Chiropractic For Soccer Players

>For soccer players, a powerful kick with the instep part of the foot is the most relied upon skill they use to get them through a match. But when injuries from falling and colliding on the field decrease the range of motion for the spine, the strength of kicks begins to weaken as result. A recent study that focused exclusively on soccer players attempted to find out if chiropractic manipulation of the lumbar spine and sacroiliac could help players increase their kicking speed.

To set up this investigation, forty soccer players were selected for the study. The selection requirements gathered players into four groups. The first group consisted of players who had reduced range of motion in the lumbar spine, the second the sacroiliac joint, the third both the lumbar spine and the sacroiliac joint, and the fourth no reduction in range of motion at all. 

All forty performed the same warm-up routine before having their range of motion measurements taken. After the warmup, chiropractic manipulation was given to each player and was followed by another set of range of motion measurements. Next, kicking speed was measured for each by a Speed Trac Sport Radar device. Finally, each player was interviewed to give their personal perception in the change of their kicking speed after chiropractic treatment, if any was noticed.

Results showed that lumbar spine manipulation had a considerable effect on increases of range of motion in left and right rotations of the body. Sacroiliac manipulation, however had no noticeable effect on increases in range of motion. The combination of both manipulations yielded a greater increase in in lumbar extension, right rotation, and right sacroiliac joint flexion. 

Most interesting was the increases in kicking speed reported by all three groups when compared to the fourth group, who had no prior-decrease in range of motion before the study. Player’s perception also correlated well with the recorded results of kicking speed increase, indicating that results were perceptible all around.

This study reveals how manipulation of the lumbar spine, when combined with sacroiliac joint manipulation, can create a big difference in increased kicking speed for players with decreased ranges of motion. However, it is possible that these are short term effects that will just as quickly fade away when players cool off after practice. Whether they can bring the increased kicking speed to the field and retain it with a significant amount of consistency remains to be seen. A future study with a much larger sample size and extended period of performance observation can provide the answer to these questions. 

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