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Health DataSheet: Inversion therapy a vital part of health
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PapayaTapper Away
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DataSheet: Inversion therapy a vital part of health
Been working on this a while and finally done (I wanted to make my 1000th post a meaningful one). I'm posting this here in the lifestyle section rather than weight lifting / fitness as I believe the benefits of inversion are an important if not critical component that can enhance most everyone's general quality of life.

There is a lot of what I believe to be valuable info in post the with a primary focus on the many benefits... so please bear with me on the length. It's important to understand the benefits of inversion in detail else one will likely remain unconvinced and thereby miss out on what I believe should be an integral part of maintaining health, longevity and quality of life

In case you don't know what "inversion" is essentially it's hanging upside down via either "boots" or "table" apparatus (We'll get into the differences, pros and cons, etc. later in the post) But here's what they look like:

[Image: bootsfeatures.jpg]

There are a number of workouts that can be done in the inverted position as well but for purposes of this post I'll limit it to just the therapeutic aspects

Premise:The constant pull of gravity is the most powerful force your body will see during your lifetime. Think about it. From even before the moment we enter the world gravity is acting to compress our bodies: 24/7, 365 and continues unrelentingly until we leave it. Inversion is effectively the only way of counter acting the cumulative effects of that compression

Background
Inversion has been an important part of my life for the last 25 years. As a kid I was very active and got into organized sports from around age 7 and continues, to a lesser extent, to this day at age 45. In high school and college I wrestled played volleyball, and baseball. I was very much into lifting and running. As sophomore in high school I several bouts of knee inflammation that were diagnosed as bursitis and had to have them drained twice before I graduated. I was told I needed surgery by more than one sports orthopedic surgeon. Additionally I'm 6'3" with 32" inseam which means I have have a long torso. And so I have always been prone to back "tweaks"and until I discovered inversion suffered from bouts of back pain.

I stumbled upon inversion in my early twenties when after a particularly bad back episode. I've been doing it essentially regularly ever since and am so glad I did

Benefits
Inversion offers a system of stretching and light exercise that helps to slow or reverse the harmful, compression of the body by gravity. Used sensibly, inversion is extremely beneficial, and no more dangerous than many other popular and widely practiced fitness activities.

The experiences of thousands of people who invert regularly is that it gives them the relief from back and neck pain they've been looking for. Just as important, they gain the rejuvenating effects of inversion on the entire body, providing health benefits far beyond the relief of back pain.

Benefits Summary:

Reduce back pain
Provide care and feeding for discs
Achieve functional fitness
Train core muscle groups without loading the spine
Recover from high impact workouts
Reduce pain in overworked muscles
Strengthen ligaments
Relieve stress
Stimulate circulation
Train for balance and orientation
Age gracefully
Inversion therapy and depression



Over half of people who invert on a regular basis do so to relieve back pain. But to discount inversion as simply a back pain remedy would be to ignore a wide range of benefits that can be easily achieved by a passive, or more active, inversion session.


There are 5 major systems in the body that the practice of inversions positively influences:


Cardiovascular,
Lymphatic,
Nervous
Endocrine.
Skeletal/muscular


The circulatory system is comprised of the heart, lungs and the entire system of vessels that feed oxygen and collect carbon dioxide and other waste products from the cells. Arteries fan out in an intricate tributary system from the heart, which pumps freshly oxygenated blood from the lungs outward. Veins return blood to the heart and, unlike arteries, make up a low-pressure system that depends on muscular movement or gravity to move blood along. One-way valves at regular intervals prevent backwash and keep fluids moving towards the heart in a system know as venous return. Turning yourself upside down encourages venous return.

Inversions also ensure healthier and more effective lung tissue. When standing or sitting upright, gravity pulls our fluids earthward, and blood "perfuses" or saturates the lower lungs more thoroughly. The lower lung tissue is thus more compressed than the upper lungs. As a result, the air we inhale moves naturally into the open alveoli of the upper lungs. Unless we take a good, deep breath, we do not raise the ration of air to blood in the lower lungs. When we invert, blood perfuses the well-ventilated upper lobes of the lungs, thus ensuring more efficient oxygen-to-blood exchange and healthier lung tissue.

Inverting also gives the heart a break. The heart works persistently to ensure that freshly oxygenated blood makes its way up to the brain and its sensory organs. When inverting, the pressure differential across the body is reversed, and blood floods to the brain with little work from the heart.

The lymphatic system is responsible for waste removal, fluid balance, and immune system response. Lymph vessels arise among the capillary beds of the circulatory system, but comprise a separate system that transports stray proteins, waste materials, and extra fluids, filtering the fluid back through the lymph nodes and dumping what remains into the circulatory system at the subclavian veins, under the collarbones. The lymphatic system is analogous to a sewage system, an intricate, underground network tied to every house in town which keeps the citizens healthy.

Lymph, like the blood returning to your heart via the veins, is dependent upon muscular movement and gravity to facilitate its return. Because the lymphatic system is a closed pressure system and has one-way valves that keep lymph moving towards the heart, when one turns upside down, the entire lymphatic system is stimulated, thus strengthening your immune system. Viparita karani is a good example of this, as it is a mild inversion that one can enjoy with no stress on the body.

