Chiropractic and Sports

Chiropractic medicine is one of the more popular types of alternative medicine in the Untied States.  Chiropractic therapy believes that when the vertebrae are not aligned very well, the spinal cord sends out weak inefficient nerve impulses to the limbs and muscles causing weakness, sickness or ailments in the body.

The popularity of chiropractic medicine is such that mainstream physicians, oftentimes refer patients suffering from muscle pain, back pain or even pain of unknown origin to a chiropractor.  Patients suffering from chronic conditions, which Western medicine cannot find a cure for usually opt for alternative medical treatments as a last resort.  Apart from chiropractic care, other popular forms of alternative therapy are acupuncture, massage therapy and naturopathy.

Chiropractic, which means, in Greek “performed by hand,” was practiced by the ancient Greeks more than 2,000 years ago and rediscovered by Daniel David Palmer in 1895.  He argued that that the proper alignment of the spine is essential for the wellness of the body’s neuromusculoskeletal system.  Chiropractic therapy is essentially treating and correcting vertebral aberrations, spinal misalignments and joint problems.  The chiropractor for better skeletal alignment manipulates skeletal problems in a relatively pain-free way. Chiropractic therapy often employs other techniques such as electronic muscle stimulation, ultrasound and massage therapy. Chiropractic therapy never uses any medications whatsoever during treatment.

Chiropractic because of its inherent value in treating sports-related injuries has found a niche in the sporting world through a specialist called the sport chiropractor.  This professional specializes in musculoskeletal problems experienced by athletes and also, in the nutritional and natural dietary matters of the athlete. In the United States, this type of chiropractic therapy is represented and governed by the American Chiropractic Board of Sports Physicians.  The most common chiropractic method used is spinal adjustment and it is employed in injuries or illnesses such as sprained joints, muscle strains or pulls, tendonitis, bursitis, and generalized joint injuries.  Many athletes have benefited tremendously from chiropractic adjustments. Chiropractors usually are part of the medical team, which include a physician and physical therapists.  These professionals all serve under a specific sports team.  Chiropractic is appealing to sports in that the therapy does not use any type of drug medications as part of its treatment.  Thus, the athlete does not register any type of medication in his blood, which is beneficial to the athlete especially when he/she is participating in a sports event where drug tests are extremely rigid.

For athletes, a healthy and correct vertebrae and spine mean the fittest functioning of their back and shoulder muscles and with nerve impulses in the spine working very well, the reaction time of the athlete is at its maximum-all these enable the athlete to perform and compete optimally.

Amy-SuiQun Lui, L.Ac. is a Board Certified and Licensed Acupuncturist in Cleveland, OH.

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