Barb McGrath 0:00
Don’t think anyone argues about the importance of physical or mental health, but trying to stay healthy during times of isolation, or social distancing. That’s harder. What if you’re injured or not? Well, at these times, our guest today is going to talk about some of the things that you can do to stay healthy to stay active, even during these crazy times that we’re in right now. And we’re going to talk about staying well on a long term basis. So I’d like to welcome our guest today, Dr. Doug paddison. He’s a chiropractor, speaker, fitness trainer, and health advocate for all of the doctors that I’ve met in my own life. Personally, I’ve actually never met a doctor of any field, who is as passionate about physical and mental health as Doug is. So Doug is the the doctor, the chiropractor, the practitioner at Patterson health. And he’s going to talk to us today about ways to stay active, maintaining your health, what to do if you need to talk to someone, a health care provider, and the ways that he’s retooling his business to continue to serve as many clients as possible during these times, and at all times. So welcome, Doug. It’s great to have you here.
Dr. Doug Pattison 1:22
Thanks for having me.
Barb McGrath 1:23
Tell us a little bit about paddison health and where your passion comes from.
Dr. Doug Pattison 1:29
Oh, Patterson, health started as a straightforward chiropractic practice 1998 when I graduated from community Memorial chiropractic college, and it’s through several renditions, since originally, chiropractors weren’t allowed to advertise. So, in order to advertise, we would have to go out and do community events and whatnot. So I would go to church groups to talk about headaches, or I would teach at a community college or anytime a business was looking for a speaker, we’d get out there and, and speak. So that is how the speaking part came around. And as far as my own fitness journey, one day, Friday evening, my wife was had been going to spin classes and her spin buddy wouldn’t go. So she said, Would you go with me and I said, I don’t really want to go I’d rather just sit around on Friday afternoon, relax, have a cold when she said I really like to voice it fine. So went to a spin class and the personality that I have. I became an instructor Two months later,
Barb McGrath 2:37
I was gonna say, yeah, let me guess you went as hard as humanly possible. We’re dripping sweat by the time you’re done, loved it, and then took it over.
Dr. Doug Pattison 2:45
That’s exactly right. Yeah.
Barb McGrath 2:48
Okay, hit the nail on the head. All right. So that’s many moons ago, I your wife took you to that fitness class. I know you teach classes now as well, don’t you?
Dr. Doug Pattison 3:00
I teach at the YMCA I teach. I started teaching four fitness classes a week there. And I found that was just cutting into my family time too much. So we cut that down to two, we do one spin class and one functional core class. And core is great because often people that have bad backs, need that core work, or people that want to prevent injuries need that poor workout as well. And we take 30 minutes and teach that class at the YMCA once a week.
Barb McGrath 3:28
So are you doing the class online now?
Dr. Doug Pattison 3:31
No, the YMCA they’ve closed their doors. And we haven’t really opened up the online yet. We actually just shot a video last week of that core workout that we do. It’s kind of a condensed version, it’s about 10 minutes long. But we’re going to serve that up on our website, as well as make that available for YMCA members that want to participate in that in that core class.
Barb McGrath 3:52
And that’s a great idea. That’s one thing that I know a lot of people are doing right now is taking to the online world to see what they can find. Between Facebook and video and YouTube and video. There’s so much out there in terms of what you can do. But I know myself having been a sort of a retired crossfitter there’s also a lot of don’t do it that way because you’re more likely to get injured. So how does someone decipher between you know, this is good and this is no good?
Dr. Doug Pattison 4:22
Yeah, that’s difficult. It’s it’s difficult on several levels. One, there’s actually several fitness instructors out there that teach as instructors but not necessarily biomechanics. So there’s a lot of exercises that are online that may look good on the outside, but actually by doing them, they’re tearing your your spine apart, but you will know that often until the injuries have have developed. So I often recommend talking to your healthcare professional saying these are the exercises I would like to do. Are they suitable for my for my condition?
