I've been going to a chiropractor who specializes in joints. In fact, I've got an appointment with him, this morning. I've been using Biofreeze, which, for those of you who don't know what it is, it's sort of like "Icy Hot," and when I've been rubbing it in, I've been using my fingers to encircle the elbow and forearm, and digging into the tissues, I've been "skinning" down my forearms. I've also found a pressure point about an inch down from the elbow, and I've been kneading at it.
My chiropractor is probably not going to be very happy with me, but I have a nearly 100% cessation of pain in both elbows! The first appointment I had, he did a technique called A.R.T., where he applied point-pressure with his thumbs to various points on the elbow and forearm, and had me move my arms in various range of motion movements. That was very effective, and left me pain-free for about three days.
This last appointment, he pulled out some big stainless steel tools and did what's called the Graston Technique, where he applied some kind of lubricating ointment to the skin, and then used the tools to "skin" the tissues, and this is where I got the idea to do it with my fingers, as I applied the Biofreeze. Graston didn't seem to be nearly as effective as A.R.T., but I'll talk it over with him.
I'm thrilled that I'm nearly totally healed. I'm taking a crapload of supplements, though.
In the morning, I'm taking Animal Pak "Lift," which is a joint supplement consisting of about six tablets. I'm taking a fish oil capsule, a multivitamin, an MSM tablet, and a vitamin C tablet. I take the fish oil, MSM, and vitamin C, three times a day.
I'm also stretching my arms several times a day, since I spend most of my day at the computer. I do what's called the "Double Hitchhiker." I stand with my arms straight out and level with my shoulders, thumbs up, like the Fonz on "Happy Days." Then I tilt the thumbs back, back, back, rotating from the shoulders, and when I get my arms rotated back as far as they'll go, then I extend the wrists back as far as they'll go, open my hands up, and stretch the fingers out as wide as they'll go. Basically, what this does is remind the body that the arms rotate from the shoulders. It lengthens and stretches all the tendons, ligaments, and muscles from the shoulders all the way down to the wrists, and opens up the shoulders, chest, and neck. It counteracts the hunched-over and hunched-in position that most of us adopt, when sitting at the computer for long periods of time.
I'm not sure if the supplements are finally kicking in, or if the chiropractic stuff is really starting to work, or if the stretches and kneading are what's making the difference, but whatever it is, I'm just glad that I'm finally healing up. It'll be so nice to be able to go through my days without constant pain, and to be able to really put forth maximum effort in karate, without worrying that I'm damaging myself, or wondering how badly I'm going to hurt, the next morning.
7 months ago