Welcome to Health News

Ed Deboo, PT, along with two other Bellingham Physical Therapists were profiled in the “Northwest Health” magazine.

“Ed Deboo, PT, doesn’t want to fix people. He wants them to fix themselves. ‘I don’t want you to come in and watch you ride my bike,’ he says.‘I help to facilitate the healing process and remove roadblocks, but you own your own health.’

To read the entire article and view the pictures, please click here to download the NW Health PDF

What’s new in the literature?

I will often come across an article that I think my patients would be interested in. I have included a short summary and then cited the source if someone was interested in the entire article. Enjoy!

Fix your Wrist Pain with Stretching!

The weak link in our upper body biomechanic link is usually the hand or wrist. This video talks about the need to stretch our wrists to maintain normal mobility and flexibility in our daily, active lives. Please let me know if you have any questions, Thanks for watching!

Trigger point work for your hip pain.

A common cause of hip pain are tight knots or trigger points in the gluteus medius muscle. If the gluteus medius trigger points are activated then pain may be felt all the way down the leg. Usually you can work trigger points 3-5 times per week and you should start to feet better with less tenderness after about a week of consistent work. The soreness shouldn’t be overly painful to cause any holding of breath, make sure you can “breath through it”. You should try to follow up trigger point work with stretching and then strengthening after the pain starts to decrease. Please leave any questions or comments down below, Thanks!

Do you have a morning routine? Establish one today with help from Habit Nest

Get your journal today and change your life https://amzn.to/2TXxArk
One of the first things I discuss with my clients is the need to establish a Morning and Sleep routine if they are serious about making meaningful, lasting changes in their lives. We often need help with routines for a variety of reasons but establishing a regular routine can be life changing. This video is specifically about morning routines. Morning routines need to consist of things you think are important in your life and you want to make sure that you do them every day. Ideas include reading, praying, meditation, exercise, walking the dog, stretching, playing with your kids, etc. If you are wanting to start a morning routine but don’t know how to start, you may want to purchase the “Morning Sidekick Journal” by Habit Nest. In the video, I give you a honest review (not a paid promotion), take you inside the book, and offer suggestions on why you need to start your own morning routine. Please let me know if you have any questions,
Thanks, Ed Deboo, PT Bellingham Physical Therapy

Hematoma: Deep leg bruise and swelling

My latest basketball injury involved receiving a deep thigh bruise about 1 week ago.  The bruise then turned in to a hematoma and I made 2 mistakes that will probably prolong my healing about 1 week.  Watch this short video and I hope you learn from my mistakes,


Ed Deboo, PT

Bellingham Physical Therapy

My Top 10 pieces of advice for future Physical Therapists

After 25 years as a Physical Therapist, I’ve become reflective on  a career of great satisfaction, filled with constant learning.  In my humble opinion, here are somethings I feel may be valuable to the next generation of PT’s,


Ed Deboo, PT

Bellingham Physical Therapy

Tired of chronic lower back tightness? Try this exercise routine

Chronically tight muscles often need to be “re-educated” on how to be relaxed again. They can suffer from “muscle amnesia” which can be caused from injury, immobility, advancing age, and even stress. Learn a simple exercise routine you can do daily to help reduce your lower back tightness. Please let me know if you have any questions, thanks!

Ed Deboo , PT

Bellingham Physical Therapy


Having neck pain and stiffness? Check your scalene muscles for trigger points.

Neck pain and stiffness can often be made worse by trigger points or tenderness of the scalene muscles.  Learn now to find and treat your scalenes and reduce your neck and upper back pain. Please let me know if you have any questions or comments,


Ed Deboo, PT

Bellingham Physical Therapy

DIY trigger point tool, the “peanut”

Trigger point pain can be debilitating but can often be treated with self-care massage and exercise.  First you will need to make a “peanut” to make your life a bit easier. Learn how to with the video below:


How to make a peanut for trigger point work


Please let me know if you have any questions,

Stay warm,

Ed Deboo, PT

Bellingham Physical Therapy

Join Elizabeth as she teaches you to reduce anxiety and improve sleep with breath control

Breathing is powerful. Learn proven techniques to reduce anxiety and sleep better at night with 4-7-8 breathing technique. Any questions?


Elizabeth Deboo, PT

Bellingham Physical Therapy

Disc disease and a weighted vest: Still a good idea?

I just posted a blog about how walking/hiking with a weighted vest can be an integral part of helping to stabilize bone density with those who suffer from Osteopenia or Osteoporosis.  However, I received a great question,

“ Hi Ed, I have degenerative disc disease in my spine. I get some intermittent nerve symptoms in my left leg L4-5,S-1 distribution and I’m thinking it’s due to the disc disease with some nerve compression. My question is whether a weighted vest would be advisable with degenerative disc disease.  I don’t want them to be squished anymore than they already are. But on the other hand, I don’t like the idea of osteopenia, thanks”

Like many things in medicine, the answer is complicated and lies somewhere in the middle.  For example, as a Physical Therapist, we were taught the importance of how to lift to avoid back injury, “use your legs to protect your back”.  Pretty standard advice and it makes sense at a certain level. However, if you look at the literature, flexing or stooping to lift is not a significant risk factor for back pain.  What is more important are other factors such as overall level of fitness and strength, flexibility, age, how many times will you be lifting and at what frequency.

The body needs “stress” (weight) to develop stronger muscles, bones, ligaments, and tendons, that is the magic of exercise.   The lack of stress or load can be damaging to muscles of the spine as studies on astronauts discovered that significant paraspinal muscle mass was lost during a long-duration mission in microgravity and was not recovered following return to Earth.  Lower back pain is a common complaint of astronauts after their return to Earth and a loss of paraspinal strength is the suspected cause.

Back to the above asked questions, I would still consider using a weighted vest as a way to increase spinal muscularity, bond density,  and balance, but I would do so very carefully, with a thought out plan.

Guidelines for using a weighted vest for those with spinal stenosis or disc disease:

  1. Read my introductory article on using a weighted vest for increasing bone density.
  2. Do not start using a weighted vest if you are currently experiencing an acute episode of back or leg pain. Resolve the current issue and try to get back to “baseline” first.
  3. Make sure you have already started to  strengthening the multifidus muscles of the lumbar spine by doing specific core exercises.
  4. When you do start to wear your vest, make sure you start slowly, 4-6 lbs at the most, in order to give your body a chance to adapt to the new “stress”. Your goal is about 10-15% of your body weight.
  5. The weight needs to be equally distributed in the front and back
  6. Walking or hiking up and down hills may be more challenging, seek out flatter terrain when first starting out with your vest.
  7. If you do experience an increase in pain, try to reduce the weight in your vest and do not increase the weight until you no longer experience the increased levels of pain.


I hope this clarifies the issue, but please let me know if you have any additional questions,

Ed Deboo, PT

Integrative Physical Therapy,

Bellingham, WA