What is the formula for a healthy athlete?
When we think of athletes, we generally think that they are healthy based on the fact that they exercise and typically have a more fit physique. The truth is, there are many athletes that are great at their sport but could be much better if we focused on other aspects of health rather than just working hard at practice.
When we look at who is competing in competitive sports it is generally younger people as most athletes do not make it to the next level of collegiate sports and even fewer of them move on to professional athletes after that. At a point when they are most athletically active, their bodies are going through so many changes. Growth spurts happen and bones grow faster than the muscles leading to tight and achy muscles. Limb lengths can change up our lever biomechanics. Altered biomechanics can lead to an increased chance of injury. Repetitive motions that are required in many sports can lead to increased injury. Contact (and even non-contact) sports can lead to a concussion which is a whole other topic. So, there is no doubt that athletes’ bodies are enduring a bunch of physical STRESS.
A key aspect when it comes to athletes is how they are fueling themselves. I’m sure you’ve heard the comparison that an athlete’s body is like a Ferrari or other high-performance vehicle. If you owned a Ferrari, you wouldn’t fuel it with the cheap 87 octane fuel from the pump. You would give it the premium fuel to make sure it continues to perform as you want it to.
Now I know, and most others would agree, that proper nutrition in America is lacking. School lunches have also been declining and although some schools try to improve the nutritional options available, a study found that kids will almost always pick a less healthy option or bring their own lunch with even worse options. It is important to instill the importance of eating healthy foods to children as they are growing up and helping them learn to make healthier choices and they will benefit both in the classroom and on the field/court/track/etc.
Chiropractic can help athletes with common sports injuries return to sport faster. In fact, chiropractic has outperformed medical options at reducing pain and restoring normal function. But it’s not just injured athletes who visit chiropractors. In fact, an estimated 90% of all world-class athletes routinely use chiropractic care to prevent injuries and boost their performance.
Did you know that all NFL teams employ on-staff chiropractors? So do 72 percent of PGA golfers and the majority of NBA, MLB, and NHL teams. Why is that? Pain relief aside, some of the athletic benefits a certified chiropractic sports physician can offer include improved performance such as improved hand-eye coordination and faster reaction times as well as reduced recovery time.
Chiropractic could be a complete game-changer when it comes to athletes and their athletic performance as the margin between winning and losing can come down to milliseconds.
Lauro A. Mouch B. Chiropractic: The Journal of Chiropractic Research and Clinical Investigation. 1991; 6:84-87