Barb McGrath 4:57
Mm hmm. You know, and I think the one of the thing that it doesn’t take into effect is if you if you’re predisposed to anything. So for example, you might have an underlying issue that, you know, has never bothered you before. But if you start to do an activity, and you consistently do it wrong, that underlying issue is all of a sudden going to become, you know, a raging issue, and then you really got something to deal with.
Dr. Doug Pattison 5:21
Well, that’s actually how the exercise came around that we teach. a PhD researcher out of the University of Waterloo named Dr. Stuart McGill, had found that people were suffering episode of back pain, they would recover, but then within six weeks, their pain would start coming back. And they were starting to try and find this pattern. And what they actually found was the exercises that the healthcare professionals and the fitness instructors were prescribing for their condition was actually making them worse. So he developed a set of exercises, he calls the big three, which are bird dogs, planks, and modified crunches, that he hooked his research people, his subjects up to machines in his laboratory and assessed load on the disk, and all the core muscles were contracting. And he found the ultimate concept, which was minimal stress on the discs, and maximal contraction of the back. So that’s how this the safety of our pro program came out of that out of that research.
Barb McGrath 6:25
Okay, so that’s very interesting. Of course, you and I did some video work last summer, and we were working around those exact concepts, um, talk a little bit of both those five exercises, because, you know, I’ll be honest, the whole reason I retired from CrossFit is because of some back injuries that I had. And as you know, once I let it go, like I just let it keep going and going. And one of these days, you know, I’ll get back into those planks. But it’s, you know, it’s a weird thing to lay in the middle of your living room when everybody else is watching TV and eating a bowl of chips. And oh, don’t mind me, I’m just going to lay on the floor and do some planks now. So talk to me about that social acceptance. And you know, and finding ways to get that into your routine.
Dr. Doug Pattison 7:10
It all comes down to how bad you want it. Because if you want it badly, you will make it happen. And you will put it into your routine. If you maybe don’t want it so bad. Sooner or later, your body will remind you that it doesn’t, it’s no longer a want. It’s a need, particularly in recurrent conditions. So a lot of people suffer what’s called episodic low back pain, or mechanical back pain. And it’s it’s not rocket science in that what often causes this recurrent mechanical back pain are weak core muscles. Because the spine is just a bag of bones without the core. And we can produce strong deltoid, strong x, big biceps, big quadriceps. And we often see that in the athletes we treat. But then when it comes down to it, the core was actually weak. And that bag of bones wasn’t supported. And often people get out of the shower, they bend over, they can’t pick up their towel, and they come into my office bent over and say, well, Doc, nothing happened. I said, Well, actually what happened was over the last period of time, your core became progressively weaker and weaker and weaker. And your body wrote a check that your core couldn’t cash. And that’s why you couldn’t stand up.
Barb McGrath 8:25
You know, that’s such a good point. One of the times that I did hurt my back, I was in the middle of training for a triathlon. And I bent over to straighten out some blankets for our dog. My back, I call it seized up. And for months, I was in pain. And I wouldn’t go so far as to say it was core related. Because you know, at that point, I could actually like count the wrenches in my absence. I was training. But there was something else from an underlying issue that absolutely didn’t have the strength that needed at that particular time.
Dr. Doug Pattison 9:01
Yeah, so back to your question of how you put it into the routine. The way you put it into the routine is you take something every day that you do and you link your core exercise to it. So if there’s a TV show that you like to watch, you reward yourself with being able to watch the TV show by saying in the first commercial break, I will do it. And if that doesn’t work for you, you say before I’m allowed to watch my show, I have to do the core exercise. And it’s like a switch the TV doesn’t go on unless the core exercise is done. Or some people don’t watch television. I say take your core exercises and we have a little brochure that we give to all of our patients and it’s just a little bit bigger than a credit card and I say put it beside your toothbrush. And before you touch your toothbrush in the evening, those core exercises have to be done and I guilt people into it. I say I want you to feel terribly guilty about brushing your teeth unless you haven’t done your gorgeous eyes.
