Stay Injury Free This Spring!

It’s finally looking like spring in Chicago, and that means it is time to dust off the running shoes, tennis rackets, golf clubs, bikes or whatever equipment your favorite sport requires. Jumping back into your favorite sport on that first beautiful day can also bring on a sports injury. Follow these tips to ensure an injury free spring and summer! Stretching: before you start on any activity make sure you have taken the time to stretch. Visit our Moves of the Month page for some great ideas for stretching. Warm-up: take some extra time before you get started to do a proper warm-up. Warming up gradually revs up your heart rate and increases blood flow to your muscles. Choose a warm-up activity that uses the same muscles you will be using during your work-out. Walk or slowly jog before you begin to run. Bike at a moderate pace before you begin a harder ride. Take the time for some practice swings with the golf club or tennis racket. Build up slowly: unless you have been training indoors during the winter for your favorite sport, you will need to build up slowly. A lot of the injuries that we see happen when people overdo it on their first day out. You need to rebuild muscle strength and endurance so that strains and tears aren’t caused from overuse or being unprepared. Weight training: regular weight training is a great way to stay injury free. A weight training routine can be designed to target and strengthen the specific muscles used in whatever activity or sport you participate in. Fuel and hydrate: proper...

Tips for an injury free 2015 Chicago winter

By Chicago Chiropractic & Sports Medicine  Whether or not we are willing to accept it, another Chicago winter is upon us.  Being the responsible citizens that we are means hours of shoveling snow, breaking up ice sheets, digging out cars and getting a free workout pushing them out of a valuable parking spot.   All this activity presents significantly higher risks for back injuries.  Coupled with the tendency in winter for people to hibernate while feasting on their favorite comfort foods, we have a perfect set up for injury. So, how do we avoid these injuries?  The advice is simple but effective.  Follow these important winter tactics to navigate your way through whatever the polar vortex or El Niño has to throw at this fine city.   SHOVELING TIPS Always warm up before shoveling.  Spend 5-10 minutes performing your favorite dynamic stretches.  Don’t just jump out of bed or off the couch and into the snow.  Examples of dynamic stretches include wall slides, shoulder circles, windmills on the floor, lunges with a twist, and high knees.  Dynamic stretching increases body awareness and lowers risk of injury. If you are older or have health issues, find someone young and naive to do the work. This is pretty self-explanatory, but have them read this article first. Keep upright, engage your core with abdominal bracing, and lift with your legs. Slouching over while pushing/pulling/lifting the shovel full of snow is one of the worse possible activities for your low back.  Avoid strains/sprains and disc herniation by driving the shovel through the snow with your back upright and core engaged, then lift with your legs.  Keep your...

Six Health Benefits of Acupuncture

  By Chicago Chiropractic & Sports Medicine Acupuncture is a family of procedures involving stimulation of anatomical locations on or in the skin by a variety of techniques. There are a number of approaches to diagnosis and treatment in American acupuncture that incorporates medical traditions from China, Japan, Korea, and other countries. The most thoroughly studied mechanism of stimulation of acupuncture points employs penetration of the skin by sterilized thin metallic needles, which are manipulated manually or by electrical stimulation. The following health benefits of acupuncture have been demonstrated in many peer reviewed research studies. Reduced pain Control of anxiety/depression Management of headaches Improved fertility Decreased asthma symptoms Improved allergy symptoms Acupuncture has been shown to be an effective and safe form of treatment and co-management of a wide variety of conditions.  Research suggests that acupuncture can be effective on both a local and systemic level.   Acupuncture has been demonstrated to increase endogenous opioid concentration, increase blood flow, reduce both heart rate and blood pressure, and has been hypothesized to stimulate neurologic and endocrine changes systemically. It’s very common for patients to receive acupuncture to treat musculoskeletal pain.  One specific example was a patient that I treated for Plantar Fasciitis.  The patient had a history of chronic foot pain that was worse in the morning and after being on her feet for long periods.   The patient had been through a variety of treatments including physical therapy, cortisone injections, orthotics, and pain medicine.  To her disappointment, none of these approaches had been effective.   After a thorough functional evaluation and physical exam, I found that the patient was “flat footed” and...

Mobility and The Rack Position

By Dr. Jon Sebby, D.C., ART Provider The elbow, wrist, and hand are some of the more neglected parts of the body. We demand a lot of them on a day-to-day basis. Most exercise and fitness programs give very little, if any, attention to the mobility and strength of these areas. When problems do arise, they tend to be less debilitating and it is common that people put off addressing the issue, thinking that it will get better on its own. More often than not, these chronic conditions will progressively get worse and harder to treat. Weightlifting – The Rack Position and Grip Strength and Endurance In weightlifting, the rack position can be one of the more difficult positions to achieve. Some of the best exercises for developing strength and power utilize this position. However, even some of the best strength and conditioning coaches in the world will forego cleans and modify the front squat. The reasoning is because a majority of people have difficulty achieving the rack position. These coaches simply avoid programming these lifts in order to decrease injuries related to them. After all, the best strength coaches work to mitigate injuries. While much attention is paid to shoulder mobility and core strength, very rarely are the wrist and forearms addressed. Most lifters who attempt getting into the rack position are quick to point out the “intense” wrist pain. This does not happen due to “tight shoulders” or a “weak core” but most often to tight wrist flexors being forced to lengthen a great deal by a loaded barbell. Apart from rack position, adhesions and tight forearm...

Is Nerve Entrapment the Culprit?

By Dr. Jon Sebby, D.C., ART Provider –  Peripheral nerves, such as the sciatic, have their own unique biomechanics to allow for movement of the arms or legs. Nerves are surrounded and encased by muscle and connective tissue, so they need to be able to ‘slide’ through tissue during movement. Nerves can only stretch about 15% of their resting length before the blood vessels tighten down and lose blood flow. If nerves are unable to slide, tension develops because nerve tissue is highly sensitive and can be injured easily if too much stress is applied to it.  In the case of the sciatic nerve, too much tension will cause the hamstrings to feel “tight”. Hamstring tightness can be attributed to the sciatic nerve or one of its branches, the tibial and common peroneal nerves, being entrapped within the hamstrings and/or calves. The detection of neural tension requires specialized training. The doctors at Chicago Chiropractic & Sports Medicine are qualified and experience in utilizing specific soft tissue work and neural mobilizations tailored to treat neural tension. For More Information To learn more about how chiropractic care, soft tissue treatments, massage therapy, and our other services can help you feel better, schedule an appointment to visit one of our practitioners by calling 847.881.2861...