Research Review: Relative mobility of the pelvis and spine during trunk axial rotation in chronic low back pain patients: A case-control study


Taniguchi, M., Tateuchi, H., Ibuki, S., & Ichihashi, N. (2017). Relative mobility of the pelvis and spine during trunk axial rotation in chronic low back pain patients: A case-control study. PloS one, 12(10), e0186369. Retrieved from

Relative mobility of the pelvis and spine during trunk axial rotation in chronic low back pain patients: A case-control study

Research Summary

Regardless of the generation observed, chronic low back pain has been a continuous health concern. Previous studies observed by Taniguchi, Tateuchi, Ibuki, and Ichihashi (2017) have illustrated that trunk rotation may increase the risk of injury to the low back. In order to conduct an experiment on trunk rotation, we must first explore the biomechanics deemed dangerous and generates a risk of injury. Trunk rotation occurs when the pelvis rotates, assisted by slight rotation of the spine. The lumbar spine contributes very little rotation, as opposed to the thoracic spine that has wider degrees of freedom. The researchers believe that any excessive spinal rotation at the end of a range of motion may increase the risk of injury (Taniguchi, et al. 2017). Movement that generates trunk rotation may also perform coupled motion, which is “the rotation or translation of a vertebral body about or along 1 axis that is consistently associated with the main rotation or translation about another axis (Taniguchi, et al. 2017).”

Researchers Taniguchi, Tateuchi, Ibuki, and Ichihashi (2017) conducted a control-case study on trunk axial-rotation in efforts to observe and analyze the three-dimensional kinematic changes. The researchers also utilized observations to compare the difference of rotational mobility and coupled motion of patients with chronic low back pain and those without (Taniguchi, et al. 2017). The hypothesis of the study was that participants with chronic low back pain had different movement patterns versus a difference in maximal range of motion in the transverse plane and rotation consisting of excessive spinal motion coupled in those with chronic low back pain (Taniguchi, et al. 2017). The study conducted by Taniguchi, Tateuchi, Ibuki, and Ichihashi (2017) consisted of 30 volunteers, 15 being participants with nonspecific chronic low back pain. The other 15 being those without CLBP that matched the CLBP group in age and sex. Participants were involved in sport activities and current students at Kyoto University. The subjects with chronic low back pain were selected based off of three concepts, having a history of low back pain with “an intensity greater than 30 mm on the visual analog scale (VAS) (Taniguchi, et al. 2017)” , more than 3 months of continuous pain, and having the ability to complete the provided movement task. 18 participants continued through the screening process through completing a novel questionnaire and individuals with pain in the buttocks, lumbosacral region, and upper leg, without any specific nerve root symptoms. 3 of the 18 participants were discovered to have been diagnosed with disk herniation, eliminated them from the study, and bringing the CLBP group to the 15 subjects listed previously (Taniguchi, et al. 2017). During testing protocols, participants were instructed to remain in a standing position, with their hands on their abdomen and a 10-degree toe-out angle. The researchers designated that the calcanei be separated a distance equal to the length of the participant’s foot. Data was collected while the individual was in the standing position for three seconds. The participant was then instructed to complete trunk rotation to the left side, return back to the neutral standing position, rotate to the right side, and then finally back to the neutral standing position all in 4 seconds. The researchers utilized a motion system and a force plate to record the three-dimensional kinematics. Thoracic and pelvic segments included markers in which created an X, Y, and Z axis grid to analyze angles in reference to the gobal frame. During the analysis of angle measurements, any positive values represented lateral flexion, anterior tilt, and axial rotation to the left side for the pelvis and thorax (Taniguchi, et al. 2017). In comparison of the two groups, there was no significant different in the rotational range of motion of the pelvis, thorax, and spine. Although there weren’t significant differences, there was an interaction between rotational range of motion of the pelvis and spine and groups (F = 4.57, p = 0.04). The spine/pelvis ration in the healthy subjects was highly less than the chronic low back pain group (CLBP; 0.50 ± 0.10 Control; 0.41 ± 0.12, p = 0.04). The results at maximal rotation and 50% rotation were similar. The gathered observation and evaluation indicate an increase in spinal rotation during trunk rotation of patients in the CLBP group (Taniguchi, et al. 2017). With understanding that the goal of the study was to find evidence that individuals with chronic low back pain had different movement patterns versus a difference in maximal range of motion in the transverse plane and rotation consisting of excessive spinal motion coupled in those with chronic low back pain, we can then compare this with the established findings of the study. The study conducted by Taniguchi, Tateuchi, Ibuki, and Ichihashi (2017) concluded with the result of CLBP subjects possessing an increase in spinal rotation during trunk rotation. With an increase in spinal rotation, more likely coming from the lumbar region, researchers can then begin to observe mechanics within the spine itself in efforts to examine compensation of movement from any particular region to another. When the body begins to compensate in movement patterns, overtime we then start creating structural or muscular imbalances.

