8 Reasons Every Athlete Should Use Acupuncture | Paddington Clinic, Acupuncture Brisbane & Natural TherapiesPaddington Clinic

8 Reasons Every Athlete Should Use Acupuncture

25 Feb, 2015 - Acupuncture, Blog

Mathew Hayden does it. So does tennis superstar Serena Williams. Olympic high-jumper Amy Acuff likes it so much that she learned how to practice it herself. New York City Ballet dancers swear by it. Acupuncture is a go-to therapy for many of the world’s leading athletes—but you don’t have to be a pro to experience the benefits of acupuncture. Whether you’re a die-hard marathoner, devoted yogi, occasional gym goer or weekend warrior, acupuncture can enhance your performance by fortifying your overall health.


Acupuncture is a highly effective, time-tested treatment for sports injuries because it resolves pain, accelerates healing and increases range of motion. Acupuncture achieves this by decreasing inflammation, swelling and bruising; relaxing muscles and relieving spasms; lowering the body’s pain response and improving circulation.

Recent clinical studies show that acupuncture provides true pain relief for a range of conditions, including chronic back, neck and shoulder pain. Additionally, the World Health Organization recognizes acupuncture as a safe and effective treatment for injuries, orthopedic conditions, and acute and chronic pain.

So, acupuncture works for pain, which is great news for athletes whose bodies suffer a lot of wear and tear. But, and this is something most people are surprised to learn, acupuncture for athletes is actually most beneficial while they’re training, before an injury surfaces.

This is because acupuncture can naturally boosts athletes’ energy levels, aid in post-workout recovery, and improve overall performance levels. Athletes who incorporate acupuncture as part of their regular training regimens notice better results and fewer injuries, and they seem to enjoy themselves more.

Here are 8 reasons every athlete should use acupuncture.

1. Improves blood flow

8 Reasons Every Athlete Should Use Acupuncture

Lack of a constant supply of nutrient-rich blood to various parts of the body such as muscles can compromise your performance in the field. Studies show that acupuncture triggers production of nitric oxide in the body that causes the blood vessels to relax and widen. Increase in size of blood vessels helps to facilitate smooth flow of blood from the heart to all other body organs before, during and even after the tournament or training session.

2. Eases stress and anxiety

Nervous for that big race? Worried your serve isn’t up to par? Acupuncture’s balancing effect is beneficial for the mind, helping to lower stress and anxiety. Becoming more focused and relaxed will improve your athletic performance across the board.

3. Promotes muscle relaxation

acupunctureAthletes trains for hundreds of hours before tournaments in a bid to keep their bodies fit and ready to compete effectively in sports. The physical exercises that they take part in can negatively affect their muscles leading soreness and pain. Fortunately, acupuncture can evenly relax muscles, reduce inflammation and promote optimal flow of blood throughout the body.

4. Strengthens the immune system

Studies have shown that acupuncture enhances immune-cell function in the body. Specifically, it helps the brain increase the body’s level of T-cells, the cells that destroy bacteria and harmful viruses in the body, even days after a session. By safeguarding against sickness, you’ll miss fewer workouts and perform better.

5. Speeds recovery time

In addition to accelerating the healing process, acupuncture helps your body bounce back from intensive exercise. For instance, a 2008 study in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine discovered that participants who received acupuncture for muscle soreness 24 and 48 hours after they exercised to exhaustion reported significantly less pain than those who did not receive the treatment.

6. Enhances energy and improves sleep

Acupuncture boosts athletes’ energy levels during the day and increases their performance. Also, it helps them sleep better at night. Note that the body repairs itself and rejuvenates in preparation for the following day at night.

7. Relieves pain

pain aPain can affect performance of any athlete no matter the kind of sport. Techniques used in acupuncture have capacity to not only reduce pain, but also eliminate it entirely. One of the major benefits of seeking this form of treatment is that you will not have to worry about side effects caused by pharmaceutical drugs. More importantly, you can rest in peace knowing that you will pass all drugs tests when taking part in local, regional and international competitions.

8. Increases awareness

Many people find that acupuncture helps them tune into their bodies, minds and emotions at deeper, subtler levels. Being mindful of yourself and your surroundings is a winning tool that is beneficial on and off the playing field.


There’s no doubt about it: Acupuncture is a powerful preventive and pro-performance modality that will benefit all aspects of any athlete’s health and wellbeing. Try it.

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