Inversion represents the "Quiet Side" of fitness, helping your body to recover from the compressive effects of gravity and daily activities. Doctors, physical therapists and sports trainers recognize inversion as a safe and effective form of therapy for the spine and weight-bearing joints. In fact, the US Army is writing Inversion into its worldwide physical training manual that will be adopted for the new millennium.

Why It Works

Inversion therapy puts gravity to work for you by placing your body in line with the downward force of gravity. Using your own body weight as a natural form of traction, inversion elongates the spine by increasing the space between the vertebrae, relieving the pressure on discs, ligaments and nerve roots. Less pressure means less back pain.

Every nerve root leaves the spine through an opening between the vertebrae - the size of this opening is largely controlled by the height of the disc. Discs that are plump and contained in their ligament "wrappers" are necessary to keep the nerve roots free of pressure and your body free from pain.

Stress and tension can cause muscle spasms in the back, neck and shoulders, as well as headaches and other problems. Tense muscles produce spasms and pain by reducing the supply of oxygen and by reducing blood and lymph flow, allowing the accumulation of waste chemicals in the muscles. Inverting yourself to as little as 25° for even a few minutes can help relax tense muscles and speed the flow of lymphatic fluids which flush out the body's wastes and carry them to the blood stream. The faster this waste is cleared, and fresh supplies of oxygen are introduced, the faster stiffness and pain in the muscles can disappear. A study conducted by physiotherapist L.J. Nosse found that, "EMG (electromyographic) activity, an indicator of muscle pain, declined over 35% within ten seconds of assuming the inverted position."2*

Inversion can also help to encourage good posture. When inverted, your body is in line with gravity. Your spine wants to naturally go to it proper form (a gentle "s" curve). A regular program of inversion can help you to maintain proper posture and keep your body in balance. Poor posture is not only unhealthy, it's unattractive.

Inversion Helps Provide Care and Feeding for the Discs

Your discs have three jobs: to separate the vertebrae, provide flexibility to the spine and to act as shock absorbers. Disc separation is especially important since all communication between the brain and the body is via nerves that pass between each vertebra. Insufficient distance between the vertebrae can result in nerve root pressure and pain.

The inner core of your discs is made of jelly-like material that provides the flexibility and "cushioning" in your back. When you are sitting, standing, or exercising (weight-bearing activities), fluid is squeezed out of your discs and into adjacent soft tissue (just as you would squeeze moisture out of a sponge). As a result, your discs lose some of their moisture and height. To prove this fact, measure yourself in the morning and then again at night. You will lose 1/2" to 3/4" in height by the end of the day. This lost fluid translates into your discs loosing some of their cushioning effect.

When you are sleeping, "a non-weight bearing activity", your discs (or "intra-vertebral sponges") expand as they soak up fluid and nutrients and increase the length of your spine by as much as 3/4". But you don't gain the full height back, accumulating to a total of 1/2" to 2" in height throughout your lifetime.

In fact, the only time in your life when you are giving your discs a full break is when you are inverting. Even when you are lying down, disc pressure remain at 25% of when standing. The hundreds of ligaments and muscles that encase and mobilize the spine act like a bunch of rubber bands holding the spine in compression equal to 25% of standing body weight. Inverting to 60 degrees is necessary to reduce the disc pressure to zero.3* Inverting is the most effective posture that allows your discs to recover from the constant pressure placed on them during your daily activities.

When your discs are compressed and thinned, your vertebrae potentially place more pressure on these nerve roots. More pressure equals more pain. As you relax, your spine begins to stretch. The space between each vertebra will increase, thus decreasing the pressure on the discs between each vertebra. This encourages fluid movement back into the disc, helping to keep your discs plump and happy and decreasing the pain in your back.


"Grapes and Raisins"
Discs are soft, rubbery pads between the hard bones (vertebrae) of the spinal column. When they are young and healthy, discs are plump with water, which keeps them hydrated and they have the perfect consistency to work as shock absorbers for the vertebrae. They also act to maintain the space between the vertebrae so the nerves are not impinged upon. Over time the daily stress of gravity, sitting, twisting and the process of aging may dry them out like grapes turned into raisins. This is called desiccation. This disc desiccation or drying out can be reversed and the disc can be rehydrated.
As discs deteriorate, their tough outer shell weakens. One swing on the tennis court or lifting in the wrong way can burst the interior gel through the casing, like jelly squishing out of a doughnut.

When a disc bulges against one of the two sciatic nerves, which run from the spinal cord down the legs, the pain can be excruciating. This bulge can also take place in the cervical area which affects the neck, shoulders, arms and hands.
Inversion therapy addresses the duel function of the discs, their ability to act as shock absorber and spacer.


Inversion Helps to Achieve Functional Fitness
A person can only achieve functional fitness (the ability to remain flexible and active throughout a lifetime) by incorporating every element of fitness into their lifestyle: cardiovascular, strength, and flexibility. Inversion can be utilized as an simple, effective method to achieve each essential element of fitness:

Cardiovascular:
The simple act of inverting the body can actually help to stimulate circulation, resulting in a mild, even relaxing, cardiovascular workout. Strength: More active inversion allows people to add strength training (crunches, sit-ups, extensions, etc) with no loads to the spine. Flexibility: Passive inversion can help to maintain flexibility of the joints and spine, encouraging good posture and properly hydrating the discs between each vertebrae. This element of fitness is rarely addressed with the equipment offered at most gyms, and is often overlooked as an important part of a complete workout.

