Saturday, March 15, 2014

Does the Duck Quack?

The more you read and the more you start to have definite opinions,  the more you realize some people don't share them.  The more you realize there is a heck of a lot you don't know.  The more you realize there are some things you truly think you know.

Lately, I find myself doing self checks more often then I used to.  I used to read something that was against what I thought and dismissed it or was so intrigued by it, I immediately adopted it and it became my new thing.  Yes, I was that guy.

When your new they don't teach you critical thinking.  They teach you see this, do this, then do that.  My school taught me to Xray the bone, diagnose the bone, move the bone.  Not much more then that.

You accumulate experience.  You find patterns.  You find things that you like, you find things that work.  You find things that don't work.  You find things that don't work for this, but work for that.  Over time you have a working knowledge.  You also have accumulated attachments that you may not even know.

Want to know what an attachment is?  Read something that is the opposite of what you think.  Does it make you angry?  Do you find yourself taking it personal?  Then you are probably attached to the idea.

This is not necessarily a bad thing.  What make it a bad thing, is if you stick your head in the sand and never evaluate what you do or what you think.

I think the work of Tim Ferris has really brought to light the concept of life hacks or using your own life and body as an experiment of n=1 to find what works for you.  Hey my doctor told me washing my mouth with coconut oil for 20 minutes will cure my "ailment."  Some people called BS, some people called it a miracle.  In reality just do it for a week, did it work?

I've had people tell me acupuncture research shows its BS.  Funny thing, it is one of the few things that makes my elbow feel normal.  It's one of the few things that a cancer patient tells me helps with her pain.  Placebo?  Perhaps, but what if you don't expect it to work, you want it to fail?

I had a case of groin pain for 6 months in college.  Had been to every doctor and PT.  My mom suggested a chiropractor.  I laughed and said my back was fine.  She forced me to go.  I went reluctantly.  3 days later I sprinted pain free for the first time in 6 months.  Part of me was just waiting to say "I told you so."  What an obnoxious 18 year old.

I've heard people bash the concept that you can't feel/touch the Psoas muscle.  What am I feeling day in and day out?  Have you even tried?  Are you just repeating something you heard?

I hear that palpation and general soft tissue work is redundant.  Just get in there, rub and it will all turn out the same.  Sadly, this has not been my experience.  I have continued to get better results the more I get better at feeling "stuff" and refine my anatomy palpation.

I hear muscle testing is BS.  Maybe it is how we think of it.  But when someone can't resist a movement and they should be able to, that tells me something.

A few years ago Mike Boyle came out and said he'd gotten rid of the back squat.  You should have heard the uproar!  This is a respected strength coach that had his reasons for the population of people he coached.  That my friends is people clinging to their self beliefs.  They have come to identify with an exercise.

It seems silly at first, it's just one exercise.  But we all do it with something.

I had a patient tell me isometrics don't work.  Maybe isometrics don't work the way you do them.  I gave him some Pails/Rails isometrics for a hip capsule and watched as the sweat poured off his brow. His experience with isometrics were different from mine.

I had people tell me high dose Vitamin D doesn't work.  But it did for me when I did it and when I have had patients that needed it to as well.

I've had people tell me sleep before midnight is the best.  It never worked for me.  There are a lot of things I've wanted to work and it just didn't.  Trust me I've tried.  I would have taken the placebo effect.

These days I'm starting to read and listen and learn with open ears and a filter.  If it challenges me, I ask why.  Am I taking this personal?  Does this have merit?  How can I test this?  Is this better then what I've been doing?  If it says it won't work, but it works for you consistently, whats that mean?

Two sayings come to mind.

"Absorb what is useful, discard what is not, add what is uniquely your own."  Bruce Lee

If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck...

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