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Eliminate Pain, Stay Fit With FMT

Sept. 13, 2013. The Economic Times

Functional Manual TherapyTM (FMT) at VARDAN has not only helped people overcome their pain, but lifted their spirits and changed their entire lives



On one of my first days in the clinic a patient asked me, “Why are you here? Can’t you work anywhere?” The answer to the second question is simple—‘yes’. The answer to “Why am I here” is a bit more complex.

I came to VARDAN to immerse myself in a clinic that is wholly devoted to furthering our knowledge and practice of Functional Manual Therapy (FMT), and spreading that knowledge to the other side of the world.

I came here because VARDAN is a center dedicated to higher learning and mentoring, so that we can ultimately serve our patients (you) better. I also came here to experience a people/culture that is very different from my own. I have a passion for treating patients and helping people achieve their goals. I also have a passion for mentoring and teaching other like-minded people. The opportunity here at VARDAN satisfies both of these passions.

FMT is complex but systematic. We are experts in anatomy and biomechanics. We are trained to use our hands and our minds—healing is truly a science and an art. FMT is very eclectic. Developed by Gregg and Vicky Johnson (USA), FMT has been and continues to be influenced by numerous treatment approaches from around the globe.This incorporation of science, knowledge and art enhances our capability to serve our patients well. Every patient is unique, and successful treatment of a multitude of patients requires the ability to apply the right treatment to the right patient at the right time.

While our goal is to help our clients live symptom- free, we also want to prevent the recurrence of future symptoms. An old proverb says “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.”

We aim to uncover the root of the problem—and then teach you how to move smarter and better, to stay out of pain. We don’t simply want to fix you; we want to empower you to be independent! I’ve learnt in my time here in Mumbai that this city is always progressing, always thriving— shouldn’t we thrive also?! So many of our bodies perform at a level of ‘getting by’, or ‘good enough’.

A slight misstep, lifting something poorly, or sustaining prolonged postures pushes us into pain. Why live on that narrow ledge? That is the beauty of FMT. The goal is not just surviving, but thriving.

If you are in pain, or simply want to learn how to use your body better, come to VARDAN. Many people have benefited from our treatment approach, and you can too! So, my question would be: “Why aren’t you here?”

Shoulder Pain

I have been a competitive shooter for 18 years. After an injury last year I got a shoulder and back ache that just kept on increasing. It hurt especially when I trained so I took a break from shooting, even exercising. I went to physical therapists, but their treatment only helped a little, as the pain would return the moment I took up my rifle and got into position. It was clearly specific to my profession; I got depressed as I thought my shooting career was over.

Then I heard about VARDAN from a fellow Olympian. As a competitive shooter my posture and stability are veryimportant to my success and accuracy. The FM therapist at VARDAN told me that both these areas were less than optimal. Stiffness in my rib cage and poor recruitment of my mid-back musculature limited my ability to hold my scapula in an efficient position. Years of standing with a forward shift of my pelvis caused compression in the pelvic joint and inhibited the ability of my core muscles to contract efficiently.

My therapist identified the exact spot on my back without even an X-ray – using just his hands – and treated the pain at its root! Through manual treatment, specific exercise to improve my stability, strength, and endurance, and training in postural mechanics, I have found a better way to do what I have always done — shoot! And I am so happy that I didn’t have to go abroad for this treatment!

Knee Pain

My main problem was knee pain for the last 3 years, though I also had backache. The knee pain made it difficult for me to use the stairs, drive, squat or sometimes even go for long walks. I tried everything – from the temporary relief of ayurvedic massages and homeopathic pain remedies to crazy naturopathy diets. I got a scare when doctor wanted to insert a probe in my knee after an inconclusive MRI!

So, when I read about non-invasive FMT at VARDAN, I decided to try it even though I didn’t believe it would work. I wasn’t initially impressed by my FM therapist’s analysis – that I had a very dysfunctional ankle, which was the driver of my knee pain. But since I wanted to go to Ladakh (on painkillers if need be!) I decided to give it a shot.

