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Old 01-13-2012, 09:26 AM   #1
Arturo Garcia
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Just a short rambling (new discoveries). I wish Mike Mallory was still around too!

Ok.. so maybe some who frequent this sub-forum (Steven Low, Mike Mallory, are two who replied in the past) knows I've complained eternally of an externally rotated right leg, weaker and everything. I've also told how I can't find qualified people here and one so-called Chiropractor did nothing for about 10 st*pid sessions and got a lot of money for it.

Well, I found a guy. Yes this guy is different, I could tell from the get go. As you might guess he's not dominican, haha. He had me take some X-rays and good lord, now I'm depressed. I went in talking about my leg.... well here's the bit.

First of all, my legs are equal length, as I've been told before. But my right hip is more upward and somewhat rotated out, but very minimally he says, nothing to worry about!!

The funny thing is... it turns out I have scoliosis!! WTF? How could noone notice before? Seeing the X-rays creeped me out. Not that bad, just a bit, but it's clearly there. From the side view, it seems I have a "straight" neck with no curve as well, as well as too straight of a low back? What?

Apparently all discs are OK, and the lumbar section is OK as well! And there was I worrying about the leg....

But that's not all: you see how all vertebraes have a little Tip pointing straight back? Well, a few of them up there by my neck, are TWISTED, their tip points to the right. This, just like the scoliosis, was evident in the X-rays. Further down they went back to normal.

He told me it's not that bad but if I do nothing about it, eventually I will have problems. He was very honest about them though, saying i was maybe in Stage 1 and I could be in Stage 2 in 10 years... and eventually Stage 4 where I'd have "everyday pain", but it sounded like it would take many years so he wasn't trying to scare me.

However, looking at the X-rays, it was clear to me he wasn't making this stuff up. And I took this X-rays at a medical center by myself right this morning so I know they're mine and he just got them with me right there. I could not believe my spine was not straight.

Mike Mallory had once mentioned that sometimes these kind of problems, in either the low back, pelvis, leg, etc., could originate as up as the Neck. He suggested visiting a Chek practitioner but.... yeah, you guessed it, I'd have to fly overseas just for that! Just not possible.

I told this guy I'd already spent money and gave me a discount and told me I hould get at least 15 sessions. The total cost is roughly US$750 for all of them (we don't earn as much as people in the USA). I'm really not in a possition to spare any money, but I'll take this much off my savings because the bloody x-rays were just plain scary. Those few vertebraes that are twisted, just ewww!

Just needed to type this somewhere.
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Old 01-13-2012, 06:08 PM   #2
Steven Low
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Re: Just a short rambling (new discoveries). I wish Mike Mallory was still around too

As long as you keep up mobility and strength I don't see why you MUST and will eventually have pain.

There's tons of people with pretty bad scoliosis who have no pain at all.

of course, I haven't seen your X-rays so... could be. But generally speaking, that's a pretty grim "prediction" for someone who is active about their health
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Old 01-14-2012, 07:34 AM   #3
Arturo Garcia
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Re: Just a short rambling (new discoveries). I wish Mike Mallory was still around too

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steven Low View Post
As long as you keep up mobility and strength I don't see why you MUST and will eventually have pain.

There's tons of people with pretty bad scoliosis who have no pain at all.

of course, I haven't seen your X-rays so... could be. But generally speaking, that's a pretty grim "prediction" for someone who is active about their health
My scoliosis is not that bad I think, I will take a pic of the X-rays to actually preserve them and will upload here, on Monday perhaps.

I seem to recall having X-rays taken about 2 years ago while i was Laying Down and I'm pretty sure it showed a perfectly straight spine. So that's a little confusing right there. Some google searching shows that some scoliosis patients lose the scoliosis when they lay down, so I might just be one of those. Apparently this is somewhat "better"...?
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Old 01-14-2012, 08:17 AM   #4
Arturo Garcia
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Re: Just a short rambling (new discoveries). I wish Mike Mallory was still around too

By the way Steven,

As of late, I had indeed been straining something in the back of my neck when overhead pressing. And not even heavy! The last time I was warming up with 75# (after doing 45#). That was a few weeks ago so I quit overhead pressing... as the pain limited my neck ROM and took 1 week or more to fully go away. It happened 2-3 times so I quit. This doesn't surprise me now seeing those vertebrae twisted... it creeped me out completely.

