Are you like the average active person? That even a when a minor injury occurs, it will sideline you...
Injuries can occur at work, on the sports field, as the result of an accident or through repetitive strain being placed on a joint or muscle. They can strike when you least expect it, and can have a debilitating effect on your everyday life and work.
Common injuries include:
Exercise can play a key role in injury recovery however by getting you back up to full speed as soon as possible.
One of the best ways to prevent injury is to listen to the warning signs the body gives out. The common expression “no pain, no gain” creates a large misconception. Pain is the body’s way of telling you something is not right!
The most effective way to minimise the risk of injury during exercise is to complete both a warm up and a cool down session of about 10 minutes duration. Light cardiovascular exercise using the same muscles that will be used during the main activity will prepare the body for exercise by:
A cool down is just as important as a warm up so following activity add some gentle stretches. Whether choosing to perform static stretches (by holding each position for 10-30 seconds) or performing dynamic stretches (by moving the body through a functional range of motion) flexibility is essential for the muscles, tendons and joints.
For those wanting to maintain their exercise regime whilst in recovery, you could consider the below alternatives:
High Box Squats – Half box squats shouldn’t be the primary exercise for people that are fit and healthy, but the High Box Squat is great for when those are experiencing an injury to their hips or if hips are feeling stiff and sore. By decreasing the range of hip flexion the High Box Squat will be less aggravating on the hip joint. Once the pain/injury is feeling better, it’s back to full range squats.
Floor Press – is a great alternative to the traditional Bench Press for those with sore shoulders. With a decreased range of motion there will be less stress on the shoulder capsule as well. The floor press is also a great exercise to help bust through that sticking point.
Sore knees require a re-focus from knee dominant movements such as Squats and Lunges to more hip dominant movements like Deadlifts (and variations), Back Extensions & Good Mornings. The more vertical shin angle during these exercises means less knee flexion and more hip flexion allowing different aspects of the lower body to be trained when knees aren’t being friendly.
Recovering from injury can be divided into two phases, the acute phase (immediate following the injury) and the chronic phase (long term recovery back to full strength and function).
Doctor or GP, Physiotherapist
In the acute phase your injury diagnosis is carried out by a general practitioner, sports doctor or in a hospital setting which may be followed by physiotherapy.
Accredited Exercise Physiologist (AEP)
An Accredited Exercise Physiologist can assist you with your long term return to strength and full function. They can also help you with exercises that will prevent injuries in the future.
Gym or Rehabilitation Clinic
A gym would be the perfect place to assist you in the recovery of an injury. Accredited Exercise Physiologists work in rehabilitation-specific gyms that cater for you returning to play/work, returning to function or returning to exercise.
Exercise in the mid-morning or early-afternoon
Exercising at a time in the day when your specific joint/injury isn’t overly fatigued and any pain medications are in full effect, is the right time to allow for the best outcomes from rehabilitation.