Acupuncture is a go-to treatment for musculo-skeletal pain and a commonly used modality for treating sports injuries.

NFL stars, Olympic swimmers, basketball players and other top athletes increasingly turn to acupuncture to help with recovery from injury as evidenced by the occasional headline or picture that gives acupuncture another 15 minutes of fame because some sports hero has needles in them.

Our guest in this episode takes a different view of acupuncture. She is investigating how it can be used for performance enhancement. Listen in as we discuss the results of her first study into using various acupuncture modalities focused not on recovery from injury, but rather as a way to improve sports performance.

Show Highlights:
3:50 Do all sports injuries respond to acupuncture?
7:38 An overview of the study on using acupuncture as a performance enhancement.
13:14 Auricular acupuncture seems to improve the neuromuscular pathways in those new to strength training.
15:11 Use of distal points had a significant impact on the intermediate group.
17:33 Those with more advanced training responded better to both distal and local acupuncture points.
24:00 Using ear acupuncture to reboot the neuromuscular pathways can help to create more efficient movement.
30:22 Periodized training and how it is different from interval training.
32:43 The extremes athletes will go to in search of a performance edge.


Amy is a licensed acupuncturist and owner of Compass Acupuncture Tacoma. She graduated with her Master’s degree in Acupuncture from the Seattle Institute of Oriental Medicine. Amy came to find East Asian medicine after suffering with a headache for 121 consecutive days. After trying everything else, she decided to try acupuncture and it changed her life.

Before coming to East Asian medicine, Amy was an exercise physiologist and certified strength and conditioning specialist where she worked with everyone from professional athletes to cancer patients. She has managed to blend her working knowledge of exercise physiology and East Asian medicine to help her patients at all stages of their journey towards health. When she isn’t in the clinic, you will find her exploring the magnificent natural surroundings of the Pacific Northwest or spending time with her amazing and supportive family and friends.


Clinic address: 708 Broadway, Suite105, Tacoma, WA 98402
Phone: 253-260-8087

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