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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 – 1 Sep 2008

39 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 244 pages
  • Publisher: Pendo Press (1 Sept. 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0979303605
  • ISBN-13: 978-0979303609
  • Product Dimensions: 21.6 x 1.7 x 27.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 311,274 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

I don't think I have ever picked up another book that so immediately encourages the reader to explore the contents. There are pages of colourful pictures illustrating exercises and postures for all parts of the body, together with very concise and easy to comprehend instructions. Esther Gokhale's method addresses the root cause of muscle and joint pain, which can mainly be attributed to the way we hold ourselves and the way we move. She points out that a century ago our ancestors knew how to move without pain and some cultures still know how. Esther refers to these cultures with many examples, for instance that of a Burkina woman "glidewalking". The techniques outlined in the book, based on the way we sit, sleep and walk, help to: - Reduce to eliminate back pain, neck pain and other muscle or joint pain - Prevent muscle and joint degeneration and injury - Increase energy, stamina and flexibility - Reduce stress and improve appearance By emphasizing everyday movement, rather than periodic exercise sessions, her method gives ample opportunity to practice without taking time out of the day. Every movement becomes an effective exercise. I have already found some relief from my scoliosis. I certainly look forward to being able to regain some of the 4 inches I have already lost in height through through the curvature! --BackChat (magazine of Chiropractic Patients' Association) Winter 2014 --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

21 of 21 people found the following review helpful By J. N. Carter on 7 July 2009
Format: Paperback
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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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By RMc on 8 Mar. 2010
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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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26 of 27 people found the following review helpful By A reviewer from London on 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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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Hasanain on 17 Aug. 2011
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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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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Hobday on 18 Mar. 2013
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I am only on step 2 of the 8 steps but so far I have to say I am really impressed. The steps are easy to follow and work through with the pictures, it just takes a little practice to get it completely right. I sat all day at a meeting last week and managed to make it through the day with the least amount of pain I have experienced for years. Just don't buy this thinking you will be cured tomorrow, you do need to work through all the steps in detail and ingrain them in your brain!
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Dr. Patrick Molloy on 1 Jun. 2010
Format: Paperback
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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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Jessie on 5 Jan. 2012
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I highly recommend this book. The importance of good posture and how it can be improved is well described and beautifully illustrated. The practice sessions are enjoyable and encourage a can-do approach. It takes a bit of effort to learn and remember in everyday life and needs to be taken slowly, but the benefit makes you feel better and more confident generally.

Another good point is that it doesn't start off with pages and pages of lengthy details about the author's history which can be irritating, and the book is quite big so that text, illustrations and diagrams can all be on one page, making it easy to follow and holds your interest.

I wish the DVD was available in the UK.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By 7rainbow777 on 1 Aug. 2013
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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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