• How chiropractic care can help runners.

  • You might be thinking that chiropractic care is for low back ache and neck pain. And that’ll be all.

    But that’s short-sighted.

    Over the years in practice, some of the most interesting results came from my working with athletes, and this, of course, involves runners. Back in 2013, I worked with a football team in Salt Lake City. Every Saturday morning I would go to the team’s training room, line up all the football players, and check and adjust their feet and ankles. We got great results, and in a minute I’ll tell you what those results were.

    Lower Extemities

    The lower extremities can be affected by the way the pelvis sits.

    But first let me tell you what happens when I adjust your spine, and evaluate and adjust your feet and ankles. Chiropractic care to the spine adjusts you to a better balance. If you have some kind of mechanical problem that is throwing off the balance of your pelvis, this can throw off the balance of all the muscles controlling the pelvis, the spine, and the legs. Your hamstrings on one side will be too tight, while the other side will be too loose. This will give you back pain, knee problems, and sloppy ankles. So when you get yourself adjusted, this sets up a natural and inherent balance in the muscles of your body. So you can have better proprioceptive awareness of how you are moving through space. This affects your whole kinetic chain all up and down your legs.

    Chiropractic care to the feet and ankles can take this a step further. The primary shock absorber in the body is the mechanical action in the foot and ankle. If there are articulations in the foot and ankle that aren’t working well, you will start to move in compensatory and unnatural ways. This can cause you to hyperpronate, where you roll the arch of your foot in too much. Pretty soon this will cause knee pain on the inside of the knee. Or, bad biomechanics in the ankle will cause it to roll into inversion, setting you up for inversion sprains if you make the wrong move on uneven pavement. Chiropractic care to the feet and ankles gives you a planted sense of balance. Chiropractic improves your proprioceptive feedback. Chiropractic adjustments to the feet can improve your coordination and reaction time.

    So when I worked on this football team in Salt Lake, even though I only worked on the feet and ankles and left the rest of the spine alone, we had phenomenal results. That season the team had an 80% reduction of non-contact injuries. They had no foot and ankle injuries. This was way out of the ordinary for them, and the team has been using chiropractic for their players ever since.

    Will chiropractic care help you as a runner?

    Foot and Ankle

    The foot and ankle can affect coordination, reaction time, and proprioceptive feedback.

    I know that runners are aware of their nuances. We spend a lot of money on shoes, and a lot of time picking out the right fit and shoe engineering. Chiropractic care for the feet and ankle compliments this fastidious approach to performance. If the small cuboid bone on the outside of the foot is stuck and won’t move its normal fraction of a millimeter, it can throw off the whole leg and create wear on the knees and low back. We check it all for you so your body can remain in good balance for your best performance.

    Do you think this is for you? You can give ChiroHealth a call to set up an appointment to get your feet and ankles checked. We check them in the context of good spine mechanics too, so we can see how the feet and aknkel are moving in relation to the pelvis. In one visit you will get an idea of the improvement you will enjoy, and with routine care over several months, you can see the lasting benefit.

    Dr. Todd Lloyd
    doctor of chiropractic in San Francisco, CA