Cupping, Scraping, and Functional Dry Needling: How These Tools Can Help Decrease Your Pain And Improve Movement and Function.
All three of these tools are utilized in the clinic to help decrease pain, inflammation, and muscle tension in order to help our patients regain function and get back to the activities they love. Although these are great to use; they are not meant to be the end all be all. They are used in conjunction with hands on techniques to get our patients back to sport. Below we will discuss each one in detail and how they can be added to a plan of care.
Many of our patients have received cupping before from different practitioners. Each practitioner will utilize this technique differently. We at KinetikChain Denver use this to directly facilitate recovery one of the benefits is to decrease swelling and muscle tension. Cupping involved having cups placed on the skin with added suction. This is known to help with blood circulation, pain, inflammation, and relaxation. The ultimate goal is to loosen the muscles so we can graduate to a more active therapy session so they can start their return to activity. Some places add heat or use different cups or styles. While we believe these are a good tool to help aid in the recovery process, they alone will NOT heal an injury completely. Depending on the injury, many patients will still require other forms of manual (hands on) therapy and exercise. Cupping does not typically cause pain, however, some of our patients refer to the feeling as “interesting”.
This involves using a tool to scrape the skin to help improve circulation. This is an ancient Chinese technique that has been used for decades. Old practices involved deep scraping to disrupt the healing process in order to start it over again with patients that have been experiencing pain for long periods of time (chronic patients). Now studies are proving that you do not have to cause damage to the skin or pain to patients in order to help the healing process. We use scraping in the clinic to decrease muscle tension and relax the muscles. You can use short or long strokes with different types of scraping tools to increase blood flow. We use this method and any region of the body where we notice knots or tightness.
Functional Dry Needling:
This gets a lot of discussion in the clinic since a lot of our patients have been to acupuncture. They assume that the two are related. Some acupuncturists have certifications to dry needle but regular acupuncture and dry needling follow different guidelines. Dry needling uses the same needles as acupuncture but is used to penetrate the skin down to the muscle to elicit a “twitch response”. This allows the muscle to return to a normal state and release the trigger point. It is important to know the musculoskeletal system inside and out in order to determine the placement of the needle. Dry needling is not necessarily painful, however, the muscle can remain minimally (1/10) sore or achy for up to 24 hours. It is important to train the muscle appropriately after it is released to gain strength and control of the muscle.
While all three of these are used in our clinic, it is important to note that they individually cannot alone treat an injury. It is important to seek a practitioner who can provide you with a thorough examination and evaluation to determine the appropriate diagnosis. Then a plan of care is set between the PT and patient to ensure they reach their goals.
Hopefully this information has helped.
Without knowing precisely what is wrong and causing your pain it can be very difficult if not impossible to fix this by yourself, but once the cause is identified it is as simple as putting in the work to get rid of the pain so you can get back to being active again and doing what you need and love to do.
I think I speak for almost every avid golfer when I say that we all want to improve our scores! Did you know that it could be something as simple as hip mobility keeping you from that. We see many people in the clinic with either too much or too little hip mobility. This blog will discuss ways to test your hip mobility at home, how to improve it, and how to put that into your swing to gain yardage and money in your pocket from your buddies.
Wrist pain is something that causes many athletes to have to modify their workouts and if it gets bad enough stop working out all together. It's hard to know what to do about wrist pain. Read below for a background on why it is happening as well as learn some tips on what to do to reduce pain as well as how to fix it.
The Top 3 Reasons Your Swing Gives You Back Pain
Lower back pain is the number one complaint of golfer’s in terms of pain. It can keep you from shaving strokes off your game and potentially set you out a whole season. The good news is there is a reason for this back pain and there is a fix. This post will discuss the reasons as to how your swing can cause low back pain and how a few simple changes can provide relief.
We get it a lot in the clinic, “My knees kill me when I'm going up and down the stairs”. What could this possibly be from and how can it be fixed? In this blog we are going to discuss different types of knee pain, causes, signs/symptoms, and ways to get rid of this annoyance so stairs can stop being a pain. Aside from stairs this pain can start to spread throughout your daily activities. Knee pain can be the reason you are unable to run, ski, hike, compete in a local CrossFit competition, or even play with your kids or grandkids. There are many forms of knee pain both serious and more commonly not so serious. Getting some advice from a knee pain specialist can help you to start the path of learning and understanding of what to do. Depending on what the nature of the injury was you may be in for an easy road ahead or a slightly longer need for help. Getting an understanding on what the signs and symptoms of your pain are can help you/us to determine what is causing your pain and help determine the best ways to alleviate the pain. To help you understand the different types of injuries that can occur at the knee joint, let’s first discuss what the knee involves.
