What Is The Fear Muscle?

Following the release of his latest book ‘Fearless’, Australian success coach and founder of The Global Success Academy, Paul Blackburn, speaks with physiotherapist Angela Melit on fear – how it affects our bodies and why it causes physical pain.

With fascinating insights into Aussie pubs, rocking boats and why carrying your wallet or handbag to one side is not such a good idea, join the conversation as Angela shares her tips on how you too can overcome feelings of fear…

 

 

Paul Blackburn: You’ll see in parts of this book we talk about how fear, or any emotion actually, when it’s suppressed, goes inside your body. And we’re all happy to go, “Yeah, yeah, it goes inside your body.” Nobody’s really made a study about where does it go – well, you know, is there actually a physical storage place for fear? – except for our friend Angela, who has 20 years experience as a physiotherapist and she runs this amazing clinic in Brisbane called Graceville Pain Slayers, which is at Graceville, and she’s got just a hundred years of experience in helping people where the fear actually goes into their bodies. And she’s come up with this amazing thing, which people around the world are now looking at her and saying, “Obviously, that’s actually what goes on.”

So, Ange, can you tell us how you came up… where you came across it… why you ended up looking at this particular muscle? Because in actual fact, we’re talking about a muscle rather than an organ. So, you’re saying that there’s a muscle that we can label it the fear muscle. And it kind of carries the fear that we bury and that might actually be more than just what we’ve experienced in our life… it might also be intergenerational. So we might actually be dealing with fear stored in our body over many generations, from our forebears, etc.

Do you want to tell us a bit about what this muscle is, what it does, that kind of stuff.

Angela Melit: Okay. When we’re babies, our first fear response is the baby reaches out to its mum when it’s in fear. If it can’t hold onto its mum, if it doesn’t catch onto its mum, the next muscle that’s activated is this iliopsoas complex, or most people talk about the psoas muscle. So that’s turned on as a primitive reflex through a fear, or, flight or fright response. So my feeling is that because it’s such a primitive reflex, it must go back generations and generations and possibly thousands of years, where that emotion is actually trapped in that muscle. Because that is a major function of the muscle. So where it is in the body, is in the pelvic basin, so it actually works as a core stabilizer as well. But it protects all of the abdominal organs, it has a connection to the adrenal gland, which is interesting for the flight or fight response. It cradles a baby when the mother is pregnant, it has a very close connection to all the sexual organs. So it’s pretty vital in a lot of body functions.
Paul Blackburn: Cool, now this muscle, from what you were telling me, basically it’s the muscle that would have enabled us to crawl around on our all fours.
Angela Melit: Yes, well it has that function. It’s actually a hip flexor muscle, so it’s primary function is hip flexion. If we’re on all fours, our hips are in flexion.
Paul Blackburn: Ok
Angela Melit: So they’re discovering now that part of the complex which is the psoas minor muscle is becoming absent in people because they no longer need it. We needed it when we were on all fours, we don’t need it now that we’re on two legs.
Paul Blackburn: So we’re going back thousands of generations on that level. For us, in ordinary day culture now, our fear reaction is to pull our knees up or to crumble around our middle, or to hold our stomach and fold in towards the centre and that’s this muscle.
Angela Melit: That’s that muscle, so yes, the response is to protect the abdominal organs, so that’s a primitive response to firstly protect the abdominal organs when you’re in fear. Because it locks you up, it almost immobilizes you…
Paul Blackburn: Is that because it’s a big muscle or because of where it is?
Angela Melit: It’s because, it is quite a big muscle for what it does and because of where it is. So where it is in the pelvis, when it’s activated, it causes your body to freeze. It’s like if you’re trying to act dead, to protect yourself. So when you activate it, it’s like you’re trying to play dead.
Paul Blackburn: Okay, so it’s like we’re trying to play dead so the threat would … anything that’s threatening… would not see us as threatening, or consider we’re gone and out of the picture and move on to other things. So it folds us up in that way and that’s why, when I’ve got a fear of something, and it might be a fear of a boss, say for example I’ve got a nasty boss, that I’m going to tend to want to fold over or as I keep saying my knees come up, my shoulders come in, I go around the middle so to speak and that if I repetitively do that, or if I’m in that fear for a long period of time, then that muscle tends to what?
Angela Melit: It shortens.

