General Joint & Muscle Injuries

If Mrs Jones sprains her ankle or wrist it’s a sprain, if she is wearing running shoes it’s a sports injury. The physiology of an injury is the same regardless of the activity, the difference is the speed the athlete may want to return to activity and the intensity of the rehabilitation program. Scroll down for information on various extremities.

In most cases, “sports injuries” are often due to overuse or acute trauma of a part of the body when participating in a certain activity. For example, runners knee is a painful condition generally associated with running, while tennis elbow is a form of repetitive stress injury at the elbow. Other types of injuries can be caused by a hard contact with something, which can often cause a broken bone or torn ligament or tendon

Sports injuries can be broadly classified as either traumatic or overuse injuries. Traumatic injuries account for most injuries in contact sports  because of the dynamic and high collision nature of these sports. These injuries range from bruises and muscle strains, to fractures.

A bruise  is damage to small blood vessels which causes bleeding within the tissues. A muscle strain is a small tear of muscle fibres and a ligament strain is a small tear of ligament tissue. The body’s response to these sports injuries is the same in the initial period immediately following the traumatic incident – inflammation.

The inflammatory stage is therefore the first phase of healing. However, too much of an inflammatory response in the early stage can mean that the healing process takes longer and a return to activity is delayed. 

The first thing to do after an injury occurs, is to get ice/cold on the damaged tissue to constrict blood vessels, reducing blood supply and inflammatory chemicals going to the injured tissue and start the healing process.

Hip, Leg & Sciatica Pain

The hip joints are formed where the head of the femur (thigh bone) attaches to the acetabulum of the pelvis (on both the left and right of the body). The hip joint fits like a ball in a socket called a ball and socket and strong capsule, strong ligaments surround the joint. There are also a large number of muscles that attach to the hip from the lumbar spine, pelvis and thigh. The thigh contains the femur bone and the groups of overlying muscles known as the quadriceps, hamstrings, adductors (groin) and abductors. 

Allthough similar in design to the shoulder, the hip is designed for stability for standing, while at the same time allowing movement to occur. It is the first joint from the solid base of the pelvis that takes part in the gait cycle, allowing us to walk and run. For this reason the hip joint experiences much wear and tear and is prone to osteoarthritis as you get into you get older.

Common leg conditions that patients present with at the Spinal Joint.

  • Osteoarthritis 
  • Sciatica
  • Bursitis 
  • Tendonitis 
  • Muscle strain, especially groin and hamstring 
  • Hip problems 

The hip joints, as well as having their own conditions, can be a source of referral for back and knee pain or can be where back and knee pain is referred to. It is important to have hip pain assessed to determine if it is true hip pain or referred from other parts of the body. Through testing at your initial assessment we will try to determine the cause of your hip pain and construct a treatment plan to help with your problems. Contact Spinal Joint, Kingston, to arrange for your initial assessment.


The knee is formed where the femur of the thigh meets the tibia of the leg. It has two strong ligaments attaching its inner centre (ACL and PCL) and another two on either of the outer sides (MCL, LCL). The joint surfaces are covered with cartilage and then cushioned by a medial and lateral meniscus. The patella (knee cap) sits on the anterior surface of the joint. Many muscles of the thigh and leg connect to different aspects of the knee.

The knee, like the elbow, allows the longer limb (in this case the leg) to bend so as to increase the number of tasks we can undertake using it. It also provides a further place of shock absorption from the weight of the upper body 

Common knee conditions that patients present with at the Spinal Joint.

  • Ligament strain/tear especially ACL and MCL 
  • Meniscus tear 
  • Osteoarthritis 
  • Patella tendonitis 
  • Cartilage issues
  • Bursitis

Knee pain can arise from any number of reasons. Ligament and meniscus damage is often caused by traumatic incidents such as sporting injuries while tendonitis can come about due to biomechanical inefficiencies in your gait cycle or foot posture.

Osteoarthritis is often the result of years of injuries and wear and tear on the cartilage and joint space. Knee pain can also be referred from the hip, ankle and even lower back so be sure to come in and see us at Spinal Joint to have your knee pain assessed.

