Optimize your Body’s Ability to Recover from Athletic Injuries

athletic injuries and acupuncture

Sports injuries and the body’s response

Acute sports injuries most often include strained muscles and sprained joints. Essentially an acute injury is any injury that occurs suddenly during activity. Muscles are quite frequently strained when they are overstretched, causing a tear to the muscle or tendon. Chronic sports injuries occur when the body’s natural resilience is compromised and weak points in the body break down in response to repetitive strain. In both cases, the body attempts to heal itself, with varying levels of success. The body’s healing response often includes painful swelling and inflammation that in many cases adds to the healing time. 

Acupuncture optimizes the body’s ability to heal itself

The importance of this cannot be stated enough. No matter the shape you are in, our bodies are incredibly resilient for preventing injury in the first place and incredibly adept at healing them once they happen. Unfortunately, the stresses that we put on our bodies often accumulate to become too much- and in this way they can use an extra layer of defense. Acupuncture is the natural force that facilitates the proper movement of energy through your body, allowing the body to heal and recover the way it should.

Acupuncture for athletes in Park Slope

We are specialists in using acupuncture for athletic injuries. Our acupuncture treatment is firmly rooted in Traditional Chinese Medicine and focuses on balancing the athlete’s energy pathways to provide optimal functioning at all points of the athletic process. If you are interested in using acupuncture for optimizing your athletic life, give our office in Park Slope a call to schedule an appointment today. 

Stretching from Bed

stretch in bed brooklyn park slope

Why bother to get out of bed?

If you are feeling extra lazy on your day off, you don’t have to get out of bed to still give your body some relief with a good stretch. If you are destined for bed on a rainy Sunday, remember that muscle tension will still accumulate; so make some moves from the mattress to keep them at back and keep on relaxing!

From bed, let the stress melt away and try a few simple stretches. 

…and of course, always remember to practice deep breathing, especially in bed. The extra influx of oxygen will help you relax further and treat your muscles at the same time. Here are stretches that target the back and hips- two regions that tend to accumulate the most tension during the regular course of life. 

  • Hamstring stretch: lay flat, and lift one leg up. Raise it as high and straight as possible while keeping your butt planted on the bed. Hold 30 seconds, then switch legs.
  • Knee to chest: lay flat. Bring one knee up to your chest, clasping the thigh with both hands. Hold 30 seconds, then repeat with opposite leg.
  • Spine twist: Lay flat, bring both knees up to your chest; cross them over and drop down to the right side of your body. Extend left arm the opposite direction and look over your left shoulder. Hold 30 seconds and repeat.

Relaxing, stretching and feeling better with chiropractic in Park Slope

The bed is a cornerstone of wellness. At Park Slope Chiropractic, we want to help you leave pain behind so that you can relax well all the time. If you are suffering from long-standing pain, give our office a call to schedule an appointment today. We can help you determine the root cause of your pain and set a course for treatment that involves chiropractic adjustment, stretching and strengthening that will keep your pain at bay. 

Are you Neglecting your Lower Back Muscles

lower back muscles

Even the most conscious gym-goers can neglect important muscles

Case in point: the muscles of the lower back which are often neglected during people’s pursuit of the “mirror muscles-” abs, biceps and pecs that make you look attractive but leave you short on stability. Building a great body means building balance, and the muscles of the lower body are essential for stability and spinal health. What’s the point of looking great or having a lot of muscle if the most crucial structures of your body can’t bear the load that this extra muscle brings on? Here are three new sets of muscle to focus on during your next gym session: 

  • Extensors: posterior muscles which allow for lifting and standing. Among them is the erector spinae which allows the spine to stand straight. 
  • Flexors: attach to the front of the spine and allow for flexing, bending and lifting. 
  • Obliques: attach to the side of the spine and allow for rotation. 

All these muscles work together to help you maintain proper posture, which is the first pitfall of not training them- it makes posture all the more difficult. From here, the problems compound, especially when you are asking your lower back to bear more strain as you scale up your ab routine. 

Neglecting your lower back no longer

There are many exercises and stretches which can be easily learned and quickly added into your routine to ensure that you are rounding out your exercise and contributing to spinal health. After all, these are the muscles that matter most for the longevity of your body. Chronic pain, postural problems and degradation of the spine can all be prevented by paying attention to the conditioning of the lower back muscles. To resolve pain in the lower back, establish good posture and restore spinal balance, give our office in Park Slope a call to schedule an appointment today.

Dr. Karen Thomas, D.C. 

