View Full Version : Question for a Crossfitting Chiropracter

Chris Puckett
06-25-2010, 10:45 AM
Hi all, I have been told by a chiro that I have a herniated disk L5 S1, and it occasionally leads to this weird thing where my right hip gets pulled up above the left side, and I get pain in the S1 area on my right side. It creeps up and happens after I sit for a long time, either driving for many hours, or flying, etc. It feels like my entire back gets stiff, and prevents me from moving freely.

I try everything to make it go away, trigger point stuff with the lacrosse ball, stretching like crazy(hips, back, upper back, hamstrings, quads, etc).

The only thing that makes the pain go away and resets my body is Chiropractic. I can literally feel almost 100% better after a few back to back visits.

I want to know how to fix this myself, without a chiropractor to fix it when it slips/goes out. Is there anything I can do to fix this, to either prevent this slippage? When I see my chiro, of course he says chiro is the only thing. When I visit Kelly Starrett, he shows me how to fix my problem myself in the visit, and I want that type of chiropractor. Are there any suggestions?


Morgan McGaha
06-25-2010, 04:11 PM
I have a similar situation with my back. My right leg is shorter than my left by .25 inches, which results in my L4, L5, and S1 to by out of alignment. My left hip is .25 inches higher than my right, which leads to what seems like the same pain you have. The only relief I have found (besides the chiropractor) was doing heavy deadlifts (strengthening my back) and abs/core stuff. Hope this was helpful.

Chris Puckett
06-25-2010, 05:28 PM
thanks morgan, it does. and coincidentally, when I do 3 on 1 off for months at a time, this happens far less often. It happens maybe 5x per year. when I take time off it seems to happen more. I deadlift frequently around 375. So if I push my DL to 400+ with more ghd situps would it go away? I would love to think its this easy, but I already have a fairly strong back(compared to the gen population!) Is this a condition with a name? Something chiros see a lot of?

Brian Strump
06-25-2010, 08:09 PM

Have you actually made a trip to see Kelly? Or are you referring to his seminars? He's a really bright PT, but he shows you how to deal with minor sprain/strain injuries, not disc injuries or other more serious injuries to other joints, muscles, etc. I don't think his CF Seminars certs would be such a hot ticket if all he did was tell you how to self diagnose and then go to the nearest PT, or chiropractor. He offers great practical, applicable knowledge on simple injuries. He doesn't not teach you in 20 hours everything he learned about rehab that took most doctors 8 years to learn. He information is great if applied correctly by the attendees.

That being said....if your doc has not given you any exercises to do for rehab, I would find another one immediately. Deadlifts are good, air squats will help. We have our patients do reverse hypers as well. However, there are basic bodyweight exercises that need to be incorporated into your rehab that is directed at the deeper muscles of the lower back, hips, glutes, etc. Some CrossFit exercises will be a benefit, others harmful, if you truly do have a herniated disc.

Chris, don't just copy what someone else has done for their seemingly similar low back pain. There are too many reasons to name what can be the real cause of the pain you are having. And, just because your back is strong, does NOT mean that you cannot have back pain, or less likely to have back pain. Same goes for, just because I can see your abs, doesn't mean you have a strong core(and a lesser chance to have lower back pain). Muscle imbalances in the low back, hips, etc is what will be responsible for alot of back pain. Not necessarily a "weak" back.

Chris Puckett
06-26-2010, 09:21 PM
thanks Brian, I have visited and done his cert and I use it as a shining example of a doc that shows you how to fix your own problems while receiving phenomenal care and instruction. Thats been my experience.

Chiro seems like its completely out of my hands though, especially this injury and the fact chiro care requires manual work. Going way out on a limb and if there was self chiro care, I would be all over it. I need to investigate the injury more, but like I said this injury comes and goes throughout the year. Air squats, deads, overhead squats always work great.

Steven Low
06-26-2010, 09:36 PM
I list some of the manipulations you can do on yourself here wfs

But I don't know if I would risk trying to do stuff to yourself. There's lots of other stuff on youtube though if you know what to look for.

The problem is not the adjustments... it's that your mechanics and muscles are either too off or too tight respectively (or could be both). Those need to be corrected before any adjustments are going to hold.

Being able to do the adjustments yourself is a stopgap measure until you correct the other stuff because even if youc an do them you will continue to slip back out.

Chris Puckett
06-27-2010, 04:28 PM
as always thanks Steven. have you written or learned anything about over flexibility, leading to instability?

Steven Low
06-27-2010, 07:08 PM
Yes, it's possible.

But in general overstretching tends to only be a problem if 2 things occur simultaneously which are (1) lack of strength training, and (2) naturally loose ligaments and joint capsules.

You can tell the later by bending your fingers or thumb back... if they bend back really far past normal (> 45 degrees) then you have loose ligaments/joint capsules.

Obviously, you can tell who has a lack of strength too for obvious reasons.

For those naturally tight, overstretching will pretty much NEVER be a problem. Most men have this problem (too tight) 'cept a few blessed with loose connective tissues, and who never train.

If you have strength it's unlikely to be a problem either. In general.

Chris Puckett
06-27-2010, 07:25 PM
cool, I have been told I could be overstretched. I am naturally loose, and never really need to stretch too much, except for my rack position and hips occasionally.

read the article and I am 99% sure its the SI joint issue. the videos were good too. have a much clearer understanding of this issue now.

Steven Low
06-27-2010, 07:31 PM
Yeah, the problem is with SI issues is that SOME muscles are too long, and some are too short.

So it's not about being overstretched... it's about some muscles being possibly overstretched (or too long) and some being too chronically tight.

Most of this stuff occurs from improper biomechanics and or compensation patterns from previous injuries like in mine and yours case IIRC.

So if you're going to do-it-yourself then you need to evaluate for what is tight and what is not first, then implement proper stretching/flexibility, mobility (it can be unilateral in some cases), and then start to adjust yourself THEN add in the proper biomechanics and strength work if the adjustments are holding.

If it's chronic issues adjustments wioll just slip as you may have well known by now...