Sport Injuries

Sport Injuries

Whether you’re a weekend warrior, a marathon racer or a casual athlete, you are susceptible to injuring or straining your joints, tendons, bones and muscles. Exercise is important to maintain your health. However, proper conditioning, warm-up and cool-down procedures, understanding proper techniques and using appropriate safety equipment are crucial for sports enthusiasts.

As Weston chiropractors, we not only treat sports injuries, we provide preventative care –preparing athletes to achieve more and get injured less.  We help to assess athletes by locating, detecting and correcting potential weaknesses or imbalances in the athlete that may predispose them to injuries.

Types of Sports Injuries

Some of the common sports injuries chiropractic treatment can help include:

Strains and Sprains
  • An acute twisting or overextension of a joint can lead to tears of muscles and tendons, called “strains,” and tears of ligaments result in “sprains.” These tears range from mild to severe.
  • In mild injuries, just a few fibers are torn or stretched. Severe injuries, where there is a tear through the full thickness of the structure, frequently require surgical intervention.
  • The intervertebral disc, a ligament between the vertebrae of the spine that works as a shock absorber, can also be torn, resulting in a disc bulge and/or herniation.
  • Ankle sprains most often involve tears of one or more of the ligaments along the outside of the ankle. Knee ligaments can also be torn.
  • In those who are training too much, overuse of a particular joint or joints in the body can result in pain and dysfunction. These injuries are called “overuse syndromes.”
  • A common overuse injury is tendinosis, a condition in which the tendon becomes inflamed from repetitive use.
  • In the shoulder, the rotator cuff (a complex of muscles that stabilizes and moves the shoulder) becomes inflamed. Tennis elbow is another form of tendinosis that occurs along the outside of the elbow, most commonly in tennis players. In golfer’s elbow, the tendons on the inside of the elbow are affected.
Stress Fractures
  • Some athletes may experience a stress fracture, which occurs when an abnormal amount of stress is placed on a normal bone, such as in a runner who rapidly increases the amount of mileage, rather than gradually progressing to longer distances.
  • Shin splints are caused by microfractures on the front surface of the tibia (shin bone). This is most often seen in runners, although other athletes can also be affected.

Preventing Sports Injuries

Here are some good tips for preventing sports injuries:

  • Warm up–start your exercise routine with light jogging or fast walking to increase circulation.  Stretch before and after working out to increase flexibility and relieve sore or tight muscles.
  • Wear protective equipment–if you run, wear comfortable, well-made shoes that fit properly.  If you play a sport, use appropriate equipment and wear the appropriate protective gear: helmet, pads, mouthpiece, face guard, protective cup or eyewear.
  • Improve your technique–take lessons or get advice from a professional to ensure that you are using the proper form and technique.
  • Cross-train–if you play only one sport, you are using the same muscles which can lead to overuse.  Make sure your training includes exercises to keep you flexible and strong.
  • Drink enough fluids before, during, and after exercise.
  • Know your limits–if you overdo your activity, you can experience a repetitive motion disorder, such as tennis elbow or tendonitis, or an overuse injury.  Don’t exercise to the point of exhaustion or pain and take breaks during practice or games.
  • Follow healthy habits–exercise is just one part of a healthy lifestyle.  It’s important to get enough sleep, eat a balanced diet and avoid smoking and excessive alcohol.
  • Exercise regularly–don’t be a weekend warrior. Consistent exercise will help your game and prevent injuries.
  • Stay on softer surfaces–play tennis on a clay court and run on flat surfaces, not bumpy or hilly trails.

Treatment for Sports Injuries

There are good reasons why an athlete should seek a sports chiropractor for the treatment and rehabilitation of a sports injury. Active people are physically and emotionally different from sedentary ones. Most physicians have not had special training in sports medicine or rehabilitation. Consequently, even outstanding physicians who don’t treat athletes regularly often make mistakes in the diagnosis and treatment of athletes’ neuromusculoskeletal problems.

That’s where our chiropractic physicians at Windmill Health Center come in. We know the mind of an athlete where winning – not preventing injuries – is the foremost thought. Our goal for sports injuries? Complete recovery. While this might not always be possible, it’s always the goal. If not carefully monitored and treated, a sprain or strain injury can result in long-lasting joint instability, painful or weak joints and muscles, and lack of mobility. Our conditioning regimes will help prevent this from happening.

The types of treatment we will use depends on the injury itself. At Windmill Health Center, we specialize in the following chiropractic treatments, which may be individual or used in combination to provide easy and effective solutions for your pain:

  • Chiropractic adjustments. Injuries which are sports related almost always cause the spinal column to become misaligned. We use manipulation to help put the spinal discs back in their proper place.
  • Sports massage. Athletes are some of the biggest users of sports massage. Therapeutic sports massage is a type of massage technique that focuses on treating soft tissue aches, pain and injuries that are associated with recreational activities. Massage can reduce muscle stiffness and improve relaxation by reducing the heart rate. Many athletes consider sports massage a vital part of their training and recovery.
  • Spider kinesio taping. We use spider kinesio tape on many shoulder, neck, wrist, elbow, upper back, lower back, hip, hamstring, groin, knee and calf/arch injuries. With the same thickness and elasticity as skin, spider taping is breathable and waterproof and relieves both acute and chronic pain, reduces swelling and inflammation, improves circulation to injured areas, and can help prevent muscle cramps and spasms.
  • Therapeutic exercises. We work with athletes to develop a conditioning and exercise program that builds stamina and endurance and decreases injuries.
  • Physical therapy.  Many athletic injuries can benefit from electric stimulation, ultrasound and cold/hot therapy.

Helping athletes to stay in the game, healthy, and at their optimal level of performance is what matters to the Weston chiropractic physicians at Windmill Health Center. Well rounded knowledge of not only the body’s bio-mechanics, but also nutrition and how it impacts the mechanism of the body, is what sets us apart as sports chiropractors.

If you are an athlete suffering from a sports related injury which is causing you terrible, debilitating pain, or is simply keeping you from being able to play at full performance the sport that you love, call our chiropractic clinic TODAY!

Don’t let sports injuries and pain keep you out of the game – we’ll get you back in the game in no time!