So when that muscle shortens and becomes inflexible, it becomes quite bandy and tight. And because the muscle attaches to the different vertebrae in the lumbar spine and even up to the bottom of the thoracic spine, parts of it can actually bulge out sideways. It actually can contort the whole spinal column.

Paul Blackburn: So I can be tilted one way or the other.
Angela Melit: Yeah, and rotated.
Paul Blackburn: And rotated, okay, so if we look at the diagram, then basically it attaches up at the spine right up near what?
Angela Melit: It attaches up near the T12, L1, L2, L3, L4, L5.
Paul Blackburn: If I’m not looking at a diagram, that’s about a third of the way up?
Angela Melit: Okay, so from the mid back down to the lower back. So portions of it will attach to all those vertebrae.
Paul Blackburn: So there’s multiple attachment points, basically from the mid all the way down to my lower back.
Angela Melit: All the way to your leg and it’s the only muscle that connects your spine to your leg.
Paul Blackburn: Okay. And at the same time as it’s doing all of that, it’s moving forward as it goes through my pelvis, making a cup shape.
Angela Melit: It should be making a cup shape, so when it’s tight, it doesn’t make a cup shape and it pushes all of your abdominal organs forward. So people who are even thin look like they’ve got a pot belly, because the psoas muscle is pushing all the abdominal organs forward. And then that can cause gut irritation as well and irritable bowel.
Paul Blackburn: Which is why, if we’ve had long term, even low level fear over long periods of time, then our body shows… starts to distort.
Angela Melit: Yes.
Paul Blackburn: Because this thing’s so big and so powerful and in such a critical place?
Angela Melit: Yes.
Paul Blackburn: Okay, cool. So here it is, we found the place where the fear goes to and the way that the fear operates, is it causes that muscle to shorten and as that muscle shortens, everything gets distorted and it loses its flexibility and now we’re out of shape.
Angela Melit: Yes. And then it actually causes more pain. And then we get secondary pain like physical pain from the fear response. Also, that pain might be manifested in lower back pain, or mid back pain, or during sexual intercourse women can get pain, that’s because that muscle’s tight, menstrual pain is caused by that tightness in that muscle. There’s a lot of different pains that are associated with that which can then cause more fear.
Paul Blackburn: Of course! Because if its like some particular action – you mentioned sex but there’ll be a bunch of actions – which I am going to start to anticipate pain.
Angela Melit: Yes.
Paul Blackburn: And I’m going to start to get rigid about that, or try and avoid the things that are causing that. So that all just creates a bit of stiffness and rigidness about how we’re conducting ourselves.

So… what do I do?

If it sounds like we’re talking to you, then what do I do, you know?

