I search for the best of the best when it comes to my fitness and conditioning. I have always been in great shape and take pride in maintaining a certain level of fitness, but in the time I have been working with Peter Park and Eric Goodman, I have reached a new level of endurance, stamina, and strength. The program pushes me without exhausting me, conditions me, and has completely changed the way my body moves and feels.
I have had nagging right sided lower back pain for years. My sacroiliac joint was unstable and I’d "throw it out" routinely. Now, if you've ever had back pain, acute or chronic, you know what I mean when I say that when your back hurts, it ruins everything in your life. Being an athlete with medical training, for years I stubbornly pursued many avenues of treatment, holistic and conventional. I read dozens of research articles on the subject, hunted down and visited numerous specialists in several states, and put myself through thousands of dollars of training including dynamic neuromuscular stabilization (DNS), Barefoot Training Certification, Don Tigney’s work, the Egoscue system and even Postural Restoration Institute (PRI) sequences.
In the late summer of 2013, I had an MRI and CT scan performed. My chiro looked at these and thought my spine looked “pretty bad.” My orthopedic surgeon was more admirably direct and matter-of-fact stating “Your spine looks like sh-t.” Here I was, a lifelong athlete dedicated to the pursuit of fitness and health, and I had somehow torn my own back apart in the process. I got pretty depressed.
Sensing an epiphany, I began doing the Foundation Training exercises... I do not exaggerate when I say that within a few days (< 1 week) I noticed that I wasn't throwing my back out. After a few more days, my back felt abnormal...meaning it didn't hurt. It was so strange (and welcome!) NOT to be experiencing nearly constant pain...
Since I began using the techniques in Foundation Training, I have remained free of the back pain and instability that had plagued me for years before. Interestingly, my left knee, quite commonly a source of pain, also stopped hurting. This latter tidbit may seem odd at first, but the knee’s function is strongly influenced by central (core) body control. I incorporate parts of the system regularly in my daily life…sometimes just a couple of movements and sometimes a whole sequence. For people who have back/hip/neck pain, I strongly recommend Foundation Training because it really hits at the essential components of human movement and function. For people who don’t have pain, I recommend the practice because even if you are pain-free now, you are probably well en route to developing it as pain is a pretty late sign of long-term dysfunction. To clarify, think of a car with bad front end alignment and an abnormally worn front tire. As with our bodies, the tire wear didn’t happen suddenly, but was a result of a long-standing alignment problem.
A little about me: I am an active 50 year old male in the final year of the Human Movement Master's Program at (ATSU), former Marine, currently Firefighter/Paramedic, Tae Kwon Do Black Belt, current Brazilian Jiu Jitsu practitioner, Hardstyle Kettlebell Instructor, NASM Personal Trainer with specialization in Performance Enhancement and Corrective Exercise, DNS Sport Levels I & II, FMS I & II, Barefoot Mechanics, and just a nerd in general 🙂
Foundation serves as the backbone of not only my workouts but also my lifestyle. At first I thought that it would just make me a better athlete, but after nearly 3 years under my belt, it has done so much more. It just makes you a better functioning human being. I like it so much that everyone around me knows how much I like it because I talk about it all the time. Baseball players sit on airplanes and busses and in dugouts. We have actions that are always one direction. Our backs are a mess, our hips are screwed up and foundation helps to right all those wrongs. Everyone I come into contact with has some issue and I get to share with them the gift of foundation. I know its worked in my life and in my friends life – and I always get a kick when someone I've never talked to about it comes up to me and says “Hey, what’s this I’m hearing about your funny workout you do, can you show me?”
Foundation Training is absolutely perfect for perfect posture in the golf swing. From set-up to finish, these exercises help with strength and conditioning for the complete game. Even with the bending over for putting. I spend a lot of time on the practice green putting and my back used to ache. But now, my back feels stronger and I have more endurance than before. I feel the positive effects of lengthening my spine which is critical because I have had two herniated disk surgeries and am 66 years old. Thank you guys. This is amazing.
I hurt my back many years ago by lifting things that were too heavy for me but managed to keep out of pain most of the time through my yoga practice. However after a fairly disastrous hysterectomy in 2015 my back became much weaker through lack of use and then when I started using it again I sat up in bed one morning in Jan 2016 and felt it go completely in the same place as the old injury. I was floored with the pain of what I suspected was herniated disc and couldn't move at first and then only with severe shooting pain down my right leg and particularly in, through and under my right hip joint. I struggled through the year with osteopathy and pain killers but as I teach yoga and play golf I knew I needed to know what was wrong and why it wouldn't heal this time. I finally had a mri scan in September which showed the disc bulging on the right handside. 'Likely to be an ongoing problem' the doctor said. I took this as a personal challenge! Having listening to a book review by Brian Johnson of True to Form and watching Eric's TED talk I bought the FT Connect programme a week before Christmas 2016. I followed it religiously and within 5 days started to feel muscles that had been long forgotten whilst protecting the damaged disc start firing and providing support once more. I couldn't believe it felt so different, so much better than it had for so long. All the training information made perfect sense and I felt empowered to make the right moves to heal myself from within. I have adapted my personal yoga practice to incorporate this. On those few days that I have not fully committed to the workout I noticed a twinge here and there returning. This is why I say that my back and hip pain is now a choice. If I do the exercises everyday I feel great and if I don't it comes back. My choice. Simple!
I have signed up for the training in Florida, as I feel just about everyone could benefit mind and body from holding their own body in this way. Yes this goes well beyond the physical I think expanding the diaphragm in this way improves wellbeing and happiness too.
I have suffered from chronic back pain for over 20 years until I discovered Foundation Training.
