Treating Injuries with
Active Release Techniques
As a professional soccer club, the Long Island Rough Riders Soccer Club deals with its fair share of injuries. One of the reasons for the rapid recovery of several Rough Riders players is Dr. Gary Olson D.C., B.A., the official spine and sports injury specialist for the Long Island Rough Riders and a certified Active Release Techniques (ART) provider. ART is used for treating soft tissues injuries including back/neck pain, tendonitis, bursitis, carpal tunnel, sciatica, rotator cuff syndrome, plantar fascitis and all types of muscles pain.
"Many people think ART is like massage. While a massage is general, ART is very specific to the injury," says Dr. Olson. He will first test range of motion. Then, he palpates the muscle to determine whether there is scarring. "This type of scar is not like a scar on your skin. This kind of scar creates a gluey substance that restricts range of motion of muscles," says Dr. Olson.
Scars are the result of an inflammatory response caused by an acute trauma, like tearing a muscle or pulling a ligament, or through a repetitive motion injury. Scarring can affect the proper functioning of muscles, nerves and blood vessels. "The inflammatory cycle is a vicious cycle. People don't feel it at first, but then they are hit with the pain." But this all can be completely reversed and healed through ART.
Dr. Olson places tension on the muscle affected in order to release it. Then he asks the patient to move in such a way that lengthens the muscle. "The goal is to strip out the scar that's formed from the inflammatory cycle," he says. "Most people report pain relief with the first session," says Olson. Sometimes, heat and/or electrical stimulation is applied to make the muscle more relaxed before a treatment. Dr. Olson also recommends a fitness program to strengthen the affected muscles. "Exercise is the best medicine," he says.
Dean Perri, the Captain of the Commack Soccer Team, twisted his ankle and hurt his low back late one afternoon at a game. The next morning, he came to see Dr. Olson. "I determined there were no issues with joint stability or ligament damage. I got into the injury immediately and worked it with ART. With traditional therapies, Dean would have been sidelined for weeks. He was kicking a soccer ball around within two days and the swelling and bruising was considerably reduced, " says Dr. Olson. Within one week, my son was back to playing soccer. Having once had that injury myself, I thought he would miss most or all of his senior year. Dr. Olson's one-on-one approach and his healing abilities are second to none!"
Dr. Gary Olson started as a personal trainer, then became a chiropractor who
was trained in Active Release Techniques from Mike Leahy, the originator of
the technique, who is also the ART specialist for the Denver Broncos.
Repetitive motion injuries, ordinary things we do all day long without even
thinking about them, like sitting while we drive or other similar
activities, can be aggravated by 'weekend warrior' sports activities, but
helped with ART.