It almost summer here in Boulder, Colorado and chiropractic is already more summer-like. Patients are back to bike-racing, running, golf, rowing, baseball, off-roading, hiking, camping, etc. Slogans like “No Pain, No Gain”, and “Just Do It” are irrelevant for most Boulderites, but quick analysis of these locker-room platitudes could save you from both acute and repetitive stress injuries.
Here’s a positive interpretation of these two mantras. Healthy, able athletes transcend all barriers to motivation and expectation to experience exhilarating performance breakthroughs. On the other hand, unconditioned athletes may get overly motivated and injure their back, neck, etc. by training beyond their skill, their conditioning and their basic structural and functional abilities. Or, an ordinarily skillful, conditioned athlete may feel the onset of hip and knee pain, but choose to “push through it” in an effort to maintain their training and competition schedule. They start taking pain-killers to keep going, but go down with a disabling knee sprain and hamstring spasm. With basic self-knowledge and discreet action, both consequences could be avoided.
Be sure to carefully match the current level of your participation with your current ability. I would be happy to help you with that. Consider your baseline fitness, including your strength, endurance, cardiovascular health and efficiency and the structural and functional health of your joints and of the rest of your body. Your pain could be from safely exceeding the limits of your expectations. Or, your joint and muscle pain could signify abnormal joint function and structure. Left unattended, these impairments could escalate into acute, disabling injuries and eventual degenerative arthritis. Detecting and correcting abnormal joint function and structure will improve your strength, stamina and coordination and will also prevent you from developing chronic degenerative arthritis of your abnormally structured and functioning joints.
Best of Health,
Dr. Tom Groover, BS, BSCI, MA, DC, CCEP