Transcript for “Awareness – with Phil Lombardo”

Episode, Awareness – with Phil Lombardo

00:00.00
Craig
Hello I’m Craig Constantine welcome to the movers mindset podcast where I talk with movement enthusiasts to find out who they are what they do and why they do it. My guest today is Phil Lombardo welcome Phil oh thank you for taking the time hi everybody. This is the.

00:13.50
Phil
Um, Craig. Thank you so much for having me. The s.

00:38.52
Craig
Let’s have a battle of thank yous, everybody’s always happy to be here and I’m always ridiculously excited to get to talk to people and I I think that energy I hope people play off that sometimes I’m afraid I overwhelm people crazy maniac at Nine zero in the morning that would of ah um, but.

00:32.97
Phil
Yeah.

01:14.98
Craig
So I’m doubly trippoli quadruplly quintuly excited because today is my last day for me to talk about although I get to do it a lot today the move and Nyc event in Manhattan this weekend. Don’t fast forward people that’s rude Phil will be there of course and you should be None dear listeners get moving by going to v. http://movementcreative.com. So there’s that um so I always have there’s like these pregnant pauses and it’s not because I can’t figure out where to start it’s because I got so many ideas and so many places to pick from and it kind of sets the tone and.

02:04.63
Phil
Um, so many choices? yeah.

02:33.66
Craig
I’m just like well let’s go. Let’s go really meta today Craig um, when you have your none opportunity to work with someone new and and maybe it’s not even like they’re at the clinic and you know they have an appointment and they’re going to be like possibly a paying client but just that opportunity to like here’s a new person. Um, and maybe you’re just moving with them. Maybe you can see they might need a little help because they’re like ah like a gate issue or something so we have that none time that you encounter a person. Um, how much of it is like a thing that you intentionally bring to bear.

03:05.90
Phil
Um, yeah.

03:44.42
Craig
Are you able to just like move and hang out with people or does the analytical I’m going to say superpowers that you have to the analytical superpowers I want say overwhelm you but do they automatically engage every time you work with somebody new or you have a chance to interact with somebody new.

03:58.41
Phil
Yeah that’s a great question Craig um I would say that over the years I’ve learned to quiet that just a little bit just for my own relaxation. My own peace of mindset if I’m out moving I can just go out and move because it used to be all the time you know I was at the gym or. Or somewhere else or at a None k you know I’d be looking at people’s running and gate analysis and I finally learned maybe five years ago or so yeah, it’s still a work in progress of course but I learned I learned to quiet that down. But the second that they asked me a question.

05:01.44
Craig
10 minutes ago

05:09.37
Phil
Oh my God like my brain lights up like I wish they could do an Mri study of me just hanging out and then me of when somebody asks me a movement question. You know hey I have this problem and I’m like great. Let’s you know, tell me more.

05:43.86
Craig
Mmm.

05:39.97
Phil
You know and it’s it’s just exciting to like you said yeah I actually do refer to it with patients as a superpower I say that they are that that we are making magic or miracles happen and changing people’s lives every day which if you think about it is None accurate you know magic or miracles are just things that people don’t understand so so I do a joint mobilization or I or I do a trigger point release or something that they’re like oh my god my neck moves in a way that I never could move it. You know to them that was a miracle and.

06:34.74
Craig
Right.

06:49.83
Phil
You know it helps me to still appreciate what I do and not take it for granted. Um you know and and literally changing their life where for months maybe six months two years five years I don’t know they’ve had this ah pain and they’ve had this dysfunction and it’s impacted their life and taken away something from them. So yes, as soon as they ask me a question my my brain lights up and certainly the energy and the excitement with me and then to see an actual change like to see this stuff work I got my doctorate at and my twenty years twenty years ago yeah and and to. See are but to see the stuff in in effect having an effect on people and seeing them like feel it and be like oh my god that actually worked because maybe they’ve been to physical therapy that was crap to be honest with you. Maybe they’ve been to what I call drive through physical therapy which is just you know.

08:53.20
Craig
Alright.

08:40.87
Phil
Throwing something at it but but a doctor of physical therapy providing like you said the the curiosity and the precision of movement and and the assessment the awareness of what’s going on for this person. Through evaluating them but also through just listening oh every time I do this, you know the emotional component about it as well. Sorry I’m going off on like None different tangents here.

