T Nation

Chiropractic Care


anybody here a chiropractor or go to the chiropractor regularly? if so how long are you supposed to wait after an adjustment before you exercise again? I just started going a couple days ago for a pinched nerve in my back and i completely forgot to talk to the chiropractor about this. also, any thoughts about chiropractic care as a whole are welcome. For it, against it, whatever.


It worked wonders for me personally. I exercised right after an adjustment with no problem, but I think it depends primarily on each indivudual's issues and agendas. So, if you feel the need to get an O.K. from your doctor, I would go ahead with that. For myself, I was going for roughly 1 and a half years on intervals from once a week to once a month and then to a 2 month interval, and I thought it was a good decision that I made for that period of time. It helped me alot.


Chiropractic is Bueno! Do it. Two bits of advice from personal experience. Find one that uses the activator method. It's a tool that's calibrated to apply just the right amount of pressure to move the bone, no more. Manual manipulation applies too much pressure - particularly if you are very muscular.

The second bit is to always get a massage afterwards. Your muscles have a tendency to pull the bone back out of place like it was before. This is particularly true with pinched nerves.

Pinched nerves and muscles in spasm, however, seem to respond really well to accupuncture too. I once had an ab muscle that was locked up solid for a week. 15 minutes worth of accupuncture and problem was solved. It was a little sore for another four days but the spasm never returned.

Pretty cool, eh? How do I know? Chiro fixed my back after a military aviation accident. 30 military physicians just scratched their heads and said: "here's more Motrin, do more PT". Nice, huh?

Good luck with it.




I am a chiropractor. You can exercise the same day you get an adjustment as long as the condition you are being treated for would not be exacerbated by the exercise program.

Since I do not know anything of your condition, I am not really able to give you specific advice.

You could post info about your condition and I would be glad to give you my opinion.

Since the other Doc has examined you and treated you, he should have a better working knowledge of your condition. I would suggest that you just call his office and ask him if working out would cause a problem, or if there are any exercises that you should specifically avoid for the time being.

Keep me posted.

Take care,




I'm glad you did well with your activator treatments.

However, your assertion regarding manual adjusting is completely untrue.

Take care,



So say you. But then, I would expect you to defend that position to the death!

Actually, the guy that fixed me up didn't do activator. I only discovered that recently - about five years ago, I guess. I like them better but I don't get that buzz afterwards like I did with manual manipulation. Truth be known, I miss that a little.

The other major benefit is my doctors cologne doesn't make my eyes water any more.




No need to defend anything, it is the truth.

I'll use an Activator on patients that may have some contraindication to manual manipulation or who can not relax sufficiently to receive benefit from it.

Take care,



Dr. Ryan,

thank you very much for replying. i appreciate your advice. i realize that i should speak to my chiropractor about this subject and i will but while i have your attention i would also like to hear your opinion especially since you browse the forums here at T-Nation and probably work out hard yourself. it's always nice to have that first person perspective on things especially from people who understand. anyway i would like to give you a real quick rundown on my situation. basically the first time i pinched this nerve in my back was about a year ago.

i was squatting and i wasn't heavy yet at at all. i had just started to come out of the hole and i had a really quick twinge in my back. so i backed off that work out. took it easy for a couple days and my back started to feel fine again. but i did stay away from squatting and deadlifting for a while. since then it has probably happend three or four more time with much less severity almost always while doing a squat or deadlift.

so then i really backed off squats and deads for a long time and then took it very very slowly getting back in and things were going pretty good until earlier this week i was doing bent over rows and it happened again. this time it felt more like the first time. more severe. so i decided it was probably time to get it checked out. he said i was pinching a nerve and had a few other problems that are natural after years of football and heavy lifting. i guess my questions to you would be 1. would you see any reason i would need to wait 24 hours or so to work out after an adjustment? 2. would there be any exercises that you would recommend staying away from for the short term healing period (other than the one that obviously put the spine in a vulnerable position) 3. would there be any exercises that you would reccommend staying away from in the long term? thank you very much for your time and advice. it is much appreciated.


that's awesome man. glad to hear you're doing well. yah i've been thinking about doing some acupuncture as well. i haven't really had any spasms and i'm really not in any pain. it's just sort of uncomfortable right now but i think acupuncture might help to alleviate some of the pressure on my back. thanks for the advice man.



Sounds like you are having problems with spinal loading while in a flexed (lumbar spine) position. This position is one of the most common low back injury mechanisms.

Since it has happened a few times over the past year and seems to have gotten worse during this last flare-up, I think you definitely need to start doing some lumbar spine rehab exercises. Also, you probably are not maintaining your lumbar lordosis (curvature) while performing these exercises, which puts you at greater risk of injury.

If you want to continue performing these exercises, it is imperative that you maintain proper form. Usually you will have to decrease your loading parameters and work on grooving the proper motor patterns. You may have some flexibility or muscle imbalance problems that prevent you from performing the exercises properly.

The chiropractor you are working with hopefully should be able to get you started on a good rehab program.

If you are interested in learning more about low back injuries and how to develop a RH program to help prevent recurrences, then I would suggest that you get the book Ultimate Back Fitness and Performance by Stuart McGill.

Take care,



once again thank you for your input Dr.. i will definitely start working with my doctor to develop a rehab program. i really don't think that it was a form problem. i've been a big form stickler my entire lifting life. i think that what led up to the initial injury was sheer load size. i went from weighing 225 to weighing 275 in a matter of about a year and my squat max went from about 450 to 575 or so. deadlift also went up considerably. but my form has always been good. and as i said the first injury occured while i was squatting at a very light weight. do you think that i will ever be able to get back to doing that kind of weight again or is this something that will bother me forever? thanks again doc.