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As an osteopathic physician specializing in the hands-on treatment of the musculoskeletal system—the joints, muscles, and other soft-tissues of the body—I am keenly aware of the changes to the body that occur over time.
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Over the past 20 years, I’ve treated thousands of young, middle-aged, and elderly patients, and what I’ve discovered is that as the body ages, the level of misalignment and tension significantly increases in predictable patterns. The body becomes ‘molded,’ causing pain and problems in one or several areas of the body. Two common examples of this process are;
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”...what a disgrace it is for a man [or woman] to grow old without ever seeing the beauty and strength of which his body is capable.”
1. Because our arms are mostly oriented in front of our chest—like when we’re reading, writing, eating, and driving—the shoulders round and the head begins to move forward on the trunk. Studies demonstrate that this forward movement affects the shoulders by narrowing the sub-acromial space—an area that can pinch the rotator cuff tendon and the bursa, and create pain. And just a 1 inch forward movement of the head effectively doubles the weight the neck must support, compressing the disks, and leading to neck pain, headaches, and numbness and tingling of the hands.
2. Due to all the sitting we do—in chairs, couches, and car seats—the muscles responsible for flexing the body forward become shorter and tighter, and the core lower back and butt muscles become weaker. This imbalance creates the chronic knee, hip, and low back pain that plagues so many people