What is up Gym N Japan Fam! If you’re anything like the both of us, you’ve sustained injury after injury over the last few months. Or maybe you have an injury now and you’re missing out on the gym. We are here today to tell you it is not all bad news and we are going to help you get back on your feet.
I, Jake, am usually quite good with never getting injuries. Throughout my life my worst 2 injuries were a broken foot and shoulder surgery for a messed up labrum. This was all around 4-6 years ago now, and so, I think my luck has finally run out. At the beginning of this year I did a stress fracture in my left foot, then hurt my right AC joint near my shoulder…and now on the past weekend, I did a grade 2 hamstring tear playing footy. Very fun times.
I (Haydon) have always had injuries throughout my life from broken arms, pulled back muscles, knee injuries, tendinopathy etc etc you get it I am always injured… Some of these were obviously preventable and probably could have been avoided if I warmed up properly and stretched regularly. Probably my worst injury is my knee injury which has been on and off causing pain for years but I do know how to manage it these days. The funny thing about this injury is that it happened when I was sitting down on one of those concrete tables and just smacked my knee into it.
Alright now that we have talked too much about ourselves here are a few ways to get yourself back out there! Just note that all these tips don’t have to be used together but are some ideas to get you back out there. Obviously some of these can be used even if you aren’t injured and great as a preventative measure.
So what are some things we can do to help with recovering from these injuries?
1. See your physio
Probably your first stop in the recovery process because it is good to know exactly what you are dealing with. Obviously if you don’t know what it is you won’t be able to treat it very well so it’s best to seek medical advice if the injury is bad/ not healing within a few days.
Note with physios, find one that has other specialties in the same practice because if it is a complex case they may be able to better diagnose you. For example some physio practices have sports doctors, podiatrists and other physios who specialise in certain injuries. They will consult the onsite doctor or specialist if they are unsure about the injury so you are getting an additional service for free!
2. Stretching/Foam rolling
I (Haydon) don’t like stretching because it hurts and I am not flexible. However there are so many benefits to this which include decreasing your risk of injury which will help you out in the long run. Definitely one of the best preventative things you can do
Don’t we all love a bit of self-care every now and then? This one is easy to do because someone else does all the work while you just relax. On top of stretching and foam rolling like we should do for pre-hab and before we have injuries, getting a massage can help find really tight muscles or areas which may be contributing or aggravating your injuries.
Also I will add other therapies under this banner because they do it at the massage place.
- Dry Needling
- Gua Sha/ Cupping: This makes you look like a bad ass after too
- Hot stone massage
- Etc Etc
4. Strengthening exercises
If you are a runner or a gym goer, slow return to activity through an appropriate strength program will help get the injured soft tissue structures strong again or create more stability in the case of any joint related injuries. Alright here we are also talking about those dreaded physio exercises… with the little band that they charge you extra for. Good news! These exercises definitely do help with your recovery and can be done in the comfort of your own home. Depending on the injury there will be multiple exercises you can do to help with your recovery because if you didn’t know, the body is connected in some way.
Finally and probably the most important one of all! And depending on the person it can be the hardest because you feel like a piece of garbage if you don’t exercise... Think of this as time to catch up on your favourite anime maybe start one piece? :P I know all you gym buffs and elite athletes out there find it very difficult to sit still for a few weeks but if you have to, make sure to pick some low impact exercises that don’t aggravate the injury.
Depending on the injury here are a few exercises so you don’t feel bad
- Strength exercises
6. Technique training
I (Haydon) am a huge believer in dealing with an injury by analysing the technique/ movements. This is because sometimes it’s not the strength of the muscle that has failed you but it’s your own technique. Even if you do every rehab and strength exercise possible but your technique is terrible you will just reinjure yourself. This is why all physios have repeat customers for the same injury ;) but you didn’t hear that from me lol.
I am a runner so I am going to use this as an example because there's so many things biomechanics and technique wise we can talk about. With running everyone has their own style which kinda just happens and evolves when you grow up as it’s a pretty natural thing. With it being semi natural, some people pick up some bad habits while running that can increase your risk of injury. For example people who excessively heel strike will be more susceptible to knee injuries and Achilles injuries as it is a jolty motion that puts excess pressure on those areas. This was something I worked on quite a lot with my knee injury and trying to landing more midfoot with each stride. I got an exercise physiologist who helped me fix my technique by filming me, giving me strengthening exercises, running/ form training then a returning to running program.
7. Rub n tug
Good for relaxation and de-stressing. Not good if you have an arm injury though.
Bigger muscles get damaged less, simple.
*Mum I am joking I swear
And there you have it! We are done for another week yeeet!
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