Sports activities are a regular way of life for many of us now, and involve people from across all age groups from those who have an avid interest to those who just wish to keep fit; from the elite professional to the casual participant.
Osteopathy helps people who enjoy sport at all levels of involvement with joint pain; muscular aches, pains, strains, pulls; back pain; preparation for big events; stiffness and tension; managing problem areas and enhancing stretching regimes.
It can help to alleviate the immediate symptoms of the injury and it can help the patient manage their recovery and return back to active participation in sport.
Osteopaths can work with the athlete in relation to their performance and long-term training goals. Osteopaths look at the relationship between muscle, limb and spine function, the potential underlying cause of symptoms and your lifestyle. By appreciating how these factors may interact they can make adjustments and recommendations to help prevent injury and help you achieve your goals safely.
Many of the injuries are the result of overuse i.e. playing too hard and too often e.g. tennis elbow, golfer's elbow, and biceps tendinitis, or from not warming up properly beforehand or from not warming down after exercise.
Sometimes incorrect equipment can lead to injuries - ill-fitting footwear can cause hip, knee and foot injuries (e.g. Achilles injuries). Reduced joint flexibility will affect the degree of performance and may result in injury if the player is unaware that they cannot perform to the same level as they used to, for example golfers who cannot turn at the waist as well as they used to, and the enthusiastic older footballer whose knees do not bend as well as they once did.
Young people especially are vulnerable in sport as their growing bodies are often expected to perform to high standards and are putting exceptional physical demands on themselves. The good news is that although sports injuries are common, those who are fit tend to recover more quickly and easily from their injuries.
Osteopathy is effective for the treatment and management of sport- and fitness-related injuries. An osteopath can help improve performance as well as treat the injuries being suffered. By using their knowledge of diagnosis and highly developed palpation skills they can help to restore structural balance, improve joint mobility and reduce soft tissue restrictions so that ease of movement is restored and performance enhanced.
For those of you wishing to keep fit, the osteopath can help you keep supple and improve muscle tone so reducing the risk of injury to soft tissues unaccustomed to the extra work they are being asked to do. Advice on diet and exercise which will help you with your specific sport may also be offered.
Osteopathy is also suitable for dances, actors and other professional performers.
Specialised consultation and care for sports and performance at Temple Clinic in Ealing, West London