End chronic pain—for good—with this practical guide from the PBS personality behind Classical Stretch and author of the New York Times bestseller Aging Backwards.
Chronic pain is the most common cause of long-term disability in the United States. Twenty percent of American adults accept back spasms, throbbing joints, arthritis aches, and other physical pain as an inevitable consequence of aging, illness, or injury. But the human body is not meant to endure chronic pain. Miranda Esmonde-White has spent decades helping professional athletes, ballet dancers, and Olympians overcome potentially career-ending injuries and guiding MS patients and cancer survivors toward pain-free mobility. Now, in Forever Painless, she shows everyone how to heal their aching bodies and live pain free.
The root of nearly all pain is movement—or lack thereof. We need to move our bodies to refresh, nourish, and revitalize our cells. Without physical activity, our cells become stagnant and decay, accelerating the aging process and causing pain. People who suffer chronic pain often become sedentary, afraid that movement and activity will make things worse, when just the opposite is true: movement is essential to healing. In Forever Painless, Miranda provides detailed instructions for gentle exercise designed to ease discomfort in the feet and ankles, knees, hips, back, and neck—allowing anyone to live happier, healthier, and pain-free no matter their age.
About the Author
Miranda Esmonde-White is one of America's greatest advocates and educators on healthy aging. She is best known for her PBS fitness show Classical Stretch, which has been on the air since 1999. A former ballerina, she designed the Essentrics technique, which uses low-intensity strength and stretch exercises to relieve pain, prevent injury, and slenderize the body. Esmonde-White works with professional and Olympic athletes and celebrities, and teaches classes to thousands of students worldwide each year.
Table of Contents
Foreword Helene M. Langevin, MD ix
Part 1 When the Pain Doesn't Go Away
Chapter 1 Our Modern Epidemic of Pain 3
Chapter 2 Our Living Matrix of Tissue-and How It Can Heal Us 15
Chapter 3 When the Matrix Gets Disrupted 23
Chapter 4 Using the Essentrics Method to Become Forever Painless 47
Part 2 The Forever Painless Program
Chapter 5 The Basic Warm-Up 61
Chapter 6 The Foot and Ankle Workout 75
Chapter 7 The Knee Workout 95
Chapter 8 The Hip Workout 119
Chapter 9 The Back Workout 139
Chapter 10 The Upper Back and Shoulder Workout 161
Chapter 11 The Connective Tissue Workout 181
Chapter 12 The Immune System Workout 203
Chapter 13 The Arthritis Workout 229
Chapter 14 The Stress Workout 253
Appendix: Complementary and Alternative Treatments for Pain Relief 279
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This book was heaven sent! It was just the right book at the right time. A close friend of mine who is also a kinesiologist had referred me to Essentrics and I had tried one of Miranda's exercise videos and liked it. But this book cemented the truth that the right kind of exercise will help me feel better. Forever Painless is well-written but easy to read and understand. The book is divided into two parts: the first part explains chronic pain and how recent studies about our connective tissue (fascia) is key to healing chronic pain. I found this section inspiring and empowering. I felt like this book was written for me. The second part consisted of pictures and explanations of the exercises. I am trying to learn the Basic Warm-up ones by heart so that I can do them without using the book. Although the exercises look easy, I still pulled a sweat doing them. I think anyone can do these exercises though, even if one is in a lot of pain. I know my body responds well to stretching and after reading this book, I understand why. The author makes reference to recent studies and explains how this relates to body pain and the healing from pain. These are gentle but powerful exercises and Part Two demonstrates specific ones for each part of the body, such as the hips or upper back and shoulders. There is also the Immune System Workout, the Arthritis Workout and the Stress Workout. The book also has an index at the back of the book. This book has become my daily companion. Because being in pain kills one's motivation to exercise, I appreciate the way this book encourages me to do it, to continue a daily 30-minute routine that makes a difference in my life both physically and emotionally. Highly recommended to anyone who thinks they are in too much pain to exercise or who don't like exercising. This is one of the best books I've read this year on wellness. I received a complimentary copy. I voluntarily chose to write a review of this book.