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back pain

Jessy Unsung Hero - International Women's Day 2018

Jessy Unsung Hero - International Women's Day 2018

International Women's Day (IWD) Special!
(Don't forget to check out our special event for the ladies on IWD - Thursday 8th March 2018!) 

‘Mum and I’m coming to see you’ - then everyone comes.
— Jessy

Some people are magnets. They bring people and joyful times together. And in a society where we’re all so busy, this is crucial. We might not live at home, we work overtime, or relocate overseas, have kids to care for and have a million chores and admin to do. So creating time for family and nurturing relationships is tough. But no matter how tired she is, and how much her hip or shoulders hurt, Jessy is the keystone of her family. When she’s away, the family do their own separate things. When she’s around, someone says ‘Mum and I’m coming to see you’  - then everyone comes and the family bonds. Her culinary skills are superb, (which definitely helps!) and she always makes time to teach and listen to her grandkids - so much so that they respect and love her beyond measure. 

Her granddaughter seeks out her advise, listens to her, and when I asked the granddaughter if she likes talking to nana, she replied that she prefers to listen to nana’s stories. What are these stories? The stories of Jessy's life. The stories of lessons we all need to learn: how to be patient, compassionate and humble. 


Jessy struggles to find time for herself, as she always puts her family first. But she's now finding a balance between giving her all for her extended family and time for her own interests and self care. She sets aside time to seek chiropractic care to ease her hip and back pain, as well as a very chronic and severe shoulder injury. In the past, wearing clothes was a difficult and painful task. Now and again it flares up, but is so much under control. And as for her hip, it's come a long long way and she's able to walk and stand for extended periods of time with much less problems. What really stands out for me though, is her kindness and that she's always grateful. I've received packed lunches of her home-cooked goodness, and she even gave me an ang pow for Chinese New Year this year!! =]  (and I'm not so young!)

So even in the most simplest of ways (and yet so powerful), there are people around us that do amazing things. To see how she has positively impacted the people around her. I hope she continues to create more memories and more togetherness with her family. 

Losing weight doesn't cure back pain or knee pain.

Losing weight doesn't cure back pain or knee pain.

Many people want to achieve weight loss, and for many reasons. Some want to be slimmer, whiles others want their image to be comparable to their friend or a celebrity. Some want to drop the weight because of health reasons, like heart disease or diabetes. Others choose to shed the pounds because they think it will solve their back pains, hip problems or knee injury. But does it really solve your aches and pains? 

Who Am I?

Who Am I?

Want to know who I am? Here's the real details. There's more to me than this brief bio: Dr Gary Tho is an Australian Chiropractor, speaker and author of “The
Pain-Free Desk Warrior, Free yourself from aches and pains”. He specialises in pain relief & peak performance.

He has been interviewed by TV7 breakfast show, 938Live radio & newspapers and magazines in South East Asia. As an ex-athlete, Dr Gary knows how debilitating pain can be. He believes we all deserve health and happiness. 



Studies show that many children carry backpacks heavily loaded with more than the recommended maximum weight. This is well known among Singaporean Parents, as their children are required to bring school books to and from school and tuition. A recent study has shown that children are also likely to experience neck and shoulder pain, as well as the commonly-reported back pain. 

However, pain does not always show up immediately. Many children develop other signs and symptoms before pain sets in. In practice, I hear complaints of poor posture, difficulty finding a comfortable sitting or sleeping position, difficulty concentrating, stiffness, headaches, and general non-specific unease or discomfort. 


So I would like to issue a warning to parents this January – check the weight and fitting of your child’s bag before they go back to school to avoid the risk of long term spinal damage.

Children should not carry loads of more than 10 per cent of their own body weight to maintain normal postural alignment and the backpack should be no wider than their chest. Lifting a bag that is too heavy causes immediate strain on the spine and the longer a child carries the load, the more severe the damage. 

I strongly suggest that students make use of school lockers, observe timetables and plan homework well in advance to reduce the need to carry large numbers of books in the one journey.  

The ideal backpack should have broad, adjustable shoulder straps that distribute weight evenly across the shoulders. They should also feature waist straps (like you can find on trekking packs) that distribute weight evenly across the hips and hold the backpack firmly to the spine. 

Having these features are fantastic, though I would urge parents to remind their children that how they use the backpack and features is more important. To gain maximum benefit from these features, your children must use both straps, and keep the straps tight enough that the backpack stays on the back and above the hips. 

When packing your school bag, all heavy items, including text books, tablets or laptops, should be packed at the bottom of the backpack and as close to the spine as possible.

There are numerous backpacks that Dr Gary Tho recommends including the Ergobag, Satch, McNeil and the MoonRock Bag, the latest lightweight ergonomic school bag for kids. Connect with him on email, Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn for recommendations and any current promotions on kids ergonomic bags, bedding and chairs, desks and the like. 





  1. Backpacks should be no heavier than 10 per cent of the child’s body weight when packed
  2. Make sure the backpack is sturdy and appropriately sized - no wider than the child’s chest
  3. Put the backpack’s comfort and fit at the top of the priority list rather than good looks
  4. Choose a pack with broad, padded shoulder straps
  5. Use both shoulder straps – never sling the pack over one shoulder
  6. Use the waist straps attached – they’re there for a very good reason!
  7. Don’t wear the backpack any lower than the hollow of the lower back
  8. Don’t overload the backpack – use school lockers & plan homework well in advance
  9. Place all heavy items at the base of the pack and close to the spine
  10. Invite Dr Gary Tho to speak at your school for further helpful tips, hands-on assessments and solutions 


Dr Gary Tho is the owner of Chiropractic Works, a Family Sports and Wellness clinic in Orchard Road, Singapore. He specialises in pain relief and preventative care and believes quality life is essential for happiness, success and peak performance. For more information and advice, phone Dr Gary Tho on +65 6733 4439.