by Christina Bird Ward
Physical fitness through exercise is an important part of every health routine. Whether you choose yoga, strength or cardiovascular training, sports, or other indoor or outdoor exercise activity, acupuncture can help you improve your wellness and encourage a healthy lifestyle. Here are five ways that acupuncture can benefit athletes in particular:
1. More Energy: How many times have you planned on exercising, only to “skip today’s workout” because your day left you feeling drained? Acupuncture can help boost and maintain energy throughout the day, lessening the “afternoon crash” we often experience.
2. Better Sleep: Not only will better sleep give you more energy throughout the day, it also allows your body to properly repair itself during your slumbering hours. Insomniac patterns, including interrupted sleep and shortened sleep time, don’t allow your body to complete its restorative process. Acupuncture helps regulate your Autonomic Nervous System, allowing you to relax out of fight or flight mode. This will calm both your body and your mind, helping you fall asleep and stay asleep.
3. Muscle Relaxation: After physical exertion, our muscles can become tight, restricting proper body movement and alignment. Acupuncture needles connect with the muscle fibers which allows relaxation along the entire muscle itself, extending beyond the area immediately surrounding the inserted needle.
4. Improved Blood Flow: Using ultrasound color doppler imaging, researchers have shown that Acupuncture increases peripheral blood flow in the body. Better circulation allows your body to receive the nutrients it needs to heal and also benefits muscle relaxation.
5. Pain Relief: One of the biggest detractors to regular exercise is pain. Whether it’s back pain, headaches, osteoarthritis, or other acute or chronic injuries, pain can get in the way of your exercise routine. Acupuncture treatments can help alleviate these pains and allow you to get back on track with your exercise routine.
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Christina Bird Ward is an Acupuncturist in San Diego, CA. She believes that a healthful life begins with loving yourself completely, mind and body. Connect with Christina on Facebook at Christina Bird Acupuncture.