Reflection & Application

Utilizing results of the provided study, we then dive into the possibilities of application for future studies and program creation among populations. Research that follows the given study could examine the degrees of freedom between each vertebra of the lumbar in comparison to the thoracic spine. The range of motion could not only be compared between the different regions of the spine in the same subject, but also compared across the board with both individuals with chronic low back pain and those without. The issue might originate from excessive movement throughout the lumbar, with lack of ROM in the thorax. When specifying the imbalances located throughout the spine, researchers can then begin to evaluate the best possible rehabilitation and therapy methods for the biomechanical issue.

Taniguchi, Tateuchi, Ibuki, and Ichihashi’s study (2017) was insightful and specific to the nature of which biomechanical movement is being observed and analyzed. Although there was a sum of participants, I do believe the study needs to be expanded with more subjects under each study group. I also believe that the study should be taken one step further down the road with analyzing the lumbar vertebrae individually for degrees of freedom and range of motion imbalances. This would drastically increase the duration to collect the study results, but could either be broken up into two studies or just sacrifice not publishing as quickly and gather more data. To me overall, the study was insightful and helps me begin to ask questions on why there might be an increase in spinal rotation when individuals have chronic low back pain. Does the pain originate from the excessive movement? Or does the excessive movement originate from muscular and skeletal flaws from other regions? I chose this study because I like understanding rotational health of the spine, in which I can use this knowledge to further enhance my injury prevention programs with fire departments. Injury prevention programs include implementing recovery, mobility, and movement prep sessions that encourage the highest level of performance possible at their given fitness level. A strong wellness program examines and influences the improvement in all aspects of fitness.


Author: Hussien Jabai


The Best Diet For Abs

running-498257_960_720.jpg“The first wealth is health.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson

“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.”
– Aristotle
People often look for the ‘right way’ to diet in order to attain many of the benefits that come with losing weight and so on, such as a thinner physique, wash-board abs and so on. Within the realm of possible answers, there are quite a variety of diets and fads that are suggested. Do some of them work?

These diets work by restricting food types that are high in calories. With that said though, dieting without performing physical activity will not get you in optimal shape, nor help to tone muscle or get the abs that you wish you attain.

With summer approaching, many individuals are forging ahead looking for advice on how to get started on their summer look. There really are many options people can choose. What diet is best to get nice cut abs?
Straight forward and simple pragmatic answer: the diet that you stick to.
Now, for a more complex and in-depth answer, let’s take a look at what information to keep in mind. In order to begin losing weight, you have to have a decent body composition. Having a lot of excess weight is quite detrimental to your health, especially if you intending on focusing on slimming down and having washboard abs. This is why a multi-tiered approach that encompasses the best diet for you, optimal lifestyle choices, and the proper exercises that suit you are best.

As far as focusing on abs, any exercise that utilizes and engages your core will aid your progress immensely. Always keep in mind that you should always hit 3 aspects of your core. One aspect of this is doing a contraction, like a crunch. The second aspect would be a rotational move, like a press where you are rotating – whether utilizing bands and so on. Or for instance, a ball in hand and rotation twisting at your torso exercise, that is comparable to the medicine ball twist. Medicine ball twists could be problematic if people have back issues, or are of older age. The third aspect is isometric, which could be a plank, or using another abdominal exercise. It could also be a dead-lift where you are focusing on and engaging your core abdominal structure and so on.
Other movements that will add in strengthening your core are: (1) pressing movements, using one arm or two, (2) performing an isometric core exercise, (3) doing rotational presses, (4) rotational row, or even contemplating to do a (5) landmine press, and many more.

You might be pondering, why are core exercises important?

Excellent question.
Simply by cutting down your weight, irrespective of what method you use, will not accomplish what you seek if your core was not strong and in constant use to begin with. That is akin to wanting to employ a knife that has not been sharpened correctly (a core that has not been used) and expecting it to be at its optimal capabilities (having a strong core) when the all the knife (the core) is doing is sitting around, dull, and not being taken care of.

Of course, many people want specific diets. However, if we ruminate upon this practically, the diet that you stick to is the best, because you stick to it and as such, it’ll work. Moreover, what works for someone else, might not work for you, which is why cut and dry advice that serves a one-size-fits-all is highly detrimental if not pondered deeply.

