Friday, 15 October 2010
I've been suffering a stiff neck for the past 3 weeks or so and today it came to a head. I woke up in a foul mood with my neck not turning fully to the right. It goes all the way to my shoulder on the left but to the right it stops half-way. After work I decided to go to a chiropractor to get some professional help. It felt overly warm in his practice but I suppose it has to be for the muscles to get warm. He checked the alignment of my spine and after I told him about my neck and a pain in my left lumbar area he quickly got to work. I expected him to really press down with his thumbs to loosen up my muscles but the movements were quite slight and he seemed to be gently stretching my neck as I lay face up on the rest bench. Then he told me he was going to adjust the alignment in my neck and after moving my neck to a slightly uncomfortable angle he cracked it. It felt good but at the same time unnatural. I was a little shocked at the cracking sound but actually expected it to be louder. He did the other side and this time I felt and heard two sharp cracks as my neck moved into re-alignment. Even after this my neck still did not have full range of movements so he worked on my back and down to my lumbar area. He used a technique of putting his knees into my back and pulling my body back over them so it cracked the spine. I have to say that it really loosened me up a lot.
After the session he explained to me that my spine was contorted and the curvature was not in a natural position. From the neck to the middle of the back a natural position is a curvature that bows outwards towards the back but mine he said had two curvatures that were creating too much pressure on my neck. I had told him that I had picked up the problem doing jiu-jitsu so he suggested that the pressures I have on my spine while sparring probably misaligned my spine. It was fairly pricey at 6000 yen for a first visit but I figured that some people pay more for the dentist so what the hell. It's not like I can exchange this body for another. You have to keep care of it right? You have to wonder about all the stress the spine takes as you tumble and roll during practice. And lets face it I'm no spring chicken.
I will go again in a few weeks because apparently the body has a tendency to move back into its bad habits. I guess it's like training the body to sit properly. I think it was worth it anyway.