As chronic pain specialists, we firmly believe that no one should have to give up their passions in life because of their pain. This includes hobbies. We are dedicated to doing all that we can to help you find ways to experience a high quality of life that chronic pain can’t interfere with. To that end, this month our Benbrook doctors accepting new patients (locations also in Bedford and Lewisville) are sharing tips on assistive technology that will help you enjoy pain-free sports! Read on to learn more.
Hiking, Walking & Running
If your running, walking or hiking hobby has had to take a backseat due to chronic pain, we’ve got great news for you! Assistive technology for these sports is not only easy to use (or “low tech”) but also available just about anywhere. Consider giving these two types of aids a try:
- Trekking Poles: These are essentially ski poles built to support walking and hiking instead of skiing. They come with a wide variety of benefits, including added balance, joint protection (especially in the knees), improved posture and reduced fatigue.
- Customized Running Footwear: Our orthopedic doctors in Benbrook TX (locations also in Bedford and Lewisville) as well as running specialists recommend investing in shoes made to support your own individual biomechanics. Before buying, consult your doctor to learn more about your arch height, any over- or under- pronation and stride length. Also, be sure to replace your shoes as soon as they begin to show wear.
Bicycling is already at the top of many doctors’ lists for patients with chronic pain. It’s low-impact and high enjoyment makes it an easy win. However, that doesn’t mean it can’t still use a bit of an assist, especially for those with chronic low back pain. Here are two of our top picks for biking technology:
- E-Bikes: Electric Bikes (E-Bikes) offer an electric pedal assist feature that can help with the more challenging parts of a ride. You can choose to turn the motor off or on and you can even select how much of an assist you would like to use.
- Recumbent Trikes: Recumbent trikes offer several benefits to those who find that traditional bikes trigger their chronic back pain. The tricycle frame allows the rider to sit on a comfortable seat in a reclined position. It’s designed to support everything from neck down to sacrum by distributing the weight along a wider wheelbase. The unique location of the handlebars also removes any added pressure to the rider’s wrists.
If you or a loved one lives with joint pain or arthritis, bowling can become difficult or even impossible. Thankfully, there are solutions for you, too! Not wanting anyone to be stopped by injury, disability or chronic pain, one company has developed a ball with an alternate grip style called a handle bowling ball.
Instead of the traditional 3-hole style, the retractable handle style allows the ball to be held by a spring-loaded handle that retracts upon release. There’s even a process that a bowler can go through to get this style of ball approved for sanctioned USBC league and tournament play!
If the quiet, pensive sport of fishing is more your style, we have some recommendations for you, too. Most of these solutions are designed to help lessen fatigue and offer increased wrist and elbow support to reduce joint pain. They are also helpful for anyone with a weakened grip.
- Rod Holder: This tool helps support wrist and grip challenges by offering alternate ways to hold the fishing pole. Depending on your specific pain triggers, you can find models that mount on the boat or pier as well as to your waist or wrist.
- Electric Spinning Reel: Similar to the concept we shared in the bicycling category, this technology adds a motorized assist to the process of reeling in your catch. There are several different models – with or without the reel as well as different levels of retrieving speed and weight capacity.
Finally, we also have some recommendations that will help eliminate pain in your golf game. Along with warming up, having supportive shoes and a golf cart to help you with the weight of your club set, we also have some assistive technology tools.
- Ball Pick-up & Tee Placement Technology: There are a handful of products on the market with a claw or suction style retriever/grabber that allows the golfer to avoid bending over to pick up their ball. There are also similar products available that help with tee placement without bending over. These would be helpful for anyone with chronic low back, hip and knee pain or arthritis.
- Club Grip Technology: For more support in your club grip, we recommend using gloves and wrist braces. This will help offer support for those with arthritis in their hands, fingers and wrist. Some gloves are built specifically for this challenge with added padding. Consult a golf coach for specific product recommendations.
At CPI we seek to be the healthcare provider patients choose. Our mission is to provide compassionate, innovative healthcare that exceeds our patients’ expectations. Our core values are honor, excellence, commitment and compassion. We treat patients like family, honoring their humanity. We focus on YOU the person and not just the pain. Call today to schedule your first appointment.