Angela Melit: We have found in the clinic, we usually do physically manipulate the muscle to try and decrease some of the trigger points. But we have found that that can create a fear response. So that is actually not really going to help.
Paul Blackburn: Yeah, because if I could describe that, having seen it happen and having had it done to me, that’s like somebody gets four of their fingers and shoves them in beside your pelvis in towards what feels like your lower intestines, finds this muscle that’s all kind of tight and pushes on it. I remember when it was done to me, I didn’t know that I could experience that much pain. But what happened was, they kept doing it and then it unlocked.
Angela Melit: Yep.
Paul Blackburn: Which… you know, that was kind of handy, but…
Angela Melit: Yes, for some people it will unlock, but if they have such a guarded response, we can’t do it. And the other problem with that particular technique is that you can actually damage the intestines, so it can be damaging to some of the other tissue around that muscle. So we’ve found that by releasing the muscle, it works better than trigger pointing it or actually stretching it. Because that was what we used to do before trigger pointing it, we would stretch the muscle. A muscle with very strong trigger points doesn’t stretch very easily, so that’s not very effective either.
Paul Blackburn: Yeah, because you’re trying to stretch something that’s also attached in many places.
Angela Melit: Yeah.
Paul Blackburn: All right.
Angela Melit: So we can actually use some of the trigger pointing and the stretching after it’s been released, which may be more effective. But the release sometimes is beneficial just on its own.
Paul Blackburn: Okay, so, do you want to describe this thing? We’ll whack some diagrams in there, but do you want to describe what we’re seeing when we’re looking at the diagram?
Angela Melit: At the release?
Paul Blackburn: Yeah.
Angela Melit: Okay, so usually what we’ll do as a basic… so this is a very, very basic release. So we’ll get the patient lying on their back with both knees bent up, and we will place a 20 cm very under inflated Pilates or soft stability ball, under the mid back.
Paul Blackburn: Okay, so lower than the shoulder blades.
Angela Melit: It’s lower than the shoulder blades. So if you’re a woman, it’s under the bra line and if you know where your solar plexus is in the front, it’s immediately opposite that.
Paul Blackburn: Which is kind of like a little bit above the belly button.
Angela Melit: Little bit about the belly button, and just underneath the edge of your sternum. So if you feel where the edge of your sternum is, that will be your solar plexus, which is a group of major nerves. So we have a few major areas of plexuses, I don’t know what the word is for that.
Paul Blackburn: Plexi.
Angela Melit: The solar plexus, obviously, feeds all of the abdominal organs and whatever. So if that ball is placed in that position, it’s almost like you can get a tiny little bit of a rocking action on it, almost like sitting in a dinghy. We have found that people with lower back pain, if they go fishing in a dinghy, they get out of the dinghy, their lower back pain is fixed, probably because they’ve released their psoas muscle without knowing.
Paul Blackburn: Because of the rocking of the dinghy.
Angela Melit: Because of the rocking of the dinghy. Yeah, so that’s why I like using the ball rather than anything else. So if they’ve got a really tight muscle, we leave them in that particular position. So then, the patient needs to make sure that their neck is in alignment as well. So you may need to put a book under the back of your head just to make sure the head’s not being tipped back. And they then actually …
Paul Blackburn: So you want maybe a book under the head and you need to be looking straight at the ceiling.
Angela Melit: Straight at the ceiling, yes, so the eyes are directly at the ceiling. And the shoulders are back and down, so relaxed. You can’t have your hands up around your belly, they need to be out lying beside you, preferably hands up.
Paul Blackburn: Yep, palms facing up.
Angela Melit: Palms up.
Paul Blackburn: Yeah. And with the knees up, you’re talking about having your feet flat on the floor.