Train Core Muscle Groups without Loading the Spine
Core muscles - the muscles providing support for the torso (abdominals, internal and external obliques, and lower back muscles) - are responsible for the maintenance of posture, efficiency in movement and transfer of power in the body.

Weak abdominal muscles allow you to slump forward, making you more vulnerable to misalignments and injury. Well-developed core muscles improve performance in athletic activities as well as with day-to-day activities, supporting the spine in proper alignment to avoid injury. Strong abdominal muscles support the spine by increasing internal pressure (similar to using a back support when lifting heavy objects) to help relieve the load on the discs in the spinal column.

Unfortunately, most exercises designed to build core muscles must be performed with great technical accuracy or they can cause injury to the lumbar spine. Inverting actually helps users to focus on building core strength without loading the spine. When performed from full inversion, exercises such as crunches, sit-ups and back extensions can build strength in the core with minimal risk of hyperextension or loading the spine improperly.

Recover from High Impact / High Stress Workouts
Nearly every activity involves some form of compression of the spine. The compressive effect of gravity is compounded by activities such as running, weightlifting, aerobics, skiing, biking, and golf, which can exact an incredible toll on the spine, discs, and back muscles.

If we perform our daily activities in the wrong way we can create skeletal misalignments. Most often these misalignments are nominal and will readily correct themselves given the opportunity. Inversion with movement (such as side-to-side bends, back arches, and a partial sit-up or two) provides that opportunity.

One-sided activities can be particularly troublesome for the athlete for two reasons: The body will tend to over compensate for the strong-side muscle groups, pulling the spine out of alignment, and one-sided activities usually involve rotation of the spine, often under incredible loads. Examples of these activities are golf, water skiing, tennis, bowling, racquetball, and baseball. Inversion after physical activity may help to realign the spine and keep athletes performing at higher levels for longer periods of time.

Still other physical activities tend to create tension in the muscles due to a contraction of the major muscle groups for long periods of time. In-line skating, swimming, bicycling, windsurfing and rowing are examples of activities which tend to create a great deal of lower back strain. Athletes in these sports can receive a tremendous boost from the relaxing stretch of inversion therapy.

Inversion Reduces Pain in Overworked Muscles
Athletes prone to stiffness or muscle spasms after a workout can benefit from the lymphatic wash provided by inversion. Intense muscle activities cause muscles to become sore. This is due to the build up of large amounts of lactic acid and cellular debris in the muscles.

Unlike the cardiovascular system, the lymphatic system has no pump. Only the alternate contraction and relaxation of muscles move lymphatic fluid "uphill" through capillaries and one-way valves to the upper chest for cleansing. Inverting the body so that gravity works with, not against, these one-way valves helps to push the lactic fluid up to the chest. The faster the lymphatic system is cleared, the faster the ache and pain of stiff muscles disappears.

Inversion Helps to Strengthen Ligaments
Ligaments are the fibrous strips that hold your bones together. Ligaments are flexible but not very elastic, and can tear when they are stretched too much. The gentle reverse loading and movement that occurs while you invert strengthens ligaments and connective tissue, and helps to protect the athlete from serious injury. Ligaments that are not moved regularly in the right way become stiff, inelastic and more easily torn.

Inversion Helps to Relieve Stress
Your body will let you know when you are stressed out - back and neck pain, headaches and muscle tension is your body's way of protesting against stress and forcing you to slow down.

If nothing else, Inversion is a great way to take a break and relax. The full body stretch can be rejuvenating and can also help to reduce muscle tension. A study conducted by physiotherapist LJ Nose found that EMG activity (a measure of muscle tension) declined over 35% within ten seconds of inverting. Inversion, therefore, is helpful in relieving tension and pain in your muscles that may have been caused by stress.

In fact, for centuries yoga practitioners have recognized the concept of turning the body upside down to find relaxation. The head stand position is a form of "postural exchange" (reversing the direction of gravity). Not everyone wants to do headstands, so inversion on Teeter TM equipment creates an easier alternative with the added benefit of joint decompression.

Inversion Helps to Stimulate Circulation
The cardiovascular system is made up of the heart, veins, arteries, and capillaries. It is your body's transportation system, carrying food and oxygen to your body's cells. Your heart pumps blood through the system: oxygen-rich blood from the lungs goes out through the arteries and waste-filled blood comes back through the veins to be cleansed and recharged with oxygen. The cardiovascular system also retrieves blood from your legs and lower torso, carrying it upwards against the force of gravity. Inversion allows your body to work with gravity to ease the circulation process.

Inversion Provides Balance and Orientation Training
The performance of inverted activities can be enhanced through inversion training. Inversion helps to develop balance awareness, which occurs when the upper regions of the inner ear are stimulated. Skydivers, gymnasts, springboard divers, and scuba divers find that inversion therapy fine-tunes the body and inner ear to the inverted world. Inversion therapy has also been used to normalize the ear canal as a treatment for motion sickness.

Inversion Helps to Age Gracefully
Height Maintenance: Most people will lose from 1/2" - 2" (1-5 cm) in height during their lifetime due to thinning discs. As a baby, your discs are 90% water. However, the water content in the discs decreases to 70% by age 70. An active inversion program can help maintain more of your original height. See Care and Feeding for Discs.

