Chiropractic Adjustments & techniques
At Santa Cruz Spine & Sport we believe that lasting healing comes from utilizing the latest tools and staying current with advances in chiropractic and medical science.
At Santa Cruz Spine and Sport we believe that a healthy life style design is having a movement practice like Yoga. We offer small group classes, as well as private sessions.
Tues & Thurs 10 a.m.
NEW! Saturday 10:30 a.m.
Rock Tape / Kenisio Tape
Rocktape is a revolutionary new type of therapeutic tape that is great for treating common sports injuries or enhancing performance.
At Santa Cruz Spine and Sport we offer a variety of different massage techniques from 3 highly trained therapists. Lets find the one right bodyworker to meet your needs and expectations
Functional Movement Screenings and Training
FMS & FMT consists of 7 movement patterns that are scored 0-3. People who score 15/21 or below are 50% more likely to injury themselves. What's your score?
Graston / Instrumentation
The Graston Technique incorporates a patented form of instrument-assisted soft tissue mobilization that enables clinicians to effectively detect and treat scar tissue and restrictions that affect normal function
At Santa Cruz Spine & Sport we provide customized training program to fit your needs, lifestyle and physical abilities. we train people at all ages, and ability levels.
Active Release Technique
ART ART® is a patented, state of the art soft tissue system/movement based massage technique that treats problems with muscles, tendons, ligaments, fascia and nerves.
HMT Acupressure Technique
Accumulation of tension in muscles, fascia and tendons manifests as hypersensitive myofascial reflex points know as trigger or acupressure points. These points act as circuit breakers and when overloaded with excessive tension can produce local or referred pain
Chiropractic Adjustments and Techniques
We have given tens of thousands of adjustments to patients ranging from little children to a 95-year-old, all of varying activity levels, and all successfully without adverse reactions. Learn about the latest techniques we utilize.
Chiropractic adjustments have a tremendous potential to help patients. From a biomechanical and neurological perspective a chiropractic adjustment can make a rapid, positive response. After their first adjustment most patients have two statements: “That was it?” and “Wow, I feel better.” The first statement because most adjustments are quick and painless. The second statement is due to an almost immediate improvement in the patient’s range of motion and a decrease or elimination of pain.
There are many different techniques, or ways to adjust the joints of the body, and Dr. Justin McLeod believes that each patient should be treated using the technique that is best suited for that patient. He does not believe in using the same technique for each patient. He has treated top CrossFit athletes and a 95-year-old osteoporotic female. They certainly did not get adjusted in similar manners. Below is a description of some of the adjusting techniques that we are trained in and uses on a regular basis at Santa Cruz Spine & Sport.
Most professional and Olympic athletes receive sports chiropractic care regularly. NFL players such as Aaron Rodgers, Vernon Davis, Jerry Rice, Patrick Willis, and Justin Smith praise chiropractic for helping them to play at the best of their ability and without aches or pains. The elite athletes of the world get the latest and most advanced medical care. Dr. Justin McLeod feels that every person, regardless of age, profession, or athletic ability, deserves to have access to the best medical care. To that end, we are Santa Cruz Spine and Sport believe that although the adjustment by itself is powerful, we find it equally import to treat and balance the muscles, tendons, fascia and joint capsules with soft-tissue techniques like HMT, Graston, ART. After mobilizing the joints and soft tissue we stabilize and correct incorrect movement patterns using a progression of exercises.
The benefits derived from adjusting the joints of the spine are equally shared by gently adjusting the bones of the upper and lower extremities. Indeed, fifty percent of the bones of the body are found in the arms and legs and fixations in joint motion can cause pain in our shoulder, wrist, hand, feet etc. Dr. Justin McLeod has taken hundreds of hours of advanced training in extremity adjusting which helps him bring relief to many patients who have previously not found relief from “spine-only” chiropractors. At Santa Cruz Spine and Sport we are trained to be able to deliver extremity adjustments using a variety of technique styles including gentle manual manipulation, and instrumented assisted/Activator.
Instrumentation Adjusting with Activator or Neuro-Impulse
The Activator Method chiropractic technique is a gentle, low-force approach to chiropractic adjustments. The technique has been used safely on patients of all ages since the late 1960’s, bringing relief to people with a variety of health concerns. We like having the option of using “instrument adjusting” in the office with patients who are contraindicated from other forms of adjusting. Examples include a patient with severe osteoporosis or someone who is afraid of getting an adjustment. We use both the Activator and the Neuro-Impulse instruments in our clinic. If you would like to experience the many benefits of chiropractic care, but are “afraid of getting your neck cracked,” we invite you to come to contact our office to learn about low-force, instrument adjusting using the Activator and Nuero-Impusle.