Angela Melit: Feet flat on the floor and the knees are at about 45 degrees. That does mean the hips are in flexion, but they’re not in full flexion. So we haven’t got the muscle on a full length, because that would be stretched, and we’re not trying to stretch it, we’re trying to release it. So the muscle is midway between its normal, natural range of motion.
Paul Blackburn: It’s an interesting point, because it’s not a stretch, it’s a flexion which is a release.
Angela Melit: It’s a release.
Paul Blackburn: And a release means …
Angela Melit: A release means you want the muscle to let go.
Paul Blackburn: Ah, okay.
Angela Melit: We’re not stretching it. So we’re not stretching through any muscle spindles, we’re just trying to get the energy to release in the muscle.
Paul Blackburn: Because the muscle’s locked up out of anticipation of something going wrong, or because of low level fear over a period of time, or of intense fear that we haven’t been able to let go of.
Angela Melit: Yes.
Paul Blackburn: So this is magical that we found the place in your body where the fear goes to, it’s this muscle, and what the muscle does is it shortens, or in layman’s terms, it tightens. As it tightens it pulls things out of shape and as things go out of shape, it shows up as lower back pain and all the other kinds of pain that you mentioned. Does it impact on things like walking and gait?
Angela Melit: It definitely impacts on walking. So it actually reduces your stride length. So usually people will have a tightness on one side more than the other. So obviously, fear is not symmetrical either, so they’ll have a shortened stride length on that side which then can lead to other problems like knee problems and foot problems and shoulder problems.
Paul Blackburn: So while I’m lying there on my back with my feet on the floor, looking at the ceiling, not actually trying to do anything, should I be bringing to mind things that I have been scared of or afraid of? Or do you just work purely physically and just say to people, “This will let go by itself.”
Angela Melit: So what I tend to do is to actually get them to focus on their breathing, because the diaphragm is also attached to the same places that the iliopsoas muscle is attached.
Paul Blackburn: Crikey.
Angela Melit: So the diaphragm actually works in conjunction with the iliopsoas as a core stabilizer. So it needs to function with it. So by breathing and focusing on the breathing and breathing into the actual area where the muscle is, that will help it to release. So if there’s pain there, you can breathe into the pain. If there’s no pain there, you need to focus on just breathing into the area and relaxing in that area.
Paul Blackburn: Yeah, which is, for the perfectionists amongst us, to breathe into that is a ridiculous concept because we know that when we breathe in, the air goes into our lungs. But this is a mental imaginary process, isn’t it, to imagine that the breath flows to where the pain is.
Angela Melit: Yes.
Paul Blackburn: Do you imagine your breath catching the pain and taking it out with it? So that you’re breathing in good stuff and breathing out bad stuff? Or is that …
Angela Melit: You can certainly do that.
Paul Blackburn: That’s one way.
Angela Melit: Yeah, that is one way. I do find that I haven’t found anyone that, if they concentrate on their breathing and focusing on the actual area – which if you put your hands on your hip bone and then the top of your leg bone that’s the area that you’re thinking of when you’re in the bent knees position – the pain actually reduces, even if you’re only thinking about breathing to that area.
Paul Blackburn: Okay.
Angela Melit: So I imagine that if you feel that while you’re doing that, a particular fear came into mind, then yes, you could possibly then breathe out that particular fear while you’re doing it.
Paul Blackburn: But purely physically speaking all we have to do is direct our breath to the pain or to the area that’s uncomfortable or that we want released, and by focusing on our breath, then that gives the muscle the signal to start releasing.
Angela Melit: Yes, because if you have been in fear or pain for that many years, turning on that muscle has become a habit. So if that has become a habit and you can’t even think of a fear, or you just have a background level of fear, by releasing that muscle, when you stand up after releasing the muscle, you will stand differently and actually stimulate your vagus nerve response differently. So your fear will be reduced.
Paul Blackburn: Awesome, awesome.