Well his prediction wasn't so grim, I don't think he was trying to scare me, in fact he said in maybe 10 years I'd be at the stage when the discs degenerate and so and so... even if this is a lie, I understand it could be a possibility. So if anything can be even slightly improved with these sessions... well, I'm gonna take my chances, as I figure it can't do any harm.
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Old 02-09-2012, 01:02 PM   #5
Arturo Garcia
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Re: Just a short rambling (new discoveries). I wish Mike Mallory was still around too

Just an update on this. Several things have happened that have almost assured me of what my problem is. I am now pretty convinced of it.

-I had a rest week recently. Right before it and during it, I thought of doing Planks, just simple forearm planks throughout the day, starting at half of my max or less, so just 30 miserable seconds, several sets a day (8-10) but spread by over an hour each. I didn't make it past 4 days: I developed low back pain, only in the Right (weaker leg) side, in spite of actually Contracting my Glutes really hard on these planks, making sure my low-back was not arched, as I've read countless times how to do them.

So... everything connected. Along with this pain, I discovered I developed major trigger points (or what seem like it) in my right QL muscle. I discovered this using a ball between a wall and this muscle, right next to the erectors on that side, very tender, painful but kindof comforting. This actually explains a few thing.

A) The recent X-rays I took show a right pelvis (iliac crest???) that's higher than the left.
B) My right bottom ribs, when I suck in my stomach, areclearly sucked inwards/downwards more than my left ribs.

The QL muscle attaches at the bottom to the iliac crest, at the top to the bottom rib, and at the sides to some of the vertebraes. Given A and B, and given the trigger points I developed, would it be safe to say my right QL is tight and short? I'd like to say yes, but what do I know?

Now, I've read on plenty of sites, that usually the QL is NOT the root of the problem, and nearly all problems with the QL are caused by the psoas! After discovering that the psoas flexes the femur and also externally rotates it, it's no wonder mine is tight, from sitting cross-legged for many years (although I haven't done it in 3-4 years since I've had issues with this, but stopping that has not undone the damage). So, could I have a tight psoas, despite being very flexible naturally everywhere? I can actually pass that test where you're at the end of a table, bring opposite knee to the chest, and let the other leg hang. But I've read it can still be tight even if one can pass that. And I'm so flexible overall I can pass most tests like this.

What gives it away, is thins like the single leg glute bridge. No matter how hard I squeeze, and in spite of having done this a lot in the past, I cannot get myself as high on the right side as with my left. It can't be due to lack of glute strength... come on, I'm not that heavy, and I had worked up to Hip Thrusting 365x5 with both legs, and my upper back on a bench. Surely with just my bodyweight (~190) and using one leg, I could do a miserable Glute-Bridge which has a tiny ROM of a few inches. You'd think so, but nope! I cannot. If I get my hands under my butt and kindof hammercurl my arse upwards, I do get higher, but can't hold myself higher with just glute and hamstring strength alone.

Now, more cues point to a tight psoas. A tight psoas overstretches the hammie on that side, I've read a lot. This might be why I feel I "tear" or injure my hammie slightly with certain moves, specially if they put me into deep hip flexion. Even stuff like Pendlay Rows off the floor, cause me this pain. If I put the bar a bit higher and do the rows, with the same weight, I don't injure that hammie. Max effort sprints injure that hammie. And Bulgarian Split Squats with Added ROM did it too. Other things are fine. I reckon when they already-overstretched hamstrings are required to be really stretched by a certain possition.... it just gets hurt. This is the only explination I've got.

I stretched my right psoas so hard yesterday that I woke up with a sore right glute, no joke! Been stretching it daily for a few weeks. I have tried, but to no avail, to self-massage this sucker. I think I've found it a few times with my fingertips, but I find no sore spots. I've always read it's super-painful but it's super-comfortable for me, so maybe I'm doing it wrong. I've tried laying prone on top of a ball with no luck.

It is my non-expert opinion that the right QL got tight/overworked in the Planks because the tight psoas, which pulls the pelvis forward, doesn't let the ab do it's job very well, or maybe the psoas itself doesn't do it's job very well... and the right QL had to compensate in stabilizing the spine during the plank. It's gotta be tighter than before because I never got this pain from planks. Jeez.

So my plan is this.

-Daily stretching of the psoas, various stretches.
-Massage the QL with that ball. I should stretch it as well, I tried a stretch in bed but I have a hard time getting it right.
-3x/week I'm doing Internal Rotation exercises with bands, 3 different drills, 3x15 reps with little rest. I know I have poor IR in my right side so strengthening it must help. On these days, I'm also throwing a side plank with the top foot elevated, which hits the glute med and QL pretty hard. I've done the IR drills maybe 3 times and just last session introduced that side plank which I think will help a bit.
-More psoas stretching

Now, the thing that saddens me is that I've read that maybe, just maybe, if the muscle has knots or trigger points or whatever, stretching wont help.... but I can't find anyone who massages this. So what do I do?

