If you are a runner, triathlete, cyclists – if you are an athlete, the odds are good that at some point, you will have an injury! The most important thing you can do is to make a plan to come back stronger!I was off running for over 8 weeks due to knee pain which turned out to be Patellofemoral syndrome. The first few weeks were miserable (not sure if it was me or my family who was more miserable). With 5 kids, running had become my only quiet time and provided much needed sanity. I tried a lot of different things, talked to many athletes and doctors, and learned a lot during that time. These tips proved to be helpful!
1) Sign up!
Sign up for a class to increase your strength and flexibility like yoga. You may think you can buy a video and do it on your own – be realistic!
- The odds are pretty good that it will be harder to stay committed if it is just you and the video!
- You will be more likely to push yourself if you are in a class.
- A certified instructor will be able to give you good modifications to avoid aggravating your injury.
- There are many different styles of yoga, find the right one for you!
Yoga is also perfect for preventing further injuries which is why I will continue to do yoga!
2) Find a group
Swimming and cycling are non impact activities and can help keep you cardiovascularly strong during recovery times. There are always groups doing swim workouts and rides – ask your local bike &/or run shop. Check to see if there is a masters swim club near you – chances are good they know of good swim groups you could join. Again, the benefits of having a group rather than doing it on your own are many!
3) Talk to people!
You would be surprised how many athletes there are who have had the same injury! You can learn a lot from someone who has gone through the same injury. If you have trouble finding someone locally, there are triathlon (for beginners and advanced triathletes) and running forums online!
4) Gurus & Gadgets!
There are great gadgets to help speed up recovery time!
- A.R.T. (Active Release Technique) can be a great non invasive place to start for treatment. I found A.R.T to be the most beneficial treatment for my knee issues!
- Ultrasound bone machines speed up bone healing after a fracture. This was a great aid for our daughters stress fractured shin.
- Ultrasound machines for soft tissue injuries
- Foam rollers – Check out this article from Running Times Magazine
- Get a video run or bike analysis from a trained coach. Correct running and cycling form can prevent re-injury
Keeping a journal will help in a lot of ways. Writing your feelings down helps not only our emotional well being, but also helpful to see physical progress. It can also help figure out problems with recovery and pinpoint the cause.
Another benefit to journaling, you will be able to look back and see ways that you can help an injured friend!
Do you have any tips to share?