Speaking of standing up, I’m not allowed to just kind of do a crunch and jump up am I?

Angela Melit: No, so first of all, if that’s not a problem doing that exercise just with the knees bent up, if you have one sided pain or one sided tightness, which most people have, we gradually lengthen out that leg a little bit.
Paul Blackburn: Okay, so the foot that was flat on the floor is now going to find that a bit more difficult, because you’re going to push your foot away from yourself?
Angela Melit: You’ve got to push it away and it doesn’t need to come out all the way straight unless there’s no pain. So if there’s no pain or tightness, the leg can eventually be straightened out and then you can breathe into it in a bit more of its lengthened position, which is very advantageous if you can get to that.
Paul Blackburn: Yes.
Angela Melit: There are alternatives if you can’t get to that, or you just keep your knees bent up. And that needs to be done for at least 5 minutes, otherwise you won’t release it. It’s not a stretch, it needs to be done for a prolonged period of time.
Paul Blackburn: So you’re saying at least 5 minutes, is there an outer limit you know? Are we talking 5 to 10, or 5 to 20…
Angela Melit: I’d probably say 5 to 10… I’d stick with the 5 to 10, especially if you’re just starting.
Paul Blackburn: Okay. Daily or weekly?
Angela Melit: Definitely daily, you can do it twice daily, three times daily. If you’re going to be doing a long walk or you’re going to work and that’s stressful, or if you come home from work and that’s stressful, then that’s when you would pick the times to do it. If you’re going to the gym and know you are doing a lot of weights or a lot of cycling or stuff like that, that involves a lot of hip flexion and you have a habit of turning that muscle on, then you would make sure you release that muscle, probably before and after you went, to make sure you weren’t habitually over using that muscle.
Paul Blackburn: Okay.
Angela Melit: Do you want me to tell you about how to get up? Because I missed that now because I added …
Paul Blackburn: I was about to say, so lets take ourselves back to how you … when you’ve done 5, 10, 15, 20 minutes of this exercise and you feel like that’s enough… then there’s a special way to get up.
Angela Melit: Yep, so when you’ve done it, it’s imperative that you actually roll onto your side before getting up because otherwise, you just turn the muscle back on. If you sit straight up, which is not good for anyone with back pain or if you’ve had children, anyway, it will just turn the muscle on and then you’ve undone what you’ve just released.
Paul Blackburn: And you probably won’t even notice that you’ve turned it back on.
Angela Melit: No, you won’t notice.
Paul Blackburn: Because it’s habitual.
Angela Melit: Yes.
Paul Blackburn: Okay, so we roll over onto our side, get onto our all fours and then pull our hips in underneath us and stand up using our legs.
Angela Melit: Yeah, using your legs. You can even put your hands on one knee, to help push yourself up, which then turns, like helps you use your big hip muscles rather than the iliopsoas to try and get up.
Paul Blackburn: All right, so one last question, and it’s only come up while we’re talking. When I’ve got a very intense period of work and I’m teaching a large class over a long period of time and I get tired in the break – so lunchtime – I’ve noticed that sometimes, I will go and lie on the floor. I’ll lie on my back and put my arms out in a crucifix position. But I get a chair and I put my feet up on the chair, so that my thighs are vertical and my calf muscles are horizontal and my feet are on the back of the chair. And within a minute or two I’m asleep. And I’m just wondering if I’m doing a bad thing or a good thing.
Angela Melit: You’re actually doing a good thing, because if I found someone had a very tight iliopsoas, and they had been doing a lot of standing if they had been presenting, then that is an alternative position. So that can actually help more if you’ve got a very tight iliopsoas, or if you’ve got pain, we actually modify the first thing, that first way I told you to do the exercise, by putting your feet up on a chair.
Paul Blackburn: Right, so we’ll put it in a diagram showing that.
Angela Melit: And you can do it without the ball as well. If you don’t have a ball, then you can do the exercise without the ball. It’s just that the ball helps to focus on where it attaches up near the solar plexus.
Paul Blackburn: Yeah, cool, all right. So when I do that, it’s generally because I’ve been standing up on a concrete floor. So have you got anything to say about dead legs?
width=”175″ valign=”top” align=”left”>Angela Melit:
Paul Blackburn: Good, I don’t know if it’s related but…
