This is a collaborative post.
While exercising, you might have made an awkward move or heard an audible crack before. Suddenly, you feel a sharp pain, and you know you’re injured. The worst part of getting hurt is that you can completely be thrown off your routine. Should you be exercising after an injury? When should you start?
Your immediate focus might be on treatment after an injury, but you’ll need to take time off from training soon afterwards. For athletes, this is even worse than getting injured. Hence, it’s essential to give your body the time it needs to heal, regardless of the severity of your injury or the length of your recovery period.
To avoid derailing your progress, or causing another damage, you need to be extra cautious when you start back into training again. By approaching the situation in the right way, you can still feel strong and accomplished during your recovery without overdoing it. Fortunately, read more to inform you of what you should do and shouldn’t do when exercising after an injury.
Do Maintain Low-Intensity Workout
You might be eager to return to the gym for a High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) workout once you’re back on your feet. However, you need to pump the brakes and lower the intensity of your workout.
Taking an exercise down a notch following an injury can be difficult on your ego, but it’s what you need to do. So, try exercising in a less challenging manner than before your injury or limit the amount of weight you can lift and the range of motion of the exercises.
During your recovery from a knee injury, you might want to reduce the weight of your squats, or you might go as far as possible without feeling pain. Your first few weeks back might be best spent without weights altogether and only exercising with body weight.
Don’t Rely On Painkillers
The pain you feel is your body’s way of informing you that something is wrong. However, you’ll be able to listen better to your body if you avoid taking painkillers before your workout. You’re doing more harm than good if your injury site hurts while you’re working out. You may find it hard to find pain-free exercises that strengthen injured areas on your feet. If this happens, seek out a podiatry centre or a physical therapist who has experience with injury recovery.
Do Proper Form And Movement
Another crucial aspect is to exercise properly when recovering from an injury. At the very least, make sure to practice proper form whenever you perform exercises that involve the previously injured area. No matter what exercise you are doing, these cues will ensure the correct form is maintained:
- Maintain a long spine: In this way, you can maintain a good posture without overcorrecting.
- Allow your shoulders to relax: Shoulders become tense as a result of stress. Let go of the tension, and your shoulders will fall into place naturally.
- Move with your hips: Your hips initiate movement during full-body and lower-body exercises. Avoid involving your lower back by keeping your spine long and moving from the hips.
Don’t Go For Long Runs
Don’t expect your body to immediately return to the level it was before you got injured. After a few days of not working out, your muscles and their endurance might begin to deteriorate. You’re more likely to experience this if you haven’t been active for more than two weeks. At this point, your aerobic capacity will decrease noticeably.
Hence, you must reduce the amount of training you do to lessen the risk of re-injury. Interval cycles and active resting are effective ways to recover your endurance quickly. You can implement this by alternating between running and fitness walking.
Unlike power walking, fitness walking has you swinging your arms deliberately during your brisk walk to increase muscle contractions. You’ll still be using your aerobic system, enabling you to recover to your original level sooner.
Do Remain Optimistic
Maintain as much optimism as possible, and seize the opportunity to turn your weaknesses into strengths. Most of the time, an injured person focuses on the negative aspects of being hurt and fails to appreciate what they can instead do. Perhaps you have a hip injury, then emphasize upper body exercises that don’t involve your hips.
Until then, determine which body parts you can safely work on and focus on improving those areas. Take your time to lay a firm foundation to reduce potential injuries.
An injury may appear to be a bump in the road, but it can be an opportunity for growth. To avoid delaying your progress or inflicting another injury, you must take extra care when returning to training. Following these pointers can help you recover steadily and reduce your risk of injuries. Pay attention to your body, and you’ll be sweating at the gym in no time.
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