shoulder blade. It controls the external rotators of the shoulder including the Supraspinatus and Infraspinatus rotator cuff muscles. So when this nerve is irritated either through entrapment or major repetitive trauma it can lead to major weakness in shoulder external rotation, muscle wasting and pain. In most cases all other shoulder movements are preserved and pain free. Getting you back to tip top shape requires professional advice and an exercise rehab program, so if you do feel you have these symptoms get some professional advice!

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16 Feb, 2018

Importance of Sleep

by Tom Ham

Everyone knows sleep is important and that you need roughly 7-8hours for a good night sleep. It is gateway for recovery and resetting your body to function properly for the next day. Not enough sleep you feel tired and groggy, but why? A recent study published in October 2013 found out that on a molecular level, sleep is designed to cleanse the brain. They summarized that “the restorative nature of sleep appears to be the result of active clearance of the by-products of neural activity that accumulate during wakefulness”. Therefore it removes potential harmful toxins in and around the brain, including the fluid around the brain called CSF (cerebrospinal fluid).  Hence this is a reason why you feel groggy with lack of sleep, as there is an over accumulation of these neuro-toxins within the brain and CSF!

However it also about quality of sleep and not just quantity. If your tossing and turning all night long, you will most likely not get the deep sleep that you need. Tips to help getting a good night, deep sleep:

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15 Feb, 2018

Lumbar Instability

by Tom Ham

Poor posture and abnormal movement patterns are associated with lower back pain. Poor function of the lumbar spine at a segmental level is split into two categories, spasticity and instability, ie tight or unstable. Instability is defined as “ abnormal response to applied loads and is characterized by movement of spinal segments beyond their normal limits” (SW Lee et al). Hip joints function is closely related to lower back pain. Restriction of hip movement in lower back pain patients was significantly different from that of healthy persons. Weak pelvis muscles including the Glut medius & hip flexor muscle can also cause instability within the lower back and pelvis.

A recent study investigated hip range of motion in relation to chronic lower back pain. The study found greater limitation in hip ROM for chronic lower back pain sufferers than healthy persons and among them whom had lumbar instability showed greater limitations than those with lumbar stability.

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15 Feb, 2018

The Importance of Sleep

by Tom Ham

Everyone knows sleep is important and that you need roughly 7-8hours for a good night sleep. It is gateway for recovery and resetting your body to function properly for the next day. Not enough sleep you feel tired and groggy, but why? A recent study published in October 2013 found out that on a molecular level, sleep is designed to cleanse the brain. They summarized that “the restorative nature of sleep appears to be the result of active clearance of the by-products of neural activity that accumulate during wakefulness”. Therefore it removes potential harmful toxins in and around the brain, including the fluid around the brain called CSF (cerebrospinal fluid).  Hence this is a reason why you feel groggy with lack of sleep, as there is an over accumulation of these neuro-toxins within the brain and CSF!

However it also about quality of sleep and not just quantity. If your tossing and turning all night long, you will most likely not get the deep sleep that you need. Tips to help getting a good night, deep sleep:

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15 Feb, 2018

IMPORTANCE OF SPINAL ALIGNMENT & STABILITY

by Tom Ham

Why is the spine so important?

Your spine is the central pillar of your body and has two main functions. It keeps you upright and protects the part of the Central nervous system (CNS) called the spinal cord that is essentially the master control system of the body. Not only does the CNS control movement, it also regulates organs, balance, proprioception, memories, and thoughts.

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15 Feb, 2018

THE BEST MECHANICS TO A SQUAT

by Tom Ham

1. Organize & stabilize spine: keep spine in a neutral position, no local flexion or extension faults, whilst keeping the core switched on

2. Create torque in your primary engines: The primary engines being your shoulders and hips. When adding torque you want to have external rotation within the socket to "tighten" the joint and increase stability, NOT SAYING COMPLETELY TURN YOUR FEET OUT. You want plant your feet neutrally (slight toes out) and create local external rotation (torque) with the primary engine joint whilst sticking the knees out to the side.

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30 Jan, 2018

Achilles Tendinitis

by Tom Ham

Do you have pain at the back of the heel, associated with physical activity such as running and jumping? Then you could be suffering from Achilles tendinopathy. It’s an inflammatory condition relating to overuse of the Achilles tendon and the calf muscle. Repetitive motion such as running and jumping causes wear and tear of the tendon, to a point where the wearing of the tendon exceeds the healing. If the injury occurs on one side it can be related to imbalances within the pelvis, hips or ankles causing one side to incur more forces than the other side. If occurring on both side factors including overtraining, poor strength, flat feet, toe walking or wearing heels often can also have a major impact on the function of your lower limbs. So finding the cause of the issue and dealing with that will in turn relieve pressure off the affected tendon. Its best to get professionally checked in order to find out the specific reason for your injury.

 

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09 Jan, 2018

Cervical Radiculopathy

by Tom Ham

Tingling, numbness or pains down the arm?

A space-occupying lesion in the form of a disc bulge, spondylosis or degeneration commonly causes cervical radiculopathy.  Irritation to the nerve root often results in radicular symptoms ie pain, numbness, weakness, tingling feelings down the shoulder and arm. Although degenerative changes are unfixable, the process can be slowed down and symptom can be treated.  Manual therapy and exercises are found to benefit the condition for pain, function and range of motion. Manipulation in particular has found to provide instant short-term relief in pain and function.

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21 Dec, 2017

Frozen Shoulder - Pain and Stiffness

by Tom Ham

Frozen Shoulder

Having unexplained shoulder pain and stiffness? Frozen shoulder or adhesive capsulitis is a common condition of the shoulder categorized by spontaneous gradual shoulder pain that leads to increased stiffness and loss of motion.  The whole condition usually takes up to 18-24 months, whereby there are 3 stages:

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13 Dec, 2017

Runners Knee/ Patella femoral pain syndrome

by Tom Ham

Runners knee is a common knee condition and generally occurs progressively as pain around the front of the knee, usually not relating to trauma and can be exacerbated by physical activity such as running, squatting, going up/down stairs. Several causes of Runners knee can include changes in patella-femoral morphology, incorrect lower limb movement patterns in walking/ running, and muscle imbalances/ weaknesses especially in pelvic stabilizing muscles and the inner quad muscle (VMO), causing poor tracking of patella. A systematic review revealed multi-modal physical therapy was clinically beneficial in terms of pain compared to a sham intervention, these included:

·      Hip/ lower limb strengthening

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13 Dec, 2017

Disc Degeneration/ Spondylosis

by Tom Ham

Disc Degeneration/ Spondylosis

Degeneration, osteoarthritis, spondylosis, whatever you want to call it is an inevitable condition that is wear and tear of the spine and its discs. It typically occurs in the later stages of life as we have put ourselves through tremendous amounts of forces and stresses over the many years. However in this day and age, many individuals have degeneration much earlier in life due to previous injuries, motor vehicle accidents and/or poor posture!

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25 Aug, 2016

New Healthspace Clinic in CBD!

by Tom Ham

Exciting news for Healthspace as we have expanded to the CBD! We are located inside Australia’s largest Fitness First, providing chiropractic & sports med to not only gym goers, but all individuals! As part of us being new to the area we are currently offering FREE initial chiropractic consults valued at $105! Hurry, as this offer will not last very long! (Ends 31/8/16) As for all our gym goers, here are a few simple tips of what NOT to do while training! (Unless you want to come and see us!)

·      Think one glove fits all: Everyone has different genetic capabilities and personal preferences. Finding what works for you is the most important rule.

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