Hmmm, I thought Andrew Weil was
a naturopath. He lives in my town and I see supplements with his photo on them everywhere I go. Anyways...
I agree that something feeling better doesn't necessarily make it better, and of course this is true in TCM as well--needles certainly don't feel very good, and TCM is opposed to certain arthritis meds that they say cause "dampness" and exacerbate the problem while treating the symptoms. I suppose whether or not you use the TCM model depends on whether or not you believe in "dampness," or "blood stasis" or chi even... or the idea that people could present the same symptoms and have totally different "conditions" (or patterns of disharmony to use TCM terminology). I've had pretty amazing experiences with TCM for serious issues that I can't explain scientifically, so I'm a believer, but I drew the line when they tried to get me to take a "patent formula" with stir-fried squirrel poop.
Robb, I'm assuming you don't want your clients to punch you and you obviously have good science-based reasons for doing cryo... are there any reasons for doing it other than quicker recovery? Do you think it'd be harmful NOT to use it-- do you think NOT using ice will potentially cause problems later on?
As far as heat for back pain, wouldn't you know if you were causing chronic inflammation, or is this one of those things like yoga or static stretching before workouts that feels really good but will mess you up without you realizing the cause? The two studies I linked to seemed to indicate that heat could be useful, but again they are short-term and like the ice research don't have follow-ups.
My own personal experience this time around is that ice seemed to make things worse (but I'm sure me trying to twirl sticks and do db swings didn't help matters any) and heat with dit da (by heat I mean 1-3 applications with hot towels--they cool down pretty fast) has helped a *lot* (but this may be due to the acupuncture and added rest days as well--too many frickin' variables).
I realize that I've contradicted myself about a zillion times already in this thread alone so I will stop trying to argue my pro-heat case.
Just curious whether you think not using ice could cause long-term issues (scar tissue laid down in a non-beneficial way or whatnot) and whether damage (inflammation) caused by heat would be noticeable in the short-term. Thanks!!