Barb McGrath 10:00
Hopefully that doesn’t discourage them from brushing your teeth. Yeah, the dentist allowed me. Exactly. You know, that’s a great idea, you know, one of the things that I’ve done is on my computer, I can set what’s called a pomodoro timer. And so you can set the interval that you want. And so on an hourly basis, I take the last seven minutes of every hour and do something, sometimes it’s as simple as you know, get up from the chair, walk upstairs, fill up the water bottle, do whatever, but there’s movement there, because for me anyway, I can sit and work for 10 hours straight, like, I’ll go to the washroom, maybe I’ll remember to eat. But otherwise I can work straight through, which is terrible for your body. So I’ve had to, you know, trigger those reminders, fill up your water, eat, you know, move, that kind of thing. So one of these times with my seven minutes, I’ll be like, Hey, I should do a plank.
Dr. Doug Pattison 10:55
Yeah, there’s that whole concept goes into sedentary work. And you know, you’ll start hearing in the next while and the meat, if you haven’t already heard of sitting is the new smoking. And it takes a certain number of years off your life for every every year you spend sitting at your job. And one of the things that we’re finding is if we can introduce mini breaks and micro breaks into your day, it really does help. So every 10 minutes, you just sit back from your chair, you don’t even have to stand up and just take a breath, move your fingers around, take your brain, just bring it off task and then refocus it and go again. And then about once an hour, try move your chair away, stand up, stretch your arms out, take a few deep breaths, refocus, and come back to your task. third part of that is the concept of sit stand desks, or what we’re trying to call them now is stand sit desks. Yeah, we’re habitual creatures, if you’ve been a work at the office type girl or at home for years, and you’re sitting, or when you get up and get to that office, if that is that that workstation is in the sit position, it becomes a sitting desk, and maybe you might remember to stand it up. But at the end of the day, when you’re done, if you leave your sit stand desk or your stand sit desk in the standing position, you come to it that way. You work through it, we like to say about about an hour of standing 30 minutes to 60 minutes. And then if you need a sitting break, set for 10 or 15 minutes, and then stand back up again. Because we as humans were designed to be standing creatures not sitting creatures. Yeah, so we just try and keep that concept of standing as opposed to sitting. And if we were designed to be sitting creatures, you know, we would all have backsides that are this big. And we were designed to step in and 1000 years or a million years, as evolution takes us, we maybe evolve into a static sitting creature. But right now, we’re still designed to stand
Barb McGrath 13:09
Exactly. I don’t know if you can tell. So I’m actually at my stand sit desk right now and I am standing, I agree with you. The if you leave it in the standing position, you’re much more likely to stand. I also find when I’m doing meetings and conference calls and zoom calls, it’s easier to stand versus sit. Now what’s interesting is, when I first set up my desk like this, it was a lot more work to move it into the standing position, because I had to move a whole bunch of stuff, right, I had to move my standing mat, I had to pull something from somewhere, the more work it is, the less likely we are to do it. So I’ve actually, you know, fashioned a carpet over my standing mat. So even if my chair ends up on the standing mat, it’s not the end of the world. There’s nothing that inhibits like my cords aren’t too tight. So I just lifted up now. And it’s made a huge difference in terms of how often I will stand. If you’re not used to standing to work. There’s a really interesting mental shift that happens. Because for so many of us when we need to concentrate, we sit down. And I have a number of colleagues who say exactly that when they need to do really concentrated work, they still need to sit down. And I don’t find that so much. But but there’s definitely times where I’m like I need you know, certain a stack of papers or I need a certain stuff in notebooks. Now I really feel like I have to sit down so I can get this done. And I think those those shifts still need to happen for folks. Because not all of those, you know, mechanisms are sort of naturally in place for us yet. Right? I go Okay, so Like, tell me a little bit about paddison house. Obviously, it’s your business. How are you balancing it out? You’re trying to you’re teaching fitness I know you serve patients here in Regina as well, you’re out in Lumsden. How are you fitting all that in?