"Decongests" Internal Organs:

As the body ages, internal organs (kidneys, stomach, intestines) begin to prolapse as a result of the constant downward force of gravity. "Middle-age spread" (that spare tire around the waste), apart from weight gain, is due to the relocation of internal organs. Digestion and waste elimination problems are also common symptoms of organs going south. Inversion helps prolapsed organs resume their normal shape and place in the body.

Increases Oxygen to the Brain:

Peter Russell notes in The Brain Book that the deterioration of the brain is not directly linked to age alone. Rather, this deterioration is caused by hardening arteries and high blood pressure, both of which decrease the supply of oxygen to the brain. Thus a major step in reducing mental deterioration (or senility) over time may simply be increasing the oxygen supply to the brain. Keeping the brain active and well supplied with oxygen may help maintain your brain function and mental sharpness throughout your entire life. (NOTE: If you have high blood pressure, consult your physician before starting an inversion program.)

Relieves Varicose Veins:
When inverting, you are helping your heart to clear the blood from your feet, legs, and lower body. This allows the blood in your limbs to circulate more easily, which may help to drain blood from varicose veins.

Inversion Therapy and Depression
One of the surprising results of inversion therapy is an overall sense of well being many people feel. Usually this is in conjunction with the reduction of pain, disability and an improvement in the quality of life. However, just as exercise will produce endorphins (opium like compounds in the brain) inversion therapy may have a similar effect. Since most people report feeling better as it directly relates to the reduction of the pain they purchased the inversion table for initially we are dealing with back pain sufferers primarily. Once this primary pain issue is ameliorated many people report continued use of the table for other reasons. After being on their feet and feeling fatigued people will hang at a 45 degree angle for 15-20 minutes for a "recharge" when they come home from work. This increased sense of energy and relaxation many people feel may be part of the reason inversion therapy is being used more and more as part of a program to reduce depression and improve the general quality of a person's life.

Considering the circulatory and lymphatic stimulation, oxygenation of the brain, stretching of the muscles, ligaments and tendons and the multitude of other benefits it is easy to see how inversion therapy may have a positive effect on one's outlook on life.


The experience of thousands of people who invert regularly is that it gives them the relief from back and neck pain they've been looking for. Just as important, they gain the rejuvenating effects of inversion on the entire body, providing health benefits far beyond the relief of back pain.

Convinced of the benefits yet? If not well I tried my best. If so read on:

The apparatus basics: Boots or Table

There are basically two categories of inversion apparatus Boot type essentially consists of adjustable padded anklets with a hook in the front. The hooks in the front are essentially what you end up hanging from:

[Image: maxresdefault.jpg]

These can be used with a plain old pull up bar (as seen above). The set I've had came with a double (pictured) bar which makes mounting and dismounting much easier:

[Image: how-to-growth-taller-088.jpg]


In the "hang" position I usually hang anywhere from 1-15 min depending on time and if I haven't hung in a while. I usually will do some deep breathing while doing a gentle twisting and focused relaxation sequence focusing on neck, shoulders, upper back, mid back, lower back, hips, knees, and ankles.

Note: I've found that hanging in the "mount" position or in other words with boots in hooked position while holding bar is a great relaxing stretch while hanging in the "U" position. I also like to hold this position for a few a minute or two before dismounting in order to avoid the light-headedness that can occur when blood rushes back out of your head.

Additionally if you've never inverted before you will want to start with no more than 10-15 seconds of full hanging and work up from there. Some people are more susceptible to fainting than others so I recommend having someone else present the first time just in case.

Boot type pros and cons

Pros
Cheaper: Cost of the boots and bar run about $159 -$225 depending (I have the original Teeter brand but there are a number of other well reviewed brands)
Space: Bar can be set up in any doorway

Cons:
Limited in function. You either in mount or full hang position
More difficult getting in and out of. (It's getting harder and harder for me and I know a table set up is in my future. I've recently added a short piece of thick knotted rope to the grab bar to help me get up and down. Just in case as I live by myself)

The second category of apparatus is the inversion table:

[Image: pDSP1-20286502v750.jpg]

The table allows one to strap ankles in and then slowly lean back:

[Image: Inversion-Table.png]

Varying the the degree of tension

[Image: images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSmABg9mEUH1Pe8xarmuew...dZC10aQZ3v]


And into the full hang position
[Image: stringio.jpeg?1386591058]



Table type pros and cons

Pros:
More flexibility in use. You can just lean back and stop at desired tension. (There are also a lot of people using the table in "rocking inversion therapy" that is claimed to essentially pumps fluids into vertebrae and organs. The rocking motion creates an accordion like pumping action that helps to hydrate and increase the fluid circulation to the discs. It creates a compression and expansion).
Easier mounting and dismounting

Cons;
Higher cost: The Teeter tables range anywhere from $324-$520 depending on source and accessories (lumbar stretcher, massage nodes, etc). I've never owned a table but have tried them (my gym has one) and the Teeter brand seems to be the best built. Plus they pioneered the product so they've been in the market the longest. There may be other brands that are good but I have no personal knowledge of them. If someone else does I'd love to hear about it.
More space: Its a larger apparatus if you don't have the room. They usually can be folded up and slid under a bed though


There you have what I know. There are a number of youtube videos that further illustrate the info I've posted as well as demonstrate different products, workouts, etc.

