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    • #71662
      AvatarSheehan Robb

      Hey guys! I have had some upper back pain on the left side for 3 weeks now. What caused it was poor defense on my part when defending an arm bar in jiu jistu class. An arm bar is a submission hold where a one tries to force your elbow to hyperextend, making you tap out. It looked similar to the image below (me being the guy in the black with my back on the ground). 

      Image result for armbar defense
      The person I was sparring with refused to give up on this submission which left me holding on to my wrist for a good 2-3 minutes. The side of my back that actually hurts is the one that wasn’t being arm barred. It was my other side, tugging on my wrist as my opponent violently would try to jerk my arm free to submit me. As he would jerk, my lats and upper back were forced to contract and to keep my arms in close to my body, to prevent from being tapped. At the time, nothing hurt. Since then, things have gotten better or worse depending on how I slept that night. I’ve tried myofascial release, but whatever potential tightness is there, won’t come out as I cannot reach it. 
      Hanging from a pull up bar entirely relaxed is impossible as it hurts too much. I have stopped all lifting and jiu jitsu training, and it is for my own good, but I want to go back to training asap. Has anyone had any similar experiences? I already see a chiropractor. Would seeing anyone else in particular help? Any help would be very much appreciated. Thanks.

    • #76502
      AvatarSheehan Robb

      Also, I did see a massage therapist. She worked on the particular spot in my lat for over 30 minutes. That made it feel worse for 2 days, but after, things felt great. The knot in my back originally was the size of a baseball, but was reduced to a small ball.

      What is concerning to me is that now the knot(s) have moved under my scapula, where I cannot reach them, and the pain has traveled from my lat to the middle of the left side of my upper back. Why would this happen? Perhaps I should revisit the massage therapist? I’m just worried it’d be a waste of money, and that myofascial release may not be the answer in this case. 
    • #76509
      AvatarPatrick Thomas

      Good to heart the knot is reducing in size.
      Are you working up/downstream of where you see the issue?
      Where you see the issue isn’t always where it originates. Working up/downstream can help the knot start to release.
      Are you addressing your back?
      Did your chiropractor  recommend anything to do?
      Have you changed your sleeping position to take out that impacting factor?
      Did the massage therapist have any recommendations?

      As some aspects resolve symptoms can move until the cause of the situation is addressed.
      As one things is resolved other come to the surface.

    • #76510
      AvatarSheehan Robb

      1.) Yes I am, but I am unsure of how down and upstream I should work. I know my lower back and other side of upper back is tight, so I work on both of those as well. But could even my ankles, hands, or feet impact it? I have no idea how to determine this. 

      2.) I am unsure of what you mean by “addressing”. 
      3.) He said for me to work on myofasical release. Finding the knot, and putting pressure on it until it shrinks or at least dissipates. He also recommended I work my shoulders through all ranges of motion, even the ones that hurt. The second part of that advice concerns me, because I have spoke to him a lot, and his exercise science knowledge isn’t the best. 
      4.) I have tried, but I cannot. I am far too uncomfortable not sleeping on my sides. This is probably a bad thing because my shoulders are inwardly rotated most of the night, and before the injury, I would have to slight stretch out a little because I’d be tight from waking up. It was nothing too serious though. This has concerned me before my injury as well, because I’d love to sleep flat on my back in a perfectly straight line for the sake of having less imbalances, tightness, and better postural health. 
      5.) She recommended I sat in an ice bath when I got home because it’d be inflamed after so much deep tissue work (and it also caused incredible pain), which I did. Not sure if I should keep icing though because I was told by my chiropractor that ice is useless after 72 hours of the injury, and I found a few websites that said the same. She also said for me to do myofasical release stuff. Now my question might seem a bit obvious… if both my chiropractor and the deep tissue massage therapist said for me to do myofasical release and I am unable to do so effectively, why not just see a deep tissue massage therapist again
      Well here is what I am worried about. I am very much in to powerlifting, and the massage therapist was a friend of mine’s mom, and her son is a powerlifter. Because her son is passionate about powerlifting and massages him all the time, her exercise science knowledge is better than a lot of health professionals I hear about. A lot of health professionals, are extremely ignorant and against lifting weights. Many doctors will give you the answer “let it rest and stop lifting heavy weights, it’s bad for x or y”, rather than finding a way to solve the problem so I can go back to lifting and jiu jitsu again. I’m unsure I could trust another deep tissue massage therapist, other than my friend’s mom and that they would waste my money… and what sucks is that they are in another state, so seeing her again isn’t an easy option. But at this point though, I am very tempted to bite the bullet and go see a local one to do it. 
      Because of my concerns, do you know anything about gratson technique or ART instead of massage therapy? It’s just unfortunate because money is an issue, and some of these things can get pricey, especially if needed to do very frequently. Thanks Kaitlin!
    • #76511
      AvatarPatrick Thomas