What a long rant. Blah... it sucks to have these issues.
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Old 02-09-2012, 07:52 PM   #6
Steven Low
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Re: Just a short rambling (new discoveries). I wish Mike Mallory was still around too

Well, the pieces are falling into place at least.

Hopefully this will be the end of the road because it's been a couple years since we've been trying to figure this one out!
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Old 02-17-2012, 09:24 AM   #7
Arturo Garcia
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Re: Just a short rambling (new discoveries). I wish Mike Mallory was still around too

I have this marvelous tender spots (trigger points?) in my right lower back, quite possibly the QL muscle. In both the inner/lower part and the upper/outer part.

I now distinctly remember this little muscle has been problematic forever! I used to think it was the low back but I think it was the QL. At times, I could feel this muscle straining with Laying Side Leg Raises which I was doing years agofor the gluteus medius! (but felt all the pump in the QL!!!).

I did a quick search and found this in my workout log, from over two years ago:
Quote:
05.11.2009

5 rounds for time of:
12 walking lunges holding just ONE 53# DB
25 hip extensions, arms crossed behind head

Stopped before finishing the 4th round. Not only was I slow as heck today, but at 3 reps of hip extensions in the 4th round, the lower back pump turned to PAIN in the RIGHT SIDE ONLY. This, as I've known for quite some time now, it's due to my under-developed right glute.
Back then it seems I didn't even consider it being the QL muscle, and I thought it was the low-back compensating for a weak glute? Dang. I think it's been the QL all along.

Also, last night I was reading a book on trigger points that I have, and went to the QL section... it specifically said "a tight QL can pull the iliac crest up, giving the impression of having a shorter leg [which I don't have, 100% sure of this], and making it look like the person has scoliosis". My goodness... this is EXACTLY me! It's the tight QL pulling my right iliac crest up (x-rays confirm this). Several docs have measured my legs: they're equal length! And my right lower ribs pulled down/inwards... and the scoliosis.. and straining this QL muscle several times, as far back as 2-3 years ago.... and me finding all these tender spots with a rubber ball against a wall.... argh.

I have tried the QL stretch I find on the net but don't feel it working so well? I'll keep massaging with the ball and try to find a better stretch.
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Old 02-18-2012, 08:46 AM   #8
Steven Low
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Re: Just a short rambling (new discoveries). I wish Mike Mallory was still around too

Sidebending is the best way... QL extends and sidebends to same side so you want to sidebend opposite way and maybe go slightly into flexion.

Though, flexion + side bend or rotation aren't exactly too great for the lumbar discs.

So I would go with just side bending
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Old 02-20-2012, 07:30 AM   #9
Arturo Garcia
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Re: Just a short rambling (new discoveries). I wish Mike Mallory was still around too

Steven: I found a video a few days ago of a guy (Check practitioner I think) recommending side bends while laying on your side on a Swiss ball. I don't own one, so I was thinking of doing them standing, maybe with a DB?

I'm just not sure if my right QL is tight and weak or tight and strong.

More things that I've remembered point to this being a problem area for sure. For instance, I remember in the past, while doing side laying leg lifts (forglute med), I'd get a burn in what I now know is the QL.

Also I just remembered something that goes far back, around 6 years ago! This pain I developed in my right low back doing Planks... I now think I developed it once, about 6 years ago, by doing this: I was doing lots of rope jumping, but with every jump I'd try to land with both feet pointed to one side, next jump the opposite side, etc. They wouldn't realistically point to the Side while my torso keeps facing the front, so lets say maybe they pointed out at 45*, switching sides with every jump. I developed a nearly CRIPPLING pain that had me taking about 10 seconds to stand up off a chair, or to extend after bending to wash my face or something. Needless to say, I absolutely NEVER did this type of rope jumping again, although back then I did a lot of regular jumps which never gave me problems, so it was obvious the twisting of the hips (or spine?) was causing it. I wish I knew what this meant.

I must point out that I did these planks recently, the ones that gave me the low-back pain, with a sore muscle in my right groin... I dunno, might be the psoas or might be an adductor, I'm not sure. But I've read that trigger points in the QL might refer pain right there too! So doing the planks with the already very tight QL... just made the QL worse, I guess.

Still using a rubber ball.... I think I'll incorporate weighed sidebends to work it, just wonder if it's a good idea to work that muscle while it's tight? The side bend would stretch it too though, so maybe it's good....
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