Find out what is wrong with my back

This is the first of two tasks which concern my back. The problem is that it sometimes begins to hurt terribly in the muscles parallelling the spinal column. In order to compensate for this, I lean slightly to one side to assuage the pain. However, as the pain intensifies, I have to incline my posture more and more. If it gets really bad, my ribcage actually grinds against my hip bone. Stand up and lean to the side until this happens and then try to imagine perform normal tasks while in that position. No easy thing, I tell you.

At this time, however, the other side starts to hurt because of the tensions built up from moving around in the previously described manner. This starts a cycle of roughly 12 hours or so, in which the pain alternates between left and right. The only remedies are pain killers, sleeping and some stretching exercises. The problem is that none of those seem to be quite satisfactory and I would much rather like to nip the problem in the bud. This is what this task is about: to get to know what causes the aforementioned condition.

As most of you probably know, I practice Tai Chi Chuan regularly and have been doing so for some time now. Our chief instructor, Paul Silfverstråle, is also trained in traditional Chinese medicine. I am not very well into this subject myself, but what he did was a light massage followed by some cracking associated with the spinal column. It all felt terribly nice.

Then we spoke a bit about the issue itself, and he gave his view of the matter. He said that stiffness and tension in those muscles can cause a temporary misalignment of the spine, which the muscles then would try to counter by contracting even more. So, the solution might be found in getting more relaxed in my back, which he showed certain exercises to help me with. The relaxation in my back was palpable when I went home.

It is now two weeks since my visiting him, and I can feel a tremendous improvement. I dare to say that his assessment of the situation has given me the means to accomplish this task.

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