Sports Dry Needling for Sports Injuries

Sports dry needling, a new treatment that is based on Western medicine, involves inserting thin needles in the body at specific trigger points. The needles are inserted at trigger points or tender areas of muscle or tendon. This triggers a response that releases tension and restores normal function. Dry needling differs from traditional acupuncture in that it involves more active techniques, which involve multiple fenestrations to an area of the body. It applies Western medicine concepts in anatomy, physiology, and medicine, whereas traditional acupuncture uses needles left in place.

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Trigger points could provide additional therapeutic benefits, including:

  • Reduce muscular stiffness and pain
  • Improve flexibility
  • Increase motion range
  • Improving life quality

Dry needling may be used for sports injuries to reduce pain, inflammation, blood circulation, anxiety, and tight muscles.

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What is it used for?

Sports Dry needling can also be used to treat tendinopathies, muscle strains, and chronic pain. Each treatment is customized to your needs. However, you can use it alongside the following common methods:

  • Channel palpation
    Channel palpation, a hands-on technique, focuses on collecting diagnostic information by carefully palpitating the distal channels (areas other than the area of the injury). It helps to pinpoint the exact location of pain or injury, refine trigger point selection, and improve clinical results.
  • Soft tissue release
    Soft tissue release therapy, also known as “pin and stretch”, is a manual treatment that uses hands-on techniques to restore muscle flexibility. This therapy is especially useful for muscles that become tightened or shortened due to overuse (e.g. weightlifting). This technique uses precise pressure, active or passive stretching, and dry needling to reduce discomfort.
  • Cupping
    Cupping involves applying silicone or glass cups to the affected areas using suction. The cups can then be pushed across the tissue to loosen fascial adhesions. Facial adhesions are caused by the fascia (connective tissue), and the underlying muscle tissue getting stuck together. This can cause muscle stiffness, pain, soreness, restricted movement, and decreased flexibility and range of motion. Clinical trials involving cupping on the lower back showed a significant reduction in pain after a randomized controlled trial.
  • Stretching exercises
    Stretching exercises can be used to restore the full range of motion after dry needling has helped loosen tight muscles. Multiple stretches may be needed for each part of the body. This includes both the injured muscles and those that move in opposite directions.

We can help you quickly recover from sports injuries, such as strains or sprains. Our sports medicine specialists are skilled in dry needling as well as ultrasound-guided and joint injections. They also provide physical therapy prescriptions, joint, and fracture care, and casting. Contact us to make an appointment.

>>> Acupuncture vs. Physical Therapy Dry Needling: Which One Is Right For You?

Oakland, CA Pain Management Clinic

Dr. Ben Bagge

Pro+Kinetix Physical Therapy & Performance

"We Help Active Adults & Athletes Get Back To Workouts and Sports They Enjoy without surgery, stopping activities they love, or relying on pain medicine."
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