Sports chiropractic is a branch of chiropractic that involves the treatment and prevention of sport-related musculoskeletal injuries. Most sports chiropractors utilize soft tissue techniques and exercises in addition to spinal and/or extremity adjustments to treat their patients effectively. This is due to the fact that most injuries that occur while playing sports involve soft tissue structures (muscles, tendons, ligaments, fascia, nerves) that will not be adequately treated by chiropractic adjustments alone to fully heal.
Humans are built to move often and with variety. Today’s society puts us in environments that not only have us sitting for long periods of time (office, school, comfy couch) but also has paved most of the ground we walk on so that almost every step we take is on even, flat ground thereby decreasing the variability our bodies need to be able to adapt. This constant usage of the same musculature in low variable environments coupled with a lack of movement in general leads to a body that is not being used the way it was meant to be used. The body tries to adapt as best as it can by laying down scar tissue to protect those tissues that are either being overworked or not being worked enough. This is fine in the short-term, but in the long-term it leads to decreased mobility, decreased oxygenation of soft tissue structures (lack of blood), and eventually injury.
A sports chiropractor trained in soft tissue techniques such as Active Release Techniques (ART) and Graston Technique is able to identify areas that have a lack of motion or pliability due to scar tissue and treat those areas effectively. Once that is treated, exercises are used to encourage the body to use the newly acquired range of motion that has been achieved from treatment. By combining chiropractic adjustments, soft tissue techniques, and specific exercises for the injury, the athlete should be well on his/her way to full participation once again as quickly as possible.
Every time that a player is injured, there is usually an underlying cause that has lead to that athlete being more “at risk” for that injury. That isn’t to say that all injuries are preventable, but athletes and practitioners together can help decrease the risk of injury by identifying those underlying causes. This is where having a sports chiropractor becomes vital to the athlete. All NFL teams have a chiropractor, 93% of MLB teams have a chiropractor, and the majority of NBA and NHL teams have a team chiropractor for this reason. At Hamilton Chiropractic, Dr. Ryan Hamilton brings that same care and attention professional athletes are receiving to his high school, college, and weekend warrior athletes here on the peninsula in the Bay Area. If you or someone you know is an athlete with pain give us a call or email us so we can take care of the issue so you can get back to doing what you love!