Dr. Doug Pattison 15:13
All the schedule has opened up timewise, because we’ve gone from seeing anywhere from 25 to 30 patients a day to between one and four. So that’s opened up quite a bit of the schedule. Between the end of March and the beginning of June, we had 12, speaking engagements, booked at conferences, and every one of those has been cancelled. And most of those just they just put the event off until the fall. So it’s left a lot of time for us to retool. And the biggest part we’re working on right now is creating an online presence. Because the best advertising I’ve ever had is word of mouth, right? Someone tells someone to tell someone that you do a good job, and they come to see you. But right now, with the hands on part of our practice, not existing. A lot of people don’t understand that we have a nutrition exercise and lifestyle consulting, part of our practice. Part of the chiropractor’s scope of practice in Saskatchewan is nutrition, exercise and lifestyle consulting. If anything, that’s part of the scope of practices is scheduling chiropractor can be covered by insurance benefits. And temporarily our association has allowed us to do teleconferencing. So this has created a really unique niche market, in that people right now have the time to focus on their health. And they can get a nutrition exercise and lifestyle coach covered by their benefits packages. So this is a perfect storm of, you know, there’s always the excuse, we don’t have time to focus on our health. Well, now you have the time, well, you know, I don’t have the money to hire a coach. Well, now you can hire a coach is covered under your benefits package, which costs you very little. So this is the perfect time, if somebody wanted to hire a coach to focus on their health, that they can actually take the 21 days it takes to make a habit and do it right now.
Barb McGrath 17:20
You know, and that’s a really good point, we were having that conversation at home the other day. In health insurance companies, you can’t see the dentist, you can’t see a chiropractor, you can’t see you can’t see you can’t see the list goes on and on and on. So in some ways, the insurance companies are kind of making a good in this particular situation. And I don’t know how that how that’s going to work for a lot of people if you have personal insurance, versus group insurance. So it’ll be interesting to see how all that works out. But yeah, talk a little bit about the the coaching that you do with clients then.
Dr. Doug Pattison 17:54
So what we do is we are currently allowed to work with any patient that we’ve worked with, in the past to work as a chiropractor. So we had done a consent, and done a physical examination. So basically anybody that seen us within the last year, which still leaves us with 2500 to 3000 patients to work with in our patient role. So what we’re going to do this week is start contacting these people that we’ve worked with, and say this is a unique opportunity, would you like to take advantage of that. And people haven’t been our practice, or in our practice before we can do the same rule, we just can’t function as a chiropractor, because my background is a fitness instructor and a speaker, we’ve taken all of these years to develop our skill set. The only difference is that I’m called a health coach. And it’s not covered under the benefits package. But some people also have flex spending accounts that they use, or they’re still working. And there’s cash in the bank and they say, you know what, now is the time that I want to change my health?
Barb McGrath 18:55
Yes, well, it’s kind of a good time to try and make some of those changes, right? Because you actually have a little bit more what I would call thinking time on your hands, as opposed to you know, you’re constantly running around dropping off the kids picking up the kids. There’s there’s just a bit of a slower pace right now. And so yeah, if you’re looking to make some of those kind of changes, I can see that it would be a good time to talk about, you know, your own business, you’re doing some retooling. You’re doing the coaching, you’re going to reach out to past clients. I assume that that means that you’ve kept some team members on board and have access to all these email addresses so you can reach out to folks how are you doing that?
Dr. Doug Pattison 19:37
Well, what we’ve done is we’ve chosen to lay off our staff and because this the age subsidy is still a quite a gray area right now. We don’t know if the government’s going to support us in that and right now, you know, our income is 5% of what it was. So once that gets clarified, we will bring staff on to to start helping us go through But right now I’m just going to the office, it gets me a break from home, I’m only a seven minute walk from our office. So I walk down to the office and, and fire up the computer and get in there and just start going through our database, finding people that we don’t have their email, get their email, and just touching base with our patients. And boy, did they ever appreciate that call coming from the people they trust when when you don’t have to follow them and just say, Hey, how you doing, and even people that we aren’t necessarily marketing our nutrition program or exercise program to it’s just somebody that had a bad sciatica a month ago, and we’re working on them when they’re in the throes of it just seeing how they’re recovering from that they truly appreciate those calls.
