If you want
to get started fixing your own pain right now,
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What We Do - Summary of My Work
Not all Exercise is Medicine. Not all Medicine is Healthy.
We Change That:
The real health care reform
Making someone give up activities they love isn't "Health Care." It isn't healthy or effective rehab (or good use of your time) to go for repeated treatments but have pain return and be told to live with it. Neither is limiting daily life movement, or using a cane, orthotic or brace as a "fix"- an approach called "Limit the patient to limit the pain." Instead, I developed methods that use your real daily life, your normal activities, and the sports you love, to retrain movement habits (function) so that all you do, from straightening your standing and walking, sitting at the desk, cleaning the house, taking the stairs, and bending for things, to your sports, training, work, and exercise, are doable, healthy, and fun again. We stop causes of pain and limited movement. Then your injuries from previous unhealthful movement habits can heal. You get healthy biomechanics built-in to all you do. This is all called functional medicine, fitness as a (real) lifestyle, and functional training. This is different from doing sets and reps of exercises, then going back to injurious movement and bent up positioning in daily life and training.
Making Medicine Healthy. I pioneered functional fitness and medicine - retraining daily life movement habits and biomechanics to be built-in health for all you do - and developed these methods. They combine tested therapeutic rehab modalities with innovative techniques that you put into practice to relieve pain and improve your looks and health right away. The idea is to get you off pain pills and constant treatments, and back to your life, better than before. This is not "alternative medicine." This is standard of care, evidence-based sports medicine techniques, with the added benefit of being from a primary source, applied to real life - where you actually need it.
Beside neck and back pain, shoulders, knees, hips, ankles, and feet are welcome: Herniated and degenerating discs, sciatica, low back pain, hyperlordosis, upper back pain (cervical pain) and rounded upper back and shoulders (kyphosis), upper crossed syndrome, nerve impingement (pinched nerve), facet pain, forward head, muscle tightness and strain, overstretched muscles and fasciitis - These are not diseases, but injuries that you can fix. We also improve your physical capacity and health, and check for unhealthy habits of life, food, medicines, and medical care. You can be fitter and healthier than before.
You don't have to do sports or be an athlete to get better with sports medicine. Retraining movement habits (better biomechanics) in daily life is built-in fitness as a lifestyle and injury prevention (functional fitness medicine). I do not consider it health care to go for repeated treatments or sets and reps of rehab exercises, then have pain chronically return. neither does rolling a tennis ball or foam roller fix the source of problems .I teach you specific skills to stop sources of your pain and problems, and improve function, the way you need in real life so you can get your life back, better than before.
Athletes use these methods to directly retrain their sports and exercises to be healthier and more effective at the same time. Good biomechanics is a powerful athletic performance enhancer. I show you top training methods and innovations to go higher, faster, farther, fix injuries you have, and prevent future injury.
Elders: Becoming slower, stiffer, unsteadier, and weaker as years pass is more from lack of specific healthful movement than an inescapable aging process. I teach techniques to restore upper back mobility and normal kyphosis, leg strength and balance, healthy knee and hip dynamics, and disc spacing associated with functionally younger age. Skills, not pills - I show you how to make it possible to straighten out, gain balance needed to get off a cane, stop painful musculoskeletal habits so you don't need pain pills in the first place, and improve strength and mobility to have your life and independence back.
Clinicians learn these techniques to reduce preventable hospitalizations, readmissions, emergency room visits, and to improve health outcomes for patients from youth to geriatric. These are major Health Care Reform Initiatives that will be required in hospitals, care facilities, and teaching centers.
Adventures: My years in the lab were devoted to healthier ways to survive - not only injury, but extremes in heat and cold, altitude and underwater, high g-Forces, top training modalities for military and athletes, and disturbances in movement. More on me and my work is on my Adventure page.
Black Belt Hall of Fame 2011 - My Seminar Students of "Top 10 Injury Prevention Techniques"
"Dr. Bookspan, you are the MVP (Most Valuable Player) of science and movement."
- Jesse McDonald
How To Do It - Appointments, Free Readings, Classes, Books, Our Resort
- Start right now with free summary articles. No ads for silly fitness products, no sales pitches. Solid info to learn to fix and prevent your own pain. Scroll down this page or click Start right now for the list of articles.
