Training Through Injury
Can I exercise when I’m injured?
Yes Yes YES!!**
well… most of the time!
When you’ve been working hard on getting into an exercise routine, there’s nothing worse than getting an injury that disrupts all of your hard work! But before you go hobbling straight back into your exercise session or worse, sit on the couch feeling sorry for yourself you need to get a few things sorted first.
Find out what’s wrong - Get a Diagnosis!
Make sure you seek advice from a trusted health professional about your injury. Don’t just try to ‘Dr Google’ it. You need to know what is wrong and how long it is expected to take to recover AND what you can do to help that process. The more you know about your injury and how to manage it the better.
Your health professional should tell you the following - if they don’t then ASK!!!
- A diagnosis - What’s the problem?
- A time frame for recovery - How long will it take until I am back to xyz?
- A treatment plan - What will they do to help you?
- A self-management plan - What can you do to help yourself?
Focus on what you CAN Do!
Generally speaking there are always options when it comes to exercise and working with an injury. We know that rest and inactivity is the enemy in most cases! The injury may need some activity modifications but the rest of your body can usually get on with it!
Ask your physio or other health professional questions focusing on what you can do and problem solve to see how to adapt your activities so that you can still exercise in some way.
For example you may not be able to do higher intensity jumping tasks with a lower leg injury but body-weight movements like a squat and upper body and core work will likely still be ok. So you can still do a pilates or yoga session or even a HIIT session - with careful modifications.
With the patients and athletes that I work with we always discuss their goals, time-frames and a plan for how to get straight back into exercise. Often in a matter of days after a soft tissue injury we will have people completing modified exercise sessions so that they can still do as much as possible, minimising the impact of the injury on the rest of the body and maintaining their exercise routine.
**A word of caution - not all injuries can follow this approach and certainly exercising whilst injured should be done under the guidance of a health professional to make sure you get it right and minimise the risks of making the injury worse. Please make sure you seek specific and individualised injury management advice from your physiotherapist or other health professional before returning to training.