What do chiropractors do, and how can we help you? Chiropractors are experts of the spine. We go to school for a minimum of 3 years prior to being accepted into chiropractic college. From there, we go through a rigorous doctorate degree that encompasses many […]
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Spring Into Running
By Daniel Hounjet, Intern, Core Health
As the snow melts and weather turns people are eager to get outside and start running.Because of the climate we live in many people either choose not to run in the winter or they run indoor on a treadmill. So, for the most part individuals who start running are not taking the necessary steps to prepare their bodies for the increased strain on the body and to prevent chronic injuries that come with an increased volume of running. The most common overuse and altered mechanics injuries that seem to plague runners include low back pain, shin splints, Iliotibial band (IT) syndrome, patellofemoral pain syndrome (runners knee) and plantar fasciitis. I will provide you with a few recommendations to help prevent some of these issues.
The snow has melted, the streets are dry, the trees are blooming and you’re ready to get your running on… But wait, what is the first thing you should do before exercising? Warm up?! You’re absolutely right. A quick 5-minute warm up will go a long way in injury prevention. When we talk about warming up, we don’t want to go and do static stretches. Instead we want to increase blood flow to the body by increasing our heartrate and go through similar motions as when we’re running. Here are a few exercises that will help warm up properly.
-Heel walk/Toe walk
Each exercise should be done for 20-30 feet, 1-2 times. Once we’ve gone through these exercises it’s a good idea to do 2-3 short sprints to really get your HR up. Now that you’re ready to hit the road be sure that your starting with a distance and pace that is significantly below what you ended the previous season. Our bodies are highly adaptable to stresses placed upon it, so it important for injury prevention to slowly build back up to where you where the previous season. By slowly increasing our duration and intensity we are allowing our bodies to adapt to the stresses placed on our body, from the increased strain on our joint, our tendons and even to regain our oxygen capacity.
Our post run recovery is just as important as our preparation and the run itself. That is why there 3 aspects should be incorporated post run. First off, we want to slowly bring out heart-rate down. It may be difficult to do with our busy lives, but having a proper cool down will prevent blood from pooling in our extremities and the unwanted potential for dizziness and or loss of consciousness. Cooling down will also help flush out the metabolite (lactic acid) build up in your legs. Try walking or even a low intensity dynamic stretch will be great to slowly bring that HR back down. Once you’ve cooled down we want to stretch and or roll (foam roller, lacrosse ball etc.) the area that worked the most during the run; calves, lumbar musculature, hip flexors and gluteus maximus and medius. Here are a few stretches to consider.
-standing calf stretch
-Stiff leg good mornings
Remember that these stretches and rolling these areas are for preventative measures and may not be the right stretches if you have altered body mechanics or are injured. If you suspect you have altered mechanics, (loss of mobility of a joint, hypermobility/ instability and/or loss of motor control) a good general tip to know, if there is an underlying issue and the pain or stiffness is only on one side of the body there is likely something that isn’t working the way it should. If you think you may have a compensation or would like to be evaluated consider seeking professional advice from a chiropractor or Physical therapist.
Lastly, we want to ensure we are refueling and replenishing lost nutrients. If you are running long distances with a duration greater than 90 minutes at moderate intensity it’s important to replenish our glycogen stores as they will be depleted after an intense distance run. That being said a balanced refuel is essential, consider 4:2:1 ratio of carbohydrates: protein: fat. We want to consume the carbohydrates to restore glycogen levels (glycogen is the muscles energy source for sustained activity). Protein to repair any damage to the muscle due to the increased intensity and lastly fats, which will slow digestion and allow for less of a blood sugar spike post workout. We also want to replenish any fluid losses. Water and a good electrolyte drink will go a long way in minimizing stiffness and soreness. If you are running for a shorter duration under 90 minutes, you are likely not depleting your glycogen stores. Therefore, rehydration and your regular diet will suffice. Research suggests that it is a myth that we need to consume protein within an hour post exercise, and that a balanced meal prior to activity will carry you through your run and even into your recovery. https://jcdfitness.com/2016/09/should-you-eat-fat-in-your-post-workout-meal/
Upper Cross Syndrome & Trap Dominance Upper Cross Syndrome (UCS) is a group of symptoms that leads to muscle imbalances and pain the upper shoulders and neck. It is typically seen in people with poor, slumped posture and those who spend their days at desks […]
Shoulder Impingement Syndrome, a common cause for shoulder pain.
Shoulder Impingement Syndrome, also known as Swimmer’s or Thrower’s shoulder, is a common over-use condition that occurs when the shoulder bursa or rotator cuff tendons become compressed within the shoulder joint. The shoulder joint is comprised of the scapula, humerus and clavicle. The tip of the scapula, called the acromion process, joins the clavicle to create the acromioclavicular joint. The narrow passage below this joint, the subacromial space, is where compression occurs.
Those who perform repetitive overhead movement (athletes, laborers) are at the highest risk of developing shoulder impingement. However, as technology and careers have evolved, it is becoming more common in those with poor posture and rounded shoulders. Overuse and poor positioning of the shoulder can cause tendon microtrauma and inflammation of the rotator cuff muscles. This may cause thickening of the tendon, decreasing the diameter of the already narrow subacromial space. At this point, movement of the shoulder may cause the tendon to be pinched underneath the acromion, causing pain and limit range of motion.
There are a wide range of treatment options for shoulder impingement syndrome, including adjustments, manual therapy and exercise. When you visit your practitioner, their goal should be to discover the underlying cause of impingement. Is it due to a recent trauma to the shoulder, too many pull-ups and presses, or repetitive use of a tool overhead? Once the cause is determined, therapy can be applied accordingly. The first step should be to manage the pain and reduce the strain on the area. Limiting the use of the shoulder, in combination with cryotherapy, will help relieve pain and inflammation. You may be asked to modify or take time away from your job or sport in order to achieve this.
The next step is to reduce muscle tension, correct structural misalignments, and improve range of motion. Chiropractic adjustments of the neck, thoracic spine and shoulder will be effective in achieving improved function and may be done in conjunction with another soft tissue therapies such as instrument assisted soft tissue mobilization (IASTM), blood flow restriction therapy, or massage.
The final step in treating this issue is strengthening of the rotator cuff muscles and shoulder retractors and stretching the anterior shoulder and chest. By working to stretch and strengthen these muscles of the shoulder and back, proper posture and alignment can be restored and future damage may be prevented. Most of these strengthening exercises are performed with small dumbbells or resistance bands, making them very approachable and easy to do on your own. Your practitioner should provide you with a basic regimen to be done at home or at clinic visits.
In order to prevent this issue from occurring, you may implement the following strategies:
- Maintaining a proper, upright posture with shoulders back when sitting or working
- Using proper technique when lifting or performing exercises
- Strengthening the rotator cuff and upper back muscles
- Stretching the anterior shoulder and chest, neck and back muscles
- Regular chiropractic visits
-Taylor Meyers, Intern Core Health Chiropractic
Deep Tissue Massage in conjunction with the Chiropractic adjustment Chiropractic and massage therapy work together simultaneously creating a synergistic effect resulting in much faster recovery time. Correction of one’s structure often occurs more easily and with less discomfort when both modalities are used together. The […]
Sitting properly to reduce back pain Neck and back pain due to posture is a growing problem. A vast majority of our patients present with symptoms that arise from cumulative stress placed on the body through poor ergonomics. Did you know that the average full-time […]