This is an interview with Phil Rolfe, a physical therapist in Boulder, Colorado, who works at a clinic where he sees primarily spine patients. Boulder is quite the mecca for yoga. There is a
studio on every block, a teacher training happening every week, and every style of yoga. Named one of the top 10 “Fantastically Yoga Friendly Towns” by Yoga Journal, Boulder boasts over 40 yoga studios (for a population of about 100,160).
Rob: What’s the trend you’re seeing in your work with respect to yoga students and teachers?
The spectrum of my patient population consists of the very active athletes to those struggling to stay ahead of a degenerative process, such as osteoarthritis. Within that continuum, I see patients injure themselves specifically their back and pelvis doing yoga on their own or in a class as a student or teacher. I often see pelvic and lumbar dysfunction, which can be thought of as an asymmetric presentation of the lumbar vertebrae often including the pelvis. These dysfunctions can be corrected with manipulations (high velocity, low amplitude), mobilizations, or muscle energy techniques. I also see, with yoga patients who are experiencing back or pelvic pain, a shutdown of their local stability system, along with joint hypermobility. The key to treatment is to correct the dysfunction and assess for gross motor strength and flexibility issues. I test whether their spinal stability system is functioning, and educate them how to reconnect with this motor control system. Continue reading >> HuffPost