If you get a poor suggestion, and it ends up unfavorable to you, be it mentally or physically, then that is probably something you should avoid. Testing various approaches on what works best for you will be an ironclad approach. Also, keeping a journal on what you ate, and what the effects of the foods are with energy, feel, and so on, is another option. That way you can use hindsight to see where you might have gone wrong.

Please keep in mind, that if you happen to get some health advice, whatever it may be, knowing the whys behind the advice will aid you in the long run into seeing what is good for you, and what isn’t. It’ll help you in finding out what individual is good for you and your health, and who isn’t. If someone is suggesting information to you, they should be able to tell you the whys behind it. That way, not only are you progressing within the area of health, but mentally, you are teaching yourself and broadening your knowledge base when it comes to nutrition and exercise.

People really should avoid, or at least be tentative, about seeking and getting advice from someone who can’t properly tell you the foundational reasons why something is the way it is. That’s one clear way to separate the wheat from the chaff.
Bottom line: begin by researching what works best for you. Put the suggestions and/or research you find through the ropes, and find out what works. Keep what works, discard what doesn’t, and make sure you take some time to understand yourself. Having strong lifestyle choices will help greatly. Avoiding fast foods, drinking enough water, logging what you eat in order to track how you feel and your bodily change, as well as resistance training will all only aid you. Or perhaps, to simplify a bit, remember to remain open-minded, but skeptical. Open-minded enough to consider that something might work for you, but skeptical enough to realize that what works for others, simply might not work for you. This is why doing your own due diligence is a must.

About The Podcast:

Podcast & Content By: Hussien Jabai of Jabai Performance

About The Writer:

Article written by Zy Marquiez.
Writer, Researcher, Book Reviewer.
Owner of Blocked Up

The Best Supplements For Your Goals

Reason and free inquiry are the only effectual agents against error.”
– Thomas Jefferson
Supplements are a hot topic these days. They come in a wide-array of types and so on. Attempting to figure out which supplement is best can be quite complex. Let’s delve into this topic and make some sense out of it shall we?

One common question that many individuals have when they consider supplements for their health is: do you have to have supplements to make progress as an individual? No, not at all. A person does not have to have supplements to make progress in physical training. That said, if at the end of the day an individual happens to have the budget to be able to afford quality supplements, then it should at least be a consideration on their path to a much healthier lifestyle since some of the products do offer value. Keep in mind, if you do choose the supplementation route, keep in mind that whatever you choose is your choice, and yours alone. Let’s now take a look at more crucial components of supplementation.
powders-795-315.jpgProduct Ingredients
When considering any type of food, drink or supplement, the main components to keep in mind are the ingredients. Ingredients are the scaffolding of each and every product (or food), and as such, those with the best scaffolding – the strongest foundation – are the ones that are high quality products. Conversely, products that have been poorly developed could hurt you given their inferior baseline. Supplements follow this same thought process, except there are more than just ingredients involved in this debacle. While with food and drinks one is usually dealing with ingredients and no particular  claims are made, many supplements do in fact make claims – and some of them are quite lofty. In fact, some are overly so. With this in mind, what the products are claiming should be pondered and examined at length. For instance, is the product claiming a high fat-loss rate? Is the product claiming to fight a particular disease and so on? Such questions are pivotal in understanding the totality of the product and its intricacies. The way to home-in on this information is by conducting research on these products – as much as might be necessary to get a satisfactory and correct answer. If what the product is claiming is the opening salvo in this process, how they back up that claim is the second salvo here. Are the claims being backed up by thorough research? Or is the company making this claim simply using known ingredients? Please keep in mind, there will be lots of studies thrown at you when researching a subject matter such as this, but do not let that deter you in attaining greater understanding of the subject matter.

Things to Consider

impace-banner.jpg#1 – Length of studies
How long are the studies conducted for? Eight weeks? More? Less? What are the dosages that are being given to the subjects? For instance, if those conducting the studies are giving the same dosage to a rat as what a person would intake, just keep in mind that the body mass of a rat is significantly less. A human subject would require a much larger dose to attain similar claims, sometimes by an order of magnitude or greater. Moreover, claims can be made to make products seem much more superior than they really are by a surreptitiously selective process of cherry-picking data. Wording can be arranged to say ‘this product causes fat-loss’ and so on. Some incredible claims can be made merely because one subject out of an entire study group attained that result.

