Horsey Therapist

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Becoming balanced thanks to Paul Bauer

Paul Bauer is a Physical Therapist working in Guilford, CT who specializes in functional biomechanics. I found him because my father has had increasing back pain some years after back surgery. My father is very conservative about whom he praises. He praises Paul Bauer. That got my attention.

What further got my attention was my father's brief description of what Paul Bauer does and demonstration of some exercises Paul has Dad do.

What further got my attention was my youngest brother's lengthy description of what Paul Bauer does and his lengthy demonstration of exercises Paul has him do. Different body issues therefore different exercises. This brother and I have talked numerous times about bodies, alignments, exercises to help, actually since he was a teenager and I was first starting body awareness through yoga and meditation.

He had remarkable though partial success with the approach to pain free living outlined by Pete Egoscue ( I had done the Egoscue exercises for some years because a dear and horsey friend, PP, recommended them plus I saw the changes in her riding after she had been doing them herself. Nothing like improved riding to get me to notice!

So, I decided I wanted to be helped by Paul Bauer. It involved a long trip and an overnight stay. And I have nothing but excitement and praise for Paul Bauer and what he has offered me.

His assessment covered every joint and associated muscle groups -- both strength and range of motion. I was not surprised when he discovered that I am strong for my age, and have full range of motion in all my joints. I was very surprised to learn that I do not use muscles in my lower lumbar to support the proper curve of my lower back, and correspondingly I overuse muscles of my upper lumbar.

Because I was confident I would not return for 4-6 months, he gave me a progressive program to follow. I hurt after my first attempt at using the muscles of my lower lumbar, finding them precisely via the exercise he taught me. In fact it took me a month to develop strength enough to hold the position for a minute each leg, two reps.

My riding position has changed. My walking position has changed. My sitting position has changed. My sense of body presence has changed. My life has changed. I am definitely more fluid and soft through my back, and move with more ease. And I'm not finished with restructuring my lower back -- just a couple of months since my first contact with Paul Bauer.

If anyone is interested, his clinic contact info: He is not the only one who provides functional biomechanics at this office or other offices of the company, but I cannot personally vouch for the level of excellence of anyone else.

From the website:

Physiotherapy Associates is committed to leadership in the field of rehabilitation care through our focus on patients, professionals, and technology. The successful integration of practice, education, and research within our clinics provide our patients with the highest quality of care.

The goal of physical therapy is to prevent injury and restore patients to their highest level of function in the shortest amount of time. Our therapists take each patient's need and develop a program specifically tailored to the individual.

A link to an article about functional biomechanics:


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