09:47.44
Craig
No, ah I was saying thinking one of the things that you mentioned that I had read before before before the call was about deploying empathy and I’m like oh you had me you know because like my personal Sh stick involves compassion and understanding I’m like oh that’s a big thing and as you were describing.

09:51.23
Phil
Um, yeah.

10:25.68
Craig
The way that you engage with people the way that your your brain literally engages about but the way you conceptually engage I’m wondering about I don’t want to say the medical establishment but I’ll just say the medical establishment I’m wondering if you’ve seen like I’m curious about what what really goes on when like two doctors interact.

10:50.29
Phil
And.

11:05.62
Craig
And not because I’m like I’m not a physician I don’t play one on Tv I have no medical qualifications whatsoever. But I’m wondering if you’ve had interesting experiences with other probably other therapists. But if you’ve had experiences with other what are the people gerretologists the people who work with Geriatrics. Um, have you had interesting exchange with those people where you’ve managed to share some piece of your spirit or your passion you know by showing them. You know there’s this piece here that is actually easy to add in. Maybe I’m hypothesizing here but I’m curious about how your reaction is how your interactions are.

11:55.99
Phil
Um, yeah.

12:21.38
Craig
With other medical professionals other Pt people who don’t start from the same mental place as you.

12:16.41
Phil
Yeah that’s a huge challenge for me and a huge point of frustration for me because whenever I talk with summit now I’m very very lucky I have but worked in the same organization for None ears and I’ve gotten extremely extremely advanced mentorship. On interpersonal neurobiology emotional intelligence nonviolent communication and a number of other things that have literally changed and transformed my life. This is not all self-development. This is ah you know some self-development but also some meant a ton of mentorship that has helped me along my way and accompaniment. I’m in an organization where there’s 60 different people that are studying the same topic and so with them I can have a very deep conversation where they offer meet empathy and resonance I offer it to my patients they will call me out if I’m if I’m left brain shifted and and I’m just. Clinically thinking about the biomechanics of it and not thinking about the person that I’m treating and and help me to explore other needs that might not be met and so I can do that with my patients but within the medical community I don’t know I don’t want to take away from anything because I haven’t had. That long of extensive conversations with people but most people tend to go to either number None the biomechanical pathophysiological anatomical problem or number None use empathy and mind body connection as a. Buzzword or as a great idea you know they’ll say oh I love what you’re doing I love everything that you’re talking about and one day I want to open a retreat center that does that and I’m saying well what about your medical practice now and right and and they’re just like.

16:04.36
Craig
Why not do it today right.

16:02.41
Phil
Yeah, like no no I always incorporate that and I’m like you know as they talk to me again, not that they’re not empathic or wonderful emotionally connected with their patients but the level that I’m talking about doing it constantly to discuss. To pick up on it. The awareness of a person’s you know why? they’re injured how does pain get perceived in our brain How does pain get processed in our brain. How does this? What does this dysfunction mean to them in their life because if you don’t answer that you’re just throwing things at them which. Might help them. You know you could throw things at them and it might be boom great and they’re they’re solved. But if you really connect to them. They’re going to be more on board with your medical plan. They’re going to be more participatory with the medical plan.

17:36.96
Craig
Something clicks.

17:51.47
Phil
You know versus poor patient compliance poor patient attendance you know all those things get addressed and guess what their outcome then becomes better because they feel heard listened to and that I really understand them and that I am accompanying them I’m not just the last thing I ever want to be. Sometimes I motivate people but the last thing I want to be is a Tony Robbins I do not want to be a David goggins or a Tony Robbins I love those guys I look to them and I think there’s some interesting information there. But that’s not what I want to be for my patients.

19:07.00
Craig
Ah, yeah, so many things? Yeah so I read that you mentioned I don’t I don’t think you mentioned the patient’s name but you mentioned a patient and what you were just describing reminded me of this small anecdote where she.

19:01.21
Phil
Ready go.

19:46.38
Craig
Her Her story like the fear that she had I think it was a woman um was not so much about her body or her pain Raing. It was like she had this preconceived notion of what Pt was going to be um and and when you were talking about empathy and and understanding I’m like yeah if you’re the type of person who’s empathic and that’s. Where you come from like as as you are then you’re going to see that and you’re be like oh well here’s here’s what this patient needs and it’s not how to do reverse light curls or whatever. It’s It’s no, no, this is what Pt is going to be like for you and and that sense of empowerment that they would get by you.

