Consistency...in fixing Sports Injuries
So you have a sports injury (or injury that’s not necessarily caused by sport) and it just won't settle and disappear.
You have waited 4-6 weeks already and its now starting to get frustrating. It's stopping you from training, competing or working well. It might even be affecting your sleep.
By now you probably still haven't given up hope of the injury getting better on its own. But maybe it's time to take the plunge and get some help - particularly if you want to fast track your recovery.
By now your partner is probably as fed up as you with the injury because you can't stop moaning about it :-).
Well it's time to begin to help yourself
What’s the next step you really should be taking to get yourself going again? Well, let us explain more because if you can begin to help yourself, well you are going to start to feel better, be more positive and your partner will be happy as well (as your moaning and groaning begins to dry up).
The topic of this post is about consistency in performing Physio rehab when recovering from injury, (sports related or not).
So what do I mean by consistency in Physio rehab exercises?
Well…dedication to sticking with a rehab regime and consistently sticking to it for probably 6 weeks + - yeah not what you wanted to hear?, but likely to be more fun than not doing anything for 6 weeks (which is probably what you have been doing up until this point).
‘Straight forward’ injuries, if there is such a thing, such as muscular strains and ligament sprains require input, even at the most basic level. When we are injured the body works hard, and a heck of a lot harder than you would imagine to self-heal. Now, this is all good and well, but you need to do yourself a favour and help out a little (or probably even quite a lot in all reality) and this is where consistency in rehab comes from. In order for you to make lasting changes muscle, ligament, tendon and the Cardio Vascular system you need to stick to training or rehab, or whatever you want to term it.
The body does respond to a training regime or Rehab programme, but it takes time, weeks in fact of Consistent Rehab or training. Let me explain…
If I go to the gym 1 x per week and lift the smallest dumbbells that I can find am I likely to get rippling muscles that look good on the beach and make me stronger? Not likely - I’d need to consistently train with heavier weights and be specific about training for increasing muscle size (consistency).
If I'm a novice runner and I want to train to run a half marathon, then I could take in 1 run a week and stick to plodding along at an 11-minute mile pace, at this rate I'm not likely to ever be able to run 13.1 miles anytime soon am I? I need to base my training towards being able to run 13.1 miles, and make it specific to this (by being consistent in my training by gradually increasing the distance of my training runs).
If I eat nothing but chips every day of the week for lunch and follow this by eating nothing but pizza for dinner - I'm probably going to get heavier and fatter and prone to a heart attack because I've been consistent…in eating a crappy diet that is.
CONSISTENCY IS KEY
What I'm suggesting is that consistently doing nothing about a sports injury means my injury is likely to persist for longer than it should, and improve at a very slow rate. But if I addressed the injury and began to stretch out damaged or scarred muscle, and consistently did it - it will probably help.
If I stuck to a specific programme of exercise that was designed to help my torn muscle heal and get stronger it’s likely to heal in time (with accurate and consistent loading).
If I stuck to and consistently performed balance exercises to help heal damaged ankle ligaments, then I'd probably end up with better balance and stronger ligaments in the longer term, get it?
Of course its not as simple as doing willy-nilly exercises. They need to be specific and accurate for the particular Sports injury that you have.
Keep rehab consistent, and accurate and Progressive! - the other key ingredients to a successful rehab programme.
I only have to consider how we treat the pros over at Cheltenham Town FC on a day to day basis - you might believe it now when I tell you that we treat them with specific, accurate and progressive exercise that’s also consistent. It's their job but these guys are doing their Physio rehab every day, with perhaps 1 rest day a week. It’s why they seem to get back to sport quicker than us mere mortals - because they are treated with consistent frequency.
Sure there is more to overcoming injury than just doing the basics every day. But as a good starting point, you really should be doing your basic rehab , probably consisting of stretching and strengthening every day - consistently :-)
You know where we are - you can find our contact details on the website. If you need more input, we’d love to help you if we can.
Because we love what we do and love helping people out.
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The Team at Straight Back
Consistency is the Key