screenshot (166)#2 – Ingredients – How Do They Work?
Supplements can work in various ways. Simply because you have an ingredient that is present in a particular product doesn’t mean it instantly starts working. One thing one can do is contact the manufacturer to ascertain the finer details of the products – how it works, why it works. If a manufacturer is reticent, or simply gives you the cold shoulder, you should be skeptical, if not downright worried. The reason for this is that anyone that purchases the product can send it to a lab for it to be studied. As such, there’s no real reason for the manufacturer not to explain why and how a product is working. Understanding the how and why of the manufacturing of the product will help shed light into the full totality of effects – short term and long term – that a product can create.
spoon with pills, dietary supplements on vegetables background#3 – Serving
Simply stated: what is the value per serving? For example, merely because a particular product offers a large amount of protein, doesn’t mean the value is great if it doesn’t have a lot of servings. Price being equal, a product with 40 grams of protein, but only 10 servings, offers much less value then a product with 30 grams of protein, but 20 servings. Please keep this in mind when comparing products, especially since some of them can be rather costly.
nutrition-vitamins#4 Quality
The quality of the product is crucial. Ingredients affect different individuals in a variety of ways. After ingestion, some products settle well with certain individuals, while not so with others. Some products mix well, and others clump up. Some taste great (or are at least palatable) with water, while others simply don’t. Some proteins give a queasy feeling and don’t settle too well. Also, determine the amount of caffeine and stimulants in the product. Some ingredients speed up your metabolism, which can be counter productive if you happen to do many high intensity compound lifts. This could potentially lead to your heartbeat skyrocketing, and you not being able to control it. Such an effect in a workout would be quite detrimental, if not downright dangerous depending on the circumstances. With that, some pre-workout supplements have a lot of fillers, and this can over-satiate you, and could even be rejected by your body.

Key Take-Away:

Listen To Your Body – How Your Body React Matters Most.
Supplements are a solid way to help attain positive health benefits, as long as they are quality products. There are countless products on the market, most if not all making various claims. Finding what supplement suits you best is crucial if you wish to take advantage of the product to its maximum potential. Make sure you carry out an incredible amount of research before you delve into the use of any supplemental product. Don’t be afraid in asking for help on this subject and doing as much research as necessary until you feel you are ready if you choose the path of supplementation. If you have any questions, comments or concerns, please do not hesitate in leaving them below.

CLICK HERE To Listen To The Podcast Episode

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About The Podcast: Hussien Jabai of Jabai Performance

About The Author: Zy Marquiez
Writer, Researcher, Book Reviewer
Owner Of Blocked Up

Ways to Raise Money and Increase Funding For Your Wellness Program

If you think a thing is impossible, you’ll only make it impossible.”
– Bruce Lee

Programs that benefit a variety of causes are something individuals and organizations can create in order to support certain ideas. To get these programs of the ground it often takes funding and support. Funding of myriad types are a vital option that all individuals have in order to fund a particular program. Knowing how to go about raising funds is imperative to accomplishing the funding and support that a program would need in order to get off the ground. As such, researching what options are available should be the vanguard point to be accomplished.

Some of the ways that programs can be funded are the following:

business-3152586_960_720(1) Grants – Grants are a possible way that funds can be raised to benefit specific causes. Grants come in many types, and each have their own set of idiosyncrasies and to-do’s that need to be followed in order for the process to begin. One great benefit of grants is that the process to get grants is usually straight forward and very streamlined. This makes grants a reasonable option not to be overlooked when considering funding for a particular program.

money-652560_960_720(2) (Institutional) Requests – Seeking funds from organizations and/or corporations is another viable option for the funding of programs. However, whereas grants have a rather straight forward approach for those that seek funding, requests from organizations and business is more complex. Simply getting a proposal seen, yet alone considered by an organization or company will require a tactful, thought-out and persistent approach. Given that funding is a resource that many individuals and organizations are seeking, odds are whatever proposal one might have when it is brought to the table might be competing with other proposals for those seeking funding as well. Be that as it may, organizations and companies usually have significant resources, and given their financial latitude a request carried out in the correct manner could net significant results.

donate-654328_960_720(3) Donations – Seeking funding via donations is one time-tested way that is an option on the table. There is no limit from which to draw ideas to seek funding from; your imagination is the limit. Donations can be requested from various sources, be them local, national, friends, family, community, colleagues, organizations and institutions, so on and so forth. An honest and conscientious approach is crucial, and perseverance is key.
(4)adult-3725715_960_720 Fundraising – There are many ways in which fundraisers can take place in order to raise the resources required to fuel a program of a given nature. Some of the ways that fundraising can take place are via sales of merchandise (t-shirts, artwork, etc.), community events (garage sales, dances, gaming tournaments, BBQs, etc.), sports tournaments (put-put golf, bowling, basketball, etc.), and so on. There are no limits from which to draw ideas from, and as such, fundraising should be a core component considered for providing the fuel to certain programs.

