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Core Training

Core Training with Rehabilitative Ultrasound Imaging (RUSI)

Rehabilitative ultrasound imaging is a cutting edge diagnostic tool that has revolutionized the treatment of back and pelvic pain. ProActive Health is one of the only clinics in the GTA with the specialized expertise and equipment to offer RUSI for core training and pain relief from spinal, pelvic and sports injuries.

The RUSI Breakthrough

The RUSI Breakthrough The stabilizing muscles of your core play an important role in keeping your spine strong and protecting your back and pelvis. If your core stabilizers are not working properly, they can slow down your recovery from injury and cause chronic health problems, such as low back pain, sciatica, urinary incontinence and pelvic instability.

These powerful muscles are involved in almost every movement you make, but they are buried deep in the abdomen and pelvis and have always been difficult to see, feel and treat. Until now, that is.

RUSI has literally changed the picture for therapeutic treatment and training of the core muscles. RUSI instantly provides video images of your core muscles at work, allowing us to look deep beneath your skin to identify problem areas and provide the best treatment for you.*

*RUSI is a non-invasive technology that uses high-frequency sound waves to produce images. It does not use radiation and does not pierce the skin.

Detect Muscle Imbalance: RUSI images can show you and your physiotherapist how effectively the different layers of your abdominal muscle are contracting and relaxing.

Like many people, you may have developed an imbalance in your abdominal muscles. The upper or superficial layers of abdominal muscle can become overactive and may dominate the deep stabilizer muscles, causing them to become weaker and underactive. This imbalance is often the hidden cause of injuries, back pain and poor posture. All of your core muscles must be balanced and work together to prevent injury and keep your spine stable, strong and healthy.

Assess Muscle Firing Patterns: With RUSI, we can also check your muscle firing patterns to see if your stabilizing muscles are “switching on” at the right time to protect you from pain and injury. For example, your transverse abdominal muscle, which acts as your body’s natural weight-lifting belt, should fire before you start to move so it can stabilize and support your back and pelvis. If it fires too late or doesn’t fire at all, you are at greater risk of injury.

The diagnostic images produced by our advanced RUSI system provide invaluable information that helps us to:

  • Accurately assess the quality, endurance and firing patterns of your core muscles;
  • Precisely diagnose your problem areas; and
  • Customize a training program to your needs.

RUSI also provides immediate visual biofeedback that empowers you to take control of your health. Seeing your muscles in action as you exercise strengthens your mind-body connection. With the help of RUSI and our highly trained clinicians, you can learn to feel and activate your deep stabilizers and accurately track your progress as you train and strengthen your core.

Health Benefits of Core Training with RUSI:

Relieves:

  • Low back pain
  • Pelvic pain
  • Urinary and fecal incontinence
  • Sciatica
  • Pregnancy back pain
  • Hip pain
  • Diastasis rectus abdominus

Improves:

  • Posture
  • Balance
  • Athletic performance
  • Bladder control
  • Recovery from orthopaedic surgery
  • Sexual performance

Helps prevent:

  • Injuries
  • Falls

How Can RUSI Help You?

If you have taken a sport, yoga, pilates or exercise class, you’ve done core-strengthening exercises. But are you sure you’re doing them correctly? The truth is, you probably aren’t.

Like many people today, you may have lost the ability to switch on your deep stabilizing muscles when you need them. This is particularly true if you have back pain, pelvic pain, urinary incontinence or muscle damage caused by an injury, pregnancy or surgery. In fact, studies show that even high-level athletes can suffer from weakness and instability in the deep muscles of their core.

Without the support of these powerful muscles, you are vulnerable to pain and injury when you perform daily activities, exercise or compete in sports. If your stabilizer muscles are not working properly, it is unlikely that they will fully recover without an exercise program aimed specifically at retraining them to activate.

Protect Yourself – Train Before You Strengthen

If your brain can’t activate a muscle, your body can’t strengthen it, no matter how many core exercises you do. Core training re-boots your core muscles, restoring the activation patterns that trigger the right muscles to work at are the right time. It also reestablishes the natural balance between deep and superficial muscles to keep your spine stable and resilient.

Research has shown that it takes mental focus and multiple repetitions for your brain to learn a complex set of actions. It may be difficult at first, but the more you practice your core training program, the more natural it will feel for you to engage your deep core muscles in your daily activities. You’ll be surprised at the progress you can make in a short time, even after years of muscle weakness and incorrect firing patterns.

RUSI speeds up your learning curve, giving you the instant feedback you need to isolate each muscle and train it to contract, relax and activate properly. The better you are at isolating and activating your stabilizing muscles, the faster you will rewire your brain to integrate these actions into your normal movements. RUSI will also help you correct bad habits, providing the visual cues you need to fine tune your training – after all, perfect practice makes perfect!

Once you can activate your stabilizing muscles in a variety of positions (sitting, standing, lifting, squatting etc), your physiotherapist will help you progress to a strengthening program tailored specifically to the demands of your daily life.

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