Alternative Medicine That Works for Regular Folks





Acupuncture for Physical Fitness and Sports
By Carrie Elizabeth Sklar, Pacific College Media

What athlete hasn't gotten injured? No matter how physically fit or well-cared for an athlete is, it is simply a fact of life that injuries happen. But now that more and more athletes are turning to acupuncture, these injuries are becoming more preventable.

Matt Callison, a licensed acupuncturist and faculty member of Pacific College of Oriental Medicine specializing in sports medicine, has traveled with the Minnesota Vikings during the 2001 playoffs and now treats many of the San Diego Chargers players. "There is much that acupuncture can do for sports injuries, especially combined with Western therapy," Callison said. "Acupuncture can quickly relieve pain and inflammation, and move blood stagnation away from the injury. This, in turn, creates a more efficient healing environment."

Callison adds, "There are differences between East and West as far as treating and managing an acute injury. In the East, the focus is on both the athlete and the injury while, in the West, it is just the injury segment. Traditional Chinese medicine fills in the gaps by addressing the individual in order to maximize their healing potential. In the rehabilitation phase, the protocol is further modified to retrain the athlete for their particular sport."

Because acupuncture can both heal and help prevent future injuries, athletes are less likely to suffer serious injuries by incorporating it into their sports therapy. According to Marcellus Wiley, a defensive end for the San Diego Chargers, acupuncture has been an integral part of his athletic conditioning.

"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."

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