How the Spine Looks and Works

By | on February 14, 2024 | 13 Comments | Array


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13 Responses to “How the Spine Looks and Works”

  1. Thank you very much Jeremy. I have just been diagnosed, through MRI, with a herniated disk in the thoracic spine (T7:T8). I am a 71 years old ex basketball, squash and tennis player who took up golf about 15 years ago. I am as obsessed with golf as my previous sports and have been working hard to adopt Paul’s “no arms” golf. After a month of physical therapy (and no golf), The physiotherapist remarked that although I am not at all slouched, he feels that I am tight on the lower part of the body, which might have contributed to the problem. After a month of physiotherapy the pain is starting to subside and I can start anticipating going back to the golf course. Can you advise how to prepare the re-entry into golf and how to prevent a renewed trauma, knowing that there is a herniated disk in there?

    Thank you very much


    • Hi David,
      Glad to hear you’re on the mend. Once allowed, warm up properly at home then do a few minutes of chipping and putting when you’re cleared to do so (at home is best). If you take all that time to go to the course/range you could be tempted to do too much – at some point it will become logical to you to head to the range. Obviously stop if you have pain during. Add practice time as tolerated. After a few weeks to a month of zero setbacks I would recommend 50 yard shots and add 25-50 yards each week after. Listen to your body, warm up well and cool down properly. Don’t push it too quickly. One of my clients is on the cycle right now and doing very well. It’s conservative but if we do it right I think it could help prevent a lot of problems. Good luck and keep me update. Please know this timeline is very general and the recommendations of your current medical team trump any of mine. Consult your team before you start.
      Jeremy Klinkhamer, PT

  2. March 12, 2015


    Wish I had seen this 40 yrs ago.I’m in my 60’s and my posture is shot.I’m hunched in my middle back,I see a chiropractor once a month for realignment,he says I’ll never get the posture back.So with this it’s really hard to do Paul’s lower body move.And after the your video I’m beginning to understand why.
    Any suggestions?

    • Hi Tim,
      You must exercise for posture as an adjunct to your chiropractic care. Even though your posture may not get significantly better, there are muscles that need to maintain or increase their strength – like scapular retractors. Others need to stretch – like pecs, lats and neck muscles. Basic rule is that you must put up the good fight… if you don’t your poor posture will only get worse and possibly lead to health issues later in life. Everyday you should get on the foam roller to stretch as well as do some fatigue causing exercises of the muscles that pull your shoulders back and extend your mid-back. After you complete these, spend some time rotating your spine too. Don’t give up on your spine… put up the good fight and you’ll soon see the rewards.
      Jeremy Klinkhamer, PT

  3. March 12, 2015


    thanks jeremy I got to the health club 3 times a week for cardio and resistance.I also to a session every wed with my Trainer(who has spoken to my Chiropractor for what I can and can’t do)It seems in the sessions were doing those things so I quess I’m on the right track

  4. A luminous ,straightforward and easily understandable description of how the spine works ,very useful to get what you teach us in YOUR exercises .Thank you ,Jeremy .
    Now you should démonstrate those drills which enable the speediest rotation of this ” axis “: there are tons of them on YOUR part of PAUL’s site ,but those which interest me the most ,to hit it longer ,are those which dévelop the very fast rotation forwards .
    Luckily ,but that’s because I’m a gymn fad ,I have nô problems with m’y back ,except this Bad habit to ” slouch “,but I,work on That too.

  5. March 14, 2015


    Please make comments on how I can improve my posture as it has become more “slouched” over time (70+) years.

    I like to think my rotational movement is “not too bad”, but certainly want improvement without physical damage.

  6. March 31, 2017


    Thanks Jeremy. I’m. 65 and have been experiencing lower back pain. I’m pretty certain it was from sleeping on a soft or sagging mattress. Also sometimes when sitting watching TV I might get back or neck pain. However for the last year I have been sleeping on the floor! I haven’t had pain for a year! I also do some weight training 3 times a week. Can you suggest any weight excercises? I do experience what you describe when tired, head forwadr and shoulders slumping. I’ve also started to do sit-ups to strengthen the core. I would also like to use a rowing machine but am a little afraid I might cause back pain. Shat are your thoughts on sleeping on the floor and rowing machine? Thanks, Tom

    • Hi Tom,
      Thanks for the comment. It seems like your spine responds well to good posture. I’m guessing sleeping on the floor is helping to keep your spine in a more neutral state for hours on end and your previous bed did not. Based on that, a rowing machine might be ok but I would start with Seated or Standing Rows in the gym first. If you eventually want the endurance feature of a rowing machine just make sure you keep a very good posture at all times. This gets tough to do the more tired you get so I would suggest doing 1-3 minute bouts with a little rest in between. Keep a small arch in your lower back while you row. Based on your info, planks would be a good choice and so would a series of exercises I put on this website a few months ago…Standing Decompression, Lunge Stretch, The Founder and The Woodpecker. Take the time in the ‘Flexibility’ tab of the homepage to find these and see what you think. Seems right up your alley.
      Jeremy Klinkhamer, PT

  7. April 17, 2019


    One activity takes care of all problems : hot YOGA

  8. February 14, 2024


    Thanks, Jeremy. Very interesting and helpful. I may have missed earlier tips where you talked about specific exercises to correct poor posture. Can you point me to those tips?

    Bill Freeman

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      February 14, 2024

      Paul Wilson

      Hello Bill, the best way to find any of Jeremy’s tips is to login to Ignition Golf. Look for the RED BAR. Second from the left is FLEXIBILITY. All of Jeremy’s tips are there.
      Or you can use the search feature and search for specific tips or topics. The search feature is found on the far right of the RED BAR.

      Mark Wilson – manager

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