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8 Steps to a Pain-Free Back: Natural Posture Solutions for Pain in the Back, Neck, Shoulder, Hip, Knee, and Foot (Remember When It Didn't Hurt) [Paperback]

Esther Gokhale , Susan Adams
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)

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Book Description

1 Sep 2008 Remember When It Didn't Hurt
After crippling back pain during her first pregnancy and unsuccessful back surgery, Esther Gokhale became intensely focused on finding the key to a pain-free body. Her studies at the Aplomb Institute in Paris and years of research in Burkina Faso, India and Portugal led to her develop the Gokhale Method. Gokhale continues to dedicate her life to posture therapy, helping people reclaim a pain-free life through implementing important physiological changes. Gokhale believes the root of a painful back, a painful body, postural dysfunctional and general feelings of discomfort are due to the fact we have lost sight of how to use our bodies. According to Gokhale the cause of such maladies is not due to the simple fact that we move less now than we ever have before, but rather it's the way we hold and position our bodies while undertaking such sedentary tasks that is creating the problem. While many of us slump our spines into a C-Shaped position, there is also a host of us that go the other way and arch up into a tense S shape, Gokhale aims to encourage her students and followers return their bodies to the natural stance, holding ourselves upright and relaxed in a tall J shape. The Gokhale Method teaches followers how posture is linked to any number of seemingly unrelated ailments, including disc degeneration, certain arthritic changes and even respiratory problems.
--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Product details

  • Paperback: 244 pages
  • Publisher: Pendo Press (1 Sep 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0979303605
  • ISBN-13: 978-0979303609
  • Product Dimensions: 27.8 x 21.8 x 1.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 229,468 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Product Description

About the Author

Esther Gokhale (Go-clay) has been involved in integrative therapies all her life. As a young girl growing up in India, she helped her mother, a registered nurse, treat abandoned babies waiting to be adopted. This early interest led her to study biochemistry at Harvard and Princeton and, later, acupuncture at the San Francisco School of Oriental Medicine. After crippling back pain during her fi rst pregnancy and unsuccessful back surgery, she began her lifelong crusade to fi nd a solution to back pain. Her studies at the Aplomb Institute in Paris and years of research in Burkina Faso, India, Portugal, and elsewhere led to her development of the Gokhale Method, which she has been teaching at her Palo Alto wellness center for the past fi fteen years. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It does what it says on the cover 7 July 2009
There are so many bad backs, and so many ways of tackling the problem. What marks this book out is that it works! The 8 steps are described in 8 chapters showing simple effective ways to stand, sit, lie down and walk in a back friendly way. Numerous pictures and diagrams make understanding the text easy, and the book a pleasure to read and refer to again and again.

The approach taken is based on observing people in cultures where back pain is virtually unheard of. This results in an approach that might not be exactly the same as you've encountered before, but from personal experience I know how effective it is. If you want to get a flavour of the Gokhale method try looking on youtube for a video of Esther teaching. Give it a go, and if you like it, do buy the book.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
By RMc
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
In summary, the author makes a very good case that westerners are prone to back pain largely because our lifestyle teaches us to forget the forward pelvic tilt that keeps the discs of the lower back in correct alignment. Her solutions are simple habits to practise when lying, sitting, standing & walking. Excellent photographs are used throughout to reinforce the mental image of healthy posture. As a corrective therapist I use this book all the time as a reference for clients & heartily recommend it as a great resource.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Section on walking lets the book down 17 Jun 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I found this book by browsing on the US Amazon, and bought it as one of a number of books to resolve an issue with my back.

The book does for me an excellent job of showing using the examples of people in Burkinso Furso, Brazil, Portugal babies and ancient statues and even picture of people in the US and France at the turn of the 19 century that what is accepted today as good posture is not in fact the case.

The static exercises, and sitting on the chair are reasonably well explained, although it helps if you have someone to read the exercises out to you and to check you are in the right position, particularly the one where you are on your side in bed.

Where I struggled with my understanding is with her description on how to do the glide walking, particularly as the pictures do not have the floor on them and are shown in discrete sequences from one place to another.

This to me was so much an issue that I bought her DVD when it cam out from her US site, but unfortunately she puts walking as a bonus at the back of the DVD and doesn't really explain if much better than the book. The rest of the DVD cover the stuff in the book.

