Want to turbo-charge your rehab? Go to the movies!

Jack Nicklaus is on the short list of the greatest golfers of all time, and I love his evocative quote, “before every shot, I go to the movies.” He never hits the ball (not even in practice) without first having a very sharp, focused picture of it in his head. He constructs a detailed image of the green, every dimple on the ball, the trajectory and … [Read more...]

Maintenance spinal manipulation: The cherry-pickers quandary

The email from the industry was effusive. In a cock-a-hoop, caps lock-happy frenzy it bellowed “ALL MANUAL MEDICINE PROVIDERS SHOULD BE AWARE OF THIS STUDY”. The study in question, soon to be published in the journal “Spine” is a RCT that specifically looks at whether patients with chronic back pain benefit from a sustained period of “maintenance … [Read more...]

Misinformed Consent? What not to tell a patient with back pain

We just came across a fancy patient information form that was given to a patient after an assessment by a clinician. The form just blew our minds (but not in a good way) because it seemed to be the perfect clinical tool for generating ongoing pain and disability, and all by the simple process of ramping up the fear. So, just for fun, we thought … [Read more...]

Expecting back pain – the possibility of a self-fulfilling prophecy

It seems like years ago now, well, it is years ago now, that I did this study with The Walking Cortex (TWC, Paul Hodges).  This was one of my PhD studies. I think it is quite a groovy study.  We gave supposedly normal healthy volunteers painful electric shocks, through electrodes placed over the back of their pelvis.  We showed that when they are … [Read more...]

Reduced sensation matches reduced movement control in people with back pain

This study looked at sensory acuity at the back and the ability to perform specific movements of the back and pelvis.  By sensory acuity we mean how precise can we be about a stimulus applied to the skin of the back. We used a measure called two point discrimination threshold. That is, if one is touched in two locations at once, how far apart do … [Read more...]

Questioning the ideal sitting posture

By Dr Andrew Claus (the handsome fellow in the stripy shirt) Sitting cops a lot of bad press, but the science to compare postures is pretty weak. One of our studies undertaken at the University of Queensland examined whether people could copy four sitting postures. Most people couldn’t sit with a curve-in at the low back (like standing, as … [Read more...]