Pressing Reset: The superpower that helps them all

Categories: Blog, Justice League, Wonder Woman, Pressing RESET Feb 26, 2024

And now, a guest article from friend and OS Clinician and Instructor Dr. Kurt Brooks:

We all know Superman.  And Batman.  Aquaman, the Flash, and Wonder Woman.  And when they came together to work as a team, they called themselves the Justice League.  But what if you joined the Justice League, and your superpower was the ability to boost everyone else’s power and make them even stronger?  Wouldn’t you then become an indispensable member of the team?

There is little debate about who is the strongest… Superman, of course.  Superman is strong.  Batman is smart.  The Flash is fast.  Aquaman is fierce.  And Wonder Woman does it all.  But you?  You make them all (individually and together as a team) “better, stronger, faster… “.  (Whoops, wrong hero!)  In most comic storylines, what makes them truly heroes are not their superpowers but their ability to regroup after failing to stop the bad guy, to come together as a team, and try again.  They press the reset button!  And you are the new superhero team member with the power to Press RESET for them.  You are the member that makes them truly superheroes.

Let’s take a look at your superpower, Pressing RESET, and all the wonderful things it can do for the whole team!

In the world of being humans and mere mortals, we function and move using many different systems (or powers).  We are governed by a neurologic system (our brain, spinal cord, and nerves), which controls and responds to our physiologic system (our lungs, stomach, kidneys, liver, etc.), which helps us feel better and stronger (our psychological system), which all wraps around to control our biomechanical systems (how our muscles and joints move) to allow us to interact with our environment and live happy and healthy lives.  When all of these systems (or super-powered members of our team) work well, individually and together, we feel good, move well, and our world is a better place.

But what happens when a member of the team falls? Or fails to stop a bad guy?  We hurt.  We move less.  We fear going out and getting hurt again, so we avoid doing certain things.

If you’ve taken a Pressing RESET course, you’ve heard how Pressing RESET helps the neurologic system move from “Fight or Flight” (sympathetic nervous system) to “Rest and Relaxation” (parasympathetic nervous system).  This resetting of the neurologic system helps decrease pain, improve muscle activation, improve joint mobility and soft tissue flexibility, improve balance, restore normal physiologic function (better breathing, digestion, sleep, etc.), and more.

Let’s take just one RESET and see the magic it does with each superhero on our team.  Let’s use Head Nods and Rotations, which is how we help learn (as infants) or restore (as adults) head control and early spinal control.

            As we tuck our chins and then reverse the pattern to look up and look over one shoulder, followed by turning the head to look over the other shoulder, we start showing off our superpower: Boosting the power of every member of our team! 

       Neurologically, we stimulate nerve endings in the joints, muscles, ligaments, fascia, and skin.  These nerve endings detect movement, stretch, and pressure.  These signals inhibit pain by using the same pathways in the spinal cord that transmit pain to the brain…  and if these pathways are full of movement signals, they can transmit pain signals! And voila, you feel better.  This increase in neurologic input from the joints, muscles, ligaments, etc., goes to a special part of your brain called the vestibular nucleus.  The vestibular nucleus likes to know what is happening in its world (the body). When he gets good information, he is calm and collected, and in return, sends out signals to the body to move well and feel good (he directs the body toward the parasympathetic nervous system and decreases the influence of the sympathetic nervous system).

        Biomechanically, as we move our neck and improve the neurologic control of our head and spinal cord, we also do some magical things for our joints, muscles, and ligaments.  Joints do not have arteries inside them, so they do not get nutrients or lubricant passively.  They do not get rid of swelling and other waste products passively.  Joints require movement to stay healthy!  As a joint moves repeatedly, the inside lining of the joint capsule (the synovial membrane) is stimulated and creates more synovial fluid (the lubricant in our joints).  More lubricant makes our joints feel better and glide/ move more easily.  Movement also acts as a pump to bring nutrients and oxygen to our joints and to flush waste products (swelling, acid, etc.) out of our joints. The same pumping action that keeps our joints healthy and feeling good also has the same effect on our ligaments and tendons (which also have very little direct blood supply and need that constant pumping action to stay healthy).

        Physiologically, head and neck movements help us feel better and help guide our neurologic system toward a more parasympathetic-dominant pattern.  This helps us breathe better and deeper, helps our digestive system work better, lowers blood pressure, and more.  Breathing better (with our diaphragm) improves gas exchange and helps maintain blood pH.  It also helps stabilize the lumbar and thoracic spines and, helps further decrease pain levels, and improves digestion. 

      Psychologically, we see less fear, depression, and anxiety when we move.  With less pain, achiness, stiffness, and fear, we are more likely to go out into the world and engage with it, seeing friends and family and enjoying all the wonderful things this world has to offer us!

Moving our whole team from “Fight or Flight” mode to “Rest and Relaxation” mode is a huge part of the process that superheroes use to regroup and try again to beat the bad guy.  Pressing RESET can help that happen.  Now, what if we continued to press reset with other movements?  What other amazing things can we do with that superpower?

A friend of mine (Dr. Michael Musselman, DC) is often quoted in our Pressing Reset courses.  He said, “Don’t mistake the simplicity of the technique for the complexity of the result.”  Boy, did he strike gold with that one!  The simple movements we use to Press RESET (diaphragmatic breathing, head movements, rolling, rocking, and reciprocal/cross-body movements) address multiple systems simultaneously.  They are super-powerful tools in our quest to help ourselves, our friends and family members, our clients, and our patients move more, move better, and feel better throughout their lives.

And when you help the rest of the superheroes do their jobs better and easier, you should hear a voice in your head saying: “Thanks! And welcome to the team!”

Comments (0)

Add a Comment

Please login to comment.