Chiropractor Chandler AZ

Soccer Injuries - Prevention and Recovery

Soccer, once thought of as a rather European sport, is more popular than ever here in the United States. Americans love to watch soccer; last year, more Americans watched the Women's World Cup soccer championship than the Stanley Cup or NBA Final. And make no mistake, Americans are playing soccer more than ever, too. Soccer has surged in popularity as a youth sport, second only to basketball when it comes to school-aged kids. "Soccer Saturdays" where hundreds of kids descend on the local athletic fields to play all morning and afternoon long, are ubiquitous across the United States these days. However, while more people are enjoying soccer these days than ever before, there is a serious downside: injuries.

Soccer players are prone to a variety of lower extremity injuries. Soft tissue issues, like patellar tendonitis (pain in the knee) shin splints, and sprains and other overuse injuries are also extremely common. In a recent study, the NCAA determined that the injury rate for college soccer players was approximately 7.7 percent for every thousand hours played. One can expect that teenagers and younger kids who are playing, and whose bodies are still growing, will experience even higher rates of injury. Fortunately, shin splints or a sore knee don't have to keep you out of the game for too long. There are new and innovative techniques to treat soccer injuries and get players back on the field sooner rather than later.

The Graston Technique for Soccer Players

One of the newer treatments to help recover from a painful soft tissue soccer injury is the Graston Technique (GT). GT is a form of soft tissue mobilization, and involves a trained practitioner using a specially designed set of stainless steel instruments to manipulate afflicted soft tissue. The GT instruments allow clinicians to identify injured tissue, and then are used to break down scar tissue and other restrictors. The technique facilitates increased blood flow to problem areas, alleviates pain, and can speed up the recovery process. While still a relatively new medical innovation, several clinical trials have affirmed the Graston Technique's effectiveness at addressing soft tissue injuries.

Video: Scar Tissue Treatment with Graston Technique for Muscle Pain

Graston Technique knee pain

GT therapy is great news for soccer players suffering from shin splints or leg sprains. Typical soft tissue injuries like this, often called adhesions, can keep muscles painfully tight and limit range of motion. GT is particularly effective at addressing these conditions. Additionally, GT can immediately address the buildup of scar tissue, alleviate lingering pain, and promote soft tissue healing for other soccer injuries as well. The Graston technique can be especially effective at addressing injuries before they become serious and debilitating, so it is worth checking with your physical therapist to get treatment as soon as your aches and pains start adding up.

Active Release Therapy (ART) for Soccer Players

Active Release Therapy, or ART, is another relatively new non-invasive technique to treat injuries commonly seen in soccer. ART is a patented technique that involves hand manipulation of soft tissue by a trained practitioner. ART's 500-move treatment protocol is exceptionally effective at identifying damaged soft tissue, and then treating it. These carefully designed, precision movements, like GT, can help increase blood flow, alleviate pain, and restore range of motion. All of this, again, is great news for sore soccer players everywhere.

Specially trained ART practitioners are adept at identifying the source of soft tissue injury or pain, then breaking down the scar tissue causing it. Active Release Therapy is also used as a preventative measure to keep muscles and tendons primed for workouts, thus avoiding injury altogether. ART can be great for dedicated soccer enthusiasts, especially those who are experiencing routine or growing soft tissue pain. So if injuries are holding you back from giving it all you've got on the soccer field, ART may be the right choice for you.

Get Back on the Field

Soccer is now an all-American sport, and continues to grow in popularity here. The fast paced game, with its lightning runs up the field and high impact, repetitive motions, leaves athletes exceptionally prone to a variety of injuries. The Graston Technique and Active Release Therapy offer innovative ways to keep soccer players' muscles and tendons in good shape, and prevent injury altogether. They are also extremely effective at treating soft tissue injuries and rapidly getting you back in action. So don't wait until it's too late. Do your homework, find a clinician who offers GT or ART and get back on the field before anyone notices you were missing.

Our Chandler Chiropractic and Physical Therapy clinic treats patients with a variety of muscle, tendon, joint, and ligament injuries. The clinic provides treatment for runners, tri-athletes, and weekend warriors in addition to common headache, neck, and back patients traditionally seen in Chiropractic, Physical Therapy, Massage Therapy clinics. We work with all ages and abilities of the residents in Phoenix, Tempe, Gilbert, Mesa, and Chandler AZ.