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News in Brief
NBCE Launches Computer-Based Testing Era; California Chiropractors Get Expanded DOT Exam Privileges; New Jeff Hays Documentary.
A Commonly Missed Spinal Fixation: The Upper Lumbar Spine (Part 1)
When we think of lower back pain, we tend to think in terms of the lower lumbar spine and the SI joint. These joints and their discs are obviously important. However, we tend to miss fixations that occur just above – in the upper lumbar spine. Three questions come to mind: 1) Why is the upper lumbar spine so important? 2) Why do we miss the fixations here? 3) How can we adjust them?
Improving Our Political Effectiveness
The November 2014 elections are right around the corner; members of Congress, governors and state legislators are all running. Now is a good time to talk frankly about our overall political involvement.
Get Ready For AOM Day
This year, AOM Day 2014 falls on Friday, (October 24th). This is a great opportunity to make your AOM Day celebration or event even bigger by extending it throughout the weekend!
Medicalization and Mindfulness
The past several years have seen a veritable explosion of research on mindfulness. Research abstracts we've published in each issue of Health Insights Today under the heading "Mind-Body News" have increasingly reported on studies about mindfulness interventions.
The Science Behind Happiness
Are you happy right now? Whether yes or no, there are a myriad of reasons why you feel that way. A whole academic discipline has developed to find out what causes or obstructs happiness, and how to amplify it.
Thoughts to Live By
When speaking to your patients about their health make sure to ponder the following points and have them assess if they are making themselves even more sick by the thoughts they have about life. Are these some of the traits and thoughts that your patients might have?
Rethinking GMO: Less Panic, More Context
Some of you may have noticed that after writing parts 1 and 2 of “Genetic Modification of Organisms for Human Consumption” a while back [Nov. 15, 2013 and Jan. 1, 2014 issues], part 3 never appeared.
MPA Media Wins Seven Publishing Awards
MPA Media, publisher of Acupuncture Today, among other titles, has been recognized for editorial and design excellence with an unprecendented seven publishing awards by the ASBPE, the nation's largest organization for business-to-business publications.
If You Get a Request for Records, Respond!
In our previous two articles, we discussed two of the main reasons for denial when chiropractic records are reviewed by Medicare contractors.
The Truth About Herbs
I appreciate the effort and research put into the article written in the June issue of Acupuncture Today regarding pesticides and Chinese herbs.
Help Secure Our Future by Sharing It
The National Board of Chiropractic Examiners (NBCE) conducts one of the most comprehensive surveys of the U.S. chiropractic profession every 4-5 years.
Healing Community Trauma in Israel and Palestine
It's the beginning of August and Israel and Hamas have just agreed to a 72-hour ceasefire after a month of brutal fighting. In the last four weeks, 1,830 Palestinians and 67 Israelis have been killed.
A Glimpse Into China's Top Brain Hospital
The sounds of the city pass through the open window are overwhelming the microphone - car horns, construction machinery - and then there's the family at the adjacent bed talking loudly on cell phones, yet you can still hear the faint beep of our patients monitoring equipment.
History of Animal Acupuncture: Part II
In Part I of this article, I had gone back to 1969 and tried to describe the atmosphere and events of that year that engulfed many of the younger generation, some who were all the core members of the National Acupuncture Association.
Thoracolumbar Syndrome: The Great Mimic
The thoracolumbar junction is a common area of joint dysfunction. The most obvious cause is dysfunctional breathing or lack of diaphragmatic breathing. Treating this breathing problem will ultimately be the long-term cure for the syndrome.
Uncle Sam Needs You
Scrutiny into the Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) continues to grow after efforts to reform the DVA by the former Secretary of Veterans Affairs, Eric Shinseki, were deemed "a stunning period of dysfunction" by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).
The Spirit of the Point
After receiving a large amount of positive feedback on my San Zhen Protocols series, I have decided to focus this article on some relevant clinical aspects of acupuncture therapy prior to moving on to San Zhen Protocols III.
The Problem With Prolonged Sitting
We need to constantly talk to our patients about spending less time sitting and about what can go wrong with poor sitting postures. The fact is we sit too long in repetitive malpositions.
Let the Patient Tell Their Story
Often when a patient presents with an injury, they want to tell their story. People by nature like to talk about themselves, particularly when they're worried about their health.
A Healthy Dose of Failure is Vital to Your Success
As an acupuncturist I tend to see people after they have already suffered for years and "tried everything." They are so desperate for some relief that they want to know everything about how to get better, right now.
January, 2002, Vol. 02, Issue 01
The Dangers of Biking
By Ben Benjamin, PhD
Cycling has changed dramatically in the past 25 years. Hi-tech bikes have gradually taken over the market, to the point that finding a bike that allows you to sit upright in a balanced position is difficult.Bikes are sleeker, lighter, and designed as if the rider intended to participate in the Tour de France. Competitive road racing mandates the flexed position to reduce wind resistance and deliver maximum power to the pedals. Off-road racing adds punishing forces from irregular terrain. If this forward-bent position is assumed by the average rider, the consequences are likely to be more severe. Many bicycles on the market, such as road bikes and mountain bikes, force your body to constantly lean your weight forward, increasing the danger of injury. The forward-bent position may be slightly more efficient for riding speed, but it places enormous stress on the low back, neck, shoulders, elbows and especially the wrists. Road bikes on which the rider is bent forward are harder on the back and neck. Mountain bikes ridden on rough terrain are rough on the wrists, elbows and shoulders, especially if the rider leans forward on the hands.
In the forward-bent position, continual tension is placed on the muscles, tendons, joints and supporting ligaments, from the hands, through the shoulders and into the back. Because these structures are under tension, bumps in the road send shockwaves of stress through the elbows, the shoulders and the very sensitive wrist joints, making all of these areas more vulnerable to injury. Furthermore, the head, which is one of the heaviest parts of the body, is held up with the neck in extension for long periods of time, fatiguing the muscles of the neck and reducing the circulation and nerve impulses down the arms. The low back ligaments also are in a constantly stretched position, which makes them more vulnerable to damage by sudden additional forces. But the greatest stress is placed on the wrist joints and their surrounding ligaments.
Mountain biking in this position is particularly dangerous because of the uneven terrain riders often traverse. Sudden wrist sprains may occur merely as a result of hitting several bumps in the road. The biker's hands often lose circulation and become cold in this position. This may be followed by a numbing sensation, setting the stage for injury to the wrists and elbows. The bikes of 30 years ago may have looked "clunkier," but they were more in tune with sound body mechanics. Sitting upright, as one might do at the gym on a stationary bike, is great exercise without the strain on the body's joints and ligaments.
What can we do to cycle and stay injury-free? If you are a recreational biker, try to find a bike that allows the body to remain in a completely upright position. You can also buy new handlebars or extensions, which allow you to ride more upright. If you are a serious biker who races regularly, and you want to ride a road bike in the forward-bent posture, make sure you warm up your neck and back thoroughly before riding. Take frequent breaks in which you regain an upright position. Work to make your hamstrings and quadriceps flexible and strong. This will help protect your back. A sufficiently flexible person should be able to bring the heel of the foot to the buttock with relative ease to stretch the quadriceps, and be able to place the hands or at least the fingertips on the floor while bending forward with the knees straight to stretch the hamstrings.
Without preventive care, many cycling injuries will likely occur. Recumbent bikes are a good alternative, because they are much easier on the body. Bicycles that make our clients continually lean forward may be good for our business as massage therapists, but they are not good for the health of our clients.
Click here for more information about Ben Benjamin, PhD.
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