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Maximize Potential by Treating Injuries
Dr Anthony Arreola, DC NASM, CPT, FNS
Many bodybuilders have found it difficult to find a doctor who truly understands their sport and the sacrifices needed to achieve success. The physical needs of a bodybuilder are significantly higher than those of the average population. Disc herniations, muscle tears, sprains, and strains can be game enders. Preventative maintenance and regularly scheduled checkups are crucial when you push your body to the limit, especially in a sport in which injuries are common.
Most professional and non-professional bodybuilders and strength athletes have injured themselves by pushing the limit. There is a fine line bodybuilders walk every time they train in the gym. In order to introduce growth, the muscle needs to be introduced to a new stressor (heavier weight or extra rep). If the stressor is pushed over the threshold of your tissues, an injury occurs. The unfortunate fact for a significant soft tissue injury (muscles, tendons, and ligaments), is that the tissue will never be as strong as it was pre-injury. After an injury occurs, your body will begin an inflammatory process to begin healing, followed by lying down a network of scar tissue. The network of scar tissue is very weak.
If you sustain an injury during training, it is important to get the injury treated quickly to mitigate the damage as much as possible. If your car tire pops, you are not going to continue driving, wearing down the rim and driving out of control. The same is true with your body. If you continue to train with an injury you will cause further damage. Most musculoskeletal injuries will be very slow to heal, especially if the injury goes undiagnosed and you continue to train. If the injury is treated quickly, the return to training time will be much faster. With less down time from injuries, there is more time you can spend training, growing, and getting stronger. Once the injury occurs, you want to see the musculoskeletal injury expert, right?
Doctors of Chiropractic are the musculoskeletal experts. Many professional bodybuilders, power lifters, strongman competitors, and Olympic athletes see their Chiropractor weekly during pre and post season training in order to prevent injuries.
Look forward to next month’s article on effective treatments and injury prevention.