7 Reasons Every Athlete should get Sports Acupuncture
It’s common knowledge that Acupuncture can reduce pain. What is not commonly known is how it does it.
“Electro-acupuncture mechanisms on inflammatory pain have been extensively studied. The modality inhibits both the sensory and the affective components of inflammatory pain, acting through peripheral, spinal, and supraspinal mechanisms with the involvement of a battery of bioactive molecules, including opioids, N/OFQ, serotonin, norepinephrine, glutamate receptors and transporters, cytokines, and signal molecules. Of these, opioids play a central role in electroacupuncture inhibition of all kinds of pain.
— Zhang, R., Lao, L., Ren, K., & Berman, B. M. (2014). Mechanisms of acupuncture electroacupuncture on persistent pain. Anesthesiology, 120(2), 482–503. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3947586/
Improves Athletic Performance
Sports Acupuncture can improve Athletic Performance in 2 ways:
- Improve Blood Flow – by using Electro-Acupuncture on Motor Points a Sports Acupuncturist can improve the blood flowing in and out of that specific muscle, they may also use Electro-Acupuncture needles along the spine at specific level to cause increase blood for to an entire area of the body, such as upper or lower extremities. You might ask “How does that work?” By needling these specific locations, it causes a normalizing of sympathetic tone by stimulating the inferior cervical chain, or the lumbar sympathetic chain. These sympathetic chains control the blood vessels that feed oxygenated blood to the targeted regions. You see, when pain is present sympathetic tone is high which means blood vessels carrying oxygenated blood to the periphery is narrowed. By doing this Acupuncture treatment we are decreasing sympathetic tone so we in turn cause vasodilation of these vessels allowing more oxygenated blood to fed these areas. Such treatments would be beneficial for any issue that affects an entire area such as diabetic neuropathy, CRPS, Fibromyalgia, CFS, chronic pain, inflammatory arthritis, and so on.
- For an athlete to access their full potential they must be able to fully contract their muscles, very often they cannot, and are not even aware they cannot, this is often due to Muscle Motor Inhibition! (link to blog post – What is Motor Point Electro-Acupuncture) For example, if the gluteus maximus is inhibited, (which is extremely common these days, particularly if the athlete is quad dominate) then the ability to run, jump will be significantly reduced, and said athlete will be much more likely to develop low-back pain, knee pain and other pelvic imbalances all because their glutes are not fully firing! Sports Acupuncture can easily, quickly, and comfortably resolve Muscle Motor Inhibition. For more detail on this see the blog post referenced above
Sports Acupuncture can significantly enhance recovery after intense training or competition. The process of recovery is vital for athletes as it allows the body to adapt to the stress of exercise, replenish muscle glycogen, and provide time for the body tissue to repair. Acupuncture aids in this process by improving blood circulation, which in turn helps to speed up the removal of lactic acid and metabolic waste products from the muscles. This can lead to a decrease in muscle soreness and fatigue, allowing athletes to recover more quickly and train more effectively.
Injury prevention is another key benefit of Sports Acupuncture. By improving blood flow, reducing muscle tension, and enhancing joint mobility, acupuncture can help to prevent common sports injuries such as sprains, strains, and stress fractures. Additionally, acupuncture can help to balance the body and correct any biomechanical imbalances that may lead to injury. This is particularly beneficial for athletes who participate in high-impact sports or sports that require repetitive motion.
Speeds Recovery of Injury
In the unfortunate event of an injury, Sports Acupuncture can play a crucial role in speeding up the recovery process. Acupuncture can help to reduce inflammation, alleviate pain, and promote healing in the injured area. It does this by stimulating the body’s natural healing processes, improving blood flow to the area, and promoting the release of endorphins, the body’s natural painkillers. This can lead to a quicker return to training and competition.
Helps Preserve Performance in Aging Athletes
As athletes age, they often face challenges such as decreased flexibility, reduced strength, and slower recovery times. Sports Acupuncture can help to mitigate these effects by enhancing blood circulation, promoting muscle relaxation, and aiding in the recovery process. This can help aging athletes maintain their performance levels and continue to participate in the sports they love.
Can Provide a Competitive Edge that Others Don’t Have
In the highly competitive world of sports, athletes are always looking for ways to gain an edge over their competitors. Sports Acupuncture can provide that edge. By enhancing recovery, preventing injuries, speeding up injury recovery, and helping to maintain performance in aging athletes, Sports Acupuncture can help athletes perform at their best when it matters most. Moreover, as a natural and non-invasive treatment, it doesn’t carry the same risks as performance-enhancing drugs and can be used safely alongside other training and recovery methods.
Whether you’re a professional athlete or a weekend warrior, Sports Acupuncture can provide a host of benefits that can enhance your performance, speed up your recovery, and keep you in the game longer. If you’re ready to take your athletic performance to the next level, consider adding Sports Acupuncture to your training regimen. Contact me today to learn more about how Sports Acupuncture can benefit you.