For more information: Activator Methods
Chiropractic Soft Tissue Mobilization: HMT, GRASTON, ART
One of the primary focus of Dr. Justin McLeod is the soft tissue component of injuries. Soft tissues are: muscles, tendons, ligaments, bursae, fascia, and nerves. The treatment of these structures is known as soft tissue mobilization. When trauma occurs, whether it is a single traumatic event or repeated microtrauma, inflammation follows. The inflammation leads to scar tissue formation within the muscle and between the muscles and the other layers of connective tissue. This scar tissue formation decreases the ability of the muscle to lengthen and contract normally, which leads to a decrease in range of motion. This effect can be very specific within a muscle or can affect the muscle groups very broadly leading to faulty bio-mechanics that are dysfunctional and inefficient. The scar tissue can also cause pain and can predispose you to re-injury. Additionally, pain can lead to muscle guarding in order to protect the injured area, if prolonged guarding occurs the muscle can loose it's normal length. The purpose of soft tissue mobilization is to restore the normal texture, tightness, flexibility, and function to the affected tissue. It includes several techniques such as Acupressure Point Therapy (HMT), Active Release Technique (ART®), myofascial release and Graston.
Accumulation of tension in muscles, fascia and tendons manifests as hypersensitive myofascial reflex points know as trigger or acupressure points. These points act as circuit breakers and when overloaded with excessive tension can produce local or referred pain. There are approximately 700 acupressure points on the human body. These points are released by deep intermittent digital pressure to a reflex point in a specific direction causing a form of "depolarization. This leads in immediate pain relief and restoration of function allowing the soft tissue to become more flexible and pliable. In the videos below; Tobe Hanson the creator of HMT explains the systematic approach to find the most important points to release.
The Graston Technique incorporates a patented form of instrument-assisted soft tissue mobilization that enables clinicians to effectively detect and treat scar tissue and restrictions that affect normal function. Skilled clinicians use the stainless steel instruments to comb over and "catch" on fibrotic tissue, which immediately identifies the areas of restriction. Once the tissue has been identified, the instruments are used to break up the scar tissue so it can be absorbed by the body. Scar tissue limits range of motion and in many instances causes pain; which prevents the patient from functioning as they did prior to the injury.
The Graston Technique instruments are used to enhance the clinicians ability to detect adhesions, scar tissue, or restrictions in the affected areas. Skilled clinicians use the stainless steel instruments to comb over and "catch" on fibrotic tissue, which immediately identifies the areas of restriction. Once the tissue has been identified, the instruments are used to break up scar tissue so that it can be absorbed by the body.
More info at: www.grastontechnique.com/
Active Release Technique (ART®)
ART® is a patented, state of the art soft tissue system/movement based massage technique that treats problems with muscles, tendons, ligaments, fascia and nerves. Headaches, back pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, shin splints, shoulder pain, sciatica, plantar fasciitis, knee problems, and tennis elbow are just a few of the many conditions that can be resolved quickly and permanently with ART®.
Treatment involves instructing the patient to move through a range of motion while applying a gentle sustained pressure into the tissue in order to lengthen and eliminate restrictions. This will help to restore motion and eliminate pain. Each Myofascial Release Treatment session is performed directly on skin without oils or lotions. This enables the accuracy to detect fascial restrictions and apply the appropriate amount of sustained pressure to facilitate release of the fascia.
Every ART session is actually a combination of examination and treatment. The ART provider uses his or her hands to evaluate the texture, tightness and movement of muscles, fascia, tendons, ligaments and nerves. Abnormal tissues are treated by combining precisely directed tension with very specific patient movements.
More info at: www.activerelease.com.
Functional Taping with Rock Tape
Rocktape is a revolutionary new type of therapeutic tape that is great for treating common sports injuries or enhancing performance.
How it works:
Rocktape is a natural-hybrid product and consists of 97% cotton, 3% nylon and uses no drugs. The adhesive is a hypo-allergenic acrylic based adhesive and contains no latex. When we manufacture Rocktape, we introduce a bias into the weave of the fabric so it stretches in one direction and not the other. This creates what we call a bio-mechanical lifting mechanism which lifts the skin away from the soft tissue. This allows blood to move into an injured area which accelerates healing and recovery.
What can it be used for?
