Often we hear of professional athletes suffering a traumatic, possibly career ending, injury. The public debate on whether or not they can resume play can go on for weeks. However, it isn’t only the professionals that sustain injuries while practising the sport they love. Weekend warriors, amateur athletes and those living active lives also run the risk of getting hurt. Most of the time, with a proper warm up, awareness to form and appropriate equipment, athletes of all stripes are able to play safely. Yet, injuries can happen when you least expect it due to an accident or even an underlying condition that may necessitate treatment.
According to Statistics Canada, a 2010 community health survey showed that 66% of adolescent injuries were related to sports. Also, among working-age adults, sports and work were the main source of injuries (47%).
How Do Sports Injuries Happen?
Sports and exercise are great ways to keep healthy, but there are often risks involved. Most often, excessive training, inappropriate training methods or perilous exercise equipment can be a cause of injury, but structural abnormalities and muscle imbalances/weakness can also be culprits leading to injury, including the ankles, knees, elbows, shoulder or spine.
Commonly, sports injuries are caused by traumatic force to a joint in motion causing hyperextension or hyperflexion. One such injury is a torn Anterior Cruciate Ligament which results from a quick deceleration, hyperextension or rotation of the knee joint that may or may not involve contact with another person. Such injury, and others, may cause significant pain and debilitation taking you away from the sports that you enjoy. Chiropractors, as spine, muscle and nervous system experts, can help prevent and manage sports-related injuries. Click here to explore specific sports injuries treated by chiropractors.
Chiropractic Treatment for Sports Injuries
In Canada, chiropractic has a long and vibrant history of treating recreational and professional athletes. To further their expertise in treating sports injuries and enhancing athletic performance, Doctors of Chiropractic can complete a two-year post-graduate residency program or Master’s that will enable them, upon successful completion of the exam, to qualify for the sports specialists (CCSS) from the Royal College of Chiropractic Sports Medicine.
Chiropractors are trained to assess, diagnose and manage sports-related injuries as part of their core competencies. In fact, through a comprehensive history and physical examination, chiropractors can help determine the cause of pain and dysfunction as well as recommend an appropriate plan of management. Conservative care offered by chiropractors, dependent on the injury and mechanism, may include joint manipulation and mobilisation, soft tissue therapies, adjunct modalities, rehabilitation and individualized exercises and lifestyle advice to restore proper function, enhance healing of damaged tissue and reduce pain. Chiropractors can also help, in partnership, determine the best strategy to return to play.
Preventing Sports Injuries
Injury prevention is key. Before starting a new exercise program or sport, visit your chiropractor to determine what measures can be taken to prevent injury or enhance performance. Click here to find a chiropractor near you.