Muscle Balancing in Applied Kinesiology

As a Doctor of Chiropractic, I know that muscle balancing is an important not only for spinal adjustments but also for extremity (arms & legs) adjustments and cranial adjustments.

 For example, I can adjust someone’s spine but if the pull of the muscle on one side of the spine is tighter than the other side than that spinal adjustment will not hold.

 Now most people think that it’s the tight muscle that will pull the spine out of alignment but it just as often can be the weak muscle not having enough strength to hold the spine towards its side.

 Also I may be treating a patient who has chronic muscle pain or weakness due to an injury; in these cases, muscle balance is very important.

 In Applied Kinesiology, we have ways to strengthen or weaken a muscle depending on what we need to do to help the patient.

 First we test the muscle that we think may be involved in an unbalanced pull on the bone (or spine) or involved w/ the pain or injury https://drvittoriarepetto.wordpress.com/2010/05/06/the-art-and-science-of-muscle-testing-in-applied-kinesiology/

testing rectus femoris

 For example, we may find the latissimus dorsi muscle weak that is a muscle that internally rotates, extends and adducts (movement towards from the body) the arm/ shoulder. It also attacts into the lumbar and sacral vertebra and part of the pelvic crest The weakness may seen either as a higher shoulder on the weak side or a rotation of the lumbar veretebrae.http://www.meddean.luc.edu/lumen/meded/grossanatomy/dissector/mml/lat.htm

The questions to be asked are: why is the muscle weak? Is the muscle on the other side hypertonic  or “too stronger.”

 One of the ways to find the answer is to use muscle spindle work. Muscle spindles are small sensory neuro-bundles in the middle of muscles that react to stretching. http://sports.jrank.org/pages/9926/muscle-spindle.html  Stretch a muscle spindle one way and the muscle will strengthen; push the fibers of the muscle spindle the other way and the muscle will weaken.

 So I would be testing the spindles by challenging the muscle spindles and seeing how it affects the strength or hypertonicity of the muscle.

 I can also use another tool at an Applied Kinesiologist’s fingertips which are golgi tendon organs and as the name suggests, these are located in the tendons of muscles (tendons attach the muscle to the bones.). http://medical-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/Golgi+tendon+organ. Again stretching the tendon organ will help strengthen the muscle and the other way will weaken it. And these would be tested in a similar manner to the muscle spindles.

 © 2010-Dr. Vittoria Repetto

 

Want more information on Dr. Vittoria Repetto and her NYC Applied Kinesiology/Chiropractic practice; please go to www.drvittoriarepetto.com.
And please check out the Patient Testimonials at my web site.

Water and Your Health

Recently one of my regular patients came in for an adjustment; she was on a new job that requires her to be on her feet for eight hours and a good deal of it outdoors.  And she was having some low back pain and numbness in her thigh.

 So after the orthopedic tests, I tested her Psoas muscle, it was weak on the side of her pain. The Psoas is attached to the front of the lumbar spine and a weakness or a spasm of the Psoas unilaterally can rotate the lumbar spine out of alignment and cause problems with the nerve roots as they exit the lumbar spine.

 And as it is almost summer and the weather has been warm I asked her about her intake of water, she had not been paying attention to her consumption of water. In the Chinese system of medicine, the Psoas muscle is associated w/ the Kidney Meridian and represents the element of water. So I asked her to go to my water cooler and have a few drinks of water; when she returned, I tested her again and this time, the Psoas tested strong.

 I’m telling this story to get to a few points.

 One is to remind people to drink lots of water especially during the warm weather: the composition of our bodies is 72% water and that includes our muscles. Dehydration can cause our muscles to lose strength.

 “All chemical reactions in the body take place in water. Every cell in the human body is bathed in water, which contains materials to keep them vibrant. Water is a transporter of nutrients and oxygen for proper function of the body’s tissues. Water helps remove waste from the body. Water acts as a natural air-conditioner through perspiration. Water is essential for digestion & absorption of vitamins and minerals. Water keeps our skin moist & supple, as well as a natural lubricator for our joints and internal organs.” http://www.filtercon.com/water_health.htm

 Therefore dehydration can make us feel fatigued and sluggish; a common complaint compounded by salt loss….I’m talking not only sodium salts but also magnesium and potassium loss. Eating a little more fruit is important as is a small amount of salt (and I do mean sea salt not regular table salt)– see https://drvittoriarepetto.wordpress.com/2010/03/31/to-salt-or-not-to-salt-that-is-the-question/.

 Try to consume the equivalent of 6-8 -8 oz glasses of water a day; soups and veggies and fruit do supply some water. Coffee, teas, beer, alcohol and (yes) herbal teas all have diuretic effect on our body so they don’t count as they make us lose more water than they add.

 And to drink water at regular intervals; if you wait until you feel thirsty, your body is already dehydrated. This rule of thumb becomes more important as we age because as we get older, that part of our brain does not signal as efficiently as it once did.

http://www.buzzle.com/articles/signs-of-dehydration-in-the-elderly.html

 Another point is that our spinal disc have less blood vessels perfusing them than the rest of our bodies which means that we get less water to our spinal discs So if you’re thirsty, your spinal discs are drying up and more subject to degeneration; a common cause of back and neck pain. http://www.spine-health.com/conditions/degenerative-disc-disease/degenerative-disc-disease-natural-degenerative-process

Please note that hyper hydration is a serious problem: http://www.healthline.com/health/overhydration#Symptoms4 

Symptoms of overhydration may not be recognized in the early st ages but can include:

  • nausea and vomiting
  • headache
  • changes in mental state (confusion or disorientation)

If left untreated, overhydration can lead to dangerously low levels of sodium in the blood (hyponatremia). This can cause more-severe symptoms, such as:

  • muscle weakness, spasms or cramps
  • seizures
  • unconsciousness
  • coma

To prevent overhydration, individuals should avoid drinking more than one liter per hour of fluid.(1 liter= 4.2 cups; 1 cup = 8 ozs)

 Raising my glass to you all as I finish w/ another web site for your reading pleasure: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/water/NU00283

   © 2010-Dr. Vittoria Repetto/ revised 2016
If you want more information on Dr. Vittoria Repetto and her NYC Applied Kinesiology/Chiropractic practice at 455 W 23rd St., NYC 10011; please go to http://www.drvittoriarepetto.com

And please check out the Patient Testimonials page at my web site.

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The Case for Caring About Primary Care


As a doctor of chiropractic who spends an hour w/ my patients, I’m appalled that the orthopedist did not seem to take the time to palpate the patient’s neck.

Fixed hard swollen lymph nodes are a classical sign of cancer taught not only in medical schools but also in chiropractic schools.

I also appalled that the physical therapists did not communicate w/ the orthopedist that the patient was not improving; that should have been a wake-up call that something was missing in the initial examination and more testing was needed.
www.drvittoriarepetto.com
More on Health
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

Want more information on Dr. Vittoria Repetto and her NYC Applied Kinesiology/Chiropractic practice; please go to www.drvittoriarepetto.com.
And please check out the Patient Testimonials at the “Our Practice” page at the web site.

Nutrition Tips: Folic Acid: Killer or Cure-All?


For additional information on l-5-MTHF, please read https://drvittoriarepetto.wordpress.com/2009/12/16/are-you-utilizing-your-folic-acid-the-case-for-metabolically-active-form-of-folic-acid-%e2%80%93-l-5-mthf/

For supplements, containing L-5-MTHF, please call www.metagenics.com
More on Health
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost