I'm not a spiritual guy. While I am and have always been very interested in world religions and philosophy, my interest is largely academic. I think it's fascinating to learn about and try to understand what drives and motivates people. However, I get uncomfortable and squirmy whenever someone mentions crystals, auras or in the martial arts world, chi. I try to remain diplomatic, usually saying something awkward and stupid like, "So, I guess my aura is plaid. Right?" But I just don't go in for all of that. The claxon alarms go off and my BS meter starts to peg out in the red. Most new age medicine is right up there with Dim Mak and the No Touch Knockout, unless proven otherwise.
I have mentioned that my past experiences with chiropractors haven't been all that positive. Well, a good friend and training partner at Foster BJJ is Sean Flaherty. Dr. Sean is a standup guy. He doesn't wear crystals... that I know of... and likes to train hard. He's also one of the only guys in Washington who does what's called Zone Healing. I had actually decided I needed to check him out a while back, but it took a few months to really take the step. The last time I saw chiropractors, after a year or so I was worse than ever. So, I was a little nervous.
I'm on the bubble right now about how much I buy into the Zone Healing concept, but I have to say that results so far are good. My lower back is still a little sore, but not nearly as much as before and I'm looking forward to training tonight.
I've been reading up on Zone Healing over the last few weeks. Turns out that Zone Healing is, while a little new agey, something many guys in MMA and elsewhere swear by. Check out this article from May, 2007 over at MMA Weekly. The article is actually an interview with Dr. Pete Goldman. He discusses Zone Healing and a little about how he helps several of the biggest names in MMA including BJ Penn and Bas Rutten. I guess Bas took too many salt shakers to the noggin and needed to get his neck fixed. Or something like that.
Essentially, zone healing builds on the general chiropractic idea that the spine is the key to overall health. Basically, we have six different body systems that can be addressed specifically: the Glandular, Eliminative, Nervous, Digestive, Muscular and Circulatory systems. So far, Dr. Sean's been working on the first area. I should notice increases in fo... cus (sorry, I was thinking about something else...). He also refers to the area of the prostate and testes. And here I thought that my four month old baby was killing my sex life! :D
Seriously, though, it's been positive so far and I'm approaching it with optimism. Each year, I try to take a step to improve my overall health and wellbeing. While in 2006, this involved literally stepping into the BJJ school, and in 2007 and 2008 working to improve my weight through diet and exercise, I'm now at a point where I'd like to eliminate as much as I can the chronic pain I've lived with for years. If I can get to where I move without pain in 2009, I'll be very, very happy.
Well, that and improve my grasp of the fundamentals, work on escapes from every position and somehow grow back my hair... well, maybe not that last one.
Don't forget, if you're looking for BJJ gear, check out Razorback Jiu Jitsu. Douglas sells the full range of Atama gear, including the Mundial #7, and if you use the coupon code "STEVE" you'll save 15% off of your offer.