Sports Injuries and Chiropractic Care
by Dr. Tim Fargo, Chiropractor
Sports injuries are extremely varied in type and severity. They range from simple bumps, bruises, and abrasions to life-threatening injuries. On the mild end of the spectrum, most such sports injuries are best handled with Band-Aids, ice, and common sense. On the extreme end of the same spectrum lies the realm of emergency medicine. For everything else in between there is a role for chiropractic to play. Strained muscles, sprained ligaments, whiplash injuries, concussions, overuse injuries, plantar fasciitis, tendinitis in the shoulder, elbow, hip or knee, back injuries, and neck injuries- all of these things, and many more, respond very well to chiropractic care.
I’ve had some experience in treating a wide range of sports injuries because, in my 40 years of practice, I have seen all manner of elite and even professional athletes in my practice. For 15 of those 40 years, I was the chiropractor for the Minnesota Vikings. As such, I saw a wide range of conditions walk into my practice on Monday mornings. I used to watch the games, in part for entertainment, but also to have some prediction about what I was going to see walk into my office the next week. While these athletes had unlimited access to orthopedists, trainers, internists, massage therapists, and coaches, they still came to our office and availed themselves of chiropractic care. There is a reason that they did so.
Cris Carter, one of the most prominent receivers in NFL history, told me that he felt that chiropractic care had lengthened his career. Numerous other players stated that chiropractic care allowed them to recover from sports injuries more quickly and get back on the field sooner. Whether the sports injury is due to some type of trauma, as often occurs with football players, or is the result of chronic overuse, as might occur with a long-distance runner, chiropractic has a role to play.
In the event of a traumatic sports injury, not only do muscles and ligaments get strained and sprained, but the joints associated with those muscles and ligaments also become misaligned. If you are trying to heal a pulled muscle or sprained ligament and the joint associated with those tissues is misaligned, then the injury will not heal properly, if at all. I have found that doing chiropractic adjusting to injured joints allows the muscles and ligaments to heal more quickly and more fully.
In the case of a chronic overuse sports injury, we have to ask what created the “overuse” in the first place. Let’s imagine that you have plantar fasciitis, knee pain, or elbow pain because of overuse. You only have it on one side, but the other side feels fine. I would suggest that the reason you have an “overuse” injury on the affected side is that oftentimes there is a loss of normal function and alignment that has persisted and ultimately precipitated the overuse injury. The job of the chiropractor, then, is to identify imbalances in the underlying joints and tissues, help resolve those dysfunctions, and thus both speed the healing and prevent reoccurrence of the complaint.
If you or someone you love and care for is dealing with sports injuries, then the doctors at Chiropractic Health and Wellness in Edina, Minnesota are well-trained and ready to help you get back on the field performing at your very best. Schedule your appointment today!