Ankle problems

Ankle problems? Clinically I see this a lot and unfortunately see a lot of practitioners missing the function of the retinacula around ankle and rightly so as research regarding this tissue and its function is fairly new. Interesting points…not all fascia is created equal. Some has been shown to be important in force-transmitting yet contain hardly any proprioceptive endings. On the other hand, some fascial structures such as the ankle (and wrist) retinacula seem to have very little roll in force- transmission. Instead, these more obliquely aligned fascial bands (see pic) seem to be located at specific approximations to major joints and they contain a VERY high density of proprioceptive nerve endings. Some researchers even suggest that the prime function of these bands may not be their biomechanical but rather their sensorial function in providing detailed proprioception to the central nervous system. Practically translated…when someone has an ankle problems, be it acute or chronic, think superficial before deep. The very “stuff” anatomist cut away is now becoming a big subject of practical interest due to the density of receptors/information about our position, movement in gravity. I see way too many people after an ankle injury immobilized, makes very little sense (get it), you need movement it just has to be adjusted to meet the tissues tolerance! I think most people don’t move as their afraid and not educated as to how to move safely. We are way to complex to stop moving, brace it and throw ice on it. Movement within threshold, heals, basic biology! Hope you enjoy!


Rectus Abdominis known as the 6 pack is one of the outer corsets of the core. The inner corset is the Transversus Abdominis. The Rectus Abdominis runs vertically from breastbone to pubic bone. It functions to bend your trunk forward and contributes to generalized trunk stability but does not attach to the spine so can’t give it direct support. Often due to obsessive overtraining(sit-ups), poor posture and emotional stress it can become overly short and tight. When this happens a few things can occur.

1️⃣ The chest and pelvis will be drawn together which will flatten the lumbar spine putting excessive pressure on the lumbar disc.
2️⃣ Downward drag of your ribcage restricts your diaphragm leading to upper chest breathing.
3️⃣ Back muscles working harder to keep you upright due to shortening of the front which may lead to low back and mid back pain. Trigger points referring to a band across the low or mid back or classic symptoms.
4️⃣ Restricts the freedom of movement of the whole body. (*try contracting your abs while standing up by flattening out your back drawing in your ribcage and tucking your tail under. Try walking around with this tension and notice how it blocks freedom of movement of your whole body. With the tail tuck under you should notice your legs can’t move freely)
5️⃣ Compresses the core and closes your structure.
6️⃣ One of the key muscles responsible for posterior pelvic tilt

If you have any of the above points this muscle is most likely short and it is best to release it to correct your structure and relieve pain. 


🌭The pec major, lats and teres major are HUGE players of medial rotation of the humerus
. 🌮Any program that is predominant in strengthening these muscles over others is a recipe for disaster. (🤔How many people you see in the gym do bench and pulldowns all day?)
. 🔑Many think that strengthening the lats will pull the shoulder back but they forget that one of the actions of the lats is medial rotation due to its insertion on the floor of the bicipital groove of the humerus
. 🍟Prolonged training in this way will lead to shoulder injuries, tension in upper traps, neck, headaches, back pain etc…


When training, don’t forget your tendons and joints also play a role in sustaining tension and creating movement. If you can expand your perspective that there is more than just muscle that needs stimulation, you will have a better understanding of how your body actually works and how/where injuries frequently occur.
Tendons are located at the end of muscles. They attach the muscle onto the bone and transmit the force created by the muscle onto the bone. They also act as a buffer by absorbing forces to limit injury risks. Therefore, they have to withstand a lot of force and pressure and for this reason are way more susceptible to injury.
Tendons typically have a poor blood supply as well. Countless research has shown that throughout the length of the tendon there is a small number of blood vessels per cross-sectional area of the tissue. This means that the tendon has poor vascularity comparatively to its muscle counterpart (muscle pumps) which prevents adequate repair and can lead to further weakening. A lot of tendons go through incomplete healing but are asked to function at original capacity.
Due to differing rates of adaptation between muscle tissue and connective tissue, it takes a much different time frame for
1. A muscle to grow/deteriorate in size
2. For a tendon to thicken
3. For a joint capsule to strengthen/expand/thicken its collagen/elastin fibers
Isometric training, partial reps, plyometrics, bodyweight training involving holds etc are some examples of ways to engage the tendons & connective tissues
Think about—and train—your connective tissue every day. That could range from random sets of static squat holds done throughout the day. I like Dan John’s “Easy Strength” program, where you basically pick a few movements to do each day—every day—with a fairly manageable weight/bodyweight. You won’t see the rapid progression of connective tissue training, but it’ll also be easier on your body over time as your tendons thicken and can withstand more pressure. Movements that were once hard will typically feel easier.



