Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Upright Citizens

Here's an interesting article in the new National Geographic about how walking on two legs is the root of all evil. Well, almost. "The Downside of Upright" claims that it is downright impossible for us humans to walk upright! Yet walk upright we do; *ahem* some of us more than others. The article states that the plethora of back, knee and hip difficulties, as well as the risks of childbirth suffered by us bipedals could be largely avoided if we gave up the whole "free hands" thing, grew our arms longer and walked on all fours. Our spinal column originally evolved as an arch, not the weight bearing column it acts as now.
... the lower region of the [vertebral] column suffers from the excessive pressure and oblique force exerted on its curved structure by our upright posture.

In my case, and how.

Basically, the vertebrae in the back are wedge shaped, this shape being most pronounced in the lower back. These wedges, along with the "S" curves in our spines (developed in response to an upright posture) and with the discs in between the vertebrae, is what allows us to flex and twist and bend.

In my case, at least one of my lumbar discs is narrowing at the front, causing me to pitch forward. The cause of the narrowing, is of course, Degenerative Disc Disease, which I already knew, but it doesn't make standing upright any easier for me, in fact, it's downright impossible.


Blogger HeroXJimmy said...

This is an interesting article. Also, I totally "id'd" with your previous post. I just came back last night from quite a long stay at the hospital... all full of hope of gardening, and cooking again and such... and it is only 11:30 am and I am already shot. Joey is away for another 10 days, which is actually a good thing for me. Sure I miss him, but when he is here I do even less because he just takes care of everything and I do nothing. When I am alone, I am forced to do some things so it gets me out of bed and away from that damn tv. I spend more time in front of that tv to the point where I find myself getting angry at certain comedic actors. My life has become somewhat ridiculous. I am sure that surgery sounds absolutely daunting but I do hope you get it and can have your life back. I wish I could have some kind of surgery to fix all of this, but that 'aint gonna happen. Anyway, in the next 10 days I am really going to try to push myself as much as I can. Hell, when Joey is here I don't even get out of bed to get a glass of water... he does it for me. I know he is trying to be helpful but it is actually quite harmful. So I am going to rest for the next hour and then get up and go restake my tomatoes and take it from there. I wish you well.

Hero and Jimmy

10:47 AM  

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