20:10.97
Phil
Um, yeah.

20:26.45
Phil
Um, right.

21:00.16
Craig
You know, realizing that they really are in control. Even if you go to your heart surgeon. You know you really are in control even though you feel like I don’t know what’s going on I’ll just sign anywhere but like that’s an interesting I’m not interesting. That’s a ah, delightful way to to interact with that patient or that person you’re consulting with.

20:48.70
Phil
Um, yeah.

21:21.51
Phil
There’s so many different ways that we tend to give empathy right? like reassurance or education and that is there’s more and more research out there. That’s showing that that is not that does not help the situation. Well, it can help the situation I’m I’m sorry but None giving.

21:42.16
Craig
Yeah.

21:58.11
Phil
Acknowledgement and some resonance you know if a patient came in and said oh I heard physical Therapy hurts and I say Nope We don’t do that here like no that that’s not goingnna that’s not going to do it. But if I said to them. Yeah,, there’s a lot of places out there that do that and and that’s a very real thing and I’m sorry that you’re. Feeling any stress you’re coming to a medical provider for help and you’re feeling stressed God I I feel terrible that you feel that way come. Let’s just talk None you know and then we talk for Christina Let’s just talk and then can I do this You know I’m very gentle with the patient can I do this is it. Okay, if we do this. How does that feel to you and I’m checking in a little extra.

23:02.86
Craig
Um, yeah, let’s start there.

23:14.53
Phil
You know? and and again it’s treating every patient differently I’ve been doing it for 20 years but if I think I know it all or I got this or I know I can help this person I’ve I’ve completely lost it. So I start fresh with each patient as if it was you know ten fifteen twenty years ago and I’m just starting now.

24:06.78
Craig
I should just press stop right? there before I wreck it by saying anything else a couple minutes ago you were talking about um left brain. There’s nothing wrong with left brain like.

23:58.43
Phil
Um.

24:17.73
Phil
Um, yeah, exactly yes.

24:34.92
Craig
We meet that side of the analytical thing too. But I am like a lot of people I tend to fall into that right? I’m I’m a very analytical person and so you were talking about that and I think most people understand what we So What we mean when we say like the biomechanical model which is not how human bodies work but like oh it’s a hinge and it’s a lerant. No. But that model and the um the disease model we’re like like what’s wrong here like so that’s like um, um I don’t want to say a mindset I’m I’m wondering if there are ways that ah I love to try and find actionable things that we can say to people like okay.

25:03.99
Phil
Here there.

25:45.70
Craig
Like this happens to me I go out running. That’s usually my None mistake then at some point I’m running and ah I’m like ohh what’s with that you know I always joke my like check knee light comes on you know and then if I if I take my time and change my cadence and maybe figure out like oh yeah, why is my back. You know like I can kind of work through it. But.

25:46.79
Phil
Um, yeah.

26:21.60
Craig
I Think that’s because i’ want to say I’m experienced but it’s because I’ve spent a lot of time moving and I’ve done a lot of like woo. Let’s do a moving screen and I’m imagining somebody who might be listening to this going? Yeah, that’s nice to you guys I hear what you’re saying but I get this problem with my foot and I’m wondering if there are things we can suggest to people like how to shift from the analytical thinking.

26:12.81
Phil
Um, yeah.

26:28.45
Phil
Um, there.

26:59.16
Craig
And more into a way of being in your body. Not like that’s going to cure the problem but that just might help them understand Actually what I’m really feeling is this real weakness in my leg. What’s up with that. Um, and my making sense is that something that is.

27:09.75
Phil
Yeah, yeah, hundred percent 100% hundred percent and what I learned years ago. This is ah again, a personal philosophy that applies to this and I think applies to what you’re speaking to is that if I am at home I don’t want to do my taxes. Now what the hell does this have to do with movement I don’t want to do my taxes because I am not good at it I do not know how to I could do it correction I could do it but I’m not going to do it well so the biomechanical assessment you. Don’t want to do yourself because you don’t know how to do it well. But.

28:00.30
Craig
Um.

28:17.82
Craig
There.

