Steve Finnemore, Massage Therapist
The cause of your pain might be elsewhere
Most clients who come along for treatment of muscle pain or discomfort assume that the therapy they need for their muscle problems will be carried out just on the exact area of their problem. That is, those with shoulder problems expect me to work just on their shoulders, those with hip pain expect the treatment to focus on their hips.
However, this is very often not the case. The reason for this is that, very often, the area of discomfort or limited movement is the result of the compensations that those muscles and joints are having to make to cope with a problem elsewhere. That is, the pain they are in now results from a problem elsewhere.
A very common example is in people experiencing hip problems – often they have had a previous problem in one of their feet or in one or more of the muscles of the lower legs. Because we automatically compensate for such problems by changing the way we stand and walk, that earlier problem has caused a change in the way the person's posture and gait which has now become automatic. It’s not unusual for the original problem to have been almost forgotten about entirely.
For this reason, whenever a new client comes along, I assess their posture and gait and I take a detailed case history. Sometimes a problem originates from an accident many years ago. I then work on correcting the muscles which were affected in the beginning as well as working on the muscles which are causing the client’s current problem. So a person with a hip problem might find that I work first on their feet and lower legs. In some cases even neck and head pains originate in problems with the feet and legs.
This approach of considering the mechanics of our muscles and movement allows therapy to be more effective and to be long-lasting. So do be aware that the source of your discomfort now might not be where the problem arises – and don’t be surprised if therapy to help your hips, back or shoulders starts with me looking at your feet.
I offer specialised physical therapies including massage and myofascial release work in Leicestershire. Contact me to discover how I might help you improve your mobility and decrease stiffness and pain.