Practical Science on Movement and Pain

Category Archives: myths

Which Workout is Best?

Many of my clients want to know what is the best exercise program for them. So they will often ask me what I think about the relative merits of some particular system of exercise: pilates, or yoga, or kettlebells, or Feldenkrais, or barefoot running, or CrossFit, or free weights, etc. I certainly have opinions aboutRead More

Assessment of Pelvic Tilt

How do you know where your pelvis is at? Does it rotate or tilt forward/back, left/right, up/down? A new study suggests that if your only method of finding out involves palpation of bony landmarks on the pelvis, you will likely have no clue. In this study (full text available) the authors had the excellent ideaRead More

“Can You Feel that Knot?” Not!

I get this question all the time in my practice as Rolfer. It usually prompts me to start trying to correct some misconceptions. Here’s why. 1. Thinking about knots might increase threat First and foremost, there is good reason to believe that the way we think about the state of our body can affect ourRead More

The Trouble with MRIs (and my Brother)

A few weeks ago I went back East to visit family. One of the highlights of the trip was going to the U.S. Open with my brother Eric to watch some tennis. When we were growing up together we spent most of our summers playing tennis, and usually capped them off with a trip toRead More

Does Anterior Pelvic Tilt Cause Low Back Pain?

Question: What is anterior pelvic tilt? Answer: It means the front end of the pelvis tips forward and the back end hikes up. Question: Will that make my gut look bigger? Answer: Yes. Question: Is that why my low back hurts? Answer: Let’s check the internet… What Google Says An internet search for anterior pelvicRead More

“Soulless Bodies and Bodiless Souls”

This post is a little philosophical, and you may even find it offensive, so I will apologize in advance and keep it mercifully short. I have done a lot of reading on the internet about the many different approaches to manual therapy. Some ideas are good, some are not so good. And some are ratherRead More

Some Myths About “Toning”

A primary fitness goal for many people is to “tone” their muscles. This is a confusing word that is associated with some very large misconceptions about the way muscle responds to exercise. I am hardly the first to point out this problem, but it is so ubiquitous that I thought I should do my fairRead More

Does Excessive Sitting Shorten the Hip Flexors?

Excessive sitting will shorten your hip flexors. I have read this sentence many times. What I have never read is a citation to supporting evidence at the end of the sentence. It’s one of those claims that no one ever questions, like you should drink eight glasses of water a day. Let’s see how it stand up to some critical inquiry….Read More

More Deepities: Does Intention Have Power?

In some recent posts I introduced the idea of a deepity, which is a statement that precariously balances between two possible meanings, one true but rather uninteresting, the other earth shatteringly profound but … not really true. Today’s installment is the word “intention”, which is often used as a deepity in the world of manualRead More

More Deepities: What is “Energy Work”?

In a previous post I introduced the concept of a deepity. Deepity is term coined by Dan Dennett to describe a somewhat ambiguous statement that precariously balances between two possible meanings. One potential meaning is true but trivially obvious, while the other would be earth shatteringly profound if true, but is in fact false. DennettRead More