I hope this proves as beneficial to others as it has to me over the years. I welcome any questions (I'll be happy to share what I know through my personal experience but don't claim to be an expert)

If anyone has any knowledge or experiences they'd like to share please post it here as well






1 The Johns Hopkins White Papers, The Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions, Baltimore, MD, 2000.
2 Nosse, L: Inverted Spinal Traction. Arch Phys Med Rehab 59: 367-370, Aug 78.
3 Nachemson, A and Elfstrom, G; Intravital Dynamic Pressure Measurements in Lumbar Discs. Scandinavian Journal of Rehab Medicine, supplement, 1970)

_______________________________________
- Does She Have The "Happy Gene" ?
-Inversion Therapy
-Let's lead by example


"Leap, and the net will appear". John Burroughs

"The big question is whether you are going to be able to say a hearty yes to your adventure."
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(This post was last modified: 01-06-2016 07:07 PM by PapayaTapper.)
01-06-2016 06:57 PM
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RE: DataSheet: Inversion therapy a vital part of health
Great post.

I've used one a few times and definitely felt back relief.

As for the internal benefits - just ask any yoga instructor. Yoga folk LOVE inversions.

Costco has the Teeter Hang Ups EP-560+ for $300.

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RE: DataSheet: Inversion therapy a vital part of health
I'm not sure if I'd trust some Chinese made hard plastic to not break, especially with long term use (although correct me if I'm wrong - are they made of metal? It looks like plastic in the photos). The problem as I see it is that if you fall off the table or the hooks from a fully inverted position, you are going to land at an angle that can very easily break your neck - not necessarily break one of the neck bones, but the stress could easily tear the ligaments of the upper neck, basically tearing your head off your neck. Although not necessarily fatal, this is a very serious injury. I've seen people break their necks from falling off short distances off ladders, so you don't need a lot of force, you just need it to be applied in a certain manner; so even a short drop off could be a disaster.

I'd say a wall assisted hand stand is the better option if you want to spend time upside down:
- it's safer, you can land on your elbows/back if you slip, not on your head
- it's cheap, make some space in your home and it costs $0.

[Image: FreestandingHandstand4.jpg]

I suppose when there is enough strength, then one can graduate to free handstands:
[Image: WallWalkingHandstand3.jpg]

Alternatively, use those leg brace things at a low enough height that you can do put your hands on the ground, so basically you'll be doing an assisted hand stand - if the boots break, your hands can then control your fall.

I admit that I am very biased because I've managed people with broken necks due to very stupid freak accidents, so maybe I am overreacting and maybe these instruments noted by the OP are indeed extremely safe; if anyone can chime in on how they are manufactured and what safety standards are used, please advise.

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RE: DataSheet: Inversion therapy a vital part of health
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RE: DataSheet: Inversion therapy a vital part of health
(01-06-2016 06:57 PM)PapayaTapper Wrote:  [Image: bootsfeatures.jpg]

Would bang chick inverted style.
01-09-2016 02:02 AM
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RE: DataSheet: Inversion therapy a vital part of health
(01-09-2016 02:02 AM)Windom Earle Wrote:  
(01-06-2016 06:57 PM)PapayaTapper Wrote:  [Image: bootsfeatures.jpg]

Would bang chick inverted style.

Oh yeah...I did have a chick blow me a few times while inverted. It was pretty intense

_______________________________________
- Does She Have The "Happy Gene" ?
-Inversion Therapy
-Let's lead by example


"Leap, and the net will appear". John Burroughs

"The big question is whether you are going to be able to say a hearty yes to your adventure."
Joseph Campbell
01-09-2016 12:54 PM
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RE: DataSheet: Inversion therapy a vital part of health
(01-09-2016 12:27 AM)Thomas the Rhymer Wrote:  I'm not sure if I'd trust some Chinese made hard plastic to not break, especially with long term use (although correct me if I'm wrong - are they made of metal? It looks like plastic in the photos). The problem as I see it is that if you fall off the table or the hooks from a fully inverted position, you are going to land at an angle that can very easily break your neck - not necessarily break one of the neck bones, but the stress could easily tear the ligaments of the upper neck, basically tearing your head off your neck. Although not necessarily fatal, this is a very serious injury. I've seen people break their necks from falling off short distances off ladders, so you don't need a lot of force, you just need it to be applied in a certain manner; so even a short drop off could be a disaster.

I'd say a wall assisted hand stand is the better option if you want to spend time upside down:
- it's safer, you can land on your elbows/back if you slip, not on your head
- it's cheap, make some space in your home and it costs $0.

[Image: FreestandingHandstand4.jpg]

I suppose when there is enough strength, then one can graduate to free handstands:
[Image: WallWalkingHandstand3.jpg]

Alternatively, use those leg brace things at a low enough height that you can do put your hands on the ground, so basically you'll be doing an assisted hand stand - if the boots break, your hands can then control your fall.

I admit that I am very biased because I've managed people with broken necks due to very stupid freak accidents, so maybe I am overreacting and maybe these instruments noted by the OP are indeed extremely safe; if anyone can chime in on how they are manufactured and what safety standards are used, please advise.

The hanging bar and the hooks are thick gauge steel The only plastic is on the exterior of the ankle binding. The inside is lined with a thick density foam so they're very comfortable even when you cinch them down tightly

If your'e in a handstand you are still under compression so you don't get the benefits of the stretch/traction (tension) when hanging

The Teeter products are UL listed. I'm 6'3" and about 230lbs and have had the same apparatus for almost 25 without incident. The only potential problem I can see is if soemone deosn't properly secure the hanging.

