Conquering Back Pain

For most of my life I’ve dealt with back pain—upper and lower.

Over the years, I’ve discovered ways to lessen the pain: yoga, strengthening specific core muscles, putting a latex topper on my mattress, etc. All of these, especially in concert, helped a great deal. But when my sister-in-law shared her positive experience with The Miracle Ball Method by Elaine Petrone, I listened.

And I put the Miracle Ball Deluxe Kit on my wish list for Christmas 2017.

My dear father choose to give me the kit as one of his gifts, and I’ve been using it ever since.

I’ve been delighted with the results. I rarely experience low back pain these days. And the doctor who I see for my joint issues said that the scoliosis of my lower spine (sideways curvature) was entirely gone!

My upper back continues to challenge me, but it is much better than it used to be. And some extra time on my Miracle Balls always resolves the worst of the pain.

I learned recently that the Miracle Ball Method is really a form of myofascial release. I’d been using the method because it worked, without really worrying about why it worked. But my new qigong practice began creating pain in my hips. In pursuit of a solution for that, I encountered…a bunch of new information.

What is myofascial release?

John F. Barnes (at myofascialrelease.com) describes it as “a hands-on technique that involves applying gentle sustained pressure into the fascial connective tissue restrictions to eliminate pain and restore motion.”

And what is the fascia?

Wikipedia’s definition…

A band or sheet of connective tissue, primarily collagen, beneath the skin that attaches, stabilizes, encloses, and separates muscles and other internal organs.

A video from the Life 360 Summit gives an excellent view of what the fascia looks like and how fascia can cause serious pain and range-of-motion problems when the fascia is tight or restricted.

Minute 6 is when Fascia-man first arrives. And 15 seconds later we get a good close-up of him, if you want to skip ahead.

The way the Miracle Balls work is that you lie on them, and your own body weight applies the sustained pressure that releases the fascial restrictions. The more you are able to relax, the better they work.

In the diagram at right, you can see how I “walk” a single ball up my spine from the tail bone. At each location, I pause the ball for 2 or 3 minutes, until I feel the restriction release.

Across the shoulders, I use the balls in a pair, one placed on each side of the spine.

The whole process does take roughly 40 minutes, but it is so worth it to be pain-free. 😀

The kit I received included the Miracle Balls themselves, a how-to book, a how-to CD (which I haven’t used), a hand pump, and a plastic nozzle for the hand pump. The plastic nozzle did not work for filling the balls, but we had a steel needle for a bicycle pump that fit the hand pump perfectly.

My son tried my Miracle Balls this week after his weight workout and liked them so well that he requested some of his own. I purchased him a smaller kit that included only the balls and the how-to book. (We don’t need 2 hand pumps in the house—he can use mine.)

I meant to tell you all about my adventure with Miracle Balls after I’d used them for a few months. I figured I’d test them well before reporting back. The problem with that plan is that I tend to be most excited when something is new. That’s when I shout about it from the rooftops. Once several months pass…it’s old hat.

I kept saying, “Next week I’ll blog about it.”

But now that I’m using my Miracle Balls on hip pain, they are new and fresh again, so here I am shouting. 😉

So what about my hip pain, which set off this new learning odyssey? I’ll tell you about it—and how I’m fixing it—next week!

For your convenience, here are some of the links from all of the above:
Miracle Ball Deluxe Kit on Amazon
Pump Needles on Amazon
Miracle Ball Basic Kit on Amazon
Fascia-man Video on YouTube

Here’s more about my own experiences with myofascial release:
Tackling Hip Pain

Important Disclaimer: I am not a medical person in any way. I’m just sharing my journey with the idea that it may point you toward some good questions, if you too suffer from back pain. Good questions can lead to good answers; coming up with the right question is often the hardest part of solving a problem, in my experience. Just remember that what worked for me may not work for you. Seek out the right experts for help, if you need treatment!

 

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2 thoughts on “Conquering Back Pain

  1. Just a note that your links for the pump needles and the basic kit have been swooped so the link labelled for the needles gives the basic kit, and vice versa. Not really important but maybe worth correcting?

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