Our Chiropractic Approach
Low-force Gentle Adjusting
At Vital Life we utilize a gentle form of chiropractic that is rooted in whole body medicine and biomechanics. Our technique is a unique combination of Activator Method, Sacro-Occipital Technique and Applied Kinesiology that ignites the body’s ability to heal itself.
No matter what kind of painful condition you are struggling with, this technique has the unique capacity to address specific health concerns while simultaneously correcting the rest of the body, perhaps catching issues that have not yet surfaced.
Keep reading to more fully understand how this technique can change your whole body dynamic, addressing pain of all types and improving performance.
How it works
This series of treatments works by re-calibrating and realigning the axial system to eliminate pain and dysfunction. The axial system includes the cranium, spine, pelvis and all the tissues that hold it together. When functioning properly, the body has very precisely managed relationships between the muscles and bones in relation to gravity – a universal constant everyone must deal with. By treating the upper cervical spine and stabilizing the pelvis, we offer the body the right stimulus to facilitate a full body neurological reset and remove compensation patterns built up over time due to direct injury, faulty movement patterns, and postural issues.
The upper cervical spine and the pelvis are two neurological reference points for the body to understand where it is in space and in relation to the ground. These two areas work together to coordinate safe and efficient movement. Due to injury, repetitive or faulty movement patterns, birth trauma, concussions, illness, and sometimes regular activities of daily living, these areas become destabilized leading to pain and decreased function. Without help, unprocessed compensation patterns and disorganized tissue relationships settle into the brain-body system leading to chronic pain over time. The weakness it creates also further predisposes the body to future injuries and illness due to its disorganized and destabilized state.
The relationship of the head and neck to the pelvis is so integral in human bipedal (upright) functional movement, we always start here. No matter the complaint.
In 8-10 cumulative treatments, we reset and reorganize the ENTIRE body.
The Corrective Steps
Lateral Atlas-Occiput Complex
When a lateral shift between the occiput and atlas occurs (base of the skull and first cervical vertebra), it can cause impairment of blood flow and nerve transmission to the brain, increase stress on the brain stem and spinal cord, and increase pressure on cranial nerves such as the vagus and trigeminal nerves.
This area is the gateway to all higher function and coordination; everything from movement, coordination, balance, and muscle memory to autonomic nervous system regulation. When this is out of balance, it has the potential to throw the entire body into a state of physical and neurological compensation and cause all sorts of dysfunction both functional and systemically.
The pelvis, sacrum, and sacroiliac joints are arguably the most biomechanically important areas of the body. The sacroiliac joints are the shock absorption system of the body. They receive ground reactive forces every time your feet strike the ground, and incorporate the weight, balance and coordination of the entire axial system and upper body.
Due to injury, either from the ground up or the top down, the function of the sacroiliac joints can become compromised and they must alter from their normal, neutral position to compensate for the injury sustained to the body.
This causes entire kinetic chain disruptions locally and throughout the body. When the body is unable to sort out and correct what happened, long term compensation patterns persist and over time leading to pain and degradation of tissues.
Kinetic Chain Balancing
Unless pain is due to direct injury to a specific joint or extremity, many times pain in the proximal (close to the body) large joints, such as the shoulders and hips, may actually be stemming from the imbalance your body is struggling with between the lateral atlas-occiput and the sacroiliac torque. ESPECIALLY if your pain in unrelated to injury. Its the pain that shows up without explanation, creeping in and slowly getting worse over time. This is why we always balance the upper cervical spine and pelvis first.
The relationship of your arms and legs WILL be affected by a torque in the axial system. This creates tension, pain and/or weakness in predictable muscles groups as they attempt to maintain normal function while they are being forced to work in positions that are abnormal for that specific muscle.
Lateral Atlas-Occiput Complex
To correct this lateralization of the atlas and occiput, all we usually need is 3-4 treatments using an activator. The treatments are quick, easy, painless, and highly effective.
These four 3-4 treatments alone can help relieve symptoms such as:
Migraines & headaches, dizziness, brain fog, visual changes, neck or shoulder pain, pain or tingling in the extremities, nausea, vomiting, fatigue & sleep issues, mood change, Bell’s Palsy or Trigeminal Neuralgia, tinnitus.
Even some unexplained autonomic nervous system issues can be addressed with this simple technique because of its possible effects on important cranial nerves.
To bring the pelvis back to a functional neutral position we must correct/reset what is called the ligamento-muscular reflex that has been holding the pelvis in a torqued position.
Treatment consists of 4-5 pelvic balancings using SOT blocks. These wedge shaped blocks reinforce the proper position of the pelvis and allow it to settle back to its proper position. If your pelvis is torqued, you may experience symptoms such as:
Low, mid- or upper back pain, acute onset ‘random pain’ that happened when you were doing a simple task such as brushing your teeth, sciatica, pain or tingling in the hips, knees or ankles, trouble sitting, laying or standing for even short periods of time w/o discomfort, abdominal disturbances, bloating, or IBS.
Kinetic Chain Balancing
The last portion of this treatment series includes re-integrating the extremities back into the freshly re-aligned axial system. We don’t leave the arms and legs to figure it out on their own. Depending on how long and how deeply ingrained the kinetic chain imbalance has gone, treating the full kinetic chains can range from 3-6 fully body treatments which includes the spine as well as both arms and legs.
Treatment is delivered using the activator is a specific sequence of adjustments that informationally re-organizes the limbs back into their proper relationship with the body.
Symptoms of kinetic chain disruptions could be anything from shoulder & neck pain, pain on the back of the shoulder or under the scapula, thoracic or rib pain, hip & buttock pain, sciatica, thigh or knee pain, disproportional flexibility, uncoordinated movement.. honestly anything.