- Rare private appointments or classes in-person with Dr. Bookspan by special arrangement. Motivated fun people can fast-track their recovery and train directly with Dr. Bookspan. Executive appointments, around an hour and a half each. Includes consult, assessment, full learning and practice of methods to improve during each session (not taking 6-8 weeks). For appointments for people coming in from out of town, best is to stay at a downtown Philadelphia hotel. Enjoy the city. I meet you at your hotel gym or meeting room on variable convenient days and times - the link at the end of this paragraph gives hotel, ideas, maps and needed info. Locals can check if I am available at our downtown Philadelphia martial arts center on selected Thursday evenings 8pm-9:30pm, with occasional Monday nights, (or send me tickets to your cruise or beach location). Style is educational, with much information as well as physical practice. Private certification work and Master classes for your group, by arrangement. My credentials here.
To apply for consideration for appointment or classes: In a nice note, indicate how you already understand and benefit from my work, and how you would make our time well used and fun. Indicate if you are traveling from out of town for my house-call to a downtown Philadelphia hotel, or you want to come to the center times available above, and a few preferred dates. If it has to be said to follow these instructions and not merely write you want an appointment, expecting me to take time from helping others to repeat the instructions, then take more time to read your repeat mail with the info, you already disqualified yourself. Click here first for appointment info, hotels, fun Phila events during your stay, map & directions, more before writing to appointment@DrBookspan.com. I never sell or share your ie-mail or lists of patients or inquiries. That is revolting and not health.
- Contact Dr. Bookspan to personally answer your questions through Individual Care.
- Learn in a group class directly with Dr. Bookspan - Fix your pain and learn healthy real life movement skills to increase function and prevent injury during all you do. Classes for physicians and military, trainers, and lay public. For info about bringing me to your private group, click the Projects page. To come here with your group for personalized workshop, see #2 above.
- Earn Academy of Functional Exercise Medicine certification in top methods. Learn directly with Dr. Bookspan in group workshops (#4) or private training (#2 above).
- Find your answers among almost 800 short articles on my free on-line health compendium The Fitness Fixer - Search The Fitness Fixer Index.
- Read Inspiring Patient Stories - patients fixed their back pain, foot pain, knee pain, shoulder pain, fallen arches, and neck pain, and went on to happy, healthier lives using these methods. Not testimonials, but tutorials so you can do it too.
- Get the books - The info you need, easy-to-read, portable, fix-it.
- Open Our Center. I was the first to put healthy fitness programs on cruise ships. Previously, no one thought of resorts and cruising for activity. Some rare photos of that here. I first developed techniques to change unhealthy standard hospital and rehab techniques. I pioneered functional exercise and fitness - a page about that here so you can benefit from my work. My dream is to head up a center of true health. Fresh air and sun and my top, cutting-edge classes and methods. Maybe conferences and master classes at your campus or center? Get in touch to make this happen - See Project 5.
What Patients Say
Dr. Jolie Bookspan is the "St. Jude of the Joints. If there is a way for you to get better, she'll find it.
- Dr. James Mann, Surgeon Podiatrist, Joslin Clinic Harvard School of Medicine.
Despite consultations with my orthopedist, two rehabilitation specialists, a sports personal trainer, and a physical therapist,
my best advice for post-operative care of my knee has come from Dr. Jolie Bookspan.
If you want to get on with your life, she is the door.
- Green Beret Lt. Col. R. Kelly Hill, MD, Swat Team Leader, Physician
I had been in PT for 2 years before coming to Dr. Jolie Bookspan.
I can't remember one day when I felt as good as I did after the first day with her.
- Camille Simms
Here is the incredible Kaethe - see her on the Patient Success page.
Why Learn From A Researcher?
As a physiologist (person who studies how the body works and why), I develop the techniques that physicians use.
I worked years as a military and university researcher in environmental physiology, which is how the body functions in the heat and cold, at altitude and underwater, breathing many mixtures of gases, doing different forms and intensities of exercise, and all kinds of injuries.
It's important to understand why things work. If you don't understand, then you can't think for yourself, and all you can do is repeat the mistakes of your teachers, who were repeating what they learned in a book from other people who just were repeating what they heard...
You can quickly learn and use what I spent my life researching so that you can be happy, free of pain, and able to do all you love that is good. Scroll down for free summary articles and fix it right now. Click the CLASS page to come learn more with me, and get certified through the Academy of Functional Exercise Medicine (AFEM).
I fix pain, even injuries top docs told people they had to live with. I develop techniques that make top athletes go higher, faster, farther. What do I do that makes tough military guys cry? Click my Adventure Research page.
Photo of Dr. Jolie Bookspan, barefoot climbing, by Paul Plevakas
"Thanks for all that you do for these athletes."
