Rick Olderman: Breaking The Cycle Of Chronic Pain [EP 67]

Show Notes:

In this episode, Melissa hosts Rick Olderman, a physical therapist who has spent his career finding the best solutions for people with chronic pain. Rick specializes in whole body system care to understand where pain is originating from. Melissa and Rick talk about common chronic pain issues, how current habits of movement play a part, and ways to make adjustments to live pain free.

Key Points From This Episode:

11:55 Taking Care Further
17:23 Internal Connections
20:54 Extension Issues
30:02 Side Bending Issues
50:41 Changing Habits
01:05:51 Solving Systems

Taking Care Further            

Rick talks about his start in physical therapy and how, over time, he started to see a gap in care options for people with chronic pain. He felt that the medical field was failing patients and decided to try to come up with solutions for chronic pain. He spent a lot of time studying, experimenting, and putting pieces together to understand where chronic pain stems from.      

Internal Connections              

Humans have a network called fascia that connects different systems in the body. The location of the chronic pain may not be where it’s coming from because the fascia can carry pain from the source to where someone is actually feeling it. This doesn’t mean the fascia is the problem, it means how someone is carrying their body is creating tension and it’s being driven to locations in the body via the fascia.        

Extension Issues        

Using tape can be good, but type of tape should be considered on an individual basis. Some tapes are more loose and should only be used as a guide to help movement, while other types of tape are sturdier and meant to support joints and muscles. Certain unconscious movements cause joint pain, and it will feel unnatural when trying to adjust it, but it’s important to try. Extension issues are one of three main causes of chronic pain. 

Side Bending Issues        

A side bending problem is the second main cause of chronic pain. Scoliosis means there is a lateral curve in the spine and comes in two forms, functional and congenital. Side bending issues happen because the body is trying to compensate, which in turn causes compression on a side of the spine, which causes different types of chronic pain. Both can be solved with attention to movement and proper exercises.     

Changing Habits         

It’s hard to reprogram the body to change habits of movement. It takes a conscious effort to get the body to start responding in a new way. Over time it will become more natural. It’s important to pinpoint which areas of the body are being strained by your movement and posture and make adjustments accordingly. 

Solving Systems          

Ergonomics are important for sitting for long periods of time. Neck pain and headaches can be solved by supporting the joints and muscles and being in the right kind of alignment. Same with walking, paying attention to steps and adjusting movements will help alleviate chronic pain. Every issue is part of a system of the body that can be adjusted.    

Resources from this episode:

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Thank you so much for listening to this episode! I’m honored and excited to be on this journey toward personal growth, a healthy lifestyle, and a greater more confident you. I’d love to hear from you. So please share this episode with anyone that you think needs to hear this message and remember to rate, review and subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts. My name is Melissa McAllister. And until next time, thank you for being your own health advocate. 



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