The Chiropractor's Guide to Pain-Free Winter Sports
By Krista Elliott
Well, it's almost February and winter is thoroughly here. While it might be tempting to hibernate inside with a blanket and a cup of tea, you really DO need some fresh air and exercise at some point between now and April. And when it comes to fresh air and exercise, winter sports deliver it in spades.
You might enjoy the serenity of cross-country skiing or snowshoeing through the fields and the woods, listening to the chickadees calling amongst themselves. Or perhaps a family skate or toboggan is your favorite way to spend time outdoors while bonding with the kids. Or, you might prefer something with a bit more of an adrenaline rush, like the heart-racing swoosh of downhill skiing or the skate-your-guts-out pace of ice hockey.
Whatever your preference, there are certain precautions that you really should take when it comes to protecting your back and joints so that you can enjoy a pain-free winter.
Winter Sports and Your Joints
If your sport of choice takes place on the ice (hockey or ice-skating), protective pads on your elbows and knees keep these joints cushioned when you fall. Speaking of falling: It's going to happen. It's just a question of when. So don't be too proud to take a few skating lessons so that you learn how to fall properly and avoid major injuries.
Heading to the slopes with your skis or snowboard? Again, lessons will help you learn to fall safely with minimal joint damage. As well, take it slowly. If this is your first time skiing, now is not the time to try out a black diamond run. Make sure that your skill level is up for the run you're selecting, and watch where you're going so that you don't collide into another person (or a tree, which would be really bad).
Even more sedate sports like cross-country skiing and snowshoeing can be hard on your back and joints. Sturdy poles help you keep your balance. Make sure to warm up your muscles before you head out, and if this is your first time at it in awhile (or ever), keep your jaunts short. These sports may be low-impact, but they're a serious workout, and you probably do want to be able to move the next day.
First and foremost, however, a visit to the chiropractors at The Joint Chiropractic is in order. Our professional chiropractors can assess your spine and joints to ensure that there are no subluxations or other issues that could interfere with your activities. And regular chiropractic treatment from The Joint can help improve your balance, coordination, and all-over well-being, making your outdoor workout a true pleasure.
So come and warm up at The Joint today! We might not have hot chocolate, but when it comes to your back and joints, we're all about providing comfort.
To learn more about your health and wellness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic.