Lines of Force

Most chronic joint-related problems involving the hip, knee, and ankle1,2 can be successfully managed with conservative treatment. Surgery for such conditions is typically a last resort and frequently does not work out well. Revision (repeat) procedures are common and represent a failure of appropriate patient selection. Severe, unrelenting, intractable pain is a suitable indication for procedures such as total joint replacement. But the best solution, of course, is to never get to such a set of circumstances in the first place. Chronic joint-related pain is often the result of faulty biomechanics. Abnormal mechanical stresses cause pain. The biggest part of the solution of such problems is learning how to correctly use your personal machine, that is, your own body.

We almost never think of what it takes for our body to work properly until something goes wrong. Usually what's going on physiologically is a seamless process, hidden from our conscious mind. However if we're experiencing chronic joint pain (or, better, at the first sign of such pain), it's time to become proactive.

Mechanical problems involving joints may be conceived as "crossing energies." Mechanical loads (such as forces of gravity) are best opposed by forces arrayed in parallel to, or perpendicular to, the force being supported. Such parallel or perpendicular forces may be thought of as "straight energies." Forces that are not "straight", that is, forces deployed at an acute angle, will cause mechanical stress to a joint over time. Such ongoing stress will damage muscles, tendons, and ligaments, resulting in strains and sprains. If these injuries are not corrected and become chronic, one may begin to experience a great deal of misery.3

Employing "straight" lines of force does not involve actually doing anything physically. Rather, such "straight energies" are activated by a process of visualization. You "see" the straight lines in your mind. To do this, you visualize a straight line running from your hip socket, through the center of your knee, across the center of your ankle, and down to the space between your first and second toes. The straight-line visualization connects your hip socket, knee, ankle, and first/second toe in both standing and bent-knee positions. Your mental image of these straight lines causes specialized nerve endings (proprioceptors) in your hip, knee, ankle, and foot to align these joints and align the mechanical actions of associated muscle-tendon groups. The result is balanced mechanical forces traversing these joints and, over time, reduction in pain. Time may be required for injured soft tissues to heal, but the typical long-term result is decreased pain and improved function.

The "straight" lines of force solution is low-tech and simple. Practice and consistency will go a long way toward successful management of chronic joint-related pain.

1Fox AS, et al: What is normal? Female lower limb kinematic profiles during athletic tasks used to examine anterior cruciate ligament injury risk: a systematic review. Sports Med 44(6):815-832, 2014
2Calatayud J, et al: Exercise and ankle sprain injuries: a comprehensive review. Phys Sportsmed 42(1):88-93, 2014
3Sidorkewicz N, et al: Examining the effects of altering hip orientation on gluteus medius and tensor fascae latae interplay during common non-weight-bearing hip rehabilitation exercises. Clin Biomech 2014 Sep 15. pii: S0268-0033(14)00213-7. doi: 10.1016/j.clinbiomech.2014.09.002. [Epub ahead of print]

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Atlas Chiropractic of Sarasota

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Testimonials

  • "Dear Dr. Zabawa,
    I want to thank you for being my #1 healthcare provider.
    I have been under chiropractic care for 40 years and of the many chiropractors I have been treated by,
    you and your precise atlas adjustment are the best.
    It really is gentle and effective. I've had migraines, scoliosis, herniated L4-L5, and sciatica -
    and in the 11 yrs of being under your care I have had no problems or re-occurrence of any
    of my former symptoms.
    You are the best and I thank you."
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  • "Hi, I'll always remember the wonderful things you've done for me at Atlas Chiropractic of Sarasota.
    I thank Dr. Zabawa for getting me up and running!
    My last chiropractor said there was nothing else they could do for me, and I felt as if my life was over.
    (I couldn't even play video games without pain.)
    Now that I've been introduced to your atlas adjustments: I'm lifting weights again, working (making money),
    and yes - even playing video games. Wow!
    THANK YOU!!!!!"
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  • "We've had 40 years of various types of chiropractic therapies (sometimes weekly),
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  • "I was diagnosed with scoliosis as a child, and through good habits & care have managed to avoid surgery.
    About 30 years ago my research into spinal maintenance led me to upper cervical chiropractic
    (specifically orthospinology) over general chiropractic.
    This is just phenomenal. When my atlas is adjusted and my spine is aligned, it is amazing how good I feel.
    It helps the nerves and muscles of the body function so well, and I believe it has been the key to slowing
    the spinal degeneration caused by my scoliosis.
    * And it's so non-invasive! *
    Now that I live in Sarasota, I am so glad to be under the care of Dr. Zabawa.
    It's no surprise that he came highly recommended. I have always been impressed with
    the professionalism and care I've received at Atlas Chiropractic of Sarasota.
    It compares to anywhere in the country."
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  • "For 3 years I had been having headaches every day.
    I even went to a neurologist for my headaches, but he said they were a condition of menopause :(
    A friend suggested going to Dr. Z because of the unique procedure he uses and the great results.
    Dr. Z took care of me and within about 3 months my daily headaches were gone.
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    I don't think I've had one since :)"
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  • "I lived in pain with an undiagnosed broken back for 23 years since a horse & buggy accident as a teenager.
    When I injured my back again as an adult, the x-rays showed that I had fractured a vertebra back then,
    as well as this time.
    I received some help from going to regular chiropractors in recent years, but still lived in pain.
    I am so thankful that I found Dr. Zabawa.
    After 35 years and lots of pain, within a month or so
    I was PAIN FREE!
    It is amazing how such small adjustments to the atlas vertebra in my neck have made such
    a big difference to my life.
    To this day, I come in periodically to maintain my new found health.
    Praise and glory to God."
    Mary T.