After suffering for ten years an L2 compression fracture that was later made worse due to an injury sustained during work. Laura Barbella was in pain that was almost constant. She’d visited doctors, physical therapists and an chiropractor and had tried every remedy possible, from massage to electric nerve stimulation, acupuncture epidurals and ablations. There was nothing that did the trick. Unable to even reach over the sink to wash her teeth without suffering immense discomfort, she was forced to resign herself to living a painful life.
The situation changed at the beginning of 2021. That’s when Barbella saw a Facebook post from Chris Bohlin, a personal trainer certified by the National Academy of Sports Medicine and the creator of The Protocol (Protocol-Fitness.com). The message said: “I help people with extreme pain to get relief and restore mobility without surgery or drugs.”
“I did not know exactly what The Protocol was,” Barbella claims, “but I was willing to explore everything.” In desperate need, she contacted him seeking help.
Barbara’s Introduction to the Protocol
“Chris clarified the following: The Protocol is comprised of four postures — the back Position, Seated Chair Position, Squatted Twist Position, and the Running Position — which help to reverse the body’s trauma by the process of realigning,” Barbella says.
“It’s an exercise that is physical that is similar to the way meditation can heal minds,” Bohlin says. The process removes friction and restores equilibrium so that people can move freely.”
In their first session Bohlin sketched out a plan of Linda’s pain and guided her to the positions that help circulate blood and relieve tension. Barbella claims the relief was instantaneous. She continued to work together with Bohlin three times a week and was able to perform the Protocol’s movements at home in the time between sessions. The improvement, she explained was gradual. However, eventually, thanks to persistence and perseverance she was able to stand up straight, slept more comfortably and the numbness of her right leg that she was informed by her pain-management doctor could never be eliminateddiminished.
4 exercises that can help ease back pain
What exactly do you mean by the Protocol? Bohlin who is its master practitioner as well as its creator explains it’s a set of movements that strengthen the core and cause a slight change in the alignment of the body in releasing tension and improving the stability. “We begin with the initial position that can be the most fundamental one, then move towards the fourth position,” he notes. The trick is to alter the poses to fit the movements of your body and release when you feel tension. Here are four Protocol postures that work to relieve back pain.
1. The Back Position
Sitting on the floor, gradually lift your legs up; bend your arms to the elbows to create right angles. Then, flatten your back and squeeze your legs together Make fists, then gently tuck your chin. Do notforce you to perform any action uncomfortable. “This posture distributes your body’s energy in a way that helps ease discomfort,” Bohlin says.
2. The Seated Chair
As you sit on the floor then slowly lean back and raise your legs. You want to create as close to straight angles that you are able to. Try to get the same posture as the Back Position while sitting up straight. You can hold any position you are able to comfortably hold until you begin to feel tension on the muscles of your back or your hips.
3. The Squatted Twist
This position in the standing position assists in stabilizing and strengthen the low back. Keep your legs in a straight line as you bend the knees. making sure you are creating straight angles between your hips, knees and ankles. Your heels can lift off the ground.
Extend your arms out towards the sides, creating right angles with your elbows and shoulders; Make fists. If you are able, turn your whole physique from right to left until there is tension within your knees back as well as your feet.
4. The Running Position
“This posture allows for more movement and therefore being aware of your body’s sensations assists you in adjusting your posture, which eventually eliminates pain,” Bohlin suggests. You can run or march around in place and land on the heels of your feet. Try to find the right angles between your knees and hips, and move your arms at straight elbows. Keep going until you feel strain on your feet or knees.
The article first appeared in our journal,First For Women.
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