We are meant to move
Movement feeds the brain invaluable information. When movement is interrupted we slip back into our reptilian brain. The brain evolved from reptiles where everything is about reaction and survival, to humans with cerebral cortices which allow us to make conscious decisions, create through ideas and feel emotions. It was the ability to move and explore that coincided with the brain’s evolution. By navigating in a gravitational field with just two limbs touching the ground, we had to learn to rely on complex neurological input from the joints and spinal postures to unconsciously feel our way through our environments.
Movement is interpreted as patterns within the brain. It has learned how to react efficiently by interpreting the pattern generators which send information on position and motion from the joints and body’s postures. If the pattern generators get disrupted then the person, not just their body, feels stressed to the max!
Focus on performance and chiropractic
Whether it’s a child on the spectrum or a professional athlete, my role is to reset the tone of the nervous system to maximise the expression of performance. I was recently working with a professional athlete who had damaged his knee and leg. He was getting some really great therapy but had learned from me that the real story of recovery and regaining his performance edge was in the tuning of his central nervous system.
As a long time patient, he recalled conversations we had had about how his brain and nervous system not only organised the tissue repair but that together it controlled his perspective and mental performance. A complete recovery from an injury isn’t only measured by improved strength and mobility. The vital metric is how fast and well the nervous system can adapt to stress. Measuring neurological tone reflects how the brain and body are performing as an inseparable unit.
As I was checking his spine and nervous system for obstructed movement and changes in tone, he mentioned that since his injury he was ‘all over the place’ in his decision making. Understandably he was upset because he was missing time with the team but he felt that if he could just move again, he could begin to get things right! Innately he knew that the value of movement and position and how clearer input from healed joints and tissues could improve his progress. His brain was craving cleaner input from those pattern generators!
Checking neurological status with INSiGHT Scans
When I work with kids or athletes, I immediately check on their neurological status. It’s where the chiropractic journey begins. The first step is to check on adaptive reserves. I use sophisticated Pulse Wave Profiling technology which allows me to measure not only their HRV but other Autonomic markers like temperature and arousal states. I need to know how much adaptive reserve is in their tank so I can push their healing limits. The jewel of instrumentation in the chiropractic care of athletes and motion restricted people (like office workers or television watchers) is the EMG. Sure, It can measure tight muscles but it really tells the story of neurological INPUT. Remember, in neurology, GARBAGE IN, GARBAGE OUT. Just like my athlete, any patient will tell you that the longer they stay out of balance and are immoble, the more dumbed down they feel. It’s no surprise that we talk about e-motions! Movement affects how our brains produce the great neurochemistry that keeps us alive but also keeps us smiling and thinking clearly. Finally, I look into the deep corners of their spinal nervous system using thermography. It detects hidden patterns of nerve dysfunction so I don’t have to rely on asking, ‘how are you feeling?’.
Together the combination of these neurofunctional tests gives me the total picture of the tone of the nervous system and how well the pattern generators are doing their jobs. Today’s technologies allow me to focus on the timeless principle of healing and not just the management of symptoms and spinal motion. By using these technologies, I know, with certainty, what I’m up against as I work with exceptional performers from all ‘walks’ of life.
– Dr. David