Meriel Davis, chiropractor at Back 2 Balance in Brighton and Hove, has a very special interest in the field of sports chiropractic and treating athletes. In this blog episode she describes her experiences in working with high performance athletes.
The weekend of the 25th July 2015 I was asked to work with GB athletes at the national masters outdoor athletics championships. This was at the Birmingham High Performance Centre in Perry Barr, also known as the Alexander stadium. I’ve worked here a number of times for similar events as well as other stadiums dotted around the country. I was one of eight chiropractors with a special interest in sports injuries drafted in to help ‘fine tune’ the athletes and to aid in any injuries they may sustain due to their various events.
Events included track events such as 100m, 200m, 400m sprints, and 1500 and 5k races; field events such as long jump, high jump, triple jump and pole vaulting. And of course throwing events such as discus, hammer, javelin and shotput. So you can imagine the wide selection of training and event injuries athletes would sustain and need treatment for. Treatment sessions with the athletes would involve muscle testing, functional movement screening and orthopaedic testing to determine the areas of dysfunction and to pin point which areas need adjusting or soft tissue work. This was done on an open plan basis so we could all see how the each other chiropractor worked. This made for great workshopping which is great for learning as in standard practice I work in one of the clinic rooms on my own on a one-to-one basis.
The most satisfying part of this branch of chiropractic is getting instant results where the athletes feel remarkably better after an adjustment. I always ask them to come find me after their event to tell me how they got on. It’s lovely hearing an athlete get a personal or seasons best and they feel the adjustment they had prior was a part of that.
By getting the nervous system fine tuned and any joint restriction/tissue inflammation minimised chiropractic is an effective tool to for athletes, both physically and psychologically as well.
Of course, in the evening, myself and the other chiropractors went for a big curry and some beers (when in Rome!). We were from all four corners of the UK and all had different opinions on various topics regarding treatment techniques, chiropractic and sports, clinic running styles etc. So it was a really useful experience all round.
Have any of you experienced chiropractic care to enhance your sporting prowess? Have you seen anyone else use chiropractic for this? Have you spotted Andy Murray on court getting adjusted? or Usain Bolt having chiropractic care on the track?