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Joint Pain: Causes & Solutions

Here is a summary of what I’ve found to be the cause of chronic joint pain as well as the solution. I’ve learned this information from my experience, fitness certifications, and the work of Robin Mckenzie, John Kirsch, Stuart Mcgill, Aaron Horschig, Vladamir Janda, and Ben Patrick.

If you go to an average western medicine doctor, they will tell you your joint pain is caused by a ‘syndrome’ or ‘disorder’ and they’ll label you with a fancy term and tell you it’s something you just have to live with. They are completely ignorant of the actual cause and are hurting millions of people every year! Let’s stop this now by learning the truth!

Joint Pain: What’s the cause?

Here’s an excerpt from Dr. Robin Mckenzie’s book “Treating your own Neck,”

“The most common form of joint pain is caused by overstretching ligaments due to postural stresses” (p. 27)

It is your POSTURE that is the most common cause of joint pain, not only in the neck, but also in the back, shoulder, and knee!

I learned from Dr. Vladimir Janda’s Crossed Syndromes that in some cases, joint degeneration may be a direct source of pain, but the actual cause of pain is often secondary to muscle imbalance. Therefore, clinicians should find and treat the cause of the pain rather than focus on the source of the pain.

This is incredibly empowering because it’s not your sh!tty low back genetics that causes your low back pain. Posture and muscle imbalance are the causes of the vast majority of joint pains, and they're completely preventable!

Joint Pain: What’s the solution?


If posture is the most common cause of joint pain, then it’s also the most common solution! Once you begin sitting and standing with good posture, you might be amazed at how your chronic body pain disappears.

Good Standing Posture

  1. Stand tall with feet hip width apart, twist your feet into the ground and squeeze your glutes to level your hips

  2. Brace your core as if you were peeing, laughing, or about to get punched in the stomach

  3. Chest up towards the ceiling

  4. Externally rotate and anti-shrug your shoulders

  5. Lastly, tuck your chin in as if something smells bad in front of you

Good Sitting Posture

  1. Keep your hips neutral and maintain the normal low back curve

  2. Align and stack your ears, shoulders, and hips

  3. Sit evenly and avoid leaning to one side

  4. Place computer as close to eye level as possible

  5. Take regular breaks or change positions often

If you have trouble identifying if your posture is good or poor, consider working with a qualified fitness professional who understands the specifics of posture and joint pain. Here’s a simple test: If your fitness professional doesn’t know any of the doctors mentioned in this post, find someone else!

Exercise Routines

Here is the basic foundation of exercises for shoulder, back, and knee pain. I have other posts with more in-depth information, so this is just a brief summary of the protocol I use when a client experiences one of these joint pains.

Shoulder pain Exercise Routine

Stretch Chest & Lats

  • Hang from a bar

    • 1min/day

Strengthen thoracic extension & external rotation

  • Prone Cobra hold and Y-T-A

    • 1 min/day


Knee pain Exercise Routine

Stretch hips

  • Couch stretch

    • 2min per day

Strengthen hips

  • Hip thrust, Hip abduction, and Hip adduction

  • 10 weekly sets of 12-20 reps


Low back pain Exercise Routine

Stretch hips

  • Couch stretch

    • 2min per day

Strengthen core & hips

  • Learn how to brace properly - deadbug, bird dog, side plank

    • 10 weekly sets of 30sec

  • Hip thrust, hip abduction, and hip adduction

    • 10 weekly sets of 12-20 reps

Joint Pain: My Story

When I was 21 years old a doctor diagnosed me with degenerative disc disease. He said I’d never run, jump, or lift weights for the rest of my life and it turns out he was very wrong.

When we accept a diagnosis, we accept powerlessness. The more you take ownership for your sickness, the more powerful you become. Take 100% responsibility for everything in your life. Here’s a great book if you’d like to read more on this topic: “The Biology of Belief” by Dr. Bruce Lipton.

Hope this helps! - Tom


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