- Joseph Estwanik, M.D., FACSM, Orthopaedic surgeon,
Chairman of Ringside Physician's Course U.S. Olympic Training Center, National Physician of the Year, USA Boxing, 1997
2012 Black Belt Hall of Fame Students - My Seminar Students of "Top Spine Prevention Technique"
Get Your Life Back and Enjoy It
We put the Fun in FUNctional. It's the Health Care Reform School. We call it Fixa U Go team! Click for more about the Academy, also called the Fixa U.
When I read medical studies that claim positive medicinal effects from humor and laughter, they are numbingly humorless. When I visit medical fitness programs and gyms where people are exercising for health, everyone looks miserable.
Then you have people like my Mom, a professional dancer. One of the classes she teaches is tap dance for senior citizens. She named one of her lively groups, "The Clogging Arteries." Another is "Tapaholics Phenomenous - We Do More Than 12 Steps."Our backup singers are "The Fifth Dementia." Our Muses are the human conditions, Absurdities, Stupidities, and Inanities. We treat Irony Deficiency Disease.
Josh Billings (pen name of humorist Henry Shaw) summed it up, "There ain't much fun in medicine, but there's a heck of a lot of medicine in fun."
Here's my Mom (at center, then 83 years old) and some students at the end of a 24 hour tap marathon.
If the video does not load on your device, click http://www.flickr.com/photos/39972966@N03/6158939003/
I entered the contest "I look Like My Dog" Here are the results. What do you think?
(thank you Sierra Club for my wolf photo)
Start Right Now Fixing Your Own Pain and Training Better - Use These Free Summary Articles:
"Dear Dr. Bookspan,
"Thank you so much for the free information you provide on your website. In just a few minutes I was able to apply your techniques and I feel better already. This is after buying a $2500 bed, $100 pillow, countless videos and exercise equipment, and still finding no relief.
"I just made a donation to your website (I wish it could have been more, but I’m still paying off that darn bed!) I plan to buy your books from Amazon and share with my family and friends.
"Most websites only give you a small amount of information because they want you to buy their book or program. I so appreciate the fact that you are helping humanity by putting this information out for free. Seriously, when you are in pain, it is hard to enjoy life, so you are doing a great service here."
"A thousand thank yous!!!"
- How To Fix Your Own Back Pain
- Bad Discs and Sciatica
- Lower Back Pain With Standing, Walking, Running
- Swayback, Hyperlordosis, SI joint pain (sacroiliac), Spondylolisthesis
- How (Exactly) Do Abs Fix Back Pain - You may be surprised
- Secrets of Fixing Your Back Pain When Lifting and Carrying
- Sitting For Planes, Trains, Exercise, Computers, and TV
- Français! - La Révolution Abdominale Une Nouvelle Manière de Comprendre et dUtiliser les Muscles Abdominaux
- Français! - Prévenir le mal de dos en cas de longue station assise
- Español!-! Dolor de Espalda y Que Hacer?
- No relation between hamstring flexibility and lower back pain - why is it mistakenly prescribed?
WMS medical conference July 2010 Fix Pain class - physicians, military, and smart students
Neck and Upper Back Pain
Upper Crossed Syndrome, Reduced Cervical Lordosis, Forward Head, Rotator Cuff, and Shoulder Pain
- Fix Your Own Neck Pain - Neck, Shoulder, Middle and Upper Back.
"Thank you for fixing my neck pain.
I feared i'd never play violin again after the accident." - Sha
Abdominal and Core Function
- How (Exactly) Do Abs Fix Back Pain - You may be surprised
- Fixing Swayback, Hyperlordosis, SI joint pain (sacroiliac), Spondylolisthesis
- Ab Revolution Course Syllabus, Research, and Summary
- Lifting and Carrying - Spine Use and Positioning for Healthier Function and Pain Prevention
- Français! - Une Nouvelle Manière de Comprendre et dUtiliser les Muscles Abdominaux, La Révolution Abdominale
Healthier, Saner Fitness and Training
- Stretching for Real Life - Functional Stretching, Fixing Bad Stretches, Wonderful good ones.
- No More Crunches, No More Back Pain - The Ab Revolution - what abs really do may surprise you
- Why Fitness Isn't Working - traditional exercises and stretches that work against you and what to do instead
- Exercises and Stretches That Hurt Your Back and Neck - Exercise is Medicine? Not all exercise is good medicine. Here are healthy built-in daily live healthy movement skills to do instead.
- Hamstring flexibility is not related to back pain - see why, where the confusion came from and what to do instead.
Mental and Emotional Fitness Training
- Click this page for readers favorites of Dr. Bookspan's Spirit Training for health.
