Sports chiropractors are one of the primary healthcare specialists for professional sports teams and the Olympics. The reason the role of the sports chiropractor is so fundamental is in part because of the strong connection between chiropractic and pain prevention. Many chiropractors are trained in manual therapies such as Active Release Technique (ART), which allows them to reduce pain and prevent injuries even under the extreme physical stresses of international competition.
The basic principle behind all therapies used in chiropractic is alignment of the various parts of the human body. Scott Duke, a chiropractor in New York City and an expert on running injuries, notes that malalignment of the spine leads to an uneven distribution of force. For example, a chronic IT band injury could be related to a pelvis that is out of alignment. If the pelvis is left untreated, the strain continues.
Typical causes of misalignment while running
Minimizing pain while running is not just about correcting misalignment but about determining its cause. Sources of the problem include:
- failure to replace shoes often enough (every 300 to 500 miles, according to some experts);
- running on a surface that is slanted, as may be true of the part of a beach that is farther from the water;
- running the same route every day, delivering the same stresses to your body from the same directions.
Running injuries can be prevented by following these guidelines:
- Diversify the surface on which you run (such as switching between grass and blacktop, or between dirt and track) so that you are sure to experience numerous routes;
- Stay close to the ocean, where the ground is more consistently flat, if you’re running on the beach.
- Get two pairs of running shoes – even if they are the identical model – and alternate the pairs.
Other causes of pelvic or spinal misalignment
The misalignment that causes pain while running is not always generated during the physical activity itself. One common contributor to malalignment is a job that is sedentary or otherwise involves holding the same position for an extended period. Sitting in an awkward position gradually tightens some muscles while lengthening others. When you start to run, your body shifts, attempting to strike a balance. However, the shift eventually becomes ingrained, as the spine and pelvis adjust to fit the circumstances.
The link between chiropractic and pain prevention is well understood by professional sports teams, as well as independent athletes and ordinary people who run for their daily exercise. Health Star Clinic specializes in chiropractic care to alleviate pain in the back, neck, shoulders, and legs. Contact us today for a free consultation.