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No Pain, No Gain?

London Marathon 2019. Sorry about the shoddy picture it is hard to capture them!

Yesterday was, as always, an incredible witness to human achievement. The London Marathon is such an inspiring and humbling event.

My partner did it in 2 hours 39 minutes. Looking at him today though makes me wish I could do some acupuncture on him.

I won't lie...the last time I ran was in the 100 metre final in Year 6 at school. So, I'm thankful I don't suffer from sports injuries. 

But research shows that acupuncture can help with sports injuries and pain.

Full details can be found on the British Acupuncture Council website but they highlight that acupuncture can help with:

  1. treatments that were effective in decreasing pain and improving function in patients with patellofemoral pain syndrome (runners knee) were acupuncture, quadriceps strengthening, and the use of a resistive brace (Bizzini 2003)

  2. acupuncture reduced pain in patients with plantar fasciitis (Zhang 2001)

  3. electroacupuncture had better therapeutic effects than medication, both in the short and long term, in patients with acute lumbar strain (Yao-chi 2007)

  4. acupuncture plus warmed needle relieved the pain of chondromalacia patella (inflammation of the underside of the patella and softening of the cartilage) (Qui 2006)

  5. acupuncture reduced NSAID intake and relieved pain in patients with shin splints (Callison 2002)

  6. acupuncture was effective for soft tissue disease (Yuan 1989).

  7. stimulating nerves located in muscles and other tissues, which leads to release of endorphins and other neurohumoral factors and changes the processing of pain in the brain and spinal cord (Pomeranz 1987, Han 2004, Zhao 2008, Zhou 2008, Lee 2009, Cheng 2009)

  8. delivering analgesia (pain relief) via alpha-adrenoceptor mechanisms (Koo 2008)

  9. increasing the release of adenosine, which has antinociceptive (sensation of pain) properties (Goldman 2010)

  10. modulating the limbic-paralimbic-neocortical network (Hui 2009)

  11. reducing inflammation, by promoting release of vascular and immunomodulatory factors (Kavoussi 2007, Zijlstra 2003)

  12. improving muscle stiffness and joint mobility by increasing local microcirculation which aids dispersal of swelling (Komori 2009)

AcuPro Academy, if you subscribe to her mailing list, has just sent out an excellent email with details on how to treat acute sports injuries with acupuncture. It is a fantastic insight to my future self and I have saved it alongside A LOT of other things acupuncture related.

And if all this hasn't persuaded you that acupuncture or Chinese Medicine can help you with your sports injuries then did you know that for the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing there is going to be a TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) experience centre?


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