Angela Melit: When you stand up for long periods of time, if your deep abdominal and pelvic floor muscles and your deep hip stabilizers are not quite as strong as they should be for standing up for long periods of time your iliopsoas will turn on and your quadratus lumborum will turn on. So some of those other muscles will become tighter, the more you stand. So if you are doing a lot of standing and presenting, first of all it’s important to make sure when you stand, that your feet are even and facing forward when you’re standing, but to have your knees slightly bent and your bottom slightly tucked under and your shoulders back, so that you don’t accidentally turn on the iliopsoas too much.
Paul Blackburn: Okay. Alright.
Angela Melit: There is one more way as well. If you put your foot, even if you put it up on a little step, it straightens the back, so again it stops the iliopsoas from turning on.
Paul Blackburn: So that little step, that would only have to be the size of a brick or something?
Angela Melit: Yeah, the size of a brick. So in the old days, in the public bars, they have a bar, at the bottom of the bar, that’s to put your foot up so you can stand for longer and drink more beer.
Paul Blackburn: (Laughter) Now I know why it’s there. Thanks, so if we put that little bar in the bar, where you put your foot up on, you’ll stay longer and drink more beer and they knew this, but they just didn’t know how they were doing it.
Angela Melit: That’s just my theory.
Paul Blackburn: That’s your theory. That’s a beautiful theory. So I’m likely to be getting what I call the dead legs, which mostly shows up in my thigh muscles as tiredness rather than pain and similar in the calf muscles, it’s tiredness. Feels like I’ve run a marathon, because I’m not moving enough.
Angela Melit: You’re not moving enough.
Paul Blackburn: I’m not standing correctly and I’m not moving enough.
Angela Melit: There’s a blockage there, so the blood flowing to the … there’s a blockage to the nerves that are innervating your leg muscles. It’s getting blocked because of the position that you’re in. So to allow everything to flow better and for the spinal cord and spinal nerves to move freely, you need to have that iliopsoas in a relaxed position.
Paul Blackburn: Does it have anything to do with the direction my toes are? I’ve noticed that lots of people stand pigeon toed, lots of people stand, I don’t know what the opposite is, but what I’ve noticed more lately, is that some people have one foot straight and the other one tilted in or out. Has that got anything to do with it or is that separate?
Angela Melit: Yeah, well it does. A lot of people who have pain or whatever down one leg and one tight iliopsoas will stand with that particular leg pointed out and forward of the other leg and that’s because when the muscle tightens, it rotates that pelvis forward. So then what happens after that is that the hip muscles, at the back in your rump, so your gluteal muscles, become weak because that whole pelvis is rotated forwards. So usually a right handed person will have a tendency to rotate their pelvis forward from the right, so it rotates across to the left.
Paul Blackburn: The right side of the pelvis is further forward.
Angela Melit: Yes, the right side of the pelvis is further forward, so that causes weakness in the posterior muscles in the hip. Yeah, and that can be because they’re using their right hand so much, they’re actually stabilizing more on the left hand side of the body and thus rotating through that right side of the hip. But consequences of that are that they become weak down that whole side of their leg and that over time, that worsens. If we’re right or left handed, then we tend to do that. People on a computer using a mouse, that can happen even though they’re not even standing. Just by them using the right hand, it still makes their pelvis rotate forward. Or driving a car, because we’re using the right foot on the accelerator all the time, we can rotate that pelvis forward.
Paul Blackburn: Is there a counter activity? Should I be swapping the side that the mouse is on every month or so?
Angela Melit: Yes. Definitely swapping the side of the mouse and then continually trying to turn on the actual hip stabilizers on the right side, are going to counteract that tightness in that psoas muscle in the front. So for example, if you’re going to walk somewhere and you’re right handed, you would tend to step with the right foot first, which then is causing a habitual strengthening of the left hip, because it has to weight-bear first, to allow the body to carry that step forward. So even just by stepping off with the left first, it causes your right bottom muscles to tighten. So if we make that a habit, it will strengthen up more on that right side. That’s a simple way that I get some of my clients to try and strengthen that way if they’re not inclined to do exercises and to make sure that you never cross the right leg over the left. Because as soon as the right leg is crossed over the left, it is again bringing the right hip up and forward.
Paul Blackburn: Up and forward, so if you’re a right handed person and you go to cross your legs, then you’ve got to get the left over the right.
Angela Melit: Yes, or just don’t do it.
Paul Blackburn: I can hear you saying just don’t do it.
Angela Melit: Yeah, don’t do it is better.