The therapist set about treating my ankle and from the second session itself the improvement was dramatic – the knee pain intensity decreased. I underwent 3 more FMT sessions – for correction of pelvic girdle dysfunction and mobilization of soft tissues in the knee and patella, before I could be pain free. Other physical therapies rely on heat to relax muscles and relieve pain but FMT gets to the root of the problem to resolve it. My nagging pain is gone. And yes, I trekked in Ladakh pain-free!

Low Back Pain

I have been suffering from low back pain for almost 25 years. I have visited many orthopedic specialists in both Chennai and Delhi and undergone several physiotherapy sessions and prescribed exercises. Other than some temporary relief, I have always lived with pain.

My job, which involves travelling more than 100 kms by road at least 2-3 days in a week, worsened my condition. I had resigned myself to the fact that I have to live with pain all my life. Then I read about FMT and VARDAN and started treatment.

My FM therapist pointed out that I had mechanical dysfunctions in my pelvic bones and sacrum, and very weak core muscles. This had resulted in stiffness in my hips, putting more strain on my lumbar spine. The manual treatment and posture reeducation helped a great deal in improving my condition. Now I am able to travel long distances more frequently, and sit or stand for longer hours with minimum pain. I have learnt there is no job/task which is beyond back-pain patients if it is done using correct posture and technique.

Thanks FMT and my FM therapist for bringing such a huge improvement in the quality of my life!!

Leg Pain

I had severe pain in my left leg and hip for 11 months and was unable to sit for more than an hour or walk for more than a km at a time. I was prescribed medication, exercises and even physiotherapy but there was only marginal improvement.

Then I heard about VARDAN and decided to try it. The FM therapist explained that I had dysfunctions in the alignment of my pelvis, tailbone and lower lumbar spine. The mobility of the muscles surrounding the pelvis and spine was also very limited, with a lot of tension in the nerves to the lower extremity. Just 3 sessions of pure hands on treatmentthat focused on these made me 50 % better. I was educated extensively about efficient ways of sitting, standing and exercising my core muscles to get stronger.

This was very different from the other places I had gone to, where I was merely instructed on what to do – whether it was taking medicines or doing exercises.

I am 70% better and am comfortably travelling from Pune to Mumbai for further treatment. I am doing so many things that I simply could not even think of doing before!

Back Pain

I was referred to VARDAN for lower back pain and had never heard or read about FMT before. I had consulted various orthopedics for my condition who had advised surgery.

The FM therapist at VARDAN said I have mechanical dysfunctions and a faulty sitting posture. He treated me for sacrum & coccyx dysfunctions. During subsequent sessions I was taught sitting postures specific to my needs, along with continued correction of my lumbar spine for mobility of vertebrae. It’s amazing how little differences in posture and regular supervised exercises to facilitate my core muscles have reduced the pain that had become almost a part of my daily life.

FMT has such a systematic, logical, step-by-step approach to identifying the root cause and rectifying it. VARDAN really fulfilled the promise of its motto and helped me to Live Efficient. And pain free.

Neck & Back Pain

For about seven years I had severe neck and low back pain. In fact my neck pain limited my ability to hold weight in my right hand. The pain eventually became so widespread that I had to give up designing.

I tried many alternative therapies – including acupuncture and massage; doctors even suggested surgery on a compressed cervical disc. Then I read about VARDAN’s work on spinal issues and decided to give FMT a try.

The FM therapist at VARDAN explained that the pain was due to my poor posture – I had an elevated sternum and tilted pelvis. My neck pain significantly improved with soft tissue mobilization in the cervical region and rib cage mobilization. My lower back pain is being treated, with sessions that focus on my pelvic girdle alignment and tailbone dysfunction.

I am being taught CoreFirstTM strategies to carry out my daily activities. Now I know how to sit, stand and even sleep properly, and be pain-free.

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