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Whole Body Vibration Therapy

With the New Year heading our way, we, at Hopkins Chiropractic, have opened our practice to a new and exciting type of chiropractic care…Whole Body Vibration Therapy or put simply, WBV.  WBV is one of the latest trends in rehabilitative and preventative medicine with recent studies showing fantastic results for wide array of patients.  While accelerating the body's natural healing process, WBV helps with injuries, illness and even exercise.  Working twice as fast as traditional physical therapies, WBV can offer both patient and practitioner improved feedback, and therefore, improved performance and results.

More specifically, WBV causes stimulation of the living cells within our bodies.  This stimulation helps with cellular regrowth, increases in the oxygen levels in cells, improved uptake of nutrients within the cells, as well as improved cellular waste removal.  What does this mean for you?  Well, without these important cellular processes our bodies are prone to disease and/or injury, both of which can accelerate the aging process.

While working with astronauts, Russian scientist ,Vladimir Nazarov, wanted to come up with a solution to some of the adverse health effects that astronauts experience while in space, most notably: the loss of muscle and bone mass, often times resulting in bone fractures.  His solution was to subject the astronauts to WBV sessions during their rigorous pre-liftoff space training sessions.  His results were astounding and showed improvement in bone density, as well as muscle strength. 

Current research shows that WBV is indicated for a broad range of therapeutic and clinical applications, such as the following:


Balance, Coordination & Fall Prevention

  • Study:  To investigate the efficacy of high-frequency whole-body vibration (WBV) on balancing ability in elderly women [Cheung WH, Mok HW, Qin L, Sze PC, Lee KM, Leung KS. Department of Orthopaedics and Traumatology, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Shatin, Hong Kong SAR, China.]
  • Conclusion:  WBV was effective in improving the balancing ability in elderly women. This also provides evidence to support our user-friendly WBV treatment protocol of 3 minutes a day for the elderly to maintain their balancing ability and reduce risks of fall.


Flexibility & Range of Motion

  • Study:  Flexibility Enhancement with Vibration: Acute and Long-Term [Flexibility Enhancement with Vibration: Acute and Long-Term. Med. Sci. Sports Exerc., Vol. 38, No. 4, pp. 720-725, 2006.]
  • Conclusion:  Vibration can be a promising means of increasing range of motion beyond that obtained with static stretching in highly trained male gymnasts.


Bone & Joint Rehabilitation, especially Knee Rehab

  • Study:  Whole-Body Vibration Induced Adaptation in Knee Extensors; Consequences of Initial Strength, Vibration Frequency, and Joint Angle [Savelberg HH, Keizer HA, Meijer K. Department of Human Movement Science, Faculty of Health Sciences, Universiteit Maastricht, Maastricht, The Netherlands.]
  • Conclusion:  Muscle length during training affects the angle of knee joint at which the maximal extension moment was generated. Moreover, in weaker subjects WBV resulted in higher maximal knee joint extension moments. Vibration frequency and muscle length during vibration did not affect this joint moment gain.


Lower Back Pain & Pelvic Instability

  • Study:  The Effect of Weight-Bearing Exercise with Low Frequency, Whole Body Vibration on Lumbosacral Proprioception: A Pilot Study on Normal Subjects [Fontana TL, Richardson CA, Stanton WR. School of Health and Rehabilitation Science, The University of Queensland, St Lucia, QLD 4072, Australia.]
  • Conclusion:  WBV, and the reflexive muscle contraction it provokes, has the potential to induce strength gain in the knee extensors of previously untrained females to the same extent as resistance training at moderate intensity.  It was clearly shown the strength increases after WBV training are not attributable to a placebo effect.

Osteoporosis, Arthritis & Rheumatism

  • Study:  The incidence of osteoporosis, a disease that manifests in the elderly, may be reduced by increasing peak bone mass in the young women. [J Bone Miner Res 2006;21:1464-1474. Published online on June 26, 2006; doi: 10.1359/JBMR.060612.]
  • Conclusions: Short bouts of extremely low-level mechanical signals, several orders of magnitude below that associated with vigorous exercise, increased bone and muscle mass in the weight-bearing skeleton of young adult females with low BMD. Should these musculoskeletal enhancements be preserved through adulthood, this intervention may prove to be a deterrent to osteoporosis in the elderly.



