• Samuel Spinelli

Tuesday Tips - Make Friends, Variation, and Chronic Pain


This starts a new series where each week I'm going to discuss a few random tips that popped up during practice, coaching, or interacting in the prior week. As well, I'll provide some additional resources such as books, podcasts, or articles to help those who are hungry for more knowledge.

Let's get into it!


1. Book Recommendations

My first book recommendation for coaches and clinicians is Dale Carnegie's How to win friends and influence people. This book serves as an introduction into many important - and severely overlooked - aspects of interacting with patients/clients/athletes. Our communication - both verbal and non-verbal is huge, improving your abilities to interact with people can deliver so much.

I'd argue learning how to speak and interact with patients/clients/athletes to a higher degree will deliver more on outcomes than any continuing education on exercise, modalities, or manual therapy can.

I know some people won't read the full book, so here is a summary of the book with great tips.

2. Exercise variations


In our modern day and age we have so much being thrown at us for exercise variety. Go on to instagram and hit explore, you'll see variation after variation of random movements. While there is merit to to variation, we want to always ensure that the movement we select does still provide the desired stimulus.

Take for example when we want to develop shoulder external rotation strength. Utilizing a classic movement like the side lying external rotation is pretty much a guarantee to get that stimulus.


Scrolling through the explore page, I saw an individual performing a similar movement, but with the shoulder positioned at 90 degrees of flexion and no support under the elbow. This movement does in fact challenge the external rotators, but it limits the maximum challenge to them due to the horizontal abduction demand.

The exercise could be of benefit, but from a pure external rotation standpoint, it's not as sufficient. Without knowing more of the program or reason for selection (it just stated working on external rotation), it's hard to say what exercise is right, but we return to the premise of of the tip - excess variation isn't beneficial for appropriate stimulation.

3. Living well with chronic pain


Image link - https://www.healthnavigator.org.nz/media/2942/chronic-pain-word-cloud-concept-200x200-123rf.jpg

This is a glorious one. When you combine the pain science and sensibility podcast (featuring two incredibly smart people - Sandy Hilton and Cory Blickenstaff) with an amazing article you get something special.

Most of the research on chronic pain tries to identify who will end up experiencing it, the risk factors, etc. but this article took a different route - what factors stand out for those who have chronic pain and are coping well.

The article itself is fantastic and worth a read, but the podcast is an excellent listen and is easily digestible for most people.

That's it for this week people!

Move often, get strong, have fun,

Sam


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