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McNeill 1 Lee McNeill English 1103 Ms.


3 Sided Assignment

The use of acupuncture in sports is very beneficial to athletes according acupuncturist Mark Kastner, L.Ac. of Circle of Living Acupuncture Center in San Diego. He feels that it can be very beneficial to athletes as far as recovery and getting them back on the field as quick as possible. Similar to Kastner another acupuncturist, Matt Collison, also believes in acupuncture and its benefits. Acupuncture is so effective in sports medicine because it moves the blood, its anti inflammatory, and it increases endorphin release, which reduces pain (From the Needle To The Field). Kastner has treated athletes from all ages on many different levels from high school to the pros. While both of these acupuncturist feel that the treatment of acupuncture can be very beneficial they do realize that sports teams often shun it as a whole. The players are quick to use Oriental medicine, but the medical staff of the teams are hesitant to refer them to acupuncturists based on what they feel is a liability (From the Needle To The Field). These two men feel like this is one of the main problems as to why some athletes do not use acupuncture. They feel as if acupuncture in some ways can be safer for athletes in the long run unlike some of the treatments players are given by their teams medical staffs such as cortisone shots. Overall these men believe in their practice and stand by their claims of its benefits. While it is not mentioned in the article it is not out of the question to infer that both Kastner and Collison are pushing acupuncture for their own benefit. Kastner and

McNeill 2 Collison receive no benefit from acupuncture other than the money they get from preforming the treatments on athletes. It would only be natural for these men to try to push their practice whether it truly is beneficial or not. Former NBA player Bill Walton and his son current NBA player Luke Walton get acupuncture treatments regularly. Bill firmly believes in the power of acupuncture in treating injuries so much that he got his son to start doing it as well. Once Luke got to the NBA his successes with acupuncture were so apparent that the L.A Lakers started getting his acupuncturist, Mark Kastner, to start working with the team. At one point during the season Luke was having ankle problems and the medical staff was having a hard time treating it. The staff finally whispered to him, Better call your needle guy. He then began starting treatments and after two weeks he was able to play (From the Needle To The Field). Its instances like these that make Bill and Luke such high believers in acupuncture. Luke and Bill are both advocates of acupuncture and believe in its power. All of there experiences with it have been positive and they feel as if it is a necessity to recovery. While in many cases acupuncture is beneficial to people according to L. Tyler Wadsworth there are some issues that could come with it. One issue he points out is making sure the person you are receiving the treatment from is qualified and experienced. Serious complications have been reported with acupuncture, including pneumothorax, spinal cord injury, cardiac puncture, septic arthritis, seizure, and drowsiness sufficient to cause an automobile accident (Wadsworth). When you keep this in mind there is a possibility that when getting acupuncture the risk could be greater than the reward.

McNeill 3 Wadsworth emphasizes that most complications stem from poor technique and inexpert needle placement (Wadsworth). This is why it is so important to make sure that the acupuncturist is experienced and qualified. If something were to go wrong with the treatment an athlete runs the risk of their career coming to an end. While there may be many instances where acupuncture is successful there are many risks that come with it. Wadsworth has never come out and said that he his against acupuncture. In many ways he points out the benefits that can come from it. Unlike Kastner, Collison, Bill and Luke, Wadsworth points out the negatives as well. This is important because Wadsworth has no direct association with acupuncture so his opinions are simply based upon what he has witnessed.

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"From The Needle To The Field: A Look At Acupuncture In The World Of Sports." Oriental Medicine (2011): 1-10. CINAHL Plus with Full Text. Web. 13 Sept. 2012.

Wadsworth, L. Tyler. "Acupuncture In Sports Medicine." Current Sports Medicine Reports (American College Of Sports Medicine) 5.1 (2006): 1-3. SPORTDiscus with Full Text. Web. 13 Sept. 2012.