As a Newcastle Chiropractor playing women’s AFL, I have loved every minute of playing such a high intensity sport. As I’m a little on the older side, I have experienced my fair share of injuries. Last season I managed fractured feet, impinged shoulders and even a concussion. But the positive things I have gained from this experience far outweigh the negative. It’s all about working on prevention and effective management of injuries to balance out the impacts to the body.
Injury Prevention and Stretching
Bumps, knocks, tackles and falls are all a part of the fun when it comes to playing AFL – not to mention the DOMS (Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness) the day or two after game day! A good warm up and effective cool down are critical in injury prevention.
The key to a good warm up, regardless of the sport, is dynamic stretching. In other words, stretching that involves active movements. Examples include lunge and twists, high knees, butt kicks, quad stretch to kick through, light running and arm cross overs. Dynamic stretching both warms up and stretches the muscles so when it comes time to run out on the field (or court), your muscles are ready for action. It gets the joints ready for movement and the muscles set for optimal activation. When done right, dynamic stretching significantly reduces the chances of injury.
At the end of exercise it’s all about the static stretch to cool down. Holding those stretches work to lengthen the muscles and increase flexibility! This style of stretching not only helps to improve flexibility but also increases the blood circulation to the muscle. This will reduce the DOMS the next day, which in my opinion, is absolutely priceless. My other two post game tricks is a swim at Merewether ocean baths following the game (the colder the water the better) and a good dose of magnesium. Magnesium is a natural muscle relaxant and proven to reduce cramps. We stock some high quality magnesium here at Energise Chiropractic!
Treatment – is Chiropractic right for me?
Despite all our best efforts to minimise injury, occasionally injuries are going to happen, and as a chiropractor I know just how many different treatment options are out there. Understanding who to go and see about what can be confusing… scans, x-rays, massage, physio, chiropractic – I’ve had it all over this past year (as well as treating injured players).
Here at Energise Chiropractic we use a range of tests including orthopaedic and chiropractic exams to diagnose the injury or problem. Treatment plans include a variety of approaches including massage, adjustments, stretching and rehab exercises to get you back out onto that field or court ASAP. If you are looking for a Newcastle Chiropractor with first hand experience in sports injury, prevention and performance optimisation, then Dr Kristel Gavenlock can provide advise and treatment to get you to you back on track. Call to discuss if chiropractic is the right option for you contact details can be found here.
For more information or to book an appointment with Newcastle Chiropractor Kristel Gavenlock click here.