Functional Exercise and Fitness Training - Fitness as a Lifestyle
- Bookspan Basics Functional Fitness Training. Fitness Re-training drills for yourself, your groups, schools, teams, battalions, squads, more
- Fitness as a Lifestyle (Functional Fitness). Not fake fitness, reps of exercises, or purchasing training "plans" but making your daily real life into your own mental, emotional and physical playground of strength mobility and health.
Do You Speak A Language Not Here?
Translate an article and I will add it here with your name credit. The world will benefit and you will sure learn the information better for yourself. Mail: translate @ DrBookspan DOT com. Bravo!
The Fitness Fixer
Dr. Jolie Bookspan is The Fitness Fixer
When exercise and medicine aren't healthy - we Fix It!
I don't repeat pop fitness. I am a primary source researcher (real laboratory research) to find fun healthy innovations to change exercise back into health. It's not fitness as a lifestyle if you have to change clothes and go to a gym. I show how your daily life (functional movement) can be healthy in body and spirit.
- For four years I wrote a full column for the Healthline company. Here is the Index - Find your answers among almost 800 free articles.
- After the company discontinued The Fitness Fixer column (they kept the articles but removed photos and movies I made for the articles) I continued on Twitter.
- The FItness Fixer on Twitter: Quick healthier fitness and medicine, next classes, reader successes, contests, World Health projects, more. Some reader Tweets below. For answers and more, click www.Twitter.com/TheFitnessFixer No account needed, just click and visit.
Dale Newnham @dalenewnham
@TheFitnessFixer Recovered from crippling sciatica without surgery
by following your advice age 50 ran 10K in 44min, rode 100 miles no pain!
Paul Jenkins @frugal_trader
@TheFitnessFixer Can you explain the swimming warm down? Seems like they are expending needed energy.
Highly recommend this website,
so much great info for mind/body/spirit health - http://www.drbookspan.com/Spirit.html
@TheFitnessFixer Nice post. But how do you feel about sitting at 135 degree angle?
Carol Steinfeld @wateringwoman
@TheFitnessFixer Love your stuff!
Shayna Waldman @ShaynaWaldman
@TheFitnessFixer What helps with altitude sickness on airplanes?
Gerardine Henning @fineshapesofart
@TheFitnessFixer I still use your two books
that I bought a few years ago. Wonderful advice to pull me back when I forget!
Penelope Fiend @veryfiendish
@TheFitnessFixer Dr Bookspan, what are the ideal sleeping positions? What are bad? Do you address this in any of your books? Thank you!
Kent MacWilliam @geolackey
Stuck at a desk? Fix your neck pain. This worked in the length of time it took to read! http://www.drbookspan.com/NeckPainArticle.html … via @TheFitnessFixer
Fun Gifts For Healthy Movement
- BackSavers of UNcommon Sense. T-shirts for teachers and slouchers, mugs that remind healthy neck for drinking, AFEM Academy professional clothes and items, more ingenious fun.
Books - Fix Pain, Get Healthy, Go Diving, Have Fun!
- Health & Fitness in Plain English, THIRD edition - How to be healthy, happy and fit for the rest of your life
- Fix Your Own Pain Without Drugs or Surgery - with tutorial patient stories in every chapter.
- Stretching Smarter Stretching Healthier - Learn lifestyle positioning instead of stopping your life to "do" stretches. Healthier more effective stretches.
- Healthy Martial Arts - For all athletes.
- The Ab Revolution - No More Crunches No More Back Pain, THIRD edition - Breakthrough in understanding abdominal muscle for real life function
- Diving and Hyperbaric Medicine books - Three hard-to-find editions. including the cult-classic Diving Physiology in Plain English.
- Forensics - Dr. Bookspan advises on environmental forensics. She applauds her colleagues' really creepy books.
Don't worry about people stealing your ideas.
If your ideas are any good, you'll have to ram them down people's throats.
- Howard Aiken
Information, drawings, and photos are © protected copyright. To cite this article or any parts, put author Dr. Bookspan, and link to this site DrBookspan.com at the top and bottom of your reprinting. A suggestion to get my books is also nice. No Derivative Works License means no changes to content, wording or links.
If this information fixes your pain, send it to a friend (the article, not the pain). "Make health contagious."
We have found certain people like this information so much that they have copied entire sections and illustrations to their own web sites without credit or link to this site and sole author, Dr. Bookspan. Web site and all contents © Dr. Jolie Bookspan. All rights reserved. You may share and distribute this info with copyright notice and full information attributing credit to Dr. Bookspan and clear link to this site www.DrBookspan.com. See copyright reprint info above.
Entire site is education only. Nothing is medical advice. See your doctor first and use your brain
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