      Lower back and upper back are a starting place.
      Lat/QL/trap are others which can impact.
      Are you seeing improvements with what you are doing to work on these areas?

      Your body will make compensations wherever needed when there is an injury.
      Yes, ankles and feet limitations/restriction in motor patterns can impact upstream back and shoulder.
      The body makes compensations to allow you to complete what you are trying to do.
      You can see impact of ankle restrictions upstream at the calf, shin, hamstring, and downstream at the foot.

      Addressing= spending time on what needs attention. Mobility, soft tissue, motor control etc. depending on which aspect needs attention.

      Your need to get your brain involved. On the trouble spot contract as hard as you can for 5 seconds, completely release the breath. Take a second breath into your diaphragm, completely release the breath.
      If something feels sketchy it is sketchy don’t continue doing it.
      Did the practitioner give you anything to be completing myofasical release.?
      Have you used Crossover Symmetry?

      Yes, your sleeping position is an impacting factor.As is your pillow.
      Build into time with a changed sleeping position. If you lay on the couch watching TV at night, or if you watch the news or a show (s) in bed at night. Doses of the new position will increase the time you are able to tolerate the position.
      Episode 38: Your Pillow is Killing Your Neck?
      Dewd, Your Bed Is Trashing You and Making You Slow and Weak
      Episode 39: Sleep, Pillows, and What Your Low Back Says About Your KB Swing
      Adaptation Error: Don’t Sleep on Your Stomach & The Right Bed

      An ice bath can be used for down regulation.
      Depends the reason you are icing. For treatment of an injury its a no go.
      People, We’ve Got to Stop Icing Injuries. We Were Wrong, Sooo Wrong | Community Video
      (A year later) Peoples, We’ve Got to Stop Icing. A Year Later…. | Community Video

      If you saw improvements with deep tissue massage you can use that protocol.
      If the practitioner has identified the origin of your symptoms things can get resolved.
      If the origin has not been identified the symptoms will show up again because the cause is still present.
      Addressing symptoms can get expensive.
      Finding a solid practitioner is KEY.
      Practitioners approaches differ based on the type or focus of their training and their movement practices.
      Ask others at your box or gym for recommendations, ask friends this is one way to get information about a practitioner.
      Have you checked the MWOD List for a practitioner in your area?
      Having an open mind to a new practitioner is one aspect.
      Letting go of expectations is huge.

      Graston is a company not a technique.
      Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization (I.A.S.T.M.) is the technique.
      Yes, I know a lot about I.A.S.T.M. I work with athletes to address recovery aspects of performance and other aspects which impact performance. I use HawkGrips which are used to address soft tissue irregularities to improve range of motion
      and /or relieve pain. They can be used to break up scar tissue. The
      different size and variety of edges allow for precise treatment,
      immediate response, and quicker recovery. Treatment is non- invasive and
      can address a legion of conditions.

      Yes, I’ve had ART treatments to address areas which needed attention.
      IASTM and ART can address the cause of a situation. Addressing the cause is how something is resolved.
      There are a lot of different protocols and it is identifying which best addresses the issue.
      Pain/soreness, sliding surfaces, mobility, motor controls or another cause.
      Combining protocols is very effective.

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