Once your doctor has evaluated your body's structure and identified any imbalances or weaknesses, they can correct the problems by developing a program that combines specific chiropractic adjustments, custom-made orthotics and a personalized conditioning program. This program usually will be based on three things: your individual needs, your fitness goals, and how well you progress with the exercises your doctor has recommended.
Chiropractic adjustments of the spine and extremities have a direct and immediate effect on optimizing your body's proprioceptive responses. Adjustments will help improve your body's overall balance and coordination. They can help keep your body correctly aligned, improving your posture. They also can help relieve pain. The purpose of adjustments is to re-educate the joints and other supportive areas of your body. This will enhance the mobility of your joints and increase the amount of stress your body can tolerate before an injury occurs.
If your doctor determines that you have specific structural defects, you should be fitted for flexible, custom-made orthotics. What are orthotics? Essentially, they're shoe inserts - made specifically with your feet in mind. By supporting and balancing all three of your foot's natural arches, orthotics work with your chiropractic care to help stabilize your spine and hold your adjustments longer. They support, move and protect your body from the damaging shock that occurs when your heel strikes the ground with each step. Orthotics help control the angle and timing of pronation or supination, but do not restrict or eliminate your normal foot motion. By controlling movement in your feet, flexible orthotics encourage normal reactions all the way up your body.
Custom-made orthotics can benefit any athlete. Many studies have shown that flexible orthotics help reduce fatigue and have a positive effect on stride length and hip rotation. They help properly position your body to improve its balance and proprioceptive abilities, helping to enhance your athletic performance.
This unique approach to troubleshooting problems before an injury occurs is what separates doctors of chiropractic from all of the other sports medicine providers who treat only the injured athlete. Chiropractors can help predict certain injuries and correct structural defects, giving athletes new and exciting possibilities for success in the sports world.