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How do you keep your neck/back in good shape? Virtual Instrument Plugins
Old 16th November 2016
Originally Posted by The Beatsmith View Post
Running is great (although I do find it a little boring) - I am lucky enough to live somewhere a little hill-y, so if I can't get to the gym I usually run hills/do hill sprints. But it's getting pretty cold and wet in the UK and I hate that feeling of sucking in that cold air into your lungs - it actually makes it... hard to breathe!
Funny you say that as winter's my favorite time to run! Maybe because I loved the movie Rocky as a kid? Anyway, sure fitting here as there's no right answer for everyone. I'm certainly not big on hills but prefer long and fairly flat as it allows me to totally zone out into the high.

@Synth Guru makes some great points. Should call it the "SG Challenge"!

I'll add again that it does wonders for the mind. I originally started running in college to battle depression and it vastly improved life going forward (no pun intended).
Old 16th November 2016
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Unclenny's Avatar
Originally Posted by batlanyard View Post
Funny you say that as winter's my favorite time to run!
Yes.....I have a woods trail that I still occasionally take. I just did a short run in fact. I enjoy it when I can see my breath.

Old 17th November 2016
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The Beatsmith's Avatar

Originally Posted by Synth Guru View Post
I think there's a lot of misconceptions about the benefits of going to the gym and implementing physical fitness into one's daily life.

Most people envision that going to the gym is only for building muscle mass and that by doing so, will turn their bodies into a Hulk Hogan or an Arnold Swarzennegger. Nothing could be further from the truth. Sure, working out with heavy weights will ultimately result in building muscle mass however, most people fail to see the other benefits of a work out.

No physical fitness and a 100% sedentary life style, weather at work or after work by continued sitting on the couch will have severe consequences over time.

As one ages, the body begins to lose flexibility and bones begin to lose their density. My father is now in his early eighties, overweight, and struggles to stand up from a sitting position. He's developed high blood pressure and type II diabetes, two conditions that can be avoided and managed without medications by the implementation of a fitness plan. Exercise burns calories and maintains a healthy body weight. In addition, a full body workout plan will help to maintain the body, joints, and ligaments in a state of adequate flexibility.

No one is saying that you have to kill yourself to achieve this but a weekly physical exercise plan is imperative for optimal health. I cannot stress the importance of a cardio plan, either by walking or by jogging/running. It helps the heart muscles to stay strong and keep that blood circulating. By increasing the heart rate it gives the body organs extra oxygen to burn calories, fat, and keeps the body flexible.

Is it uncomfortable? Does it make you feel sore when moving around? These are some of the reasons people are turned off to physical fitness so they turn to their comfy chairs and fluffy plush couch because it's less work. This is too how I once believed, but I made the decision to change.

It's hard at the beginning, you will be uncomfortable and will have a degree of soreness and pain after exercising, but it'll go away after a few days to a week as the body begins to become stronger and develop resistance. After a few weeks you'll begin to feel better and over the course of months you'll begin to see the benefits of reduction in weight and increased flexibility. The importance, is to keep the body moving on a daily basis.

Don't believe me? I challenge you to try.
Old 17th November 2016
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Rumble Roller

Apologies if this has already been mentioned but I had back problems and things and two things tend to help, stretching just light stretches that invert and exvert the spine. The use of a rumble roller a foam roller that helps to break down tight spot and muscle to help relax the body and joints. If you want to expand on these a bit further please get in touch, but make sure you research a touch before you do anything and find what is best for you


Old 17th November 2016
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Joking or not, he was right the first time. The "works for most people so that is the only way" approach is ridiculous, and it's why most people don't continue with it.

My problems are two fold: I have a form of scoliosis (minor but problematic) and a complete lack of muscle development.

Add on how people almost never know what they are doing, and how bad exercise gurus are and walla! Instant extra pain.

The idiotic "no pain no gain" is not applicable to back and neck problems, otherwise people wouldn't have the pain in the first place.

But please, keep thinking that everyone fits into a neat little box and that everything works as advertised.
Old 18th November 2016
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The Beatsmith's Avatar

I'm confused as to how this thread could turn into anything but positive and helpful - then i remembered that this is the internet, and i'm on gearslutz.


Old 18th November 2016
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Unclenny's Avatar
This has been an excellent thread really....with filters in place.

I always like hearing how we all deal with these personal issues.

