Runners rejoice: how dry needling can help you

Dry needling in physical therapy setting

It must be your lucky day because we have another guest post from the Clinic Director of our McLean location, Dr. Kelly Henry!

Do you have tight muscles or knots that won’t go away? Maybe you have even gone to physical therapy elsewhere but made minimal progress!

If you are anything like me, you have tried massage, foam rolling, stretching, and whatever else you can think of, but they keep returning.

Dry needling could be the solution you are looking for. Running is a very linear and repetitive sport, which increases the risk of developing muscle tightness and symptoms related to overuse. Many runners have experienced relief of chronic quad, calf, hamstring or hip flexor tightness from dry needling.

I recently helped a runner during a physical therapy session at our McLean facility that was experiencing consistent calf pain. It was most intense in the middle of his runs and forced him to reduce his overall mileage. He did everything that he could to fix it. He spent a lot of time warming up before runs, cooling down after runs, and he stretched constantly. But nothing helped.

His first physical therapy session included dry needling for his calf muscles, range of motion drills, and a few adjustments to his running technique, and the chronic calf pain went away!

Dry needling works by targeting a muscle limiting range of motion or causing pain. Your physical therapist will identify which muscle is causing the problem, identify “trigger points” in the muscle, and create a “twitch response” with the needle. A twitch response is a quick contraction that helps the muscle relax. People often feel better just a few moments after treatment! Here are some of the things that my runners have noticed after dry needling:

  • Less tightness during and after runs
  • Improvement in muscle soreness
  • Faster recovery from nagging injuries
  • Improved range of motion and muscle activation during cross training

Dry needling is best used with other forms of physical therapy and rehabilitation, including exercise and neuromuscular conditioning.

If you are a runner that is struggling with chronic injuries or tightness or is looking to optimize your recovery, contact us for a dry needling session in our McLean facility today.

Speaking of serious runners…we have 2 slots still available for a FREE Resilient Runner Injury screen at our McLean facility. If you want to run injury-free for years to come, don’t miss this!

This screen involves the use of our exciting, new Forcedeck technology. Learn more about that here!

Contact us for more information and to sign up.

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