Coming from a very physically demanding Military unit I returned to civilian life barely being able to put on my shoes in the morning because of the lack of flexibility and pain. I was able to maintain an active lifestyle through stretching and even some "as seen on TV" gimmicks which had some benefits, but seemed to only be temporary relief. I was even desperate enough to buy a $5000 hot tub which is very nice, but is far from the answer to back pain.
I have been determined to continue an active lifestyle and continue my career in Law Enforcement, but I began to lose time at work and about twice a year my back would "go out" and I would be completely immobilized for a week or two. Long hours of sitting in a car with duty gear pushing against my lower back and walking with the off balance heavy gear hanging from my hips had completely taken its toll and I was beginning to wonder if a medical retirement or back surgery was the only option.
I discovered Foundation Training from a fellow student on a work trip several months ago and I have been practicing religiously. It has completely turned things around for me and I expect to continue to improve and live my active lifestyle and enjoy my career indefinitely.
I suffered a L-5 compression fracture 6 months ago and have not been able to find a work out that helps with my back pain until now. I began Foundation Training 3 days ago using your free YouTube video and I have noticed such an incredible difference in how I feel and operate. I feel more mobile, more flexible, and just overall better after using this! Thank you so much! I appreciate you for genuinely caring about the people of this world and what you have implemented to make a difference. I want to become a Foundation Trainer in the future and help to spread this effective solution to people who are in need of it. Thanks again!
First, I must say, I am not one of these ‘post everything that happens to me’ people. In fact, I avoid it. But I must tell you my story and about the success of the Foundation Exercises on one of the most painful ailments I have ever had—Plantar Fasciitis. For the past 120 days, this extremely painful ailment affected my left heel. My wife asked me once how it felt. I described the intense stabbing pain as, “being hit in the heel every step with a sledge hammer.” And worse, when I would let my foot dangle the pain would just continue pulsating. It was awful. Over these 120 days I have taken more Ibuprofen than at any time in my life, went to massage therapy, went to a neuromuscular skeletal therapist D.O., saw a resident M.D. got some drugs [didn’t take them], rolled my heel with a tennis ball every night, got a rolling pin and rolled my leg muscles, and then went old school placing my foot in ice water then transferring it to hot water for as long as I could stand it.
I went on vacation where a lot of bike riding, walking, and touring was required. I did not want to go on the vacation because of the pain. After one particularly long bike ride I had to sit down while my wife went shopping, I literally could not stand the pain any more. I was sitting in front of a local Church and prayed a solution would come to me to somehow help relieve the pain. Suddenly, I remembered watching one of your early videos four years ago and had tried the ‘hinging’ exercise. I was determined when we returned to our condominium I would go online and try the exercise again to relieve the pain.
I studied the promotional video very carefully, got up, took of my shoes, and began. As you would know, and if done correctly, the exercises allow you to feel the entire ‘back plane’ being stretched. Because I was so tight, I could feel the stretch from my neck to my toes—initially the hinging was quite painful as well but it was a good pain—back plane stretch, fantastic! To cut to the chase, I first did the exercise on Sunday afternoon and again in the evening. By Monday morning I was walking with just a twinge of PF pain. Throughout the day on Monday I continued to do just the basic ‘hinging’ exercise. It is now Tuesday evening and I am walking completely pain free for the first time in four months. I am not sure others will have my same success. But I can say this, if you are reading this post and are suffering from Plantar Fasciitis give Foundation Training a try. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain.
Laying in bed one night, I found myself in tears wondering how many good years I really had left to workout the way I was used to, given the lower back pain I have had for so many years. Too, my body was beginning to show signs of breaking down with new joint pain in my knees.
Amazingly, within that same week I "stumbled" upon [Foundation Training]. Eric's story captured me immediately; a student of chiropractic medicine looking to avoid back surgery was totally believable.
I have since practiced the FT exercises faithfully (with amazing results) so that I now have a story to share, giving hope to others. As a certified PT in Fitness and Yoga my next step is to attain a certification in FT.
As it turns out, FT is more than an answer to the question that brought me to tears. It will no doubt be one of the best professional opportunities to cross my path. I can hardly wait to discover where this will take me and see how many people I can help! I am truly grateful 🙂
Using the hips to hinge, paying special attention to the head/neck relationship, developing the core strength of the posterior chain vs. limb strength or ab strength I’d heard all this before, thirty years before and have had decades of personal experience with the various systems out there that attempt to focus on these concepts. So I put the book down, ignored the DVD and didn’t try Foundation Training. (Hint, this was a mistake, don’t do this.) Fortunately I was offered a couple of sessions with a Foundation Training expert trained by Dr. Goodman to learn about the work directly and I grudgingly went along with it just to check out what the buzz was around Foundation Training. Literally two minutes into the exercises I realized something special was going on here. Dr. Goodman has taken a very well-worn path and blazed a completely new trail which is impossible to appreciate or understand until you get your first two minutes of Foundation Training and the light bulb goes on. Foundation Training is like powerlifting or Olympic weight training for your deep postural muscles. As we sit a lot, collapsed, and work on computers these deep postural muscles degrade and weaken to the point they can no longer function and hold us up. Even the “fit” among us, professional athletes, tend toward developing poor movement patterns from the years of sitting we all do that then translate into their sport whether it be basketball or cycling. Breaking these postural movement patterns is virtually impossible using most all of the existing systems. Yoga increases flexibility and strength, weight training increases muscle strength, the Alexander Technique and Feldenkrais make us aware of poor movement patterns, but Dr. Goodman has developed the unthinkable – one single set of exercises that quickly, almost miraculously create profound muscle strength and flexibility at the same time in just the areas we are weakest and tightest from our modern lifestyle habits.