Frequently Asked Questions for Treating Soft Tissue Injuries

By Dr. Josh Akin and Dr. Jon Sebby  – There are various methods for treating soft tissue injuries. Active Release and Massage Therapy are two non-invasive soft tissue treatments to heal and prevent a wide variety of soft tissue injuries. To understand a soft tissue injury, it is important to comprehend the basic mechanism of a cumulative injury. It is also important to understand what occurs to your body when it is over stressed and the role that soft tissue treatments provides in treating the stress. Read More About Frequently Asked Questions for Treating Soft Tissue Injuries Download & Print [wpdm_file...

Healthy Running

Q. I am a runner and I try to do 1-2 races a year, but I always end up injuring myself. I’m planning to do this year’s Chicago Marathon, what can I do to stay healthy, especially as I’m approaching my long runs? A. Think about this for a moment.  It takes the average person about 41,280 strides to complete a marathon. Then you need to factor in the hundreds of miles spent training; average weekly miles ranging from 35-50 miles.  Now you can get an idea as to why runners are so prone to overuse injuries. What’s more, if you already have an imbalance hiding somewhere in your legs, core, or even upper body, that can become magnified to the point of serious pain and side-lining your training. As we train, muscles have a tendency to become short and tight, allowing adhesions to accumulate and impede our normal movement patterns causing pain, discomfort and imbalances. Active Release Techniques (ART) and Massage Therapy are designed to release tight muscles and breakdown adhesions. During peak training, it’s important to be evaluated by a certified ART provider. TIPS FOR HEALTHY RUNNING 1. Foam Rolling and the Stick: Investing in a foam roller and/or a stick can help ease tight muscles before running. 2. Strengthen Your Core: Do the McGill Four exercises; the instructions for the exercises can be viewed at www.chicagochirosports.com/exercises.html. 3. Add Miles Slowly: Make sure you don’t add miles on too quickly; you need to allow your body time to adapt to the increase mileage. In general, you can add a mile for every run you do per week, provided you then...

Sprained Ankles

Q. I have a long history of spraining my ankles.  What can I do to prevent future ankle sprains? A.  More often than not, a sprained ankle is due to a loss of proprioception and balance in the ankles, and not necessarily a strength issue. Proprioception is your body’s ability to sense its position in space. A classic example of when your proprioception fails you is when you trip on a flat surface while walking. Often you look back puzzled and in search of something sticking up that may have tripped you, only to see that there was nothing there. Some experts will argue that our shoes prevent the full development of the proprioceptors in our feet and ankles, which inhibit us from being able to quickly adapt to the ground surface. 1. Balance with one foot on a flat, stable surface for 30 seconds. Repeat with the other foot. 2. Stand on one foot on a flat, stable surface for 30 seconds with your eyes closed. Repeat with the other foot. 3. Using an unstable surface, balance on one leg for 30 seconds with your eyes open. For an unstable surface try a rolled-up or folded yoga mat, BOSU-ball, or wobble-board. 4. Using an unstable surface, balance on one leg for 30 seconds with your eyes now closed. For an unstable surface try a rolled-up or folded yoga mat, BOSU-ball, or wobble-board. 5. Play light catch with a light-weighted ball while balancing on one foot for 30 seconds each leg. Have a partner toss it to you at different areas. Unfortunately, the ankle isn’t the only part that needs...

Tight Hip Flexors

Q. I have tight hip flexors. Is stretching my hip flexors enough to overcome the tightness? What else could I be doing to help my situation? A.If you are like most, your daily commute and sitting throughout the majority of the day contributes to the length of your hip flexors.  The more time you spend sitting will tend to shorten your hip flexors.  Tight hip flexors can add compression forces to your lumbar spine when you do stand up, as well as create other problems for your hips and low back. Half-Kneeling Desk Work Depending on the height of your desk, you may be able to kneel on one knee while doing computer and deskwork. By using a small pillow, folded towel, or pad you can alternate kneeling on one knee while you check email, do your spreadsheets or even peruse Facebook. By keeping one hip extended, you effectively reduce the amount of time you have your hips flexed. This also puts you spine in a more neutral and less stressful position. Start by trying 10-15 minutes every hour in the half-kneeling position. Standing Desk Many people these days are realizing the benefits of standing desks. By standing at your desk you forgo the sitting all together. Plus, many people claim to be more productive and less groggy when they switch to standing desks. If you work with a laptop, a low-cost way of making a standing desk is to simply take a chair and place it on your desk and then put the laptop on the chair. Stand While Talking on the Phone If you are not quite...