Published on Wednesday, 30 November -0001 00:00
Many amateur and professional athletes are sidelined with injuries that could be avoided. Others sit it out on the bench because their injury does not respond to ordinary treatment. Still others are playing, but at less than peak efficiency, simply because their structural system is not balanced. Progressive coaches, athletes, and doctors are realizing that pain-killing drugs are not the answer. They merely cover up the symptoms, deceiving the athlete into actions which could make the injury more serious. Probably more than any other health profession, Chiropractic's approach to health closely relates to the needs of the sports participant. Most sports involve body contact, fast starts and stops, and positioning that places an unusual amount of strain on the back and structural system. Doctors of Chiropractic consider a person as an integrated being, giving special attention to the spine, joints, muscles, tendons, ligaments, and nerves. Chiropractic is a natural health care method that stresses the importance of keeping all the systems of the body functioning efficiently so the player enjoys peak performance, a minimum injury risk, and fast recuperative powers. Many world class and Olympic athletes, as well as professional athletes and teams, have retained sports chiropractors to provide care. Joe Montana, Nolan Ryan, Muhammad Ali, Kareem Abdul-Jubbar, and Carl Lewis all utilize chiropractic care. The player Association of the NFL has officially incorporated sports chiropractors as a regular part of care.
The primary treatment of the Doctor of Chiropractic is manipulation (an "adjustment") to those areas of the spine or extremity joints which are slightly displaced and fail to function normally. Given by hand (the word chiropractic means "done by hand"), the adjustment will restore proper alignment and function to the joints, thereby restoring the normal function. Exercise rehabilitation, acupuncture, massage, and nutritional support are part of patient care when appropriate. Injuries like sprains (ankle), strains (e.g. pulled muscles), tendonitis (e.g. tennis elbow and bursitis (e.g. shoulder pain) and joint problems in the shoulder, elbow, wrist, hand, hip, knee, ankle, and foot can all be treated effectively with chiropractic care.
Chiropractors perform a comprehensive orthopedic, neurological, and chiropractic examination after a history of the injury is taken. The need for further studies such as x-rays or MRI study is based on the findings of the history and examination. Should the diagnosis show anything outside the scope of chiropractic care, the conscientious sports chiropractor will refer the athlete to the appropriate health-care specialist. The beauty of Chiropractic is not only drug-free and surgery-free care, but also preventative and performance enhancing care. Maintaining proper alignment will allow athletes to be prepared for their sport. When asked about chiropractic's effectiveness, Roger Crain, formerly of the San Francisco '49ers, stated, "We won four Super Bowls in the 1980s with it, so it must be doing something right!"
If you are a weekend warrior, amateur, or high school athlete suffering from a sports related injury or want to compete at peak performance, please e-mail Dr. Spaulding with questions at cspaulding
. Also check out www.chiroweb.com, for further articles related to chiropractic sports care and other conditions related to chiropractic care.