Frontier Movement, Health and Healing in Action

Chris' Healing Story

I have always looked at life as an adventure and followed my heart into those adventures. Along the way I suffered many insults to my physical body. My assumption was that you “gotta pay ta play” and pay I did!

I have been hit twice by automobiles and have hit two of them in return. A drunk on a jet ski hit me while I was swimming in Lake Murray which broke my neck. I have fallen about 18 times while training and racing during my cycling career which is about average for the duration. I had accepted that old age might not be pretty as I had a ‘bad” back, a “trick” knee, a stiff ankle, a “bad” hip to name a few of the highlights. I fully expected arthritis and a general creakiness would be my fate for having chosen a “rock n’ roll” life.

All of these insults would present themselves painfully whenever I reached a certain level of strength, speed or range of motion which directly involved them. My back had bad spasms about twice a year no matter what modality I pursued and I tried them all! My father and my brother both took early retirement, at age 59, due to the same “degenerative disc” condition. My sister, at age 54, is scheduled for her first surgery. I am currently well into my 60s and have not had backpain for over 6 years.

I have always known intuitively that the body is designed to heal itself and I have found one avenue which facilitates that process. I stumbled upon it; literally.

My bio mentions my being asked to ‘ready’ John Wilson for his first years of college basketball. Though I had trained many cyclists, triathletes and hundreds of “general population” clients, I had never trained the relevant speed, strength, agility and vertical jump techniques necessary for basketball and I was asked to begin this type of training with a guy on scholarship!

I buried myself in training techniques (see my bio) and started doing the movements myself. When John and I started the workouts, I was two weeks in front of him on the schedule, meaning that I was doing the movements he would do two weeks later. This gave me a chance to refine my teaching skills before I gave the movements to John. I was also performing the movements with him on his workout days.

Within the first few weeks, I landed a long jump on a small round stone and my leg skidded out from under me. My right ankle, which I had badly sprained at age 14, was throbbing. From my yoga classes years earlier, I knew that this ankle had a much smaller range of motion than my other due to this old sprain. I limped off the field wondering what to do next. I had been trained that pain is a sign to stop but decided to go ahead and train on the ankle anyway in order to stay in front of John.

The first few jumps had quite a bit of pain and then, to my surprise, the pain lessened. After the workout, the pain returned. Each day I had less and less pain while performing the workouts and slightly less the rest of the day. Sometimes I would have a stabbing pain during the night. Finally I would feel the ankle on the first jump and then no pain for the duration of the session and subsequently less and less pain after workout. In the end my ankle was pain free and my long lost range of motion HAD RETURNED.

Before the ankle had completely healed, my ‘bad’ knee flared up. In 1978, it had swollen to volleyball size after a very hard bike ride. I was told that I had chondromalacia and that my knee would gradually get worse over the years. Here it was; swelling and hurting for the 10th time. Again I decided to keep on training.

Almost the same exact pain and healing profile of my ankle repeated itself on my knee. Today I CANNOT hurt my knee no matter what kind of crazy move I perform. This healing process was to repeat itself on my ‘bad’ hip and shoulder and finally on my back. Yes, I had back spasms and kept on training; many back spasms as my training partners will attest. By this time, I knew my back would heal despite the “degeneration” of my discs because I had grown to have faith in regeneration.

Today, I am living a pain free life. This is a miracle, if you ask me, and I am grateful every day.

The interesting part is that I had been praying and meditating that my gym would become more of a healing place. I went so far as to write down that prayer during an exercise from “A Course In Miracles.” These written prayers were to be mailed one year later to their authors by the course facilitator. Six months into my work with John, after my knee and ankle had already healed, my prayer letter came in the mail!

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