She has videos on her site and youtube, and also quite a long talk that she gave to Google employees, so if you are interested then check these out first.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant Stuff! 1 Jun 2010
Every so often a new discovery is made that moves our understanding forward in a particular field.
Having worked with chronic back pain sufferers for a decade as a chiropractic physician, I feel that this is the next leap forward in our understanding of how to resolve these issues naturally, without drugs or surgery.

Esther's book is beautifully laid out and is very clear and logical. The methods described are actually quite simple but surprisingly effective. In the past I had felt that any attempt to alter posture was doomed to failure in the long term, requiring superhuman determination. Not so! I can already see positive changes in my own posture
after only a week of trying out some of these methods. The other wonderful thing is that the Gokhale method hands the power back to the patient, providing them with the keys to resolving their own problems. Very empowering.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing book 17 Aug 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
She really knows what she's talking about.

I came here to write a review cos I felt like the world has to know about this....seriously.

Buy it and implement it. It's not difficult and it's certainly life-changing
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I have had chronic back pain for 12 years. I often took pain killers, over the counter or from the doctor. I have tried, acupuncture, traction, cranial sacral therapy, massage, reiki, need I go on - I tried it all. I've had test after test physio therapy many times to improve my posture and still I am in pain.

Then I heard about Esthers book. She belives that the posture we teach is increasing back pain and bases her method around studying the countries where back pain is lower.

Many of the things Esther talks about in her book are the things I was doing before I had problems, like how to walk, hip hinging and how to sleep. Doctors have been telling me for years that my posture was terrible and yet all they told me to do made it worse. Esther's method makes sense, about sitting, standing and walking in a way that your large joints take the strain, not your back. Is my back better, yes of course it is. I move my back in a natural way now.

Physiotherapists should take note as their success rate in treating back and neck pain is low. Time to try something different?

I love this book.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
This book offers well organized information which allows the reader to build a clear and comprehensive understanding of postural health and how to move closer to it by making logical changes to their everyday body usage. It employs examples, testimonials, diagrams, stunning photographs and historical and contemporary evidence to guide and inspire you on your journey.

The author's passion and deep knowledge of her subject is clear. Having experienced muscular spasms in my back for over 20 years, I wish this book had been around before now. Applying its key concepts would, I am convinced, have made immediate improvement of my symptoms. As it is, I now understand why some practices aggravated my condition while others helped to heal it, and I continue to improve by using the Gokhale Method. Thank you, Esther Gokhale!

Outstanding value for money as a book, priceless help for back pain sufferers.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Wish I'd bought this years ago.
This gives really good advice for people suffering from aches and pain bought on by poor posture. I've had backache, a slipped disc, knee pain, neck pain, over the years. Read more
Published 19 days ago by Anne
5.0 out of 5 stars Very useful
I have been using techniques in this book since last 2 months. Two techniques that really helped me are Stretch lying & Stretch Sitting. Read more
Published 2 months ago by vipul jindal
5.0 out of 5 stars A recommended read
I was recommended this book when I was diagnosed with frozen shoulder and progress through the NHS was slow. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Rebecca Read
3.0 out of 5 stars Perhaps a curate's egg ?
Beautifully produced but disappointing
Numerous ambiguous passages, a lot of heavy technical vocabulary, and excellent drawings which are difficult to follow (even though I am... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Corrie Vrecken
4.0 out of 5 stars It's helpful
The visualisation of the technique using photos of tribal people was really helpful. I now imagine I'm tribal when I wash out the bath.
Published 5 months ago by Emma Currie
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book
I have done some of the simple steps in this book and also bought her back cushion although to early to tell with the cushion just some of the posture truing has helped.
Published 5 months ago by Alex
5.0 out of 5 stars If you have pain issues try this book
Well presented and illustrated.If you have pain issues try the methods in this book.You have nothing to lose at this price.
Published 5 months ago by Susan Christie
5.0 out of 5 stars An amazing read
Everyone should read this book and parents read it on behalf of their children, it is truly life changing and also beautiful to look at
Published 6 months ago by Janice Kitchen
5.0 out of 5 stars Pain free back
The book has easy to follow instructions with illustrations and reminders at the end of each chapter. Read more
Published 6 months ago by lesley mckay
5.0 out of 5 stars It worked, what else is there to say?
I had awful back pain for years to the point where i ended up lying on the floor of our lounge most nights in agony. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Johnnie B
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