Do you ever wonder why you sometimes can hurt yourself by doing the smallest thing, like bending down to lace up your shoe, or lifting up your child in the way that you always do? This comes down to the capacity of your body, and the demands that you put on it.
Capacity is another way to discuss the readiness of your body to respond to activity or stress. Your body’s capacity can change depending on many things: The quality and amount of sleep you get, the food you fuel your body with, your alcohol consumption, drug use, your stress levels, your physical activity and any chronic problems. Regular maintenance adjustments are another very important way to help increase the capacity of your body. We often find that patients who “tweak” their back when they are lacing up their shoe are under a lot of stress, maybe have not been sleeping well or have ignored a minor problem which worsens over time.
Interestingly, your ability to heal from any injury is also influenced by your body’s capacity. For example, people who have a new problem but are under a tremendous amount of stress are likely to heal less quickly than those who are less stressed.
Demand means the activities or strain that you put on your body. The way in which your body understands the demands that you put on it will be different depending on the capacity that your body has. This is why sometimes, something as simple as lifting a laundry basket, a job that you’ve done a million times, can hurt your back. These two things, your body’s capacity and the demands that you put on it, are in a constant flux. Your body is not fragile or weak, or you don’t have to avoid that motion or activity for the rest of your life. Instead, you should focus on increasing the capacity of your body, by having regular adjustments, sleeping well, eating more nutritious food, consuming less alcohol and drugs, trying to maintain lower stress, and adding more movement to your life are all things that will increase your capacity.