Ray's Story

Founders Introduction

When Ray came to Align he had nowhere left to turn. All the medical diagnostics had proven fruitless and he was looking at exploratory hip surgery, which he was less than optimistic about. To say that Ray has had a turn-around is a dramatic understatement. He went from bent over, sleeping in a recliner, with severe pain to 100-pound deadlifts, lunges, and hiking. This is what Align is all about. Giving people their life back. And in Ray’s own words, “I can truly say Align has saved my life.” That’s exactly the kind of impact I want Align to have on the world. 

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Ray’s Story 

“I had developed a pain in my hip and leg that made it impossible to walk more than 30-40 steps before having to stop and rest. Carrying objects of even a modest weight was impossible. I was unable to lie on my back for more than 10 minutes without suffering for it. This meant I couldn’t sleep in my bed. Instead, I spent my nights in a chair or propped up on the coach. I would have to alternate positions constantly as each would become painful.

This situation made it impossible for me to continue the active lifestyle I was used to. Walking, bike riding, even working in the garden all became things to avoid. Instead, I spent hours sitting to minimize the pain. But that created other issues. I gained weight. My mood changed. I had become more difficult to be around, often snapping at those close to me. The pain was just always there.” 

Ray fell into The Pain Spiral. He developed pain. Decreased his activity. Gained weight. Which in turns makes his pain worse. Which means more decreased activity. SPIRAL. 

“When the pain continued to get worse, I sought medical advice. I saw my personal doctor, two orthopedic specialists, and a physical therapist. X-Rays and MRI’s showed nothing. I was out of options to try. Feeling a bit hopeless, I took the advice of a close friend who recommended that I go to Align. I scheduled a consultation.” 

Coming To Align 

When Ray came in for his consult, it was clear the walk from the parking lot to the sitting area was very painful for him. He paused and rested every 25 steps. He displayed some major postural issues. He had severe cases of both The Low Back Pain Walk and The Hip & Knee Pain Walk. We were less than surprised that he was in pain. He was creating massive stresses and inflammatory forces on his hip. It was really just a matter of time until he was hurting this severely. It was definitely a complicated issue with posture, flexibility, and strength deficiencies that all led to this quality of life disaster. But we were all encouraged by the lack of degeneration in the hip. This meant there was a chance we could get him back to full strength without any surgical intervention. If he would have let the situation go on much longer, he would have worn down that hip and needed a replacement. The lesson is don’t wait. The longer your postural issues exist, the more you wear down your joints. The more surgeries your looking at. 

“Slowly the approach began to bear fruit. As the pain began to lessen, I soon began walking more easily and sleeping in my own bed for the first time in five months. It was amazing. 

And now, I find myself able to do things I wasn’t able to do for decades before coming to Align. I’m doing deadlifts with 100 pounds, two-minute planks, and 12-inch step ups with weights. These things were unthinkable when I began. I have so much more strength. I’m pain free. And I’m standing up straight! 

For a man in his early seventies, this has been a great experience for me. I’m back to doing all the things that I love to do, hiking, camping, fly fishing, and traveling, without the crippling pain that had changed my life. I can truly say that Align has saved my life. 

I am a believer that the approach taken at Align could help so many others who are experiencing pain. It’s your life. You have to make it the best you can.” 

Matthew Lister