Bouncing Back from Injury

Updated: Jul 10, 2020

Injuries are part and parcel during anyone's journey through fitness, sports and health, it is something is almost impossible to avoid and if you go through your whole career without some sort of injury, then that is simply a miracle and you should probably buy a lottery ticket.

While there a some varying definitions of injuries, there is no consistency or standardised definition of what a sports injury is, and multiple injury definitions have been proposed from losing time, medical attention and any sort of physical complaint. For example, some sports injury studies define an injury as “an event occurring during a match or training session that required medical attention (including self-treatment), or caused the player to miss at least one scheduled match or team training session” (McNoe and Chalmers, 2010), others define it as “any injury that prevents a player from taking a full part in all training and match play activities typically planned for that day, where the injury has been there for a period greater than 24h from midnight at the end of the day that the injury was sustained” (Blake et al., 2014). As a result of this lack of consensus, and the intricacies of different sports, specific injury definitions have been developed for particular sports, such as cricket (Orchard et al., 2005) and soccer (Fuller et al., 2006).

So, its probably safe to say that you have fit into one of those definitions at some point in your fitness career. I have certainly had my fair share of some significant sporting injuries and some minor ones. Which, has definitely helped me to see the psychological and physiological impact it has on an individual. Being told to REST and do nothing is always tough when you are particularly sporty or enjoy the gym. You start to feel down, lose motivation and when you can train you are not as capable as before. It takes it out of you. But, what I have learnt is, no matter how big or small the injury is, its all about goal setting. Like most things in health and fitness, setting those short term goals are going to keep you motivated! When you hit these short term goals its going to give you that confidence boost to keep on pushing yourself. Then finally, the sense of achievement when you come back even stronger after injury is unbelievable and you will feel incredible proud of yourself for not stopping when it would have been easier to do so. If you are someone who is unsure of how to return to exercise safely; seek professional help; in the form of a qualified personal trainer, physio or doctor depending on how serious the injury is and what stage you are at..

Take away points:

  • Accept the injury. Avoid doing exercise that will cause even more harm.

  • Seek professional help if you need to.

  • Set those short, medium and long term goals (write them down).

  • Think about the sense of achievement when you come back stronger.

  • Bonus: Work on some weakness now you have more time e.g. mobility, core strength...

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