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Getting back in the swing of things

Just because you might be getting older doesn't mean you have to give up the things you love.

Just because you might be getting older doesn’t mean you have to give up the things you love.

But Gordon Smith, 53, thought he did.

Gordon loves golf. He also loves soccer. He doesn’t play soccer anymore, but his weekend hobby is to commentate Ottawa Fury FC games for local station Rogers Cable 22.

About 10 years ago, back and neck pain led him to give up golf. He just couldn’t finish 18 holes.

He continued commentating with Rogers, but being on his feet for hours at a time sometimes made it a painful experience that robbed his enjoyment.

Gordon had worked with a Chiropractor before, mainly in a reactive mode when the pain became too much or a slip or twist caused discomfort. While the results were positive and did result in pain relief, he never embarked on a long-term solution to the problem. Instead, he resigned himself to foregoing or limiting his favourite activities while relying on muscle relaxants for temporary relief.

But then he met our own Dr. Erin McLaughlin at a vendor fair close to his workplace. That conversation led to him starting care at our clinic last December. Our location and our convenient hours have helped Gordon maintain his commitment to getting better.

Gordon is quick to acknowledge the contributors to his pain – poor posture, long hours in front of a computer at home and at work, and extra pounds that he doesn’t need.

“My posture was terrible,” he said. “I always walked around like I had a weight on my shoulders, with neck and shoulders hunched forward. The x-rays showed that was the main crux of my problem.”

Gordon has become much more self-aware about his posture at his desk and carries out the at-home exercises we prescribe (most of the time).

The results speak for themselves

By August, he was back on the links for the first time in a decade, armed with a fresh set of clubs. He finished those 18 holes and walked the course – no cart for him.
“I was mentally tired before I was physically tired,” he said. “It used to be the other way around. My game has now become the pain, not my body!”

Even commentating those Fury FC games is a breeze now. Gordon can get through an entire game without thinking about the soreness in his back or in his legs. Grudgingly, he can even lean over the sink to help his wife with the dishes again without paying for it. At work, he’s more focused and productive, free of the headaches he once suffered.

“It’s been a really positive 10 months, which was what I had hoped,” he said. “I know Erin is tremendously pleased with the results we’ve gotten. My last x-ray was night and day. It’s been a good success and I’ll continue to get better.”

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