Chiropractic and golf

Chiropractic and golfA lot of people were impatiently waiting for the nice weather in order to be able to play golf. However, before rushing to the golf course, it is important to have some knowledge to avoid some injuries that could keep you from practicing your sport.

First, many people rush to the golf course without having previously made some warmups. Why warmups are so important? Mainly because they help ensure that the muscles are ready to do the exercise and the blood supply will be sufficient in the muscles. They also ensure a proper lubrication of all the joints. To warm up, you can make some golf swings without a ball. In addition to helping your muscles, warming up allows your brain and your nervous system to remember the right way to the golf swing. You can also jump up and do a bit of jogging in place to raise your heart rate. To prepare your shoulders to the effort, you can do some rotations with your arms for 15 seconds.

In addition to warmups, there is something else you can do before playing golf: consulting your chiropractor. What is the link between chiropractic and golf do you ask? In fact, the execution of a golf swing requires a good overall flexibility, good mobility of all joints of your body, good movement coordination, good balance and a precise activation of the muscles of the legs, back and shoulders. The chiropractor is an expert of the posture and of the biomechanics of your body. Therefore, your chiropractor will be able to detect movement restrictions in some of your joints and help you fix them. This way, each joint will be able to function properly and allow you a better swing. If you have posture problems that affect your golf swing, the chiropractor will also be able to help you fix them and contribute to improving your performance. Chiropractic treatments also prevent mechanical disorders that may predispose you to injury.

You’re not a golf fan? No problem! The recommendations mentioned above apply to all sports and physical activities that you are planning to do this summer. So for an active and painfree summer, call your chiropractor immediately.

Article inspired by a text published by the Association des chiropraticiens du Québec: “Performer au golf”

Chiropractic and pelvic pain

Chiropractic and pelvic painOne of the most common source of pain in the lower back is probably the irritation of the pelvic joint, also known as a “sacroiliac syndrome”. The pain associated with this problem can be intense enough for the patient to be forced to stop some of his common daily activities. The pain is generally localized just above the buttock and can shoot down in the buttock, the thigh or even to the ankle. Even if the pain pattern could be different from one patient to another, the aggravating factors are usually: sitting for a long period of time, bending forward or sideways, turning in bed, standing for a long time, etc.

Why is it so frequent? Probably because this condition can be caused by so many reasons: sitting the wrong way, sleeping with a torsion in the lower back, playing sports stressful for the lower back (hockey or golf, for example), bad posture, wrong movements, repetitive movements, accidents, pregnancy, etc. Also, there is no age group for this condition. As a chiropractor, I’m treating as many young teenagers for this problem because they are playing soccer for example, that I’m treating adults working in a sitting position the whole day or construction workers. This problem is also very common among pregnant women, mainly because of the increased laxity of the ligaments of the back and because of the increasing weight of the baby.

What is the solution for this problem? Good news! Chiropractic care is usually very effective for this condition. After making sure the pain you have is caused by an irritation of the pelvic joint, the chiropractor will perform a manipulation of the affected joint. The goal of the treatment is to correct the alignment and the movement of the sacroiliac joint in order to stop the production of inflammation. The chiropractor will also work the muscles around the joint because they could also represent a source of pain. Also, the chiropractor will review your activities and your habits with you in order to identify the possible reasons why you developed the problem. Therefore, you will be able to apply the changes needed to avoid a recurrence of the problem. You and your chiropractor are working as a team to not only correct the problem, but also prevent the recurrence of it.

If you think you are suffering from an irritation of the pelvis, contact your chiropractor today. There is not point of suffering from a condition like this when a solution so simple and effective exists.

Enjoy the spring!

How to prevent injuries while traveling

How to avoid injuries while travelingFor this article, I decided to give a few recommendations to those of you who will have the chance to travel during the March break.

First, it is very frequent to get injured after lifting our luggages. To avoid injuries, try to lift using your legs and thighs instead of your back. The muscles in your legs are strong enough for this task compared to your back muscles. Also, remember to avoid doing any twisting movement of your back, especially if you have something heavy in your hands (your luggages). This type of movement creates a big stress on the back, especially on the small cushions (the intervertebral disc) located between the vertebrae.