Old 18th November 2016
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Originally Posted by The Beatsmith View Post
I'm confused as to how this thread could turn into anything but positive and helpful - then i remembered that this is the internet, and i'm on gearslutz.


It may have been snarky sounding if you didn't understand what I was saying, but it's not about that.

Read my comments (other than my attempt to be funny first post with dr smith) and then try again. Or, keep blaming the internet because people don't always agree.

Yes, it makes me angry because I've spent a minimum of 20,000 USD out of my pocket to be better, and it's not that much.
Old 18th November 2016
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Originally Posted by The Beatsmith View Post
How YOU doin'?


Good. Swimming + Running. 5+ times per week. Biking when in season.

Need a new pillow though.
Old 18th November 2016
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Originally Posted by Synth Guru View Post
I think there's a lot of misconceptions about the benefits of going to the gym and implementing physical fitness plan into one's daily life.
I hate going to the gym. I'd rather peel potatoes for an hour. And I HATE peeling potatoes.
Old 18th November 2016
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A great way to get some exercise and reduce overall time sitting (in a car) is with an ebike. I recently got a radwagon and in 2 months have a little over 1000 miles on it- and 95% was in lieu of driving. It's getting close to the end of practical bike season here, but I expect to be able to do 4-5k+ miles next year.

A lot of people hear about ebikes and think of something that must be for the physically impaired. While they could be good for that, they are also great for being able to ride 40+ miles a day, everyday, lugging stuff (and kids) and still averaging really close commute times to driving. You can get up hills and go faster without showing up dripping in sweat, then pedal hard on the way home for a serious workout. ~400 times more energy efficient than a car, cost less per mile, less stress- really a great way to get around if you can make it work with your lifestyle.
Old 19th November 2016
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I think this was a nice thread, Ed. Some tips that I will try to implement into my lifestyle. If only I can find the time.
Old 19th November 2016
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Tommy-boy's Avatar

Originally Posted by joeq View Post
another thing I find handy is a Theracane, it's a hook shaped thing you can use to loosen up knots in your back. There are also stretching exercises you can do with it. I learned about it from a piano player who uses one to warm up for gigs and recordings.

Thanks for posting this. Ive never heard of a theracane. I bought one on Amazon after reading this post. Tried it the past few days. Seems to be very helpful

Old 19th June 2017
Gear Maniac
Originally Posted by joeq View Post
another thing I find handy is a Theracane, it's a hook shaped thing you can use to loosen up knots in your back. There are also stretching exercises you can do with it. I learned about it from a piano player who uses one to warm up for gigs and recordings.

Looks kinky.
Old 20th June 2017
Gear Maniac
elgee's Avatar

Hey man... Listen I've been working out with kettlebells for over a year now and I have never had better posture. Changed my entire body. People think I'm taller and but really it is my posture that has totally changed. Most of the exercises focus on core strength and even if I don't have time to get to the gym some pushups and kettlebell swings I'm done in a half hour bodys awake and I'm ready for music. That being sad careful throwing this thing around in your apartment or house can seriously f**k s**t up. Even if you run and lift this is a different type of exercise. Doesn't make me feel as bad either when I crank down a few beers



*Also invest in a good chair. I had a thread and there were some great recommendations if you want some.
Old 24th June 2017
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JayTee4303's Avatar
In 1996, I fell 14 feet onto concrete on a construction site and broke 3 vertebra, plus nerve and muscle damage.

Dialing in my control room started with adjusting the desk heigth to exactly match the horizontal centerline of the video monitors. Back straight, arms comfortable, eyes about 2 inches above centerline.

Next, I re-engineered the office chair to get its heigth right to match the desk.

Finally, I built a foot rest to take pressure off the back of my thighs.

I can mix 10-14 hours without stiffening up now, as long as I stand up a minute or two every 4 hours.
Old 24th June 2017
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One thing that works great for me if im hurting from prolonges sitting is to lay on my stomack, lift my head up, bend my knees, reach back and grab my feet, kind of making a circle. Not sure what it called. Kind of like a superman but to the extreme.

