Repetitive Strain Injury/RSI, lower back, sciatic nerve


I read the excellent response on this topic just now and I need some suggestions or places I can go for consultation - unfortunately I am not in the USA as I moved to France almost a year ago, and purchased a house for conversion/renovation at the beginning of this year (2015).  For months I blamed my very uncomfortable bed for waking up in the morning feeling like I had been run over with a truck, then thought I had pulled a muscle, developed sciatic nerve pain, saw Doctor who sent me to kinestherapie, and was getting better when I discovered the REAL cause of my problem..... The weather turned cold, and as the building work was still awaiting permits and I had no central heating I had to light the wood burner :(  I carried in a load of logs - saw my reflection in the window, lit the fire, and on my knees, bent and twisted to load a log into the fire - felt it and I knew .... 4 months of RSI, all day, 7 days a week. Now back to where I started before the therapy and looked up RSI on the internet. Now I know the cause, I have to fix it - but my biggest worry is, have I done too much damage for complete resolution or is improvement all I can plan on? I am normally a very, active, healthy person and this is very difficult for me.

Hi Stephanie,

I'm happy to say that the odds are you haven't done too much damage and that you'll be able to get it resolved with a bit of focused attention.  It's pretty complicated to explain so I suggest you go to and look at the section about the low back.  

In brief, the muscles that pull you into the sitting/forward bending position have gone into spasm. This causes your pelvis to rotate forward and down, which in turn pushes your pelvis up in the back.  As this is happening it causes the bone to press into your sciatic nerve.  Before we would ever do any treatment in your sciatic nerve area (the butt), we need to address the muscles in the front so the pressure is taken off the pelvis.

When you are on the website you will see that I do Skype consultations, so it's not a problem that you are in France.  There is a ton of information on that website, plus you'll find the blogs to be informative.  After you have looked at it, please feel free to contact me if you have any questions.  I truly believe that you will be able to self-treat each of the muscles that are causing this painful problem.

Wishing you well,
    Julie Donnelly

Repetitive Strain Injury

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Julie Donnelly, LMT


I can accept questions that relate to chronic or acute pain caused by muscle spasms and contractions. Repetitive Strain Injury is actually Cumulative Trauma to muscles. Releasing the spasm &/or contraction will relieve the strain that is felt at the insertion point on the bone. I am the co-developer of the unique safe-stretching program "Focused Flexibility Training," which combines easy instruction for self-treating spasms throughout your body with proven yoga stretches. I have recently authored two new books: "The 15 Minute Back Pain Solution," and "The Secret to Your Best Golf Game EVER!


Since 1989 I have been working with endurance athletes and individuals suffering from chronic pain conditions. I have authored seven self-treatment books and three self-treatment DVDs and I have developed the Julstro System for the treatment of carpal tunnel syndrome, Trigger Finger, and other Hand/Wrist pain. I am a national and international presenter at conventions, seminars, and workshops. Principle topics are "Work Shouldn't Hurt," and "The Pain Free Athlete." In 2005 and 2006 I was the massage therapist for ultracyclists competing in the Race Across America (RAAM) 3000+ mile race from San Diego, CA to Atlantic City, NJ. I've taught the Julstro techniques to physical therapists at the Cleveland Clinic, to massage therapists in areas around the USA, and I've taught Julstro self-treatment clinics to dancers at Juilliard School of Performing Arts (NYC),the sprinting team at NC State, and I am working closely with several Olympic-hopeful. We have successfully eliminated the repetitive strain injuries that could keep them out of the Olympic Games, and the best part is they know how to do the self-treatments so they can stay pain-free and flexible.

Triathlete Magazine, Endurance Magazine, multiple national and international trade journals.

Swedish Institute of Allied Health, NY, NY - Initial education in massage therapy Licensed NYS Massage Therapist since 1989. SUNY Empire State College, Saratoga Springs, NY - B.Sc. degree in Interdisciplinary Health Education I was an Associate Professor helping to develop the massage training program for SUNY Rockland Community College

Past/Present Clients
Privacy prevents me from filling in this section without prior consent from my clients. Life Experience: I have been specializing in the treatment of chronic pain and sports injuries since receiving my NY massage license in 1989. A personal bout with carpal tunnel syndrome was the catalyst to my developing a self-treatment that heals the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome quickly and without surgery. My work with endurance athletes was the inspiration to teach people how to self-treat so they could stop pains even during a race or heavy training day. Both of these situations ultimately became the products that are sold on my websites: and I currently treat people in my offices in Sarasota, FL, Cary, NC, or Pearl River, NY

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