28:24.37
Phil
But emotionally you are the expert of yourself. So what can you give yourself again. Empathy awareness. There are mri studies that show that decrease I’m sorry naming the emotion that you’re a feeling can decrease the stress in your amygdala by. 50 just by naming it. So if you say I feel tight I feel frustrated Jesus Christ is this back pain coming back again like I’m so fucking frustrated with this right? just just by saying that for yourself again. You’re not going to beat yourself up. You’re a piece of garbage and isn’t this.

29:19.66
Craig
Um.

29:36.14
Craig
I can’t even pick up my socks right? I’ve had that 1

29:42.69
Phil
Not beating yourself up if you name the emotion and give it acknowledgement that can decrease your stress level by 50% which will in turn decrease your cortisol levels which will decrease your inflammation. So if you want to help the best advice to help yourself is the biomechanical assessment. Go to a professional seek out a professional for that. Hopefully they will also add in the empathy component. Maybe maybe not I can’t speak to that but leave the biomechanical assessment there and then do some selfref reflection for yourself and give yourself empathy and resonance as far as what you’re feeling and that I would say is the best thing for. People to to help themselves and get to the bottom of their problems because there’s there’s so much when we can talk biomechanical assessment right? I use so many different models I use the practice of natural movement which is formalized by Movnat International I use that certainly I use and actually we’re developing a screening system currently with about 15 different medical professionals internationally I use the functional movement screen I use my doctor of physical therapy evaluation with active range of motion passive range of motion manual muscle testing special tests I use. All that stuff I use medical imaging I just you know physical therapists can refer patients for Mris as referred to somebody yesterday instead of taking two weeks to go back to her orthopedist and do all this stuff I ordered the mri so I have all these different tools at my discretion I want to acknowledge that I still use that stuff. Not just oh by talking to somebody and giving them a hug their ankle suddenly feels better and goes away but there’s there’s so many biomechanical tools that we can use and if somebody else comes in and says oh well I use this method I say. Great. Can you tell me more about that because I would love to learn about it. Um, my ego is not big enough that that I can’t learn from other people still. So.

33:40.32
Craig
M.

34:02.24
Craig
So many so many things turn signal completely left turn I watched ah a short Instagram video of you doing some what I would call lowgate work on a bar. You know so squatted or.

33:51.57
Phil
Um.

34:04.80
Phil
Yeah.

34:25.27
Phil
Um, yeah.

34:42.10
Craig
Way birds would sit across a bar and just moving and the video was sped up and I was going real fast but I found I don’t know five seven years ago I was doing a challenge involving wearing feu minimalist. You know, minimal shoes I wouldn’t even call us minimalist these days but wearing.

34:53.63
Phil
Um.

35:17.00
Craig
Basic feiou shoes and doing bar precisions not at height or at big distances and my little foura and to understanding how my feet worked I think it changed all kinds of things like I think just being you know like the None time we jump on the bar I was like oh o that hurts we need to make this much shorter much closer.

35:20.50
Phil
He.

35:33.49
Phil
Um, yeah.

35:56.38
Craig
Um, and I’m just wondering I think I say that a lot I’m wondering because it’s true I think that feet are underrated isn’t quite right. Feet are Underrecognizedd or under certainly underappreciated, most people just jam them in their shoes and torture them and I’m.

36:03.77
Phil
Um.

36:33.24
Craig
I’m wondering if you’ve found some interesting exercises or things that can challenge people to maybe kick their shoes off and and try some movement I’m a big fan of like a schedule 40 Size. Ah. Inch and a quarter inch and a half round steel Pipe I think has a nice size to get your foot on and you can get some What is that Meta Tarsel Movement. So I’m I’m just wondering what your thoughts are because I know like the the nerve density is like the same as your hands and it’s like there’s as much down there as there is on the end of your arms.

36:47.39
Phil
Um, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. Yes, yeah, the the feet are so underutilized Both as far as function and mobility and strength and you know, proprioceptive feedback. So So the nerves are receiving information from the ground. Tell us where we are and the joints are are are telling us where we are in space and when we put them in in these sneakers that we currently have they’re almost like wearing you know oven mittens you know. So if you put oven mittens on and walked around good Luck. You know, using your smartphone and good luck.

38:28.14
Craig
Ah, to pick your coffee off right.

