Chiropractic Sports Medicine
Most aches and pains come from muscle imbalance.
Many of your sprains and strains are also related to muscle imbalance.
Your muscles are what move your body, as well as, bring stability to each joint on your body, including your low back, neck, shoulders, knees, etc. And every muscle has an opposing or antagonist muscle that simultaneously contract/shortens and lengthens/stretches to move your body. The key is to make sure that opposing muscles contract and lengthen equally from both sides of a joint, as well as, from front to back, top to bottom, and left to right.
The Problem for most people is that our everyday lifestyle puts us in various positions that holds certain muscles in a contracted position, while stretching its opposing muscle for extended periods of time. This leads to muscle imbalance, which could be the root cause of your aches and pains.
- Think about sitting and low back pain. When you sit for hours at a time at work, in a car, plane or in your recliner – you shorten your hip flexors and hamstrings. This creates imbalance around your low back and possible back pain.
o Do It Yourself Test: Are Your Hip Flexors part of your low back pain?
Lay flat on the floor, with legs straight for at least a minute. See how you feel, how comfortable are you with your legs straight?
Next, bend your knees. How does that make your back feel? Is it better, worse or no change?
If it feels better, it’s a tell-tale sign that your hip flexors are part of your low back pain and needs to be addressed.
Some of you will already know that you can’t lay flat for more than 15 seconds and immediately want to bend your knees to relieve your low back!
- How about your head down for hours reading your smartphone, laptop, book, etc.? This shortens the muscles on the front of your neck as opposed to the muscles on the back of your neck, which can lead to neck pain.
- What about having your shoulders pulled forward all day from smartphones, computers, cooking, driving, folding clothes, etc.? This shortens and tightens your pec/chest muscle and creates muscle imbalance to your upper torso and can be the underlying cause of upper back pain.
Let’s not forget the muscle imbalance we create from some of our physical activities.
Golf, baseball, softball, bowling and tennis to name a few are one-sided sports where you over-use specific muscles on one side of our body more so than the other. This leads to muscle imbalance.
How about the seated position from biking and your body bent at the waist for extended periods of time, further shortening your hip flexors and hamstrings. Or the skateboarder who only pushes with his right leg… these are all examples how we can create various muscle imbalance that leads to those unexplained aches and pains.
Dr. Len trained in Chiropractic Sports Medicine uses manual muscle testing to find muscle imbalance in and around your low back, neck, shoulders and every joint on your body to help find the possible cause of your pain.
Adjusting the bone is an important part of the healing process, but if you don’t address or tweak the associated muscle imbalance – you may not get the lasting relief you are looking for.
So, if you have some aches and pains you haven’t been able to get rid of – maybe an initial assessment with Dr. Len to check for muscle imbalance can help you identify the possible cause of your pain and discomfort.