Something of a back exercise and stretch at the same time. I feel like it makes me move most of my body in the exact opposite way of sittinf
Old 1st July 2017
Gear Head

Hiking and a standing desk. Going to the gym lol
Old 28th July 2018
Here for the gear

I believe that one of the basic reason for neck and back pain for the people who mostly spend their time in office is the type of the chair they choose. I and my friend were suffering from this pain from many days as we work as partners in my home office. On my dad's suggestions, we decided to get a new ergonomic chair from this source, for the seating comfort, which also helps in preventing the neck and back pain to occur. Now we do not have to spend much time on pain relief exercise as the chair itself make us feel comfortable and healthy.
Old 2 weeks ago
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Kozmos88's Avatar

re back pain

i've had it since age 25 .. (am now 65 ) ..
the cause be a worn disc in my lower back ..
and that .. was a result of driving artic-hgv's ( semi-truck ) for a number of years
and probably helped along by wearing heeled cowboy boots much of the time
( i was living in the usa at the time )
the worn disc was spotted in an x-ray

chiropractor told me that even if i had the physique of a body builder
i'd still have problems due to the shape of my back ..
was also told that .. as i got older .. the joints wouldn't be prone to movement as much
and the fact .. that back muscles take about 4 days to calm down after being stressed

the thing that helped me the most were finding out about negative-heeled shoes
after the first pair wore out .. i found it difficult to source n.h. shoes for men
( plenty for women .. no idea why )
so then i found out about 'm.b.t.' shoes .. those were good .. except useless
for walking on rough ground .. felt too easy to twist an ankle when walking over moorland .. etc

so now i stick to flat shoes .. or low heeled walking boots for the rough ..

sitting on just about any chair is out ..
( i do have an ergonomic office chair .. but even that give me problems )
oddly enough my car seat is fine
( i got something called "back-friend" ..
( and put some memory foam on it ..
public transport is out .. especially buses .. the acceleration / braking effect .. and low seats

sleeping: had to experiment to get the bed right ..
too hard = problems .. ditto for 'too soft' .. the latter being far worse

music and computer ..
well .. standing or sitting with guitar doesn't work out
( although never got to try out the shoes for standing 'n playing
( as .. by the time i found the shoes .. the local jam-session scene sort of collapsed
so these days i made myself a recliner .. wereas i can access the computer
and various bits of music gear .. all with an arms reach ..
for playing guitar i'm laying on my back
( got my tele-thinline for no other reason that it were light-weight )
have a remote editor for my full sized synth ..
and got the 'minilouge' for it's size .. ( plus i'd never played with an analouge synth before )

exercise: .. well the chiropractor gave some advise .. but must admit i didn't follow it up
these days i've got the company of my staffy-bull-terrier .. and she needs a good daily walk
and even if i've done my back in .. if i can walk at all .. i'll force myself to get out
movement .. movement .. works much better that being static ..

i once gave pedal-steel playing a go .. and to my surprise .. i could do it ..
but 2 years later .. resulting back pain ( and chrome-nickel irritation on my hands )
i decided to quit .. .. put the steel in it's case .. but .. it were upsetting to see it there
and not be able to practise with it ..
( it be a favourite instrument to listen to )
so i sold it .. got me 'effed off no end ..

for me the worst of .. aint so much the pain ..
it be lack of understanding from other folk ..
including one doctor who thought i were
( that were before the x-ray )
yeah .. feeling socially isolated ..
and when my back goes .. i just feel seriously angry ..
probably a good thing i'm rather reclusive by nature in anycase :-)

so helpers ..
negative heeled shoes .. mbt shoes .. or flat shoes
getting bedding sorted ..
and daily walks with dog :-)

'diclofenac' also helped a lot ..
didn't find out about that 'till i had a major 'back-out-of-wack' occurence
was doing some gardening .. lent over a wall .. was ok
went to other side of wall .. crouched down .. was ok ..
went inside .. got drink out of fridge .. was ok ..
shut fridge door .. and WAM .. serious back pain ..
laid down on floor .. couldn't move ..
neighbours called an ambulance ..
docs sent me home after being in A'nE for a few hours .. with crutches
and prescribed 50mg of declofenac .
whoohoo .. that stuff worked well .. 'n no side effects either ..
unfortunately sale of declofenac without prescription was stopped here in the uk
( one could get 12mg tablets at the chemist )

one thing the chiropractor showed me .. was a pressure point on the pelvis
she said .. use your thumb and press hard on it 'till it stoppes hurting
that .. evidently causes the related muscle to relax ..
( relieving tension on the joints and resulting nerve irritation )
problem now is .. can't remember where exactly the pressure point is :-/

that 'Theracane' looks interesting ..
cheers for posting that ..

