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With fall football right around the corner pro athletes and amateurs alike are preparing to run, tackle, and defend with the best of them! It is not only wise, but crucial to also prepare your body for the impact of heavy physical activity and to reduce recovery time should an injury occur. As they say, he who sweats more in training bleeds less in war.

However, a common misconception of chiropractic care is that many people seek help after they’ve sustained an injury. The truth is that chiropractic is best used as routine maintenance, and that spinal adjustments are proven to reduce injuries in your daily life and especially if you’re involved in sports. No one’s spine is perfectly aligned, but by getting regular spinal adjustments, you can optimize your athletic performance and enhance your overall wellness. The holistic approach of chiropractic takes into account all factors that may be affecting your health and athletic ability. This is how they recognize and alleviate smaller injuries before they worsen.

An athlete’s performance is improved by having good posture, agility, and range of motion. High-impact sports like football and hockey have obvious advantages to chiropractic care, but many athletes of lower-impact impact sports , such as swimming or golf, can also benefit. Muscle strain can happen to anyone at any time. Even professional athletes including Tiger Woods and Joe Montana attribute athletic success and quick recovery times to regular chiropractic care!

Read on to find out how regular chiropractic care can enhance athletic performance for these common sports and conditions:

“Hey is that a bulge in your stomach or are you just happy to see me?”
Five to twenty percent of all sports injuries involve groin pain or a hernia. Take soccer for instance. A 2012 study in the Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies showed that soccer players who had suffered sports hernias took part in 8 weeks of chiropractic care and rehabilitation exercises, and were relieved of discomfort.

Fall Football at its Finest
One of the main forms of chiropractic used in sports medicine is the adjustment. This method promotes flexibility and pain-free movement. Football players often rely on the adjustment as a preventative measure against high-impact injuries.

I did a lot of things to stay in the game, but the most
important one was the trip to my chiropractor.
-Jerry Rice

Down On Your Puck
Chiropractic has benefits for full-contact sports like football and hockey where injuries are common. The most common shoulder injury in hockey is a separation which occurs from direct contact of the shoulder with another player, the boards, or the ice. An injury of this magnitude can lead to the recurrent painful symptoms of shoulder instability.

Go for the Gold
Unbeknownst to the general public chiropractors have worked with world-class Olympic athletes to improve their strength, endurance, and range of motion while training and during the games. An often overlooked segment of the Olympics is the Paralympics which include athletes with some type of physical disability. These professionals also use regular chiropractic care to overcome minor injuries and enhance performance.

Take Me Out to the Ball Game
The sporadic energy required to run the bases is demanding and can take its toll on a hitter. Whether it’s running the bases, whipping a fastball, or cracking the bat these fast-moving activities often come with neck pain, back strains, and rotator cuff injuries. Chiropractic can help prevent injuries to the lower extremities as well as improve versatility of the upper arms and shoulders to make the tissues more pliable in the event of a pull or tear. Routine adjustments can also soothe the discomfort of tennis elbow!

The Benefits of Chiropractic
Mechanical maintenance of one’s body is what keeps us moving on a daily basis and helps minimize adverse effects and recovery time when something does go wrong. The human body works like the family vehicle; it is always in use and requires routine maintenance to function properly. The added stress of being an athlete ensures the need to take care of yourself and keep your machine well-oiled, no matter the intensity of the sport! Living to your full athletic and personal potential requires taking care of the body that will get you there.

As long as I see the Chiropractor, I feel like I am one step ahead of the game.
-Tom Brady




*Soccer study source: Yuill, E.; Pajaczkowski, J.; & Howitt, S. Conservative care of sports hernias within soccer players: a case series. Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies. 2012 October 16(4):540-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jbmt.2012.04.004.

Matt Kingston
About the author

Dr. Matt Kingston is a licensed Chiropractor who received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Wisconsin – Madison, and his doctorate from Palmer College of Chiropractic, in Davenport, Iowa. Dr Matt can be seen at Chiropractic Solutions in Madison, WI.

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