Hamstring Tightness: Is it the cause of your back pain?
Many of our patients come into the clinic with the complaint that they ALWAYS have tight hamstrings. It seems like no matter how much they stretch or foam roll, it never seems to make a difference. They attribute their tight hamstrings to their back stiffness and pain. Could it be that even though you have “tight” hamstrings, there might be another reason for your back pain. The key to determine the back pain is figure out why the hamstrings are constantly tight in the first place. There is actually a reason why our body (hamstrings) tighten up which can add more force on to the back and surrounding muscle groups.
So You Have an Injured Disc, Now What?
We treat several injuries in our clinic but one of the most common is back pain, and one of the most common causes of back pain is a herniated disc, which is sometimes called a bulging disc, and sometimes called a ruptured disc. Treatment for all of these is relatively straight forward. When hearing this diagnosis it may sound scary because many people start thinking of the activities they will miss out on and the long healing process. Many start getting anxious about surgery or the dreaded sciatica. Herniated discs can happen at any level in the spine but are most common in the neck and the lower back. It can cause pain, discomfort, and can keep you out of the activities you love to do. The good news is that surgery is usually not necessary. There are several ways in which we treat our patients that allow them to return to their daily activities without pain. This blog will dive into the symptoms of a disc injury, how long it takes to heal, what the healing process looks like, and how you can recover.
How to fix back pain is one of the most common things we get asked about. Back pain is one of the most common injuries we treat. Over 80% of the population will suffer with back pain in their lives. Most of us just push through pain, rely on medication, or put our trust in Youtube to fix the issue. The truth is, there are many things that can cause back pain, however, there are things you can do at home to help ease your lower back pain (or middle back pain or upper back pain as well). Many people ask us which exercise for lower back pain should I do? Or what exercises for lower back pain will help? When considering back pain exercises the trick can be finding the right ones that not only work for you, but also that you can do without causing further damage. If you are searching for lower back pain relief (or upper or middle back) this post will go over the best exercises to help decrease/prevent your issues and allow you to continue the activities you love without hesitation.
Neck pain is one of the most common symptoms we treat, but many of our patients are unaware of the causes and symptoms that it can stem from. For many of our patients, neck pain can be debilitating and cause headaches, burning/tingling down into the arms and fingers, and soreness/stiffness. This can make it difficult to pinpoint where the original source of pain is and what the underlying cause could be. Maybe you have had tension headaches, a pinched nerve in your neck, pain in the back of the head, or you want a migraine fix. If you want to learn more about your neck and/or headache pains from a neck pain specialist in this post we will discuss how to determine the cause of your signs and symptoms and how to prevent it and keep it away.
Hip pain treatment first starts with understanding the signs and symptoms of what could be going on and then coming up with a plan including hip pain exercises to get you back to your goals. As hip pain specialists we have seen more types of hip pain then you could imagine, but first and foremost before diving in to the pain and relief and hip pain exercises portion we must address what the hip consists of.
Getting injured can really set your exercise and fitness routine back a notch! And worst of all… it can be a total pain in the butt in more ways than one. Can you guess what we mean? If you’re reading this, you may have heard of piriformis syndrome before, or perhaps your just curious – either way, we’re here to tell you what it is, what causes it, and what you can do about it. That way, you’ll know why you’re in pain and you can “butt to the chase”, so to speak!
I am sure most of you have heard the expression “The bee’s knees”, but what happens when your knees are no longer working well and they are the cause of serious pain and discomfort? Do you have pain on the inside of the knee or outside knee pain? Knee pain can be the reason you are unable to run, ski, hike, compete in a local CrossFit competition, or even play with your kids or grandkids. There are many forms of knee pain both serious and more commonly not so serious. Maybe you want to know what knee strain treatment can consist of or maybe you want to know what to do for a torn meniscus. Getting some advice from a knee pain specialist can help you to start the path of learning and understanding of what to do. Depending on what the nature of the injury was you may be in for an easy road ahead or a slightly longer need for help. Getting an understanding on what the signs and symptoms of your pain are can help you/us to determine what is causing your pain and help determine the best ways to alleviate the pain. To help understand the different types of injuries that can occur at the knee joint, let’s first discuss what the knee involves.
