Once Korby Sinclaire reached his 60s, he decided he had to give up surfing because he was in so much back pain when he tried to do it. Korby was born and raised in California, and had spent most of his life, even in retirement, just a few blocks from the ocean. He’d always surfed—it was part of the fabric of his very being—so this was no small decision.
“There isn’t a more beautiful view of the California coast than the one I get sitting on a surfboard with the afternoon sun on my back, and the Pismo hills illuminated,” he said. “I love it out there. Sometimes big brown pelicans cruise by just a few feet above the waves.”
Unbearable Back Pain and Shoulder Pain
Korby looked the part of a California surfer—slim, suntanned, with curly blond and gray hair. But the increasingly unbearable back pain and shoulder pain was too much for him to continue to enjoy it. Plus, the cool coastal waters seemed to make it all worse by gradually impacting his ability to lift his arms straight up over his head. He started to experience numbness in his fingers. Add to that, he was tiring more quickly and having a harder time balancing on his surfboard.
This all made Korby severely depressed. The thought of never surfing again and being away from the ocean were unbearable. Kirby’s body was failing him and depriving him of experiencing the one thing that had been so important to him his entire life: sitting out in that ocean and being one with the waves.
Getting Back Pain Relief
Worried about him, and his mental state, I suggested he join me at the gym. He agreed. It wasn’t easy for him at first—the elliptical machine exhausted him and even the light weights and cable machines proved challenging. But then there was a shift—he started zipping along at a greater speed and distance during his cardio workout as well as increasing his weights. Then things got truly amazing: The numbness in his fingers started to decrease.
I showed him how to do squats on the Bosu ball and all of the little stabilizer muscles around his knees grew strong and sure again. And eventually, he began racing along on the elliptical machine without using the handles. His balance returned, as did all of his surfing skills from days gone by. As his shoulders strengthened, he found that his flexibility increased once again and as his core got stronger, and he got back pain relief.
Thanks to strength training, Korby was back and better than ever, tackling waves like he did when he was a young man. He’d battled aging and back pain—and won. After a year, he was heading out into the waves with relish once again. And something else happened too: His disposition brightened.
Korby’s life changed. He avoided what so many come close to experiencing—a depressing trip down the frail trail—and it paid off. His surfboard, the sun and the sparkling sea was his again. And he had very nearly walked away from it all forever. He also got back to playing with his rock band at the local pub. Three times a week in the gym on the StrongPath…and for Kolby, life was good again.