To your point yes you can reach the ground with your hands

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- Does She Have The "Happy Gene" ?
-Inversion Therapy
-Let's lead by example


"Leap, and the net will appear". John Burroughs

"The big question is whether you are going to be able to say a hearty yes to your adventure."
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(This post was last modified: 01-09-2016 01:05 PM by PapayaTapper.)
01-09-2016 01:01 PM
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musashi Offline
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RE: DataSheet: Inversion therapy a vital part of health
So after being at the chiro yesterday and looking at my X-rays Ive decided I'll need to buy a teeter hang up. My l5-s5 is compressed the worst. Basically I need to do a total revamp on my resistance trying program, but he said its reversible if I'm diligent. I will get another X-ray in one year. Thank you for this data sheet!
03-09-2016 08:05 AM
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RE: DataSheet: Inversion therapy a vital part of health
Careful if you have extreme back pain. The load returning to the back after returning upright has been some of the worst back pain I have ever felt. However, I have enjoyed inversion therapy for general maintenance and use it one to two times a week.
03-09-2016 08:59 AM
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RE: DataSheet: Inversion therapy a vital part of health
(03-09-2016 08:59 AM)OneManWolfPack Wrote:  So after being at the chiro yesterday and looking at my X-rays Ive decided I'll need to buy a teeter hang up. My l5-s5 is compressed the worst. Basically I need to do a total revamp on my resistance trying program, but he said its reversible if I'm diligent. I will get another X-ray in one year. Thank you for this data sheet!



(03-09-2016 08:59 AM)OneManWolfPack Wrote:  Careful if you have extreme back pain. The load returning to the back after returning upright has been some of the worst back pain I have ever felt. However, I have enjoyed inversion therapy for general maintenance and use it one to two times a week.

As with anything...if you have a pre existing condition or injury make sure you clear it with your doctor. Most of them are aware of inversion now and will be on board...unless you have a particular condition that the tension will exacerbate.

Another one of the advantages of the table is that you can gradually work up to a full hang. It allows the control of leaning back just past 90 deg from vertical for a gentle stretch and then over time work up to a full 180 deg hang

_______________________________________
- Does She Have The "Happy Gene" ?
-Inversion Therapy
-Let's lead by example


"Leap, and the net will appear". John Burroughs

"The big question is whether you are going to be able to say a hearty yes to your adventure."
Joseph Campbell
03-09-2016 11:07 AM
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RE: DataSheet: Inversion therapy a vital part of health
(03-09-2016 08:59 AM)musashi Wrote:  So after being at the chiro yesterday and looking at my X-rays Ive decided I'll need to buy a teeter hang up. My l5-s5 is compressed the worst. Basically I need to do a total revamp on my resistance trying program, but he said its reversible if I'm diligent. I will get another X-ray in one year. Thank you for this data sheet!



(03-09-2016 08:59 AM)OneManWolfPack Wrote:  Careful if you have extreme back pain. The load returning to the back after returning upright has been some of the worst back pain I have ever felt. However, I have enjoyed inversion therapy for general maintenance and use it one to two times a week.

(03-09-2016 11:07 AM)PapayaTapper Wrote:  As with anything...if you have a pre existing condition or injury make sure you clear it with your doctor. Most of them are aware of inversion now and will be on board...unless you have a particular condition that the tension will exacerbate.

Another one of the advantages of the table is that you can gradually work up to a full hang. It allows the control of leaning back just past 90 deg from vertical for a gentle stretch and then over time work up to a full 180 deg hang

_______________________________________
- Does She Have The "Happy Gene" ?
-Inversion Therapy
-Let's lead by example


"Leap, and the net will appear". John Burroughs

"The big question is whether you are going to be able to say a hearty yes to your adventure."
Joseph Campbell
(This post was last modified: 03-09-2016 11:09 AM by PapayaTapper.)
03-09-2016 11:08 AM
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RE: DataSheet: Inversion therapy a vital part of health
They have one those table ones at my weightlifting gym.

I always thought it was an ab machine. No one uses it ever, I'm going to give it a try this week and report back

(11-15-2014 09:06 AM)Little Dark Wrote:  This thread is not going in the direction I was hoping for.
03-09-2016 11:35 AM
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RE: DataSheet: Inversion therapy a vital part of health
(03-09-2016 11:35 AM)Oz. Wrote:  They have one those table ones at my weightlifting gym.

I always thought it was an ab machine. No one uses it ever, I'm going to give it a try this week and report back

Try it at the very end of your workout Even after stretching. Just hang, breath, relax and focus on the stretch.

First time you may only can take less than a minute as blood builds in your head.

Look forward to hearing what you think

_______________________________________
- Does She Have The "Happy Gene" ?
-Inversion Therapy
-Let's lead by example


"Leap, and the net will appear". John Burroughs

"The big question is whether you are going to be able to say a hearty yes to your adventure."
Joseph Campbell
03-09-2016 12:41 PM
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RE: DataSheet: Inversion therapy a vital part of health
What is your opinion on doing handstands for time as a form of inversion therapy.

I know world class gymnasts will do a handstand for a half hour as a form of light recovery work.