If you travel by plane, it is recommended to use a pillow, a cushion or a rolled sweater to put on your lower back. This way, your back will be supported even if the seats are not comfortable. You can do the same on the beach if you use one of their lawn chairs, since this type of chair doesn’t provide much support for the lower back.

If you have enough space in your luggages, it could be a good idea to bring your own pillow. Since you can’t control the quality of the mattress you will have at the hotel, at least you will make sure to have a proper support for your neck.

For those of you traveling south, you will probably be tempted to wear scandals more than regular shoes. Be careful because some types of scandals are not providing much support for your feet and ankles. It could be a good idea to wear  a good pair of running shoes  once in a while to give your feet some rest.

Finally, there is no problem to enjoy a drink while relaxing on the beach. Just make sure to drink enough water to avoid any heat stroke or dehydration.

Happy March break to all travelers!

School bags

school bag

School bags

It is already the beginning of September indicating the back to school season. On the shopping list for your kid’s school supplies, you probably have to purchase a school bag. The following text will guide you to buy the proper school bag.

A backpack or a bag with a shoulder strap?

While shopping for school supplies, you will see different kind of school bags. It is important to know that your best choice is always a backpack compare to a bag with a shoulder strap. The reason is simple, there are two straps on the backpack in order to distribute the weight evenly on both shoulders. Compare to the backpack, the bag with only one strap will put all the weight of the bag on only one shoulder, thus increasing the risk of causing posture problems or problems with some vertebrae of the spine.

The characteristics of a good backpack are:

– Padded straps in order to absorb the weight of the bag and for more comfort

– It is always better to have a small school bag ( this way you will keep the bag lighter)

– The bag should have a waist strap to transfer some of the weight on the pelvis

It is also very important to fit the bag properly. To do so, make sure that the top of the bag isn’t higher that the shoulders and that the bottom of the bag is at the pelvis height (the bag should not rub on the buttocks or the back of the thigh.

Don’t forget to keep the weight of the bag as light as possible. In fact, the weight of the bag shouldn’t be more than 10% to 15% of your child’s weight. Therefore, if your child’s weight is 100 pounds, the bag including all the school supplies shouldn’t be more than 10 to 15 pounds.

You may have thought about buying a bag with wheels. This may look like a good idea at first because you pull the weight instead of lifting it. However, sooner or later, you will have to lift the bag to go up the stairs or to put the bag in the car or the school bus.

It is also recommended to consult a chiropractor at the beginning of the school year for your kids. This way, the chiropractor will be able to verify the health of your kid’s spine and will be able to confirm the proper fit of their school bag.

Chiropractic and kids

Chiropractic and kidsWhen I look at my 11 month old daughter crawling on her stomach, walking on all fours and trying to walk, I can’t help but notice how many times kids are falling every day. Of course, this is part of their normal development. However, the accumulation of all those falls may have consequences in short or long term.

This brings me to talk about chiropractic care for kids. Even if it is rare that a kid will mention pain, it is possible that the accumulation of all their falls creates restrictions of movement affecting the vertebrae of their spine. Those restrictions could be responsible for other problems in the future like headaches, postural problems, muscle asymmetry, etc.  Like any condition, it is always better to prevent the problem than having to treat it. Therefore, even if your kids didn’t mention having pain (or if your kids are too young to be able to talk), it is recommended for them to have a chiropractic evaluation of their spine. This way, the chiropractor will detect biomechanical problems before they start creating bigger problems. It is important to know that chiropractic care for kids is extremely gentle, safe and pain free. Moreover, the chiropractor will be able to make recommendations for your kids in order to improve their health. For example, if you have teenagers, the chiropractor will provide them with exercises to improve their general posture.

If you have kids, make an appointment now with a chiropractor for a preventative chiropractic evaluation of your kid’s spine. This way, you will contribute to the normal development of their full potential.