Wellness and Your Spine with Chiropractor and Paleo Advocate Dr. Brett Hill- EP017

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As athletes, we are looking to achieve optimal performance. And we know that the spine protects our nervous system, which controls every part of the body. Yet many of us wait until we are in pain to enlist the help of a chiropractor!




Dr. Brett Hill is chiropractor and wellness coach with a successful practice in Hazelwood Park, South Australia. As a wellness advocate, he endorses a Paleo approach to eating and living, and his holistic methodology is based on ancestral movement patterns. Dr. Brett is the co-founder of Australia’s leading health podcast channel, The Wellness Couch, and the co-host of both The Wellness Guys Show (Australia’s number one health podcast) and That Paleo Show. Dr. Brett is a sought-after speaker who makes regular radio and television appearances, inspiring people to make drastic changes for the better.

Dr. Brett is also an advocate of natural running, and today he shares his introduction to the technique as well as advice around the transition away from structured shoes. Listen in as he explains the role of a chiropractor, questions you might ask to find the right chiropractor for you, and how often you should return for maintenance care. It’s time to learn how spinal health affects performance and contributes to overall well-being.

Topics Covered

[0:51] What a chiropractor does

  • Focus on spine (protects nervous system)
  • Optimize performance of body
  • Techniques range from low force to manual
  • Philosophies span from symptomatic approach to holistic
[4:12] The questions you should ask a chiropractor to determine right fit

  • Dependent on goals
  • Address specific injury if dealing with pain
  • Techniques used (Activator vs. Manual)
  • Ask about typical care plan to achieve wellness goals
[8:19] How often you should visit the chiropractor

  • Crisis – when experience symptoms
  • Maintenance – once a month so symptoms don’t return
  • Wellness –every two weeks to keep nervous system at peak performance
  • Elite athletes – weekly to ensure nothing interferes with optimal performance
[13:18] The differences among chiropractors, osteopaths and physiologists

  • Chiropractors generally more focused on wellness, optimal performance
  • Physiologists focus on pain reduction; deal with muscles, ligaments and soft tissue
  • Osteopaths also focus on spine, nervous system; deal with blood flow, muscles and organs
[17:00] The connection between the spine and other parts of your body

  • Upper thoracic spine and neck affect shoulder
  • Rotation in pelvis may cause ankle, knee and hip issues
  • Treat spine to achieve long-term results
[18:34] How much of a chiropractor’s success depends upon patient behavior

  • Dependent upon definition of success
  • Chiropractor responsible for giving best possible adjustment, advice
  • Patients get better results faster when follow guidance
[20:40] Why many patients resist regular maintenance care

  • Medical model suggests quick fix
  • Equate feeling better with being better/health
[25:02 ] Dr. Brett’s suggestions for strength training with an injury to one arm

  • Work on core, legs
  • Keep body functioning as much as possible
  • Research indicates you can maintain function in injured arm by tricking brain
  • Continue to work out uninjured arm, but don’t overdo it
[28:28 ] How Dr. Brett got into natural running

  • Chronic knee pain didn’t resolve with orthotics
  • Learned about technique at chiropractic seminar
  • Felt difference right away
  • 10K run faster, wasn’t tired
  • Structured shoe causes more impact
[32:42] Dr. Brett’s advice around the transition to natural running

  • Cut mileage way down at first
  • Gradual change in shoes as option
  • Find podiatrist with functional approach
[36:49] How much the change in our environment might affect natural running

  • Far less of an issue than we make out
  • We have evolved to run on firm ground

Learn More About Dr. Brett Hill


The Barefoot Athlete  by Dr. Brett Hill and Kim Morrison

Dr. Brett Hill Books

Resources Mentioned

The Wellness Couch

The Wellness Guys Podcast

That Paleo Show Podcast

Danny Dreyer Books

Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen by Christopher McDougall




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