So what does “Off the Chain” mean to me? Considering we work with the Kinetic Chain very closely in our practice what this phrase means to me is someone who has a link in the chain that is throwing off other areas within it. Each segment of the kinetic chain acts on the other as the body is in movement if we disrupt one or more of those areas we have an effect on the system.
This picture signifies that connection. As you can see the link that is supposed to be red has been replaced with some string, making it the weakest link. This is significant because as demonstrated it has a link to the Lumbar and Cervical spine, meaning that a dysfunction in the Thoracic spine can have an effect on the areas above and below it.
The body likes to keep the eyes at a normal level with our field of vision, by doing this our body will adapt to our environmental conditions in order to make that possible. For example, your hip has been bothering you for a number of years, you haven’t thought of it in forever because that is your “status quo” but now you’re starting to develop issues in your upper T-spine and opposite shoulder. How does that even happen? Why does that make sense to your Athletic Therapist? Well, if we keep in mind the picture with the chains and the idea that the eyes like to be level with our field of vision that’s why it makes sense. As your body has adapted overtime to compensate for an area of pain other areas will shift in order to make up for the movement that one area is lacking to provide the system. This is why it is important to look at all areas of the body to get a proper evaluation and put all the pieces together. Otherwise, it’s like trying to bail out a sinking ship, if you never find the source of the problem you won’t be able to stop the inevitable. This is why we assess and evaluate more than just your knee injury with treatment because it could be as a result of an ankle or hip injury, and sometimes it could be from even further up the kinetic chain!
When we ask you a series of history questions about previous injuries try your best to remember some of those pesky injuries that seemed to be a little more minor. It could definitely relate to the new problem at hand due to how you adapted way back when the injury initially happened. We understand you may not remember them all at that first appointment but, that’s why we also build a rapport with our clients because you may remember those old minor injuries through conversation while we are assessing or treating you! Or we’ve worked on one area, it’s gotten better but now XYZ is starting to hurt and it’s been fine forever! This is a golden opportunity to ask about injury XYZ because as we have uncovered more layers to the injury at hand, old injuries sometimes like to rear their ugly heads and ask for some attention as well.
Our body is connected from head to toe, one imbalance may cause an imbalance to one or multiple areas. If this sounds like you, maybe it’s time to say Goodbye to that weakest link!
Contact us today at (403) 252-6222 | [email protected]
Written by Michelle Gaudet
Certified Athletic Therapist CAT(C)