We wanted to share with you excerpts from an interview in Better Living with NFL great Roger Craig ["NFL Great Roger Craig Shares his Secret Weapon." Better Living Volume 1, Issue 2, 2015: 11-14. Print.] Enjoy!
BL: So, Roger, you understand the power of the chiropractic adjustment! Can you tell me a bit about how you came to understand its effects so completely?
RC: Of course! I am from Davenport, Iowa, and my whole family had been receiving treatments from Dr. Mitch Mally. He adjusted my mother and my grandmother, who was in her 90s! She would get adjustments twice a week. Her spine was so straight, she'd walk gracefully- it wasn't like she was old or hunched over. She was just fluid, man. She just walked fluidly. Dr. Mally took good care of her....
Now, I'm actually the spokesperson for the Nebraska Chiropractor Physicians Association!
BL: So not only do you get adjusted, but most of your family does as well?
RC: Yes! My five kids - they're all great athletes, you know? My daughter Rometra is an all-American basketball player. She even took third place in the world in the Tae Kwon Do Junior Championships. All of them know the importance of getting adjusted and staying healthy!
BL: What do you need in your life?
RC: Keeping your spine in line - that's what's so important in life, as you compete at a high level and your joints get knocked out of whack. Basically, if you never get your joints realigned, you damage other things in your body. Just like a car, when it hits a curb and the wheels go out of alignment, if you don't realign that car, it's going to break down other parts of the car. Your body's the same way. Really, I liked to be at my best every time I stepped on the football field, and by having chiropractic on my team, it really helped me play at a high level every week. I would recover so fast. People would look at me like, "What's wrong with this guy? Is he bionic or something?" I didn't miss a game for eight years! It just shows you how important maintenance is.
BL: Sounds like you understand the big idea.
RC: That's the only way you're going to keep going. It was revolutionary, you know - athletes getting adjustments. There were athletes before me that were getting adjustments.
BC: Like Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Arnold Schwarzenegger. I was fighting it because it wasn't popular in the 1980s. Trainers would hear about us getting an adjustment, and then the doctors would get pissed off.
BL: So how was the chiropractor influencing the sports world?
RC: Basically, what chiropractic was doing was enabling the players to perform well and not have to get surgery. If your shoulder was out of alignment, they would immediately want to operate. I'm like, "Dude!" "Oh no. No, no, no, no operation here." I said, "Let me spend some time with my chiropractor, and if it's not better, I'll come back to you."
BL: Right. So you got it worked out?
RC: My chiropractor, Nick, adjusted my shoulder because it was out of alignment, and then I strengthened the muscles around it, and I was done. Today my shoulder's fine. You now, most guys, they don't have options because they don't know about chiropractic.
BL: Because of your effort in educating others about the benefits of chiropractic and what it can do for athletes, there is now a chiropractor on all of the NFL teams.
RC: Right. Now they have their own chiropractor as one of their doctors, but they only let them do so much, you know?
BL: Either you're the best salesman in the world, or you're involved with a lot of stuff that's absolutely true in the health industry!
RC: I'm just saying, health and chiropractic plays a big role in my life - keeping my body tuned up all the time. It's something that you have to invest in. You just can't walk around like, "Well, I'm just going to be OK in life." You have to take the time to understand your body.
And the cool thing about chiropractic is that every chiropractor who adjust me gives me some education on the profession. I think a lot of people just don't know the benefits.
My grandmother's a prime example. Her spine was so straight - it was amazing. She did it for about 35 years. She believed in it, you know? I better believe in it! The benefit is also in prevention. If your hip is out, or your ankle, something else is going to go out. So you address those issues early and then it'll stop you from having major injuries.
BL: Any last words for our readers?
RC: Patients need to be educated in chiropractic. Most chiropractors don't go through the motions; they explain things to the patients. Patient's [sic] need to embrace was chiropractic is all about. They need to be educated about their body so they understand about their extremities and how to help prevent injuries. Invest in your body!