Acupuncture Scores Points
The sports world was skeptical when New York Knicks shooting guard Allan Houston announced that he was receiving sports acupuncture treatments for an ankle injury (a common sports injury ).
Then he started playing better, and doubt turned into a mixture of surprise and curiosity.
However, according to Matt Callison, a faculty member at Pacific College of Oriental Medicine and licensed acupuncturist in San Diego , Calif. , traditional Chinese medicine has been an extremely helpful and growing trend in athletics for quite a while. San Francisco 49ers Steve Young and Jerry Rice have been treated with sports acupuncture , and Canadian speed skater Kevin Overland received sports acupuncture to help him earn a bronze medal in the 1998 Olympics.
As a sports acupuncturist, Callison has been treating athletes for 11 years. Three of those years were spent with the Minnesota Vikings during their playoff run, and he now treats many of the San Diego Chargers.
“It all started with one guy – Martin Bayless – and then he ended up referring some more players, and it has snowballed from there,” Callison explained.
Because of these referrals and his affiliation with AcuSport Health Center in San Diego , Callison said that about half of his current patients are involved in professional sports.
Started in 2000, AcuSport was created to offer a unique blend of Eastern and Western approaches to orthopedic and internal medicine. By integrating multiple healing techniques, AcuSport is one of the first holistic medical facilities of its kind.
Callison also works in conjunction with student interns from Pacific College of Oriental Medicine to treat athletes from the University of California San Diego (UCSD). At UCSD’s RIMAC Arena athletes receive sports acupuncture treatments in addition to care from athletic trainers and physical therapists. Pacific College interns use acupuncture to help rehabilitate post-operative injuries, sports injuries and athletic performance by increasing range of motion, muscle strength and tissue healing potential. This partnership with UCSD and Pacific College of Oriental Medicine allows Callison to share his unique combination of Sports Medicine , Chinese Medicine and Kinesiology with students and athletes alike.
Callison reported that the most common injuries he treats athletes for are muscle contusions and tendinitis, as well as over-use injuries involving the lower back, shoulder, knee and ankle, all examples of common sports injury areas. These injuries typically require two sports acupuncture treatments a week, with a varied recovery time depending on the injury .
Callison said that he treats “any and all injuries” with the same philosophy: by combining traditional Chinese medicine and sports medicine . The result is a unique blend of sports acupuncture and exercises that Callison said has a quick rehabilitation time.
Marcellus Wiley, a defensive end for the San Diego Chargers, is one patient who noticed how quickly he felt the benefit of acupuncture .
“I responded quickly and favorably to the treatment,” Wiley said. “It was refreshing to receive therapy that allowed me to sustain my health for the duration of a season and physically grueling career.”
According to Callison, both Oriental medicine and sports medicine techniques focus on proprioception, which he defines as the muscles’ awareness communicating to the central nervous system. According to Callison, injury can disrupt this communication, thus hindering balance.
” Acupuncture is one of the quickest ways to restore muscle balance,” Callison said. “When acupuncture is used at specific sites, the muscle spindles are reset, and then that balance is reawakened.”
Baltimore Ravens safety Will Demps regards sports acupuncture as a definite asset to his training.
“In my extensive off-season workouts, I have noticed a difference in my balance and agility since receiving treatments at AcuSport Health Center ,” Demps said. “I feel my muscles have been ‘turned on’ and are firing on all cylinders.”……
An article from Pacificcollege.edu