Today’s blog is a special entry for all you runners out there. We know you love to run, and we also know you value fitness and health. Running has become, for you, a metaphor for life: determination, mobility, and freedom. And yet, for some of you reading our blog right now, this might not be the case anymore.
Most of us have probably experienced some type of shoulder issue over the years and
shoulder impingement is one of the most common shoulder issues that can cause you pain. If you have shoulder pain, stiffness, or weakness identifying whether you have shoulder impingement can be the first step in getting you back to what you love to do.
Is Your Achilles Heel Weighing You Down? Achilles tendon pain (achilles tendonitis or achilles tendonosis) has many people asking us what they can do and what treatments will help them. Below are some signs and symptoms of achilles tendonitis and treatment ideas for what you can do to get relief.
Who doesn’t love hiking? On the trail we are immersed in the open air, wildlife, beautiful, rugged terrain, fresh water streams, and… ankle injuries? Yes, you heard that right. Hiking often goes hand-in-hand with some fairly severe ankle twists, sprains, and even fractures or breaks! It’s not hard to guess why, mind you, because from loose rocks, to uneven footpaths, hiking poses a big threat when it comes to the wellness of your ankles. Don’t despair though, we’re not asking you to pack away your hiking gear and take to the treadmill instead. Rather, we’re here to chat to you about how ankle injuries during your hike can be prevented, and why being mindful of their probability and severity puts you in good stead to steer clear of them!
Did you know sitting more than doubles the pressure on the discs in your low back? Low back pain happens to everyone, but is known to be even more of a nuisance in those who work behind a desk. Not only has it been linked to increases of your risks for heart disease, diabetes, and stroke, but also prolonged sitting can even increase your current back pain...
There are really only two valuable things in life. I’m not saying that other things aren’t valuable to you, I’m just saying that two things matter more than others and will affect all of the other aspects of your life. What are those two things?
It is that time of the year again; kids are back out of school, the gym is filling up, the courts are being used, and track and field is back in full swing. Exercise abound, it’s tempting to imagine yourself as a professional gymnast, a basketball player, or the next Hussein Bolt. New seasons mean new opportunities, but while these challenging new goals and habits offer an air of excitement, many people don’t take the time to listen to their bodies as they undertake new adventures.
We know that for many of our patients running is a passion. The truth is, however, so many of those same patients visit us because of injuries related to their runs. Far from telling them to stop running, our main goal is to prevent debilitating knee/foot/ankle injuries BEFORE they happen, and to keep our patients as active as possible.
Rotator Cuff Injuries are common and in fact affect most people in their life. The pain can be both sharp and specific or dull and hard to pinpoint. Maybe you are wondering what the treatment for a torn rotator cuff is and/or maybe you want to know about some rotator cuff exercises which we discuss below. Rotator cuff pain and/or weakness can affect you with a variety of things from putting up dishes, playing with your kids, working out and everything in between. Please read below to find out the symptoms of rotator cuff injuries, what you can do to relieve your pain and/or weakness, as well as find out the most effective treatment for rotator cuff injuries...
Plantar fasciitis… to people outside of the medical world, the name itself gives very little away. But, while its title might be a mouthful, it's symptoms are certainly a lot more familiar: stabbing pains, and burning, aching, and dull discomfort throughout the bottom of the foot are but some of it’s well known trademarks. Many people suffer from plantar fasciitis on a daily basis, yet its causes and treatment might surprise you. If you’re one of the millions of people worldwide who struggle to overcome this affliction, keep reading – we’re here to tell you everything there is to know!
Neck and shoulder pain may be the most common ailment faced by most people these days. That having been said, it is often the most mysterious, too. Pinpointing the exact cause for shoulder or neck problems is particularly tricky, and the underlying cause of the pain may be due to many differing factors. Maybe you want to know what is causing those knots in your neck and shoulder and/or maybe you may want to know what are some reasons that could be causing your pain and stiffness. In this post, we take a look at not only what causes shoulder and neck pain, but also how we can prevent and heal that pain, right now...
What is hip pain?
This seems like an easy one, but what constitutes "the hip"? Go ahead and point to your hip - it's ok, I'll wait.
If you pointed to the side of your body where your back meets your leg, you're right. If you pointed to the back of your body, right below where people get those "butt dimples" you're also right. If you pointed to the front of your body, in the line of your groin, where your leg meets your abs, you're right again.
And guess what. Pain can be caused by all of those areas.
What can be done for those areas causing pain?
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