Other Benefits

  • Stress & Pain Reduction
  • Neuromuscular Re-Education
  • Circulatory Functioning
  • General Health & Wellness



Regardless of age, WBV provides a low impact vertical exercise solution that can work the entire body or specific body parts.  The reduction of pain and discomfort can dramatically improve flexibility and range of motion.  As a standalone exercise program, or even as a pre/post workout addition, provides many muscular benefits in a fraction of the time.  One of the major perks of WBV is its ability to allow individuals with debilitating illnesses or restrictive conditions to enhance their quality of life, which is something we strive to achieve at Hopkins Chiropractic.  Have we piqued your interest?  If so, call us and schedule an appointment to see what Whole Body Vibration Therapy can do for you.


Back Pain - Am I At Risk?

 Your Family and You
For the most part back injuries are caused by mechanical issues, and the tendency to get such injuries is not inherited.

However there are family-related behavioral tendencies, and these behaviors - while not "inherited" as such - may easily be passed down from parents to children. When we grow up, these ingrained habits of daily living may lead to back injuries.

Poor posture, lack of interest in exercise, and a tendency to be overweight are all patterns of behavior we learn from our parents. As adults, its valuable for us to make conscious efforts to revise these unhealthful patterns, being proactive in developing new behaviors that support our goals of health and well-being.

And, various health issues that actually may be inherited can increase a person's susceptibility to back pain and back injury. Your chiropractor will be of assistance in identifying such additional risk factors.
Are there risk factors for back pain? And, if there are, what can I do to keep myself healthy and well? Your chiropractor can help answer these questions and more.

One primary risk factor relates to exercise. Everyone has heard, "if you don't use it, you lose it". If you're not exercising regularly, your back muscles are deconditioned and much more susceptible to injury - the strains and sprains we're accustomed to calling "back pain".

Muscles get stronger when they're required to do work. Also exercise helps "train" the soft tissues around a joint - the ligaments and tendons - these supporting structures "learn" how to withstand mechanical stresses and loads without becoming injured. Basically, when you exercise - when you do any kind of exercise - your body gets "smarter" and you're less likely to get those annoying back problems.1

A related risk factor is weak abdominal muscles. When you were a kid, at some point one of your gym teachers probably told you to "suck in your stomach". Actually, it turns out that was pretty good advice. Your abdominal muscles support the muscles of your lower back. If your abdominals are weak or if you're not using them - letting them hang out and droop instead of keeping them activated - your body weight has to be held up by the muscles of your lower back. They're not designed to do that - they're designed to move your spine around. And eventually, these lower back muscles will give way under the excess strain. The result is a very painful lower back injury.

There are many easy-to-do exercises for your abdominal muscles. The key is to actually do them - and do them after you're finished doing the rest of whatever exercises you've scheduled for that day. How often? Three times a week is plenty. Abdominal routines are quick - no more than 10 minutes. And, remember to use your abdominal muscles throughout the day. Imagine your abdominals are being pulled in and lifted up. This is not a "tightening" - your thought should be "activate". Your body will know what to do, once you've started adding consistent abdominal training to your exercise routine.

Risk factors for back pain may also be found in your personal and family medical history.2,3 During your initial visit your chiropractor will ask you about accidents and surgeries you've experienced, and discuss any important elements in your family history. For example, surgery to remove an inflamed galllbladder or appendix or to repair a hernia may result in weakened abdominal muscles. A motor vehicle accident or a fall from a height may have caused injuries that healed with soft tissue scarring.

Learning about potential risk factors and taking appropriate action will help ensure a stronger, more flexible, and healthier lower back.

1Jones MA, et al. Recurrent non-specific low-back pain in adolescents: the role of exercise. Ergonomics 50(10):1680-1688, 2007
2Cherniack M, et al. Clinical and psychological correlates of lumbar motion abnormalities in low back disorders. Spine J 1)4):290-298, 2001
3Plouvier S, et al. Biomechanical strains and low back disorders. Occup Environ Med 2007 (in press)bodyvib4.jpg

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