New Research Sheds Light on Balance, Stability & Chiropractic

Research News Staff
New Research Sheds Light on Balance, Stability & Chiropractic

Clinical Study Shows Chiropractic Can Help   

Recent research reporting on a clinical study of balance and stability reveals that chiropractic may play an important role in balance, gait and coordination challenges. The research, reported in the Journal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research showed improvements in balance, stability and sway after just one chiropractic adjustment to the upper part of the neck.

CLICK HERE to view the study 

“Research is revealing that there is a relationship between structural abnormalities in the spine, the nervous system and brain” stated Dr. Matthew McCoy, a chiropractor, public health researcher and editor of the journal that published the study. “Basic science research shows that the proper functioning of the brain and its ability to coordinate movement and balance relies on proper structure and movement of the spine from an early age.” 

Research has shown not only that the brain relies on normal structural integrity and joint movement, but that complex neurological communication and pathways involved in helping humans balance and orient themselves in space are tied into spinal biomechanics and their related neurological pathways. 

“It makes perfect sense when you think about it” stated Dr. McCoy. “Coordination and balance disorders may be related to how the entire body communicates with the brain and the most critical area for this is the spine and the most critical area of the spine is the upper part of the neck.” 

According to McCoy “People’s nervous systems need the constant stimulation of movement in order to develop and function properly. Abnormal structural shifts can occur in the spine and these structural shifts can lead to obstruction of the nerves and it is this obstruction, called vertebral subluxations, that chiropractors correct. 

The study reported on the outcomes of nine patients who underwent testing of their balance using posturography. All of the patients were also examined to determine if they had structural shifts and vertebral subluxations in their upper necks. Each person was x-rayed and subluxations of their upper necks were found in all of them. They were then adjusted in order to reduce their upper neck subluxations and had their balance tested again. All of the subjects showed reductions in subluxation and improvement in balance and stability following just a single chiropractic adjustment.   

Awareness of body orientation and the preservation of balance in the upright stance are crucial for performance of daily activities. Falls, gait disturbances, and balance disorders are common clinical problems for the elderly and these problems are associated with considerable morbidity and mortality. Falls are the leading cause of death from injury among people 65 and older. Scientific research has shown that patients with various types of balance deficits, vertigo, and dizziness improve after chiropractic intervention and this study adds to that growing list. The researchers call for more research on chiropractic, subluxation, coordination and balance disorders.

Contact Information: 

Matthew McCoy DC, MPH
Journal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research
McCoy Press