38:21.17
Phil
Using the computer. Yeah, exactly you can do it you you know you can do it but and your body will adapt to it and your body will learn how to how to how to get around that because our bodies are very very good at at adapting. But you know take the shoes off number one try to walk in as much. Ground as you can whether it’s you know? Unfortunately we live in a concrete jungle most places but as much dirt and grass. You know if I’m in my backyard I’m barefoot if I’m hiking I’m wearing either like an earth runner Six Millimeter you know little piece of rubber between my foot or and then I just started getting curious I said well.

39:41.84
Craig
Right.

39:39.11
Phil
I hike barefoot and so when I went out with my kids. They’re younger. They were a little slower. It was the perfect speed. So and I adapted to it. Did I get a little o oo poke here and there absolutely and and again emotionally what did I think it was I thought it wash ohh this is danger. This is a problem. What am I doing this is stupid and I had to. Process that emotionally and say no keep try keep keep trying. You’re not getting in. Yeah, you’re not you’re not injured there’s nothing the next day there’s no pain. There’s no cuts and sure enough you know my body has adapted to it. But the none thing yeah, like you said the one in a none pipe or simply we use a.

40:39.00
Craig
I’m okay here. Yeah.

40:55.27
Phil
Movenat we use a lot of 2 wo-byour s it’s it’s almost like a slight regression from the pipe so you’ll have a little more space but it feels like you’re off the ground you’re you’re kind of a target of only a certain distance and I was actually just thinking this morning one of the topics I’m doing is rehab at the move Nyc event this weekend. And rehab and injury prevention. An important part of that is balance and I said dear lord how am I going to fit that into my that’s one of 6 topics I’m saying I could do a whole other hour just talking to people about about balance. You know, give me a 2 by 4 and we can do a half hour workout whether it’s lunges split squats sidestepping. Um, lowering tripod trans transitions. You know you name it. There’s so much that you could do on a very narrow or unstable surface. So I encourage people to challenge themselves and see what happens you know, get a 2 by 4 out, get a piece of pipe and and just move around turn back and forth walk sideways. Low to the ground and see what happens for you. You’d be amazed. The spine hips knees ankles everything starts to come into play.

43:07.59
Phil
Me.

43:21.36
Craig
Terrific as I often say I’m watching our time slip away Phil I think I will just say and of course the final question 3 words to describe your practice.

43:25.49
Phil
Ah, okay so I went with curiosity awareness and precision precision. Yeah because I don’t know man you know the curiosity is 1 thing like you said when that when that patient asks me.

43:58.62
Craig
Pres precision right? yeah.

44:02.89
Phil
Hey, What’s this problem that I have you know like likes up him and I are connecting over our curiosity as human Beings. You know we want so often to be comfortable and to get into routines and there’s nothing wrong with that. But sometimes we lose our humanistic instincts for curiosity whether it’s with movement with an injury and hey I’m curious can I overcome this. You know it feels Frustrating. We feel stuck so we stop and we don’t do anything and then the awareness of you know again, just not pushing that stuff away just you know letting it come to the surface letting it get acknowledgment and you know keeping our eyes open I mean you know we can go down a whole matrix Rabbit hole. But. Again, Whole other podcast whole the podcast. It was so true with Movement. You know we get a doctorate of physical Therapy. We come out and we work in factories where we’re just mass producing you know, general movement and exercise. But if I have the awareness to hear what my patient’s saying recognize what’s going On. Them. We’re gonna have a deep bond and their outcome is going to be much much much much better and of course of course the precision. You know you can’t just go through saying hey I’m working hard hey I’m working hard hey I’m working hard. Well, what are you working on you know movement like okay. You know, let’s let’s get into that. Let’s get out from the theoretical conversations and let’s start to get into you and me conversation. What’s going on for you and what’s you know, being more precise with the connection with the movements with the sensations with just just all of it. So Curiosity Awareness and precision are things I think about. Every single day of my life. Definitely.

47:32.32
Craig
Terrific Phil ah it was everything I hoped it would be I really appreciate your equanimity if I can trot out big words that your you know your your passion comes through you know and nobody can see you but me but like you’re an animated person.

47:22.85
Phil
Same crack.

48:07.88
Craig
But there’s also a calmness and a relaxation about it which I really find a great way to start my day. So thank you so much for taking the time and I look forward to seeing you this weekend. It’s going to be a blast.

48:11.93
Phil
Yes, I’m so excited I Look forward to seeing everyone in the listeners. It’ll be out there so come on down guys.