- Rotator cuff issues
- Groin and hamstring pulls
- Lower back issues
- Shin splints
- Tennis and golf elbow
• Achilles tendonitis
• Plantar fasciitis
• Jumpers knee (PFS)
• ACL/MCL issues
• Shoulder Pain
Rocktape is also great for correcting tracking issues in knees, shoulders or elbows. It can also be used to correct posture problems including those associated with pregnancy.
Swedish Massage / Relaxing Massage
One of the primary goals of the Swedish massage technique is to relax the entire body. This is accomplished by rubbing the muscles with long gliding strokes in the direction of blood returning to the heart. However, Swedish massage therapy goes beyond relaxation because it is exceptionally beneficial for increasing the level of oxygen in the blood, decreasing muscle toxins, improving circulation and flexibility while easing tension.
Deep Tissue / Sports MassageDeep
Tissue massage slowly works through the layers of the muscle. It is designed to relieve tension in the fascia and connective tissues and reduce recovery time from an injury or excessive training. Many athletes, from world-class professionals to weekend joggers tend to gravitate to this deep tissue work because it focuses on areas that are overused and stressed from repetitive and often aggressive movements. If you want it deep then Tiffany Logan is the therapist right for you.
Thai Yoga Massage
Traditional Thai massage uses no oils or lotions. The recipient remains clothed wearing loose, comfortable clothing and lies on a mat or firm mattriss on the floor during a treatment. There is constant body contact between the giver and receiver, but rather than rubbing on muscles, the body is compressed, pulled, stretched and rocked.
The true ancient style of the massage requires that the massage be performed solo with just the giver and receiver. The receiver will be positioned in a variety of yoga-like positions during the course of the massage, that is also combined with deep static and rhythmic pressures.
The massage generally follows designated lines ("sen") in the body. The legs and feet of the giver can be used to position the body or limbs of the recipient. In other positions, hands fix the body, while the feet do the massaging. A full Thai massage session may last two hours and includes rhythmic pressing and stretching of the entire body. This may include pulling fingers, toes, ears, cracking knuckles, walking on the recipient's back, and moving the recipient's body into many different positions. There is a standard procedure and rhythm to the massage, which the giver will adjust to fit the receiver.
Prenatal / Postnatal Massage
Massage therapy addresses different needs through varying techniques, one of which is called Swedish Massage, which aims to relax muscle tension and improve lymphatic and blood circulation through mild pressure applied to the muscle groups of the body. Swedish Massage is the recommended prenatal massage method during pregnancy because it addresses many common discomforts associated with the skeletal and circulatory changes brought on by hormone shifts during pregnancy. Studies indicate that massage therapy performed during pregnancy can reduce anxiety, decrease symptoms of depression, relieve muscle aches and joint pains, and improve labor outcomes and newborn health. Other potential benefits are listed below.
- Reduced muscle tension and headaches
- Reduced stress and anxiety
- Improved oxygenation of soft tissues and muscles
- Better sleep
- Reduced back pain
- Reduced joint pain
- Improved circulation
- Reduced edema
- Reduce Neck Pain
- You deserve it
Santa Cruz Spine & Sport believes in the value of wellness care for you and your family and have maintained a pricing structure that allows care for all budgets. Our office participates in most insurance programs. We also accept auto accident. For patients who have little or no chiropractic insurance coverage, flexible payment programs can be arranged. To learn more about our payment options for chiropractic and wellness care, you can call our office directly.
Many insurance plans are accepted at our office. We accept auto accident, personal injury, and most health insurance plans, including Medicare. Since there are so many plans and coverage varies widely, please call us to find out if your plan covers care in our office. Our staff will verify and explain your benefits before treatment, at no charge.
For patients who have little or no chiropractic insurance coverage, flexible payment programs can be arranged. If you have no insurance or do not have chiropractic benefits there is still a way for you to receive the care you need. Many patients pay directly for care, as they discover chiropractic to be extremely cost-effective and affordable.
Our focus at Santa Cruz Spine & Sport is to actively help you and your family into taking responsibility for your health, wellness, and disease management. We assist and guide you to take the time to care for the important people in your world: you and your family. In an effort to make living the wellness lifestyle as easy and affordable as possible, we can create a customized family plan that is specific to you and your family.
