We can feel the cold setting in during the past few weeks. Without a clear agenda of opening the international border, some of our practice members are planning on a snow trip this year! The question is how can we enjoy the winter sport without breaking our body.
According to the American College of Sports Medicine, the most common injured area for a skier is the lower extremity(e.g. knee ligaments), and the wrist for both skier and snowboarder.(1) Other injuries involved in high-speed impact are more serious such as head injury(e.g. concussion) and spinal injury(e.g. vertebral fracture).(1) The fact that beginners and experienced skiers/snowboarders are both at risk of injury, protection and prevention is key.
Most people would have a basic idea of putting on protective gear to lower their chances of getting hurt. Studies have shown the use of protection gear in commonly injured areas are effective in reducing the severity of injury. For example, helmet and wrist guards can reduce the risk of serious injuries without compromising movement.(1) In addition, the use of proper sport-specific techniques and instructions, and knowing how the injuries can happen is also vital of reducing the risk of injury.(1)
Little wonder, strengthening core muscle and lower limb muscles have been recommended to lower your chances of getting injured as well. To make sure you are preparing your body ready for the snow, a physical therapist would be handy as part of a team to prepare you. Research in 2012, studying the grip strength of national level judo athletes, has shown chiropractic adjustment provides a consistent significant improvement, up to 17% of muscle strength.(2) Newer Randomised Controlled Trial data from the US military has shown chiropractic adjustment improves maximal pulling strength(increased up to 5kg), improves trunk endurance and better balance with eyes closed.(3)
Learning from the latest evidence we could enjoy our sport better and help prevent serious injuries while doing it! If you and/or your kids are heading to the snow this winter or interested in how chiropractic may help with musculoskeletal factors related to sports performance, give us a call today.
1. Weinstein S, Khodaee M, VanBaak K. Common Skiing and Snowboarding Injuries. Current Sports Medicine Reports. 2019;18(11):394-400.
2. Botelho MB, Andrade BB. Effect of cervical spine manipulative therapy on judo athletes' grip strength. Journal of manipulative and physiological therapeutics. 2012;35(1):38-44.
3. Vining R, Long CR, Minkalis A, Gudavalli MR, Xia T, Walter J, et al. Effects of Chiropractic Care on Strength, Balance, and Endurance in Active-Duty US Military Personnel with Low Back Pain: A Randomized Controlled Trial. The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine. 2020;26(7):592-601.
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