by Dana Cavalea July 11, 2017


Tension creates pain.

What causes the tension?

Based on the work of Medical Doctor, John Sarno, many of our typical methods of healing including anti-inflammatories and other therapies can be eliminated if we grasp hold of the origination of tension.

This is the backbone of my whole training and rehabilitation philosophy. Tension must be eliminated. Then and only then can you optimize performance of an athlete and non athlete alike.

Flexibility is a term thrown around like a baseball at a little league game these days. "You have to get more flexible" is one of the biggest scam diagnosis I have ever heard.

Has anyone ever achieved better flexibility without the inclusion of massage and other tissue therapies?

Now the buzzword is mobility, OR a buzzword for joint range of motion.

I have heard practitioners in the space of strength and conditioning and performance training throw this around as well- yet very few of these practitioners even know how to use the tool (a goniometer) that measures and quantifies MOBILITY.

How could you suggest a mobility problem if you don't have a baseline measurement?

What this illustrates is that we still do not know how to treat pain appropriately. We also have not advanced our training enough if we still think "stretching" is how we can improve flexibility.

Flexibility & Mobility will both improve when global and isolated muscle tension is reduced. Case closed. Take the tension out of the body using physical and mental modalities.

If you are stressed or anxious, tension goes up. This is the premise behind the strong push on meditation and other eastern practices like acupuncture. Tension relief.

Reworking the mindset is the essential first step to pain relief and tension reduction. Thoughts, both conscious and subconscious will lead to increased tension as well as decreased immunity.

I write this to you today as somebody working through a cold and episodic back pain as the result of a higher stress, low sleep week. Fitting!

As Sarno concludes in his research, we can heal ourselves if we put our focus on tension. We can heal ourselves and boost immunity if we can understand the mechanism of pain, illness and systemic distress.

In our training facilities, our clients are first met with an assessment/ evaluation and strategy session. From that point, every session begins with heat, trigger point therapy, tension reduction, cognitive behavioral therapy and then more functional total body training.

The recipe works. Instantly reducing pain and tension session to session.

If you find yourself chronically injured, sick, in pain or dealing with headaches, realize these are often times the site of the overflow of the bodies tension. Once tension builds so high, there must be a release. Back pain, headaches, etc. are all the boil over. High pressure always needs to be released.

Once you realize this, it is your job to bring your nervous system back into check using stress management techniques.

These "tension sites" are indicators of a turbulent internal environment. You can't hide from your body. The body always wins. You can only bury pain and stress for so long before you pop. #recoverlikeapro

Dana Cavalea
Dana Cavalea

Dana Cavalea is the World Champion Director of Strength and Conditioning & Performance of the New York Yankees. Currently, he is a High Performance Speaker & Consultant to Pro Athletes, Entrepreneurs, Business Executives, and Workforces on lifestyle strategies to reduce stress, improve work/life integration, and most importantly improve daily performance /outcomes. Book Dana to Speak at your Company Event or Conference Today!

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