The Benefits of Osteopathy in Sports Injury Rehabilitation

Posted In: Osteopathy, Sports Injuries

You love playing sports and living an active lifestyle. But when you suffer a sports injury, it will likely prevent you from being active until you’ve fully healed.  You can speed up recovery time with rest and osteopathic treatments. Osteopathy can often be used in addition to other therapies or surgeries you may require. In fact, Osteopathy treats more than you think!

Keep reading to learn more about how osteopathic treatments can support your healing and recovery from sports injuries. 

What is Osteopathy?

Osteopathic practitioners treat pain and dysfunction related to your muscles, bones, tendons, ligaments, nerves, connective tissue, and internal organs. They provide osteopathic manipulative treatment (OMT) to diagnose and treat your injuries. These treatments include various techniques using their hands to gently manipulate your joints and tissues to restore your full range of motion. In addition to being used in post-injury healing, osteopathy can also help you prevent injuries in the first place. 

Treatment isn’t focused on only providing symptom relief but on a more holistic view and seeking the sources of the pain or injury to optimize long-term healing and sports injury rehabilitation. 

What sports injuries can Osteopathy treat?

Sports injuries can happen from a variety of causes, including over-exertion, overestimating your physical ability, and unpredictable accidents. Not getting enough recovery time and not stretching or warming up can also result in injuries. 

Specific sports-related injuries an Osteopath can help include:

  • Shin splints
  • Back or neck pain
  • Rotator cuff injury
  • Ligament injury
  • Sprains
  • Knee or ankle injuries
  • Cartilage tears
  • Hip strains
  • Hip and pelvis injury
  • Overuse injuries
  • …and more

How does Osteopathy support sports injury rehabilitation?

Many sports injuries are related to the bodily systems that Osteopathy specializes in treating (muscles, bones, tendons, ligaments, nerves, connective tissue). Osteopathic treatments focus on rehabilitating these body parts so you can return to regular function and play your sport or be active again. 

While every injury and individual is unique, many sports injury rehabilitation Osteopathic treatment plans may include:

  • Gentle manipulation of your joints. This helps relieve pain and restore your normal range of motion and movement. 
  • Mobilization is where your osteopath will gently stretch or move the area of tightness to help release the tissue tension. It’s done through specific pressure points and repetitions. 
  • Soft tissue techniques can also help reduce tension and restore muscle tone after a sports injury. Commonly used soft tissue techniques include stretching, myofascial massage, and trigger point therapy (deep tissue massage).

Treatments like these greatly benefit your whole-body health following a sports injury. They can aid in increasing blood flow to the injured area and decrease swelling. Some patients also report lower dependence on other pain medication and reduced stress and anxiety from the calming nature of some osteopathic techniques. 

Osteopathy aims to help you return to physical activity and sports as quickly and safely as possible. 

When can I exercise or play sports again?

After sustaining any injury, it’s always important to follow the advice of your healthcare practitioners before you return to being physically active again. Some injuries could require restraining from sports or physical activity for a few weeks or longer for more severe injuries.

If you are seeing more than one practitioner, it’s best to get sign-off from all (this includes any general practitioners, surgeons, osteopaths, and physical therapists). 

To support faster healing and overall health, your Osteopath may also recommend: 

  • Rest: rest the affected area and your body as a whole to help divert extra energy towards healing
  • Staying Hydrated: adequate water intake can help flush out toxins and ensure the proper flow of bodily fluids for healing and general health. 
  • Eating healthy: eating a diet rich in proteins, fruits, and vegetables helps your body stay strong, providing much-needed nutrients to support your physical healing journey. Your Osteopath should also provide easy-to-follow home care instructions and examples of any safe exercises or movements you can perform between sessions.

Can Osteopathy help prevent sports injuries?

Yes. General health and injury prevention are huge benefits of osteopathy. If you are active on a sports team either recreationally or professionally, regular visits to your osteopathic doctor can help you:

  • Ensure your musculoskeletal system is functioning optimally
  • Maintain your safe, full range of motion in your joints
  • Detect potential for injury early so you can get treatment early or prevent reoccurrence
  • Support optimal blood flow
  • Prepare your body to return to full function faster after an injury.

Where to go in Vancouver for Osteopathy for sports injury?

Thuja Wellness can support all your sports injury rehabilitation needs in Vancouver. I’m here for you whether you’re looking for preventative healthcare to ensure your body is strong and functioning optimally or need help healing from a sports injury. 

I can also refer you to complementary natural therapists if you need additional healing support that I can’t provide through Osteopathy alone. I have trusted referral connections for local General Practitioners, Counsellors, Naturopaths, Acupuncturists, Physiotherapists, Exercise Physiologists, and Massage Therapists.

Let me help you return to your sports and physical activities as quickly as possible. Book a sports injury rehabilitation assessment today.