Barb McGrath 20:39
Yeah, you know, I can see that they would I was talking with another business owner on a show a couple of weeks ago. And she said the exact same thing. I you know, they were picking up the phone, they were calling people that they hadn’t talked to, you know, possibly since the follow the previous year. And she said the same thing, like people just appreciate the fact that you’re reaching out, you’re talking to them, you’re checking in with them. This is a really weird time for all of us. And you know, we we can’t have that human to human contact. And so we’re we’re actually searching for other ways to stay connected to people. And sometimes it’s as simple as a phone call, or a video you might put on your Facebook page. But anything that allows you to stay connected, I think makes a huge difference in both your physical and your mental health right now.
Dr. Doug Pattison 21:32
What Yeah, that’s where it comes down to this is, this is turning out to the mental game, the beginning of this, the whole reason we’re separated is so we don’t get sick. So COVID-19, that virus right now will make you sick if you get it. But by isolating, you may not be well at the end. And so there’s a difference between being sick and being well, we want to come out with this as a society as being well, we actually started a Facebook group called hashtag three things for you. And as it was actually as much for me as anybody, because I was finding I wasn’t coping well. The middle of the second, the first week, I realized after five days, I hadn’t shaved, showered or changed my pants. So I wasn’t coping well. And I thought I was. So I reached out to my friends on Facebook and said, Listen, I’m going to do something for my health, my home and other people. And I want you to keep me accountable to this. And when I checked the other day, we had 417 members, it was really been coming in and it’s people motivating others. And we’ve got people from Newfoundland to British Columbia that don’t know each other that are helping to support.
Barb McGrath 22:38
Yeah, that’s a fantastic idea. Is that a public group that others can join? And what was the group name? Again,
Dr. Doug Pattison 22:44
it’s called hash tag three things for you. And what it is, it’s a public group that you have to ask to become a member of just so we can keep the comments. relevant. And so you just have to ask a trivia question to become part of the group. Or if you don’t ask a trivia question. That’s the trivia question, then we just have to approve you manually. So it’s open to the public. It’s considered a private group, but we’re accepting anybody. Okay, that sounds awesome.
Barb McGrath 23:13
Doug, we’re actually at the end of the show here. So I’m going to quickly ask you to share the rest of your contact information. And then we’ll close out here.
Dr. Doug Pattison 23:22
So to get a hold of us online, and to access our online booking, it’s Patterson health.com. Our phone number which we do use is 306-731-2587. And if you need emergency chiropractic care, or you just want to talk more about our nutrition, exercise, lifestyle programs, the phone is still the best way to get ahold of us.
Barb McGrath 23:45
Okay, that sounds awesome. Ah, that brings us to the end of another show. So Doug, I’d like to thank you for joining me today. It’s nice to see your kitchen, my office in the background. It’s interesting seeing everybody’s in a working environment right now. But thanks for sharing that information with us. And if you haven’t already, I think about joining me hashtag three things for sorry, one more time, three things for three things for you. That’s the number three. There we go. Three things for you. Um, if you’d like to be a guest on the show, you can email me at Barb at Google girl.ca or reach out on Facebook and Instagram at Above the Fold. ca and just a reminder, you can submit your questions in advance of the live show on our Facebook page. I’m your host, Barb McGrath, local business owner and Google girl. Remember, you worked hard for your success. Don’t keep it a secret. Bye for now.
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Feel a twinge? An ounce of prevention as they say…
Our guest today is an expert in prevention. Dr. Doug Pattison is a chiropractor, health nut and speaker on the care and maintenance of your back.
Tune in as he shares his insights and tips to stay healthy as a slave to the laptop.
Connect with Doug @ Pattison Health
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