How To Treat Joint Pain

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Why Joint Pain Isn’t Inevitable…and How to End Yours

by Jonathan Bender

One of the questions I most often hear from people is, Well, But what can I do about my knee/hip/back/neck pain? After all, I’m getting older!

OK, the truth is, there is some truth to that, in that we all have only so many miles in our joints. Some of us have more, and some of us, like me, have a lot less. However, limited mileage doesn’t doom us to lifelong joint pain.

When I was a teenager, I endured a tremendous growth spurt of 6 inches in just 4 months. It was terribly painful and it began more than a decade of constant knee trouble. By the time I was 25, despite the best care the very best sports-medicine doctors and physical therapists could provide, I had no cartilage between my knees. Severe, constant pain ended my very promising NBA career.

In retirement, I ended up creating my own rehabilitation program that was so successful, I have been pain-free for years, including while I was playing for the New York Knicks.

I’d like to share some of the “secrets” of that rehabilitation program with you now. Because of how your body is designed, these secrets will work with any kind of joint pain, from your ankles to your neck.

Secret #1: Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate

Nothing you do affects the inside of your body…as much as what you put inside of it.

And when it comes to your joints, that’s particularly true for what you drink.

When we’re young, our joints are up to 85% water. Water is also an important component of synovial fluid, which lubricates and cushions your joints.

As we get older, our joints tend to contain less and less water. They’re dryer and they don’t glide as well as they used to.

What should you drink?

Water. And more water. I don’t buy that expensive bottled water. I just draw it straight from the tap into a pitcher. I often toss in some lemon or lime slices, or mix and match ingredients like a cinnamon stick or three, crushed mint leaves, cucumber slices, or chunks of fruit, and let the water steep overnight. This adds flavor, vitamins, and anti-oxidants.

Herbal tea: spice blends as a pick-me-up, chamomile for its mild, pleasant flavor and calming properties before bed.

Be careful with coffee and black tea. There is very strong evidence that coffee has great health benefits, including reducing the risk of gout in women and men. However, caffeine itself can pull minerals from your body and aggravate joint pain. Decaf coffee and green tea are both excellent.

Skip soda, energy or sports drinks. There is simply nothing in them your body needs—and sky-high levels of sugar and caffeine that will hurt your joints.

(To learn more about how sugar can directly cause joint pain and make it a whole lot worse, Click here! )

Instead, squeeze a whole real orange into a glass of sparkling water. It’s a delicious, refreshing alternative to soda.

Secret #2: Warm Your Muscles with Activity

Every joint has a code: the specific sequence that warms it up, stretches the muscles that surround it, and activates those muscles to support the joint.

So activity isn’t about exercise: the hiking or biking or walking you enjoy.

Rather, this is about warming up to getting the blood and lymph flowing in your body, and particularly around the joints that hurt.

Heat, walking, and even movements like jumping jacks, are all excellent ways to warm up. You can also target individual joints with specific activities, such as arm circles.

These activities warm your muscle so it can release knots and kinks more easily than if it were cold. Warm muscle also allows you to stretch more deeply and effectively.

Secret #3: Stretch Your Muscles to Release Strain

Yes, that’s right, and it’s a secret we’re taught to dislike. I’m not sure why, because done right, stretching is simple, pretty close to effortless, and practically painless.

And I get it.

I love engaging my muscles: it makes me feel strong and alive.

But during my growth spurt, my bones actually grew faster than my muscles, jamming my joints together. The one thing that might possibly have saved my knees was ballet-type stretching, where you hold a stretch for 20 to 30 minutes. I didn’t do it, I thought spending so much time stretching was a waste… and it would have saved me years of pain and possibly enabled me to retire on my own terms.

So I stretch now. Every.single-day.

And like most people, I do just fine with 2 or 3 20-to-30 second stretches.

That’s because, when we’re young, we’re supple and limber and active. As we get older, we become less active and our muscles get tighter and shorter, pulling our joints together so they grind against each other. Stretching stops and can reverse that tightening.

Stretching and warming activity are two of the three parts of the rehab program I created for myself to return to the NBA. I follow this rehab program to this very day. As long as I do it—despite being 7 feet tall, active, and having no cartilage between my knees, I am pain free.

My rehab routine takes about 20 minutes and while it varies from person to person, that seems to be pretty normal. Because I’ve helped thousands of people, from

  • young trauma victims
  • professional athletes
  • baby boomers who want to stay active
  • people with chronic diseases from arthritis to multiple sclerosis to
  • seniors in their 90s

dramatically reduce and often eliminate their own joint pain.

