I started working with Geoff a little over a year ago. Geoff has severe scoliosis, which required surgery to insert steel rods into his back at the age of 15. For the last 15 years doctors and physical therapists had told him there was nothing that could be done to restore “normal” function. To a certain extent they were correct. Because of the scoliosis and subsequent surgeries, Jeff had severe limitations with range of motion and strength of anything that directly attached to the torso. He had received physical therapy for only two weeks post surgery and then was left to his own devices. He was cleared after one year to resume “normal” activity. However, the musculoskeletal and biomechanical changes caused by the scoliosis coupled with the new changes caused by the surgery left his body “non-functional.” His medical/therapy team did what they were taught to do; they took the “isolative” approach towards restoring “normal” function. “Normal” function in their eyes was making sure he was able to walk and that was it! This was a 15-year-old boy that had the rest of his life to live! How the hell can they have just been concerned with just the ability to walk? Where was their common sense and compassion? He had two titanium rods in his back. You could have run him over with a truck and his spine would be fine. His limitations were predominantly soft tissue and neurological. Soft tissue, which includes the muscles, ligaments and tendons, can be permanently altered given the correct amount of consistent loading over a long enough period of time. The neurological system can be altered as well under the same conditions. This isn’t some futuristic concept. This is what Strength/Weightlifting coaches do for a living!
To Geoff’s credit, he started to do barbell exercises on his own. He really enjoyed them but his physical limitations caused poor lifting mechanics and he started getting hurt. He then sought out professional instruction. He moved to Southern California and found the local Southbay Crossfit affiliate, which was renting space from me. Geoff started attending classes religiously hoping to learn how to squat, pull and do the Olympic Lifts properly. Unfortunately for Jeff, that wasn’t going to happen at this particular affiliate. He approached me and asked if I would work with him, and I agreed. I used barbell protocols to help create these miraculous changes, not any of the “traditional” physical therapy protocols. The only balls that were used were the ones swinging between Geoff’s legs! I am in the process of doing an article on the “Evolution of Jeff” .It will chronicle the collaborative work of Dianna Linden (Body Worker), Dr Brendan Murray (Chiropractor), Chris Talley (Sports Nutritionist), and me (Strength Coach) which caused the changes in Jeff that nobody in the Medical field thought possible. Stay tuned- it’s going to be a game changer! In the meantime enjoy the video.
Fight until your very last breath!