Returning from Injury

Many of us will experience an injury of some form or other in our lifetimes. When I was 20 I bent over to pick up some laundry and my back just went. I could barely move for two weeks. Whatever the nature of your injury, how you work to overcome it can be the difference between reinjury and getting back to where you were before.

Injuries can take a long-time to recover fully from. Today’s society pushes us towards the quick-fix. Sure, a trip to the physio or some anti-inflammatories can make you feel better but have they fixed the underlying cause of the injury or just the symptoms?

For me, it wasn’t until I started Pilates in my 30s that I realised the role my poor core stability and strength played in my back injury. At the time I just wanted to be out of pain and moving again as soon as possible.

Case in point, a client of mine loves CrossFit and the heavy lifting that goes with it. But injury has challenged her this year. Many people in this situation would either give up (and feel sorry for themselves) or quick-fix a patch over it to get back into what they loved ASAP.

My client? She made the decision that in order to do what she loves (lift) she’d also have to do other things. Whilst these don’t inspire her in quite the same way they enable her to do what she loves in the long-term. This included a strict and structured eight-week rehab program to build back up to lifting again as well as ongoing Pilates sessions three times per week. Initially frustrating but after a while my client started focusing on the wins and positives. So she’ll be back lifting again with amazing shoulder stability, a super strong core and a butt that works likes it’s supposed to.

If you’re injured, listen to your health professional. If they give you exercises to do at home… do them! If they tell you to rest… rest! And take the time to figure out why you got injured in the first place. Did you do something wrong? Or is there an underlying weakness that you need to address first? Most of all, take your time. Better to take 12 weeks out and return to the activity that moves you to move fighting fit and ready to go than taking 6 weeks and reinjuring yourself day 1.

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