Episode 267 - Bill Hodges: Treating His Own and Paying It Forward

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In episode 267 I'm speaking with Mr. Bill Hodges. He's not a healthcare professional or an industry leader or author or researcher either. Just a guy who's had his own struggle with back pain. But there's more to the story - including his exposure to a resource which has helped him tremendously and with which he's shared with countless others. It's a great story with potentially some great lessons for those of us who educate and treat patients on a daily basis. This week on MCF!

Show Notes


Bill is a business owner of a small manufacturing company and is currently residing in Florida. 

Dealing with Back Pain

Bill had his first experience with low back pain and sciatica right after college (1985) when he was about 23 years old and it was debilitating. He had been very active in sports prior to the episode but the pain impacted his quality of life significantly. Bill talks about his initial treatments of anti-inflammatories and advised bed rest which did not provide any relief. Eventually he underwent laminectomy and diskectomy which was successful for a few years. 

His exact same symptoms returned after a few years though they were not as severe. This time he was introduced to the McKenzie method. 

Experience with McKenzie Method

Bill was introduced to the “Treat Your Own Back” (TYOB) book and though he initially did not have much faith in the exercises he started doing them and was surprised by the results. He was feeling a lot better in just 3-4 days. 

Bill loved the way the book had explained the physiology of the symptoms, effects of exercises prescribed and symptom response guidelines. 

Sharing the Treat Your Own Back book

Having a personal experience with debilitating low back pain, Bill was able to understand what others suffering from it go through. When he comes across acquaintances who happen to mention in their talks about their problem of low back pain, Bill feels the need to share his positive experience with TYOB. Over a period of 33 years since being introduced to the book, Bill periodically buys the book in bulk and shares it with people suffering from low back pain. He recounts that many individuals have had success in self management and been able to avoid surgery after following the book’s recommendations. 

Patient’s Perspective

From a patient’s point of view, Bill feels that this book is a great resource for all to have after their assessment. It is a great guide for understanding one’s symptoms and for self management. Bill has found the book an adequate resource for self management of his symptoms and not had to seek professional physical therapy care otherwise for his low back pain symptoms.