In order to combat daily aches and pains, many people turn to exercise hoping to alleviate their pain by getting into better shape. Activities like yoga, Pilates, and 30-minute circuits are becoming very popular. There’s no doubt that such activities can increase blood flow to the joints, easing them through fuller ranges of motion on top of countless other health benefits. I am a huge advocate of regular physical activity. Minor aches caused by an out-of-shape body will often be relieved by daily exercise, and the results can be felt immediately.
I am, however, a little concerned by what I see when people begin these fitness programs without giving proper consideration to what may be causing their pain. Research shows that the average person has at least 6 postural imbalances in their body. Most of these imbalances stem from the spine the core of the body. Because gravity exerts a constant pull on the body, these imbalances show through as joint strain (back, neck, arm, leg pain), depending on where the imbalance is. If an exercise program is taken on board, the added strain can cause the pain to worsen because it overloads an already strained area. In such cases, it becomes much MORE HARMFUL to continue with the activity without giving appropriate attention to the cause. I am surprised by how many patients I meet who suffer through their daily exercise for months on end, despite the fact that their pain is persisting or even worsening. Chiropractors are trained to detect and correct these imbalances so you are able to achieve better fitness without pain. If you are experiencing pain while you exercise, I urge you to find out the underlying problem before more damage is done!