Health on a Budget
At Santa Cruz Spine & Sport, we're convinced that a small amount of your time and money to care for your most important asset--your health--will be far less time consuming and expensive than trying to recover it. If you feel you do not have enough time or money to take care of yourself, please contact us--we can help! The last thing we want is for you to come to our wellness center in crisis. So please, we would like to encourage you to take your health very seriously. As the old saying goes, if you don't have your health, you don't have anything. Unfortunately, too many people don't discover how true that statement is until it is too late.
Personal Training - A New Approach
Here are 7 Principals that our trainers at Santa Cruz Spine & Sport follow when Training. If this type of functional integrative training resonates with you, then start training with us today!
1.) Start with a Baseline. Test and Re-Test with FMS
Our trainers at Santa Cruz Spine & Sport use the Functional Movement Screen as their baseline. It is a systematic approach to initially analyze patterns. Its 7 individual movement patterns are scored out of 21. A Score of 14 and below indicates a 50% increased chance of injury.
Instead of breaking down the body into its component parts, it’s a better approach to analyze movement first. Our body moves as one unit where all the parts are connected. If the body moves efficiently without pain, we don’t have to worry about over-analyzing each of those parts.
If one of the movements is dysfunctional, we continue assessing other related movements instead of committing to one area. The underlying issue may not be occurring because of tightness or weakness in muscles, but an underlying neurological (i.e. motor control) issue.
2.) First move well, THEN move often
Our trainers focus on movement efficiency (or moving well) as a chief aim of a properly constructed strength and conditioning program. Movement efficiency requires a combination of mobility (i.e. flexibility and range of motion within the joints) and stability (i.e. motor control and postural musculature).
Sequentially achieving optimal fitness and athleticism looks like this:
Mobility => Stability => Strength => Power
The more mobile you are, the more potential you have to move well. When mobility is controlled you get functional movement. Once you have functional movement: move as often as possible, challenge your body with strength, and incorporate power exercises.
3.) Don’t add strength to dysfunction
If you have a dysfunctional movement pattern, adding weight or habits to that movement pattern will make the dysfunction worse.
For example, if your knees cave in during a squat because your glutes are weak and your inner thighs are tight, those problems will only worsen if you add weight.
While it’s a tough pill to swallow and may hurt the ego, laying off the weights to focus on flexibility and stability may be the best course of action to correct movement dysfunction and prevent future injury.
4.) Previous injury is the #1 predictor of future injury
Have you ever sprained your ankle? Or maybe pulled a hamstring?
The probability is high that while you were recovering from those injuries, the way your body moved changed…in a not-so-good way.
For example, if you sprain your left ankle, several “compensations” may occur:
- You begin to put more pressure on your right foot vs. your injured left foot
- Your left hip becomes weaker relative to your right
- When you run, or squat in the gym, the asymmetry gets worse
- Your right hip becomes stiffer because it’s overworked
- And so on, and so on.
The body is one interconnected unit, so any compensation can cause a variety of problems throughout the entire chain. That’s part of the reason why previous injuries are the #1 predictor of future injury.
5.) The hips are the powerhouse of the body
While the bench press may be a very popular measure of strength, the greatest power the body can produce comes from the hips.
In particular, the hip hinge (bending of the hips) is the most powerful lift. It’s a reason why most people can deadlift more weight than they squat. Hinging of the hips is less of a forward bend and more of a sitting back motion where the hips push behind the heels while the back remains straight and the knees stay slightly bent.
In addition to the hinge, the hips can produce significant power rotationally. In sports, a powerful swing in baseball, or drive in golf is from rotational hip power.
It is not by coincidence that when doctors assess bone mineral density, measurements are taken from the hips and spine. Keeping your hips strong and powerful may lead to greater longevity.
6.) Asymmetry is a big risk factor for injury
While excessive tightness, or weakness in the body is certainly not good, research shows that functional asymmetries between the right and left sides of the body are a much higher risk factor for injury.
If your right hip is tight, but your left hip is flexible, this asymmetry can lead to a cascade of problems throughout your entire body.
In a video I saw recently, Gray joked that he tells high school football players, “If you’re going to be tight, be tight on both sides. Then you’re just slow. If you’re tight on one side, your going to rip yourself in half.”
7.) Evolution of Infant movement is key to understanding human movement
Most fitness professionals teach exercise from a standing position, but this is the opposite of how we learn to move as infants. The topic of infant development and its influence on exercise is easily worthy of a book.
As infants, we breathe, then grip, then roll, then crawl. Eventually, we sit, kneel, squat, then stand. So technically, we squat before we can stand.
This developmental sequence has important implications for how we should learn to exercise and how to correct dysfunctional movement patterns.