sorry .. bit of a long post ..
in anycase .. wishing you all the best at combating back 'n neck pain .
( and any other issues that might get you down )

Old 2 weeks ago
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chet.d's Avatar

I've had issues for years. My best advise that's readily achievable for most is Planks, Posture (an ongoing challenge for us all and very important) , ...and careful stretching. It's very much about core strengthening.
Learning how to relieve problems when they happen through specific pressure points, re-alignment and then ....repeating again, back to posture & core. It can IME make things more manageable when maintained.
Old 1 week ago
Originally Posted by joeq View Post
My sister teaches Alexander Technique. It is really excellent for improving your posture and the "use" of your back. So many of our problems come from bad form. improper use, lack of balance and the 'favoring' of weaker muscles. When your bones and your muscles work together, you can avoid problems.

The technique is very soothing and relaxing, but the main purpose of it is to train your body to 'go back' to its proper (instinctive) balance. So a session with an Alexander teacher is considered a "lesson" and not a "treatment".
Without Alexander technique I probably wouldn't have had a career at all. Saved my arms.

Another excellent tool is Egoscue posture therapy. The two in combination, fantastic
Old 1 week ago
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Unclenny's Avatar
Originally Posted by chet.d View Post
My best advise that's readily achievable for most is Planks, Posture (an ongoing challenge for us all and very important) , ...and careful stretching. It's very much about core strengthening.
Just want to echo this advice.

I have been doing planks and other core strengthening exercises regularly for the past couple of years and my back is in pretty good shape now.....finally.
Old 1 week ago
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GearFiddler's Avatar

I had just turned 39 when I had a whiplash injury back in Jan '02..back stage at a pops concert. I went back on stage to try to play the 2nd half of the show and couldn't stand it. The inside of my head was like one of those plasma balls, only there were millions of the squiggly lightning bolts. I could hardly even read the music let alone follow the conductor. I waited for the lights to come down for a ballad and told the person behind me to move up as I got up and walked off. There was a fat lady singing...and she wasn't part of the show.

Bad bad bad, serious and for real. C1 and C2, which is up inside the head. Cervical facet syndrome, nerve damage, occipital neuralgia that radiates into my forehead and eye sockets, cervical vertigo, blah, abruptly ended my career as a professional violinist, orchestra player, and hasn't helped the electric violin project I had going any. But, I haven't given up either.

Pain from this injury does fluctuate, but, it's fair to say that I have a headache to one degree or another every day. And it's had a negative effect on neck vertebrae below as the years have gone by. Pbbb...whiplash. It's funny, some people get seriously busted up, broke this, broke that, and back on with their lives they go.

I had a lot of physical therapy, have seen several different chiropractors, and for a few years had a lot of pills. After a few years of that and having gone from being in great shape to gaining about 50 lbs. I saw where things were headed and changed my approach.

I haven't had prescription pain relief since '05 and I only cave for ibuprofen when it's the worst and I just can't stand it anymore. (And yes, there have been times when I could have cut off my own head, with a spoon if necessary.) I rediscovered my awol self discipline and I've lost about 35 pounds of the weight in the last 3 years or so. An exercise bike helped a lot with that too. Sitting very long for any reason seems to stiffen things up in a hurry, unless I'm kicked back. So, another thing that has made a difference is that I've arranged my studio so that I'm standing up for everything. It's all in one big room and well, I'm standing right now in front of my iMac and these words are at eye level. I stand in front of my mixer, racks, and sequencers.
Instead of getting up out of my chair to take a break, I sit down.

I'm careful about what I eat. There are certain nightshades that I try to avoid altogether like potatoes, and peppers, tomatoes, especially canned tomatoes. Pain levels increase undeniably when I stray. That goes for white flour and highly processed foods as well.

There's something in tart cherries that helps. At least as much as aspirin if not even into Advil territory. The concentrates are kind of pricey and I've found that the Knudsen tart cherry juice is about as effective. And it's delicious, and it won't ruin your health or leave you with a heart that that skips a lot. I remember the day it started and yup, the pills, if you ask me anyway. It's OK. I'm told it will still be skipping like this when I'm 99. I intend to hold the doc to his word.

That's about it. I try to stay standing, literally and figuratively. Good luck to all of you. And watch your step out there.
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