“I have a very simple rule when it comes to management: hire the best people from your competitors, pay them more than they were earning, and give them bonuses and incentives based on their performance. That’s how you build a first-class operation.”
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If you want some PDF's on bodyweight exercise with little to no equipment, send me a PM and I'll get back to you as soon as possible.
03-11-2016 04:11 PM
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RE: DataSheet: Inversion therapy a vital part of health
(03-11-2016 04:11 PM)Hannibal Wrote:  What is your opinion on doing handstands for time as a form of inversion therapy.

I know world class gymnasts will do a handstand for a half hour as a form of light recovery work.

It seems as far as decompression of the spine is concerned, doing handstands actually still compresses it. I would think gymnasts do that for blood flow purposes.
03-11-2016 07:49 PM
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RE: DataSheet: Inversion therapy a vital part of health
(03-11-2016 07:49 PM)musashi Wrote:  
(03-11-2016 04:11 PM)Hannibal Wrote:  What is your opinion on doing handstands for time as a form of inversion therapy.

I know world class gymnasts will do a handstand for a half hour as a form of light recovery work.

It seems as far as decompression of the spine is concerned, doing handstands actually still compresses it. I would think gymnasts do that for blood flow purposes.

That's correct. Handstands dont create tension (pull, stretch) on the spine, hips, knees, and ankles.

_______________________________________
- Does She Have The "Happy Gene" ?
-Inversion Therapy
-Let's lead by example


"Leap, and the net will appear". John Burroughs

"The big question is whether you are going to be able to say a hearty yes to your adventure."
Joseph Campbell
03-14-2016 09:14 PM
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RE: DataSheet: Inversion therapy a vital part of health
I finally tried this today, I've been walking passed it long enough. My lower back felt great after I went on it (chair version) actually it cracked all over the place. At the same time it felt like my spine was being stretched apart, I did it twice for 30 seconds each time

Although I regularly do handstand holds for my shoulders I felt a bit of pressure in my head after doing this, lightheaded too if you will. Even though it was only for 30 seconds and I hold handstands for about 2 minutes

(11-15-2014 09:06 AM)Little Dark Wrote:  This thread is not going in the direction I was hoping for.
04-29-2016 09:38 PM
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RE: DataSheet: Inversion therapy a vital part of health
I'd recommend Aerial Yoga as a possible solution.

There are classes popping up for it everywhere as it gains momentum as a fad.

You basically have a silk cloth rated for 2000lbs hanging from the ceiling at 2 points.

You get a pretty decent stretch out of it. It's more comfortable than an inversion table or those boots.

It's also pretty fun and the class is mostly women.

You could set it home with a daisy chain/carabiners/hook points. It makes a great substitute for a sex swing/hammock.
08-21-2016 06:44 PM
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RE: DataSheet: Inversion therapy a vital part of health
What about a protocol? Can you give us an idea of how long we should do this and how many times in a day, starting out as a beginner and progressing over time?
09-18-2016 08:43 AM
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RE: DataSheet: Inversion therapy a vital part of health
Hi

I just created a thread for this but luckily, I decided to do a search instead. The rvf literally has all bases covered.

Great data sheet op. Can I ask your opinion on just hanging from pull up bar with your legs hooked over it like kids do. I've been experimenting with this and I'm convinced it's going to be good for my back. There is a kids climbing frame near where I live and I can hang on this with my knees over the bar and my feet braced against a cross bar.

Effectively, I'm hanging only from where my knees are, is this sufficient or is there some sort of extra stretch to be had from hanging from the feet on a table?

Thanks
09-27-2016 02:17 PM
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RE: DataSheet: Inversion therapy a vital part of health
Unfortunately, the long-term efficacy of inversion tables is questionable at best. Go ahead and try it, but I just don't want to give anybody who is suffering too much false hope down this avenue.

Quote:Inversion therapy doesn't provide lasting relief from back pain, and it's not safe for everyone. Inversion therapy involves hanging upside down, and the head-down position could be risky for anyone with high blood pressure, heart disease or glaucoma.

In theory, inversion therapy takes gravitational pressure off the nerve roots and disks in your spine and increases the space between vertebrae. Inversion therapy is one example of the many ways in which stretching the spine (spinal traction) has been used in an attempt to relieve back pain.

Well-designed studies evaluating spinal traction have found the technique ineffective for long-term relief. However, some people find traction temporarily helpful as part of a more comprehensive treatment program for lower back pain caused by spinal disk compression.

http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-condi...q-20057951

Regarding inversion tables, doctors usually hold the opinion: "if you're careful and try not to hurt yourself, go for it (but it probably won't do much)". Understand that if you have back pain, you need to discover the root causes (movement dysfunction/flexibility, discogenic issues, nerve impingement, etc.), and that the inversion table most likely isn't the true solution. Failing to find the root causes will likely result in chronic pain and/or surgery.

If you still want a little traction, try sitting in a chair and lift yourself up by pushing against the armrests for several seconds. It's safer and you also lower the risk of putting yourself into too much extension.
10-17-2016 04:10 PM
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RE: DataSheet: Inversion therapy a vital part of health
(10-17-2016 04:10 PM)soviet_dissident Wrote:  Unfortunately, the long-term efficacy of inversion tables is questionable at best. Go ahead and try it, but I just don't want to give anybody who is suffering too much false hope down this avenue.