One significant component that should not be overlooked in funding programs is social interaction – truly heartfelt individual interaction. We live in an age where social media has considerably curtailed the capabilities of certain individuals to interact in a sociable way. In some circles, even being sociable might get askance glances given how much people are glued to phones. Keeping in mind individuals, who they are, where they come from, their backgrounds, their passions and the like, are all parts of a heart-felt approach to getting to know someone.

Why is this important? Because people support programs not only for what they seek to accomplish, but more importantly, for the individuals behind them, who they are and what they stand for. Moreover, individuals will keep coming back for these very reasons due to the trust garnered periodically. These relationships built and forged with appreciation and honesty stand to grow considerably stronger over time. This makes relationship building a core component in raising funds for any program. The opposite side of the coin is seeking funds in a cold-call interaction type-way, which is already at a disadvantage given the lack of all the aforementioned points. This makes building value in relationships a must-do.

Whatever path you opt to take, keep in mind that perseverance is key, but more importantly, a strong mindset is significant to accomplishing your goal. Setbacks will take place, issues will no doubt arise, but those that stay the course and continue with consistency will undoubtedly accomplish the goals they seek.



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About Written By: Zy Marquiez

Writer, Researcher, Book Reviewer

Owner Of Blocked Up

Fire Fighter Training Systems Podcast: The Beginning of The FFTS Project

“The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.”
– Lao Tzu

screenshot (160)Not long ago, Jabai Performance began a pilot program whose aim is to help Firefighters maintain a high level of physical performance while on the job. Moreover, the overarching purpose of this program is not only to increases the wellness of all individuals in this program, but ultimately to help save lives.

Months ago, a serendipitous discussion took place between Jabai Performance’s CEO, Hussien Jabai, and a former client of his. This discussion bore fruit in the fact that although Jabai’s aim was to create a program to help Law Enforcement Officer’s tackle preventative issues, as well as educating individuals on proper training protocol and so on, Jabai’s friend gave him another suggestion that would ultimately lead Jabai on a slightly different, but equally important path – the idea to create a training system for Firefighters instead. Thus was born the pilot program that is now called Fire Fighter Training Systems (FFTS).

The ultimate aim of FFTS is to create a high standard of physical fitness for Firefighters in similar fashion that athletes have. As many know, in order to perform at incredibly high levels, athletes of myriad types have a very sophisticated physical repertoire. The pregame preps, post-game treatment, rehab and recovery, and more, all coalesce to help create a path that athletes can follow in order to consistently perform at a high level. Similarly, Jabai’s aim is to have Firefighters achieve their own high standard of physical wellness that directly translates to a more robust and healthy lifestyle for these hard working individuals.

Following the brainstorming of the FFTS idea, Jabai began actively working with the Melissa Fire Department to achieve specific goals within the FFTS program. After discussions with the Fire Department, screenings, training programs, and an overall streamlining of all the exercises that were to be done and implemented were carried out. This entire process is currently helping fine tune this pilot program in hopes to help it become a program that is shared with other Fire Departments at a much wider scale. That said, the aim of Jabai Performance is not to diagnose any conditions or take physical therapy on hand – that job is to be referred to the proper professionals. The goal of FFTS is to create a program that helps set the standard for the wellness and physical prowess of future Fire Departments.

Fire Departments do have some obstacles that they are facing though. A combination of lack of space, proper training equipment, funds, sponsorship, and more, have become an anchor on these departments and the amount of work that can be done in the wellness area. This is where local involvement will be crucial, especially given that this is an issue that affects all of us. The significant increase in fires across the Southwestern United States over the last few years should give individuals pause since Fire Departments across various states were not only continuously needed, but needed at such a vast scale that it was unprecedented. Fires need not be of a large scale to affect a local community though.

A single, innocently-seeming fire can begin to cause absolute devastation if not tackled properly, and as such, the individuals that are involved in the prevention, and/or direct confrontation with these fires need not only to have a high standard of wellness, but as much local support as humanly possibly given that lives are at stake.

Just as a fire merely requires a spark to begin, ideas are no different. And the idea of the FFTS program already has its spark, all it needs is the continued commitment to help change the lives of many. Jabai Performance is merely doing its part to help those that directly help us in our time of need.


Listen To The Full Podcast HERE!

The Start of FFTS



Article Written By: Zy Marquiez

Writer, Researcher, & Book Reviewer

Owner of Blocked Up