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Old Forum uneven gait?

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the hansenator

Level 6 Valued Member
There probably isn't a good answer for me over the internet but I thought I'd ask, my back has been sore for about seven months now and I'm running out of ideas.

I noticed my gait is uneven, I can tell that the muscles are working differently on each side and that the movement is different. I'm not sure what to do about it but I think it's contributing to my back pain because the more I walk the more it hurts, but only on one side.

I went to the doctor and they looked me over and took x-rays and told me there's nothing they can find. A different therapist said I had one leg shorter so he did an adjustment and I could really tell the difference but it wore off in a couple of days.

I realize there probably isn't a good answer but is there anything common or obvious that can be checked in terms of imbalances or left/right differences?

I have identified a couple of areas that are tighter on one side and plan to work on them but I don't know if it will actually help or not.

Would it be worth investing in the Secrets of the Hip and Knee dvds?

This article might raise more questions than it answers in regards to your specific issues, but I think it's worth a read anyway:

I've been having amazing results with Neupert's and Anderson's Original Strength routine.  Takes about 10 minutes a day.  Restoring reflexive core stability may even out your asymmetries, and you could start implementing the movements immediately as the book is available on kindle.
Thanks for the replies everyone, I appreciate it. I wasn't sure how much information would be useful or that people would want to read through but, to respond to your posts:
"Where exactly is your back hurting and are you still lifting"
The muscles on the lower right side, from the lower ribs to the hips, feel chronically overworked and there's a stabbing spot on the lower right, it almost feels like it's more in the hips than the back itself. It's always worse in the morning. I've been trying to avoid exercises that I know make it worse.

"This article might raise more questions than it answers in regards to your specific issues, but I think it’s worth a read anyway:"
Interesting article, I tend to agree with much of it. I know I've been "crooked" for a long time but, until recently, have always been able to run and walk without pain. Something happened about 7 months ago. I did a couple heavy sets of kb front squats and my back was sore and it's never been the same since.
I’ve been having amazing results with Neupert’s and Anderson’s Original Strength routine.
I'm going to go  look for it right now. I hope it's on non-Kindle since I don't have one.
Chris, just so you know I am not a specialist in any sort I can just give you advice on what helped me. I had a similar sounding injury, after months of aggrivation I came to the conclusion my hips were far to tight causeing a tug of war with my lowerback/sciatica. I had my doctor prescribed me a muscle relaxer( not a perk) and I did numerous stretches with a main focus on hips and lower back as often as I could. It took three days and I was almost 100%. I am now an avid stretcher because of the amount of hip dominate movements. Once again I hope this helps you in your road to recovery. Oh and it wont hurt to take a week or two of weights if needed.

you can download a kindle app onto your computer.  Is there a CK-FMS instructor in your area?  Having an FMS movement screen done at this time as a baseline will give you feedback if you're progressing in the right direction.
Chris, your back pain could be the result of your uneven gait, you are right. The best is to see a podiatrist and have a full assessment of your lower limbs and a computerized gait analysis. So many reasons of your uneven  gait, and a posture analysis by a Physio. Very smart to make a relation  back pain / gait.  Back  pain is very often due to your  feet or lower limbs and can be fixed in no time.

Thanks for the advice everyone.

I was planning to go through some of the yoga moves to see if the right and left sides were different. I also found the kindle app and bought the book.

I have another appointment with a pt in a few weeks, do you think a podiatrist would be able to find something the pt didn't?

I have noticed that, when I place my hands on the low back while walking, I can feel the muscles on the right side are working harder and spending more time tensed. I've tried and it's hard to get them to relax. It even feels like the muscles on the right have even gotten bigger.
Back pain.  PAIN - no longer an exercise problem.  Find a person that can run you through an SFMA.  Or find a good healthcare provider to asses you (find a good healthcare provider that does the SFMA and you will be even better.) 

Amazingly, my back pain went away when I broke my arm.  Give it a try.  (SARCASM)

See someone about it, YOU (or anyone else on any forum) cannot fix it.
Zach, what is the original strength routine you are talking about? I bought their book Becoming Bulletproof and it talks about crawling and rolling, is that it?

Brandon could you share more about your back pain I am curious like how it started and what the problem was and how breaking your arm could have made it go away?

Not trying to diagnose, but it sounds like the muscles in your low back might be making up for something else.  Could it be a lazy glute? Could it be an overactive hip flexor hindering proper rotation? Yes and yes, but it could be a host of other things also.