Finding Success with Goal-Setting


Goal-setting helps you figure out where to start

Spring, the season of renewal, is right around the corner and there is no better time than spring to make powerful changes in your fitness routine. While it is more common to make fitness resolutions at New Years, we think it makes more sense to start when the weather is warming and the colors are getting brighter- there just seems to be more energy to tap into. For people looking to shed their winter skin and join in the movement of spring, it can help to focus on realistic goal-setting. Start by finding yourself on the fitness spectrum, with no shame: are you a no-fitness-fanatic, a dedicated gymrat, or something in-between. Before you set any goals, it is important to be honest with yourself and know just where you stand. 

A checklist for success in goal-setting

  1. Choose an appropriate time frame
  2. Start with just one goal
  3. Write it down
  4. Schedule the time

Make goal-setting easier with our help at Community Chiropractic & Acupuncture

The feeling of fully achieving a goal can be a powerful incentive to continue with more ambitious goal-setting in the future. Let’s leave the winter in the rear view mirror and reap the benefits of the season to get our bodies feeling their healthiest. If you need help addressing long-standing limitations such as muscle pain or problems stemming from spinal conditions, we are your resource! At our office in Park Slope, we will help detect the true cause of your dsyfunction and create a plan for healing that will allow you to focus on successful goal-setting. Give our office a call to schedule an appointment today!

Dr. Karen Thomas, D.C.

Acupuncture for Fitness (Part 2)

relaxation acupuncture

The benefits of acupuncture seem to be almost as far-reaching as the time it has endured as a healing procedure. For fitness fanatics, acupuncture has a wealth of benefits. By boosting your psychological well-being, you will perform better in the gym. After just one session, people experience reduced stress and anxiety, catharsis and general sense of well-being. In fact, the more you work out the more you can get out of acupuncture.  Here are some of the other benefits:

  • Muscle and joint injury rehabilitation: re-oxygenating tissues, reducing inflammation.
  • Improved stamina: improving circulation generally means you will see a boost in your energy at the gym.
  • Weight loss: curbing hunger, improving digestive efficiency and allowing the body to burn more fat.
  • Muscle relaxation: provides a way for your muscles to recover and grow in the wake of exertion.

Acupuncture is an integral piece of our holistic approach to health at Community Chiropractic & Acupuncture of Park Slope. No one piece will be the magic ingredient by itself; instead, we would like to put all of our modalities at your disposal as part of a healthy lifestyle. No matter what your affliction or idea for self-improvement, we have tools to help. Call our office in Park Slope at (718) 398-3100

Dr. Karen Thomas, D.C., L.Ac. 

Acupuncture for Fitness

Acu for fitness

Muscle and joint pain is a regular side-occurrence of athletic performance. This pain could begin as a byproduct of aging, derive from a genetic inheritance or result from a direct injury; no athlete wants to be sidelined by a limited muscle or joint. Acupuncture is a direct and natural method that gets to the root of the injury: thin needles are strategically entered along anatomical pathways of the body, creating micro-wounds that the body is quick to heal. In the process, the body focuses on healing the surrounding area by reducing inflammation and re-oxygenating the tissue. The endorphins that are naturally released help control pain and regulate the nervous system.

At Community Chiropractic & Acupuncture, we know that the body relies on a balance between exertion and rest to grow effectively. A key pathway to injury is by over exerting yourself without the proper rest or nutrition. If you have overdone yourself, acupuncture is a great therapy for speeding the recovery of torn muscles or worn down joints. The body’s natural healing ability is boosted by acupuncture needling because it promotes circulation and blood flow.

For athletes of all ages looking to maximize their physical potential, acupuncture offers an advantage that is too good to ignore. If you are interested in finding out more about the potential of acupuncture for your athletic routine, call our office in Park Slope at (718) 398-3100 to schedule an appointment today.

Dr. Karen Thomas, D.C. 

Fitness Planning

Fitness planning

At Community Chiropractic & Acupuncture, we practice holistic care that benefits you for an entire lifetime. Because our practice focuses on the nervous system and the biomechanics of the human body, our treatment has wide-reaching implications in overall health.

Here is a table that lists common patient goals along with lifestyle considerations that directly impact this goal. 

Your Goal Your lifestyle
Pain relief Posture, repetitive stress or direct trauma, degenerative injuries, workplace ergonomics
Healthy aging Weight, mobility, healthy joints, level of activity, stiff joints
Improved range of motion Stretching, posture, workplace ergonomics
Strengthening, muscle building and athletic performance

Weight lifting, nutrition, overtraining, lung mechanics

Weight loss Exercise, nutrition
Something else All of the above

Chiropractic and acupuncture are powerful forms of treatment that can help you achieve any personal health goal that you have set. But we cannot begin to create a personal fitness plan until we have conversed regarding your specific history and your thoughts regarding the outcome of a fitness plan. Along with all of the lifestyle considerations above comes a good dose of awareness: this is the first ingredient of change.

Call our office in Park Slope at (718) 398-3100 to schedule an appointment and begin creating a plan for a future you, full of health.

Dr. Karen Thomas, D.C., L.Ac.