Chiropractic care for the fittest on earth
Todd Rodman, D.C., CCSP®, CSCS®, Port Orange ’08, is no stranger to treating some of the world’s fittest athletes. From CrossFitters to UFC fighters and Florida Atlantic University’s collegiate athletes, his ability to relate to athletes has been the driving force behind his chiropractic philosophy and practice from the beginning.
The Boca Raton, Fla., chiropractor and owner of Sports Chiropractic and Natural Health Solutions, played Division I baseball at Florida A&M University, often experiencing the familiar pains and bodily stress that high-level training and weightlifting brought on. He used those experiences to help care for athletes in similar situations, devoting his time and practice to caring for active individuals who wanted to feel their best, maximize athletic performance and “not be told to stop doing what they love to do.”
As the director of athlete services for the CrossFit Southeast regional competitions, Dr. Rodman is a familiar face in the CrossFit arena. Minimizing injuries by delivering chiropractic care pre- and post- competition has allowed participating athletes the opportunity to continue competing at their highest, functioning level. As the high-intensity, functional sport continues to become “one of the fastest growing sports in America,” (according to Forbes) so will the need increase for these athletes to receive chiropractic care.
“CrossFit is becoming one of the fastest growing sports for many great reasons,” says Dr. Rodman, “a CrossFit workout helps to improve cardiovascular capacity, strengthen the core, strengthen posterior chain postural muscles and improve overall functional movements.” The high-intensity workouts combined with full body movements allow athletes to get in a tremendous amount of work in a short period of time. With the intense training, there comes some risk.
“CrossFit athletes can develop tightness in their muscles and joints and become injured if they do not have good form or if they progress too quickly with their weight,” says Dr. Rodman. “Even novice CrossFitters train like professional athletes, so they need to recover like one. “
“Sports chiropractic is a combination of chiropractic, advanced soft-tissue therapy and advanced therapeutic modalities. It’s a valuable tool for the recovery of the CrossFit athlete because it mechanically corrects the problem, unravels the tightness that develops from training and gets them better faster.”
Another valuable tool that sports chiropractors can offer is using movement analysis to detect movement dysfunction. Movement analysis makes the invisible visible, it helps to detect the athlete’s musculoskeletal limitations and gives chiropractors the opportunity to educate athletes on which exercises to modify or avoid due to risk of injury. Chiropractors can also teach mobility exercises to correct movement dysfunction.
“What makes me helpful to CrossFit athletes is that I speak their language,” Dr. Rodman adds. “I’ve been doing CrossFit four days a week for six years, I’m a CrossFit Level 1 coach, CrossFit certified mobility specialist and have been on the athlete services staff at The Games and regionals. To help an injured CrossFit athlete, I use my knowledge in CrossFit training, personal training, strength and conditioning, soft tissue therapies, movement analysis, chiropractic and knowing the CrossFit movements to develop a strategy of which exercises to avoid and which ones they can still do. Athletes don’t like when their doctor tells them to stop doing what they love to do. If one of my CrossFit athletes is injured, my goal is to keep them in motion and teach them which movements to avoid — keeping them safe and helping them recover correctly. Athletes appreciate the doctor who is able to keep them going, get them better faster and not make them feel like they’re broken.”
Watch and learn how the Sports Chiropractic and Natural Health Solutions team cares for elite athletes at the South East CrossFit Games.
Created by recent Palmer graduate Tim Hartman and influenced directly by Quad City CrossFit, the Davenport, Iowa, campus houses a functional fitness area that holds classes five days a week. Classes are taught by Palmer students with a focus on properly understanding increased movement patterns, mobility, stability, strength and overall fitness. The space is equipped with a large-scale rack cage, barbells, kettlebells and mobility equipment. Student trainers are able to provide and teach appropriate foundational movements that are often found in CrossFit facilities across the nation. Join the Palmer Functional Fitness Facebook group for more information.
To watch live coverage of the 2015 CrossFit Games held in Carson, Calif., on July 21-26, tune into ESPN3 or watch the live feed at: http://games.crossfit.com/archive/live.