It's Never JUST Back Pain

holistic health Jan 13, 2023

“It’s never just back pain.”

This is an expression that I heard from an extremely knowledgeable practitioner and head of education development at the CHEK Institute, Matthew Walden, and I think it really gets to the crux of the issue.

I’ve experienced back pain at various times throughout my life.

The first instance was when I was in junior high school.  The muscles in my back spasmed and tightened to the point where I could not sit down.  The best I could do was kneel next to my desk at school.  Movement was uncomfortable, to say the least.

Later, when I was in my 30’s, I experienced a combination of intermittent muscle spasms and nerve pain.  It was extremely painful, debilitating, and continued for many months.

In between, I had more than enough bouts of stiffness, aches, spasm, and pain.  At times, I could barely stand up straight or take a deep breath.

More recently, I experienced a recurrence of the muscle spasm and nerve pain combination.

I am no stranger to back pain.

One of the most important things that I have learned over the years, is that there are layers and layers to pain, especially when it relates to the spine and back.

Mental stress, emotional conflict, lifestyle imbalance, self-image, diet and nutrition, inflammatory conditions, repetitive movement, postural patterns, social demands, and the list goes on.  All can be contributing factors to pain issues that manifest in the back.

The spine, in particular, is central to our being – it includes the primary extension of our central nervous system from the brain and is tied to every aspect of our life experience and bodily function.  When it is injured or dysfunctional in some respect, it affects us on every level.

And the web of kinetic and fascial chains in the body that can have significant impact upon the spine are broad and highly complex.  Sometimes seemingly unrelated issues are key factors in manifestations of back pain.

X-ray and MRI imaging of my own spine have revealed scoliosis, bone spurs, arthritis, and the signs of previous injuries.  It’s knarly to look at.  No doubt, these “mechanical” factors played a role in the instances of back pain that I have experienced.  However, it’s only one piece of the puzzle and only a small part of the overall picture.

My own journey has been one of both standard medicine and alternative therapies as well as one of exploration.

Compassionately, and courageously, allowing myself to be confronted with the unresolved conflicts and imbalances affecting me in various ways has led me to be able to treat and address my own back issues with increasing intelligence, patience, and effectiveness.

This, combined with specific, individualized exercise programs that I have developed for myself allow me to be highly functional physically and mostly pain-free today (we are all a work-in-progress, right?).

When I work with others who may be experiencing back pain, I approach the issue with the same holistic perspective.

“It’s never just back pain.”


If you’re experiencing back pain and would like to learn more about how I can help, schedule your free consultation today.