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Oct, 2015

What an athlete looks like with and without today’s chiropractic

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This week was a shock.

I personally saw the contrast of an athlete who has had chiropractic care from birth compared to one without.

This first x-ray you will see is of my oldest; 15 years old and involved in competitive sports.

In fact his #1 sport is one of the highest impact sports on the planet, ice hockey. He’s has been banged around with the best of them. As he advances, it only get’s more competitive and aggressive.

He’s had multiple injuries throughout his career, sidelined with broken bones and sprains and strains. He also trains like crazy.

The number of hours he spends in the gym working out and the number of hours he spends working on his skills is incredible. These kids sacrifice a lot for the “dream”.

The repetitive nature of the one sided hockey shot and the body “abuse” from taking and giving a hit causes major ribcage and pelvic imbalances.

Here is his most recent x-ray of his ribcage and pelvis.

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This photograph of his x-ray doesn’t let you see the pelvic heights but they are right bang on.

His x-rays are almost perfect.

That doesn’t happen in his sport without some major intervention and support. And it certainly is not blind luck.

His major intervention and support has been chiropractic.

He has rarely gone a week in his life without a chiropractic check up.

My family and I try to practice what we preach.

We’re not perfect but with my wife’s background as a pediatric nurse and me as a chiropractor, we work hard to do what it takes to raise healthy kids.

I spend my day’s talking to people about the importance of looking after their spine and nerve system, so of course our kids get adjusted regularly.

I see the damage that happens when a spine is taken for granted.

Symptomatic Care, or only when you’re hurting

The next x-ray is of an athlete one year older than my son. This athlete has had a few chiropractic adjustments, but only when he was in pain and the care was focused only on the symptoms.

This is common in amateur athletes, but you rarely find this at the professional level.

Professional athletes understand that it’s about performance and their chiropractic care is about correcting imbalances, maximizing the nerve system and faster stronger performance.

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Then the final x-ray is of an athlete almost the identical age to my son.

Never been checked by a chiropractor

He has never had a spinal or nerve system checkup before. The family knew about chiropractic but because he wasn’t in pain, it wasn’t on the radar. He finally had pain so they brought him in.

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In addition to the massive shift in the rib cage, there is a 16mm shift in the pelvis. All the exercise in the world can’t fix that. This athlete needs specific, accurate chiropractic adjustments in combination with exercises prescribed to target the damage that is occuring.

Prevention is Worth far more than a Pound of Cure

These last two athletes are approaching a point in their career where damage is about to happen permanently.

If these athletes continue to train at the level they are training at, and don’t get their spine and nerve system corrected, they will cause irreversible damage to the holding elements (ligaments, disc’s and soft tissue) surrounding their spine. 1 If they continue to train “through the pain” then the bones themselves will start to degenerate as well.

But if they do choose to prioritize their spinal health and nerve system function, get under regular corrective chiropractic, they can train even harder than their peers and get stronger, not cause damage.

As a dad of 2 super competitive kids (and 1 yet to be determined) I know that the best thing I can do is ensure the things they do in their youth are a blessing and not a curse.

Unfortunately many young and developing athletes will be a long series of injuries as early as their late teens and early 20’s. They will NOT accomplish their sport goals and in the process they will jeopardize an active and full adult life as well.

Degenerative joints and nagging injury is no way to enter into adulthood.

What’s the solution?

Regular and early chiropractic intervention.

Find a quality corrective family chiropractor, one that will actually do a complete exam and even take x-rays to determine where your kids are at. I can absolutely guarantee that the parents of the last 2 athletes had no clue that their “incredible athletic kid” was in such a bad way.

Parent’s can hardly believe that their kids are walking around with this big a problem. But it’s far more common in the athletic community than not. My kids are the exception.

So take it upon yourself to get the check up and really prepare your kids for an awesome future, free of disease and degeneration. And if they do make it some were in athletes, congrats but let’s keep the main things front and centre. All the “youth” athletic accomplishments in the world are not replacement for health and vitality in adulthood.

Keep your priorities straight, healthy drug free kids needs to be a top priority.

If you need some help in finding a correction specialist in your area, leave a comment below and I will help you get pointed in the right direction.

Notes:

  1. Adams MA, Doland P. Recent advances in lumbar spinal mechanics and their clinical significance. Clin Biomech 1995; 10(1): 3-19.

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