Chiropractic and the Amusement Park: Ride that Coaster All You Want
By Sara Butler
If your summer plans include a trip to your local amusement park to defy gravity on the wings of a steel beast, then it’s a good idea to understand, no matter who you are, how chiropractic can help you celebrate to the fullest the joy and excitement of the roller coaster.
Millions of people each year enjoy all that amusement parks offer, including thrilling coasters. Some people travel the world in search of the best coaster in the land or make it the centerpiece of their vacations to different destinations. Riding roller coasters is a popular activity for people both young and old.
If you’re a thrill seeker, you may be wondering how to best prepare your body to handle the force of gravity of your favorite coaster in celebration of National Roller Coaster Day on August 16. The chiropractors at The Joint Chiropractic are here to answer all your chiropractic coaster questions to help you prepare for the big day -- or the big trip.
Benefits of Chiropractic Care
Chiropractic care and the chiropractic adjustments performed by chiropractors have many benefits, especially for those subjecting their bodies to the forces associated with roller coasters. Of course, you don’t have to be an enthusiast to benefit from chiropractic treatment.
Some of the benefits of chiropractic care for everyone include the following:
Improved physical performance - There’s a reason why many professional athletes seek out chiropractic care. The spinal manipulations performed by chiropractors are a natural way to help your muscles recover from activity, reduce discomfort from soft tissue injury, increase range of motion, and support your body by allowing it to do what it was meant to do -- heal itself.
Treat back and neck pain - Back and neck pain are conditions suffered by many people and can be made worse by amusement park rides. The chiropractors at The Joint can help to restore the range of motion in your spine and remove any joint dysfunctions interrupting the function of your central nervous system. This allows you to heal naturally.
Improved joint health - Your joints do a lot of work each day. Overuse of your joints, like the 17 miles you log while walking around the Magic Kingdom, can wreak havoc. Chiropractors help to restore joint health with hands-on treatments and stretching techniques to help your joints work as they were made to.
More energy - Those who love amusement parks also know how exhausting they can be, but everyday life can feel just as exhausting. That’s why many people turn to chiropractic care for help. When our physical pain and discomfort are alleviated and you can get more restful sleep at night, then your energy can increase too.
If you’re curious about the benefits of chiropractic for you, then talk to the chiropractors at The Joint.
America’s Best Amusement Park Rides
The best amusement park rides in America are subjective. Yet many people spend time visiting and rating rides to help others understand the best rides to duplicate the feeling of your soul leaving your body.
Some of the most highly rated roller coasters in the United States include:
- Iron Gwazi at Busch Gardens in Tampa, Florida
- Steel Vengeance at Cedar Point in Sandusky, Ohio
- The Voyage at Holiday World in Santa Claus, Indiana
- Velocicoaster at Universal Islands of Adventure in Orlando, Florida
- Pantheon at Busch Gardens in Williamsburg, Virginia
- Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind at EPCOT Center in Orlando, Florida
- Emperor at SeaWorld in San Diego, California
- Kingda Ka at Six Flags Great Adventure in New Jersey
- Mako at SeaWorld in Orlando, Florida
This is not an exhaustive list, but if you’re a thrill seeker -- whether you fancy a wooden roller coaster or a sleek steel one -- these are great roller coasters to ride.
What Impact Does a Roller Coaster Have on the Spine?
The rides you find at amusement parks, including roller coasters, can cause physical problems for those who ride them, including injuries to the spine. When you think about what a person experiences on a roller coaster, then how they wreak havoc makes a lot of sense.
Roller coasters suddenly jerk the rider from side to side. They speed up quickly and slow down quickly, too, which puts a lot of stress and strain on the neck and lower back. All these movements may lead to pain, as well as trauma to soft tissue, ligaments, and muscles.
If you have a history of back or neck pain, the twists and turns of a roller coaster can put a lot of pressure on the discs in the back that sit between the bones of the spine, which can lead to herniated discs in the back and neck. Anyone who suffers from arthritis pain can also find their condition aggravated by roller coasters, and muscle spasms are also common.
The bottom line is this: Roller coasters put a lot of force on your body that can lead to discomfort and even injury. Your best bet is to make sure your body is in the best shape before you ride. Luckily, the chiropractor is here to help with that, and you can find The Joint in almost a thousand locations nationwide.
How to Safely Ride Roller Coasters
To help prevent injury on a roller coaster, there are some important pieces of advice to remember before you get in for the ride of your life.
Read the warning signs and follow them - Roller coasters have signs that warn potential riders of conditions that can be aggravated by the coaster, such as back or neck conditions or heart problems. Read the signs and heed the warnings!
Stretch it out - Between rides, stretch your legs, arms, neck, and back regularly. This is great advice for anyone, not just roller coaster lovers. But stretching between rides can also help you to loosen muscles and reduce the chances of muscle spasms.
Stay hydrated - Most of the time, amusement park visits will be during very hot weather. Don’t forget to stay hydrated while visiting; it will help you to stay healthy.
Try out the seat - Many roller coasters have ride vehicles you can try out before you get in line. This allows you to see if you can be comfortable in the ride vehicle.
Brace yourself - Rides have bars you can hold onto to brace yourself through all the twists and turns. Use them so your body doesn’t get thrown around quite so much.
Roller coasters are a lot of fun, but back and neck pain are not. If you’ve never visited the chiropractor before embarking on your previous roller coaster journeys, that’s OK. It’s never too late! Going beforehand may go a long way toward preventing you from going afterward -- and that will be much worse.
The information, including but not limited to, text, graphics, images and other material contained on this page are for informational purposes only. The purpose of this post is to promote broad consumer understanding and knowledge of various health topics, including but not limited to the benefits of chiropractic care, exercise and nutrition. It is not intended to provide or be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your chiropractor, physician or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment and before undertaking a new health care regimen, and never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this page.