A person who lies down on his back and tries to sense his entire body systematically—that is, turning his attention to every limb and part of the body in turn—finds that certain sections respond easily, while others remain mute or dull and beyond the range of his awareness. It is thus easy to sense the fingertips or lips, but much harder to sense the back of the head at the nape, between the ears. Naturally, the degree of difficulty is individual, depending on the form of the self-image. Generally speaking, it will be difficult to find a person whose whole body is equally accessible to his awareness. .


The parts of the body that are easily defined in the awareness are those that serve man daily, while the parts that are dull or mute in his awareness play only an indirect role in his life and are almost missing from his self-image when he is in action. A man who cannot jump will not be aware of those parts of the body involved that are clearly defined to a man who is able to jump. The problem lies in that the world is a random place and the less you can adapt your body to succeed in an environment, the more likely an injury can occur. 


– often first thought is that they just contract and relax, go hard or soft, 💪🏼 or weak. If you can flip your perspective for just a ⏱, a way to frame their function is that they are providers of 🔋 and shock absorbers for anti-gravitation.

So instead of benchmarking yourself just by measures strength, power, endurance etc, a more interesting way is to think about energy cost required for a given activity and energy as a 💲. Your health and overall wellbeing is a determinant of how much energy you can 💸


Factors such as aging, stress, overtraining, undertraining, tight muscles, weak muscles, lack of oxygen, posture etc will influence your reserves. Similar to 💰, the less you have, the less you can technically buy. So let’s forget perfect form, perfect movement, tight muscles, weak muscles and pain for a second


Let’s talk more about how you decide to 💳 your limited energy to pick activities. For a simplified example, if you have poor grip ✋🏼, the amount of activities you have available at your disposal are relatively limited than someone who’s got good grip strength – hence, it will be easy for one person to carry groceries versus another person to carry groceries


Someone will have 1️⃣0️⃣0️⃣ units of energy to use and another will have 1️⃣0️⃣0️⃣0️⃣. Since the weight, bag shape, awkward contents of the 🍏 is constant, it means that it’s safe to say the energy cost to carry them is 50 units


One individual is going to have to go home and take an ❄️ bath after while the other is going to the gym after to 🏋🏾, ⛹ and 🏌 and then after, go do 3 hours of 💻 and then hang out with 👪 .

People who are relatively stronger tend to have more energy and tend to have more abilities to adapt compared to their relatively weaker counterparts , and the reason being is they’ve been able to bank a tonne of energy reserve, they rarely spend their energy into a deficit 📉 and they are constantly doing health-promoting activities to get more energy 📈


So forget muscles and aesthetics or how much you squat for now, but ask yourself how do you think your life would feel if you had an extra 25% more 🔋… Or what about UNLIMITED ENERGY??!? 

Why posture becomes a problem_

. -Left-BEFORE/ Right-AFTER

Bringing the body back to balance is where life begins to change. Let’s take a good look at the left picture and ask ourselves, how often do I see someone’s neck off? The odds are, you may not see it.

Let me explain. We’ve become used to people having bad posture and the usual thing i hear people say is “its part of getting older”. Respectfully I disagree. –

We become older because of how we treat our bodies. And what’s required to have healthy tissue is correct movement for your body. –

Having better mechanics opens up space in your body and allows you to move better without pain; Eventually!