If you’d like to learn more about how you, too, can radically diminish, even eliminate your own joint pain without drugs or surgery, click here!

References › Osteoarthritis

Here are 12 natural arthritis remedies that might actually help ease the pain. … can help provide at least short-term pain relief and also ease joint stiffness › Product Review › Joint Pain Relief & Care

Joint Pain Relief Codes wants to help by teaching you stretches and natural remedies … Here’s our review of the Joint Pain Relief Codes downloadable eBook

5 Ways Your Core Protects Your Joints

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When I tell people that if they want to relieve their joint pain, even totally end that pain, they must strengthen their core, they look at me like I have two heads.

After all, it’s their knees or their hips that hurt. Right?

Totally makes sense, but it’s not true.

And as someone who retired from the NBA at 25 with no cartilage between my knees, then rehabbed myself so well I played pain-free for the New York Knicks, I learned that the very hard way.

So you don’t have to.

What Is Your Core?

Your core is slang for those muscles that are the center of your body: your hips and back, your abdomen, your shoulders and chest, your diaphragm, pelvic floor and yes, your glutes. Your core also encloses and includes your entire spinal column.

All major body movements begin in the core. A weak core sets you up for all kinds of instability, forcing your joints to carry loads they weren’t designed to. A strong core is the key to a mobile, balanced body, allowing all your joints to glide freely and easily.

In short, your core is a system of 29 pairs of muscles, and your rectus abdominor, or “six pack abs”, is just one of them. Unfortunately, many people overwork their abs and neglect all their other core muscles. That’s a recipe for imbalance, instability, and pain.

So let’s take a deeper look at how these important muscles work protect you from pain.

Your Shoulders

Your shoulders are an extremely complex joint and you use them in almost all upper-body movements. This makes them vulnerable to a variety of injuries.

When you need to load your shoulders, whether it’s carrying groceries or lifting barbells, a strong core protects your shoulders by activating the abdominal muscles and bracing your entire spinal column. This “stiffness” allows your shoulder blades (your scapula) to stiffen in turn. Now your rotator cuff muscles are supported, so they can engage to stabilize your humerus, the bone of your upper arm through its range of motion.

Strong core muscles safely generate the power you need, without damaging your shoulder joints.

Low Back Pain

Generally speaking, if you have low back pain, you need to strengthen your core. Why?

Your core muscles stabilize your spine and pelvis. When you injure your back, those muscles “turn off” or shut down. This stresses the ligaments, which connect bone or cartilage to other bone or cartilage, forcing your stressing your sacroiliac joint to bear loads and forces your muscles should be carrying.

Ending low back pain, far from relying on pain killers or muscle relaxants, requires you to re-engage and strengthen your core muscles to support your sacroiliac joint and allow it to function the way it was designed to. As a joint, not a weight-bearing structure. Click Here!

Bad Posture

Your core is how you carry your body, and there is a vicious feedback loop between a weak core and poor posture. Weak core muscles make it hard for you to carry yourself in a tall, neutral position. A slumped posture further weakens your muscles.

To compensate, your head tilts forward and down, causing your shoulders to roll and your chest to sinks. In turn, your pelvis tilts in, forcing your stomach and your butt out. Your knees turn in to compensate, destabilizing your feet (wearing heels makes this worse).

The chain reaction of weak core muscles turns every joint into your body into a weight-bearing structure.

Hip Pain

Your glutes, the big muscles in your butt, abductors and adductors, and your hip flexor muscles are all part of your core. When those muscles are weak, the strain of walking, running and other movements is transferred to the ligaments in your hips, which in turn transfer that load to the hip joint, distorting its normal function.

Under such circumstances, your hip grinds into your pelvis.

Knee Pain

This chain of weakness extends down to your knees. And because your knees are two relatively isolated joints that must bear almost the entire weight of your body, they are very extremely vulnerable to weakness in your glutes.

One of the most frequent mistakes I see people make (that I made myself for many years) is to focus on stretching the IT band and engaging the quads, the big muscles in the back of your thighs.

The fact is, you can do those things all day, every day, and unless you engage your glutes, those weak muscles will still force your knees to carry the weight your muscles should…

Forcing your knees to grind away at the cartilage, then the bone.

Click here to know how to develop a strong core so your joints can once again glide easily past each other… without pain… in just minutes a day… even if you’re older, have arthritis or a disease such as multiple sclerosis.