Paul Blackburn: Yeah, now you’ve got an opinion about wallets as well.
Angela Melit: Well yes, we do see a lot of men who come in with back pain because they put their wallet in their back pocket. So that again, that is pushing that side of the pelvis up and forward. So I must say, I have found some men who only get tightness in their iliopsoas because their wallet is in their back pocket and not through doing right handed activities.
Paul Blackburn: Or fear even.
Angela Melit: Yeah, or fear.
Paul Blackburn: Just the wallet.
Angela Melit: It’s just the wallet, so once we take the wallet out of their pocket, they’re fixed.
Paul Blackburn: Yep. Do you put it on the left to fix it?
Angela Melit: No, we don’t put it on the left to fix it. They’re not allowed to put their wallet in their back pocket, or their phone in their back pocket.
Paul Blackburn: Okay, so wallets and phones in places other than your back pocket.
Angela Melit: Yes, and actually, I do know that if you have a phone that is quite heavy or a phone that’s attached to a purse, even if you’re walking and you have it in a pocket in a coat, that will tend to actually still …
Paul Blackburn: It’ll still do it?
Angela Melit: It can still have an effect on that, yep.
Paul Blackburn: Okay, so here’s another, I don’t know if this is related or not. If I’ve got to carry a heavy weight and I’m going to put it on my shoulder. When I was building the house, there was a bag of concrete. But I’d always put it on my left shoulder. Should I be …
Angela Melit: Are you right handed?
Paul Blackburn: Yes.
Angela Melit: That’s why you put it on your left shoulder.
Paul Blackburn: Because it’s stronger on the left. Well yes, stronger on the left and you need to do more manipulative things with your right hand, because you’re right handed. Such as?
Angela Melit: Such as pick up the hammer or pick up something if you’re carrying whatever you were carrying, wood.
Paul Blackburn: All right, so the bag of concrete is pretty easy to work out and I guess what you’re saying is, if I have to put something on my shoulder, can I swap shoulders every now and then.
Angela Melit: Yes, it would be a good idea to swap shoulders and you’d probably feel really weird doing it.
Paul Blackburn: I’d definitely feel weird doing it. That bag of concrete weighs twice as much on the other side, and it wants to fall off. Which brings me to handbags. Is that similar?
Angela Melit: Yes, we see a lot of handbag injuries, so I don’t like handbags at all. And sometimes backpacks are not that much better. So the best thing I think is not to have much in the handbag to start with and to have a bag with a very wide strap that goes across your body rather than on one side. So if it’s across your body, you’re still going to get a little bit of transference of weight from one to the other, and more of your body’s involved. And then you should be changing sides that it’s on and making sure there’s not much in it.
Paul Blackburn: Yeah, so the old handbag with everything except the kitchen sink in it, is really bad news.
Angela Melit: It’s very bad. The reason why I say backpacks don’t always work is because if you do have a really tight iliopsoas, sometimes a backpack can make that worse. It has to be a very well fitting backpack.
Paul Blackburn: Yeah, and there’s not many of them around.
Angela Melit: Well, no.
Paul Blackburn: And I see a lot of people carrying a backpack and they haven’t got both straps on anyways.
Angela Melit: No, and they need a waist strap to make sure that the weight’s transferred properly.
Paul Blackburn: Okay, cool. All right, so if we wanted to get in contact with you, how would we best do that, what’s … if we wanted to explore being treated by Pain Slayers and Graceville Physio, how do we do that?
Angela Melit: Okay, so yes you can just book online at GracevillePhysio.com or call us. Do you want me to say the number? 3278 1186.
Paul Blackburn: Say that again, say it slower.
Angela Melit: Okay, so the phone number is 3278 1186 and the website is GracevillePhysio.com.au and you can book online.
Paul Blackburn: You can book online and you’re not the world’s most expensive. You’re not the cheapest but you’re not the most expensive either are you?
Angela Melit: Oh no.
Paul Blackburn: Right, so it’s not going to cost us an arm and a leg and we can get ourselves looked after.
Angela Melit: No, because we like to fix bodies and cater for everybody.
Paul Blackburn: Beautiful. All right, thanks Ange.

About Angela Melit:

Known as the “Physio’s physio” in Brisbane Australia, Angela’s 30 years running a clinical practice and 20 years in teaching have turned her into a master practitioner.
Her “PainSlayers” clinic is regarded as industry leading and is a sought after posting for students of physiotherapy wanting to rise to the peak of their profession.
Angela’s personal aim is to integrate mindfulness and physical health so that her clients become self sufficient and capable of preventing the vast majority of injuries that cause a visit to her clinic in the first place. http://gracevillephysio.com.au