There are more master athletes today than at any time since the running boom of the 1970’s. Enter any race whether it is the local 5k or a sprint or Olympic distance triathlon and you will find by far the largest segment of athletes is in the master or over 40 category. This is true for bike races as well. I know this first hand as I lined up this past Sunday for a mountain bike race in the 50+ (sport master) category and there were 21 racers.
These athletes are just slightly past their competitive athletic peaks, but are still pushing their own personal limits. As the body starts to lose some of it’s strength, flexibility and aerobic capacity these athletes must do everything they can to maintain their competitiveness. They need to lift weights to maintain strength, continue with anaerobic intervals and tempo runs for endurance and speed and they need chiropractic care to keep their neuromusculoskeletal systems firing properly and their biomechanics in good working order.
Treatments can include spinal and extremity adjustment/manipulation, muscle work (pnf stretches to strain counter strain techniques), low level light (laser) to stimulate healing and activate muscle fibers, kinesiotaping to help with strained muscles to name just a few.
Take for example the US Postal Service professional bicycle racing team who won the Tour de France seven times in a row from 1999 to 2005. They had a team chiropractor who kept them riding everyday of the grinding 3 week tour and many times the team was the only one of over twenty teams to finish with all nine members still riding (all this through crashes and the overuse injuries that arise in such a grueling event). The riders all gave great credit to the team chiropractor for “keeping them in the game”.
Another example is football champion and all-star Jerry Rice who says chiropractic was an integral part of his long and fruitful playing career. So much so that he is now a professional spokesperson for the American Chiropractic Association.
Basically speaking, chiropractic adjustments have profound effects on the human nervous system and this is the system that controls and coordinates every function of the human being. What could be more important? Especially for a master athlete.
So if you find yourself accumulating some nagging aches and pains, instead of reaching for nsaid’s (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) think seriously about seeking out a well qualified sports chiropractor. Especially in light of recent research about nsaids that state:
American Journal of Sports Medicine
“Injured muscle fibers were shown to have incomplete healing because of medication (NSAID)
Archives of Internal Medicine
“NSAIDs have been shown to delay and hamper the healing of all soft tissues including muscles, ligaments, tendons and cartilage.”
“NSAIDs can delay healing and delay it significantly.”
Multiply that with the adverse cardiovascular and gastrointestinal side effects and you are playing with fire. Why on earth would anyone, let alone an athlete, take something (nsaids) that will cover up the symptoms and cause delayed healing. Then go out and train or compete and risk even greater injury. It makes absolutely no sense at all. You are better off controlling injuries with RICE (rest ice compression elevation)
You are much better off and safer with chiropractic care, especially the master athlete.