Habitual posture. Habitual emotion. Habitual thought.


Observing people has always been one of my favorite pastimes. I enjoy setting myself down with a book in a local café, pretend that I’m reading and then take a look at how the bartender is stressing out over clients, how people are enjoying or disliking listening to the story of a friend, people fighting verbally in cycling traffic, awkward situations of people meeting an old friend they would rather avoid today, other observers realizing you’re also observing, all of that… I love it and every time it teaches me something.

Recently, this fascination of observing people’s daily behavior has gotten a bit more specific through the stuff I’ve been reading. My observation has shifted towards the physical behavior of people: the postures they hold, hand gestures they use, their facial expressions, what parts they are holding when walking, etc.

What I try to do often, is when a certain posture intrigues me is try to mimick it and observe how it makes me feel or what I associate with that posture.

I have been focusing my attention on different closed and open positions – both static and dynamic – and what they communicate to me, and maybe communicate in a universal way that everyone intuitively understands.

Better than to explain it, you can test for yourself with some of the artworks, pictures and videos by either putting yourself in these postures or observing your first associative thoughts with the postures.

How posture affects disc pressure


Have you ever noticed how you adjust the rear view mirror in your 🚗 in the morning?

Let me explain why. When you go to sleep, your intervertebral discs expand because they are resting over night, opposed to being compressed through daily activity.

The intervertebral discs serve as shock 〽️absorbers. As they are absorbing the force in between the vertebrae they become more compressed throughout the day and by the end of the day they are full of loaded compression➡️⬅️

As illustrated in the diagram above you’ll see how the load and the disc pressure increases with different 💺 seated positions.

spotlight on massage and lower back pain

10251983_686466381395768_3351223617913562052_nAccording to the National Institutes of Health, lower back pain is the second most common form of chronic pain after headaches. Experts estimate that approximately 80% of Americans will seek help for low back pain at some point during their lives. Public health officials and insurers estimate that Americans spend $50 billion each year on treatments that are often ineffective. The standard treatment for lower back pain is to take muscle relaxants, painkillers or anti-inflammatory medications, along with physical therapy and back exercises. However, few medical interventions relieve pain reliably, and continuing to take painkillers on a long-term basis is not advised. Massage, on the other hand, has been found to be an effective way of dealing with back pain on a regular basis.

Treatment for lower back pain accounts for approximately a third of all visits to a massage therapist. A study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine found that patients suffering from the lower back pain of unknown origin were helped more by message than by conventional medical treatment. Of 401 total study participants, 133 received traditional medical care with no massage, 132 received structural massage (which addresses particular muscular and skeletal structures that cause pain) and 36 received relaxation massage (a general form of massage, such as Swedish, intended for overall relaxation).

Participants in the massage groups received one hour-long massage once a week for 10 weeks. All participants completed a questionnaire at the beginning of the study, then again at 10 weeks, 24 weeks and a year after the beginning of the study to report on their perceived pain. Both kinds of massage groups reported greater pain relief and ease of motion after 10 weeks of treatment than the medical group.

An average of 37% of the patients in the massage groups reported that their pain was almost or completely gone, while only 4% of the usual care group reported similar results. This was also the case at 26 weeks. However, at the one-year mark, the benefits to all groups were about equal. The type of massage used did not seem to matter, with both massage groups experiencing comparable levels of pain relief. The massage groups were less likely to report having used medication for their back pain after the 10 weeks of intervention, and they also reported having spent fewer days in bed and had lost fewer days of work or school than those in the usual care group.

Dr. Richard A. Deyo, professor of family medicine at Oregon Health and Science University in Portland says of the study, “I think this trial is good news in the sense that it suggests that a massage is a useful option that helps some substantial fraction of these patients. Like in most other treatments, this is not a slam dunk, and it’s not like a cure, but it’s something that seems to offer a significant benefit for a substantial number of patients.” Deyo sees massage as a way of people being able to break out of the pain-inactivity cycle. He notes, “I don’t see massage as the final solution, I see it as maybe a helpful step toward getting people more active.”

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