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  • Mark Austin

This is What Physio Should Look Like


This is what physiotherapy looks like.


This video is this patient's first day back at barbell squats, deadlifts, and bent over rows after herniating a disc a few months ago.


This wasn't a mild injury-- he was unable to stand fully straight or put weight on one leg for several weeks due to pain and spasm, and he had neurological weakness, numbness and restricted range of motion in his leg due to the extruded disc putting pressure on a spinal nerve root.


Should this guy avoid going back to these lifts? Of course not. It is so important that while recovering from an injury that you don't hold back, but rather try to gradually get back to doing as much of your pre-injury activity as possible as things continue to heal.


Beyond that, deadlifts, squats, etc., even with a loaded barbell, are great rehab exercises in themselves when programmed in intelligently.


This patient wasn't 100% pain and symptom free when we started these lifts-- there was still some ongoing mild pain and tension in his back and hip. We started light, monitored his symptoms closely, and we are working towards being able to do these exercises with perfect form.


Why didn't we wait until he felt 100%? Small bouts of minor stress on the disc are actually going to help it continue to fully heal and become more resilient against future injury, wheres waiting to feel 100% pain-free first can take a long time, or even lead to chronic pain.


Props to this patient for working so hard to get back to this point. He stuck with physio, really educated himself on the science of back pain and disc injuries, worked through some pain and discomfort, and stayed on top of his rehab exercises over the long term. This is what hard work gets you! And by the way... not once did this guy ever lie on a table with a hot pack! Looking for a Calgary physiotherapist that will get you the results you're looking for, with an active, science-backed rehab plan? Get in touch or book online.

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