As well as helping with your pain we can also advise on rehabilitation. If you have a knee injury due to trauma get some ice on it as soon as possible, to reduce swelling.

Ankle and Foot

The leg, sitting between the knee and the ankle consists of the tibia and fibular bones. The calf muscles make up the posterior portion of the leg. The ankle is formed at the base of the tibia and fibular with the talus (a foot bone). Like many of the other major joints listed it is surround by a joint capsule and many ligaments. It is these ligaments that are damaged when you sprain your ankle. The rest of the foot is made up of 26 individual bones joined together by ligaments and muscles.

If you have injured your foot the first thing to do, even before seeking professional advice is to get some ice on the injury to prevent increased inflammation.

Common conditions of the leg, ankle and foot that are presented at Spinal Joint.

  • Calf strain/tear 
  • Ankle Sprain/strain
  • Achilles tendon strain/tear 
  • Compartment syndrome 
  • Medial ankle sprain 
  • Plantar fasciitis 
  • Heel spurs
  • Metatarsal fracture
  • Pronation/supination
  • Gout 

Conditions of the lower leg, foot and ankle have a habit of reoccurring as few people allow them to resolve completely before returning to activity, nor do they often complete all of the necessary rehabilitation.


The shoulder is a complex very mobile joint, made up of the glenoid of the scapula and the humerus of the upper limb. The joint is surrounded by a capsule and ligaments and then connected by a large number of muscles to the trunk and upper limb to allow for its diverse range of movement. 

The shoulder connects the upper limb to the thoracic cage (rib cage) of the axial skeleton, enabling us to do things such as catch and throw, write, hold hands and wave goodbye. 

Common back conditions that patients present with at the Spinal Joint.

  • Dislocation and instability 
  • Rotator cuff tear/strain 
  • Tendonitis 
  • Bursitis 
  • Frozen shoulder 
  • Impingement syndromes 
  • Clavicle fracture 

We can help identify the cause of your shoulder pain as well as assist with the recovery and rehabilitation of your shoulder injuries. Due to the complex nature of the shoulder, recovery from injury can often be slow and tedious but generally worth the effort in the end.

Arm and Elbow

The elbow is made up of the humerus of the arm and the ulna and radius of the forearm. It is surround by a joint capsule and overlying ligaments. Most of the muscles that allow movement of the wrist and hand, as well as those from the arm, attach to the elbow. It is a hinge joint that allows for greater use of our upper limb; without it our arm would not bend. 

Common elbow conditions that patients present with at the Spinal Joint.

  • Tennis elbow 
  • Golfers elbow
  • Tendonitis 
  • Bursitis 
  • Fracture 
  • Radial head dislocation in children

The elbow often goes unnoticed when considering injuries as problems in the muscles attaching to the elbow are often felt in the wrist or hand. Our computer driven society has our hands on a keyboard or mouse for most hours of the day. As it is the muscles that begin at the elbows that drive the finger taping to occur, it is important to ensure that the health of these muscle and their joint of origin are in good working order. Come and see us at Spinal Joint Kingston to keep that mouse clicking, pain free!

Hand and Wrist

The wrist and hand is a complex part of our anatomy due to the dexterous natural of the nerves, ligaments and muscles that allows our hands especially to do all that is required of them. The wrist is formed by the ulna and radius of the forearm and the first row of carpal bones in the hand, while the hand itself contains 27 bones. 

Common hand & wrist conditions that patients present with at the Spinal Joint.

  • Carpal tunnel syndrome 
  • Fracture 
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis 
  • Lunate dislocation 
  • Wrist sprain 
  • Finger Ligament sprain
  • Pins and Needles/numbness 

We often underestimate how much we use our hands and wrists until they are injured. We also tend to ignore pain in this area, unless the onset is traumatic, hoping that the niggle will go away. While are hands and wrists are not as commonly injured as our backs or necks, it is important to take care of them.

Richard Lanigan DC. MSC., has has many years of experience providing chiropractic care sucessfully to people with Sports Injury and extremity problems . Make an appointment before those niggles you feel each morning become chronic and arthritic.