If the therapist did an adjustment to fix a leg length issue, then it's not a true leg length discrepancy and instead a "functional" leg length discrepancy due to pelvic rotation or upslip. At least that's what it should be. as there's no way to address a real leg length problem without special shoes or lifts or having your leg broken and lengthened on purpose.  The reason the adjustment didn't stick it that the underlying problem wasn't addressed. I've been looking at becoming an SFMA myself and that seems like a good way to go.
Brandon- you're absolutely right about pain.  I may have misread Chris's original post, I assumed he was still being treated by the therapist that eliminated the pain.  SFMA certified would be the first place to go if possible.
Daniel- Original Strength was released last month I believe.  It has the original content of becoming bulletproof plus another reset movement and provides more variations and much more info based on their last three years of implementing becoming bulletproof with others.
The good news is I think I made progress today but it might take a few days to be sure.

I spent some time this morning trying to get my back muscles to relax and found a certain alignment that seems to help. While walking, I can tell, not only that the muscles spend more time relaxed, the low back motion and the hip motion seems more even. It feels kind of weird but in a good kind of way so I'm optimistic.

In the past, I spent so much time fussing about anterior pelvic tilt and a lazy glute that I think I lost the curve in my low back and the alignment of the hips got out of whack.
I was being sarcastic in regards to my back pain.  What worked for me will have no effect on anyone else.  Doling out advice on fixing pain on a forum is about like asking for a catch all training program - for the right people in the right situation it MAY work, but chances are the results won't be as amazing as they were for the person giving the "do this" information.


Low back pain seems like no big deal.  Unless it is low back pain at night, which could be indicative of a tumor.  Or just general non-discript low back pain could be a red flag for say maybe a kidney issue.  Who on any forum knows? 

Giving out medical advice (and anytime there is pain it has become a medical issue, not an exercise issue) in any situation where there is not some level of an exam is not professional.  I may be overstepping my boundary here, which if I am Pavel, Mark, or Brett can set me straight, but this drives me NUTS!

Chris - if you feel better, great.  But proceed with caution.
I have mixed opinions on this. Whilst this is a pain issue not an exercise one the same criticism could be levelled at exercise  advice via the written word where  technique cannot be monitored or the adaptive response of  the advised program is not reviewed on an individual basis.

As for the subjects exercise and health/pain being separated I believe there is a thin grey line here as one can either have a positive or negative impact on the other.

Advice on a forum can be a poor choice for the reasons mentioned above and as only the individuals posting can be sure they have the credentials and personal integrity to so.

However, I personally believe in the sense of community here at strong first and value the opinions and advice of those who give it. I also freely accept the responsibility that any advice I put into action may result in my own damn injury, whether it is from Joe Shmo or Pavel himself.

It's a sad fact we live in an increasing litigation society, helpful for protecting the public even better for those not man enough to accept responsibility for acting in their own volition.

As a registered healthcare practitioner in the UK I recognise the risks of dishing out generic advise but choose to balance this with a sense of community, knowledge sharing and good intentions. I also choose to exercise the right to speak when I feel I can contribute something positive and reframe from doing so when I can't. It is this discernment that is the hall mark of a professional. If we all reframed from speaking from a vantage point forums such as this would cease to flourish or be interesting.

In contradiction to this (I am full of them) the one thing I would agree in this case is the need to seek professional advice and get the problem diagnosed and be educated on the subject. Only then will the advice (Wherever the source) be pertinent to you.

A leg length descrepancy cannot be true if it can be adjusted by a therapist, something else such as SI joint displacement is at play.

Get the problem fully diagnosed, treated and work in earnest to deal with the route cause of the problem.

This website can be a great source of info............just don't believe everything you read.

Good luck and let us all know how you progress.
Great advice from everyone, I appreciate all the feedback.

I realize the most obvious and correct advice is to get looked at by a professional. The problem is it sometimes takes years to find a professional who can actually help you and, if you have lousy insurance, it gets quite expensive to keep going to different people.

I've had the family doctor look at my back. She took x-rays and stuff and didn't find anything to be concerned with. The pt I've been seeing has done wonders for my shoulder but hasn't been able to do much for my back yet. I've been to numerous other professionals for back problems over the years and yet, here I am still with back problems. I'm starting to feel like I'm on my own with this one because nobody I've been to has been able to help.

Where are you located?


I am not a medical specialist, so obviously see one to get it fixed.
The muscles on the lower right side, from the lower ribs to the hips, feel chronically overworked and there’s a stabbing spot on the lower right, it almost feels like it’s more in the hips than the back itself.
Sounds like your right Quadratus Lumborum muscle is tight. Its also common with one side of the hip being higher than the other. I usually get pain in my right side. Trigger point work on it fixes it as does stretching, particularly side bends.

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