What's the first thing you noticed in this picture?
Was it the curve through the spine in the x-ray? Was it the swimmers muscle deformity and uneven bathing suit? Or was it the silver medal hanging around 23 year old Olympian swimmer Jessica Ashwood's neck?
Jess, along with 2-3% of the population, suffers from a musculoskeletal condition known as scoliosis. Scoliosis a condition that causes the spine to curve towards the side of the body opposed to staying in the middle. This can be a dangerous condition as the spine can deviate towards the sides, pressing up against organs and require surgery to implant metal rods to straighten the spine. It can also be a disease that looks worse than it actually is, causing muscle discomfort but not limiting an athletes ability to perform on the field or in the water.
With therapy (including myofasical release, stretching, and dry needling), hard work, and targeted exercise to overcome the muscle imbalances in her back, Jess was able to train her muscles and joints to function together turning her severe scoliosis into more of a visual distraction then a functional impairment, something we do in our office every day. She is proof that with proper treatment you can overcome certain structural defects within the body to become one of the best athletes around!