Quote:Inversion therapy doesn't provide lasting relief from back pain, and it's not safe for everyone. Inversion therapy involves hanging upside down, and the head-down position could be risky for anyone with high blood pressure, heart disease or glaucoma.

In theory, inversion therapy takes gravitational pressure off the nerve roots and disks in your spine and increases the space between vertebrae. Inversion therapy is one example of the many ways in which stretching the spine (spinal traction) has been used in an attempt to relieve back pain.

Well-designed studies evaluating spinal traction have found the technique ineffective for long-term relief. However, some people find traction temporarily helpful as part of a more comprehensive treatment program for lower back pain caused by spinal disk compression.

http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-condi...q-20057951

Regarding inversion tables, doctors usually hold the opinion: "if you're careful and try not to hurt yourself, go for it (but it probably won't do much)". Understand that if you have back pain, you need to discover the root causes (movement dysfunction/flexibility, discogenic issues, nerve impingement, etc.), and that the inversion table most likely isn't the true solution. Failing to find the root causes will likely result in chronic pain and/or surgery.

If you still want a little traction, try sitting in a chair and lift yourself up by pushing against the armrests for several seconds. It's safer and you also lower the risk of putting yourself into too much extension.

It's only been working for me for 22 years. If thats "temporary"... I'll take it

_______________________________________
- Does She Have The "Happy Gene" ?
-Inversion Therapy
-Let's lead by example


"Leap, and the net will appear". John Burroughs

"The big question is whether you are going to be able to say a hearty yes to your adventure."
Joseph Campbell
(This post was last modified: 11-20-2016 12:04 PM by PapayaTapper.)
11-20-2016 11:57 AM
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RE: DataSheet: Inversion therapy a vital part of health
PapayaTapper - Great post. Gladly gave you a +1. This is a 'therapy' everyone should try out, especially those that sit for large portions of the day.

I recently got an Innova brand inversion table on Amazon shipped to me for like $90. I find it very sturdy. It's very heavy, feels very safe. Surprised it only cost $90, seems a good value.

I am wondering about a protocol, or minutes of inversion to shoot for?

I have started slow and working up... I was thinking my ultimate goal would be 10 minutes 1x per day at full vertical. What do you think of this? Should it be more / less?
02-24-2017 01:00 AM
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RE: DataSheet: Inversion therapy a vital part of health
(01-09-2016 12:27 AM)Thomas the Rhymer Wrote:  I'm not sure if I'd trust some Chinese made hard plastic to not break, especially with long term use (although correct me if I'm wrong - are they made of metal? It looks like plastic in the photos). The problem as I see it is that if you fall off the table or the hooks from a fully inverted position, you are going to land at an angle that can very easily break your neck - not necessarily break one of the neck bones, but the stress could easily tear the ligaments of the upper neck, basically tearing your head off your neck. Although not necessarily fatal, this is a very serious injury. I've seen people break their necks from falling off short distances off ladders, so you don't need a lot of force, you just need it to be applied in a certain manner; so even a short drop off could be a disaster.

I'd say a wall assisted hand stand is the better option if you want to spend time upside down:
- it's safer, you can land on your elbows/back if you slip, not on your head
- it's cheap, make some space in your home and it costs $0.

[Image: FreestandingHandstand4.jpg]

I suppose when there is enough strength, then one can graduate to free handstands:
[Image: WallWalkingHandstand3.jpg]

Alternatively, use those leg brace things at a low enough height that you can do put your hands on the ground, so basically you'll be doing an assisted hand stand - if the boots break, your hands can then control your fall.

I admit that I am very biased because I've managed people with broken necks due to very stupid freak accidents, so maybe I am overreacting and maybe these instruments noted by the OP are indeed extremely safe; if anyone can chime in on how they are manufactured and what safety standards are used, please advise.

I was thinking the same thing about the type that hang on your door frames. I used to have a pullup bar like that and one time it punched through the wall, another time it ripped the trim off my door, didn't completely fall but don't trust those. I've been meaning to buy a power tower, I think maybe that would work with the boots
02-24-2017 12:18 PM
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RE: DataSheet: Inversion therapy a vital part of health
(02-24-2017 12:18 PM)jamaicabound Wrote:  I was thinking the same thing about the type that hang on your door frames. I used to have a pullup bar like that and one time it punched through the wall, another time it ripped the trim off my door, didn't completely fall but don't trust those. I've been meaning to buy a power tower, I think maybe that would work with the boots

Always follow the installation directions

If you dont properly secure the bar through the jamb (as per the instructions that come with the bar) and into the framing stud you are setting up disaster.

Most door jambs are 3/4" thick (with a 1/4"-1/2" gap for plumbing the jamb) so you need 2 1/2" -3" long bolt of 1/2"-3/4" diameter
[Image: s-l300.jpg]

that goes through the jamb, the gap and into the stud / framing (in yellow on diagram)

[Image: 80469d1381015352-exterior-door-frame-con...orjamb.jpg]

I'm 6'3" / 230lbs and Ive moved my set half dozen times over the years without a problem

_______________________________________
- Does She Have The "Happy Gene" ?
-Inversion Therapy
-Let's lead by example


"Leap, and the net will appear". John Burroughs

"The big question is whether you are going to be able to say a hearty yes to your adventure."
Joseph Campbell
(This post was last modified: 02-26-2017 01:49 PM by PapayaTapper.)
02-26-2017 01:40 PM
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