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Why the Karate Kid Needed a Chiropractor

By Krista Elliott

People who are serious about martial arts tend to embrace it as a lifestyle and a state of mind, as opposed to "just" an exercise. (They're kind of like Crossfitters that way, except that they don't constantly talk about it.)

While martial arts can be a fantastic way to improve your focus, discipline, and concentration, practicing them is also a great way to get and stay fit. The term "martial arts" can refer to kickboxing, karate, krav maga, judo, jujitsu, tae kwon do, and any other form of combat that requires controlled, practiced movements and years of study. Mixed martial arts is a fighting style comprised of elements and techniques taken from any combination of those sports.

Partaking in martial arts requires daily practice, commitment, and focus in order to discipline the body and mind. In order to perfect the required moves, however, you need extensive training. And practicing a move over and over (and over) again? It involves repetitive movements of the muscles, joints, spine, and ligaments, which can lead to strains and subluxations. As well, most martial arts require hitting, kicking, grappling, or throwing, which can lead to injuries if you push yourself too hard. 

Mr. Miyagi Never Warned Us About This

Whether it's from overuse strain or injuries sustained while competing, some of the most common injuries associated with martial arts are as follows:

  • Lower back pain, either from muscle strains, pinched nerves, or spinal misalignments

  • Herniated discs

  • Sprains

  • Dislocations

  • Muscle Strains, such as pulled groin muscles from forceful kicking

  • Tendonitis

  • Neck and jaw pain

Maybe Daniel-San Just Needed a Chiropractor?

Unless you want to coordinate your black belt to your hospital gown, it's best to take some sensible precautions while practicing or competing in martial arts.

First of all, proper form is essential, both for the effectiveness of your moves and the well-being of your body. Be sure to only learn with a reputable, experienced instructor who emphasizes good form and respect for the body's limitations.

As well, consistency is key. Keeping up your stretching and strengthening routine throughout the week will help keep you strong and flexible for your lesson or meet. People who do no exercise during the week and then engage in intense activity are at much greater risk for strain and injury. Routine chiropractic care, like the expert care you get at The Joint Chiropractic, can help keep you aligned and well-balanced, further reducing your risk for injury and helping you get the most out of your lesson. 

And if you do get injured? First, make sure to seek medical attention to make sure your injury does not require emergency care (such as with a fracture or a head injury). If you're given the all-clear for bodywork, then pop by any of 360-plus nationwide locations of The Joint Chiropractic, where our chiropractic doctors will perform targeted and gentle adjustments that can help reduce inflammation and pain, and help speed your healing, getting you back on your feet that much earlier. 

So make time in your busy schedule of waxing on and waxing off, and come by The Joint today!

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