So you have an injury. As you start on the road to recovery, you start to look back at your training and figure out where you went wrong and how you could’ve avoided it. However, it’s impossible to prevent every injury, especially acute or traumatic injuries. It’s also not entirely impossible to prevent overuse injuries. You could do everything right and yet still get injured. Most people focus on the past in preventing another injury after a previous injury.
No one likes to get injured and everyone looks for ways to stay injury-free. Once injured, however, the thought starts to creep up about preventing it from happening again in the future. In fact, studies suggest that your risk of injury significantly increases after being previously injured. Is there a way to lower that risk again and avoid future injuries?
Recover Properly And Fully
Many people think that once the pain subsides from an injury that automatically means they’re done with the recovery phase. Nevertheless, proper rehabilitation is more than getting rid of the pain associated with the injury. Some physical therapists still believe in focusing on the injury part of the body. However, many physical therapists and athletic trainers are increasingly seeing re-injury rates go down with a focus on the whole body.
Physical therapists are now focusing on strengthening supporting muscles in the recovery and rehabilitation phase. Not only is the goal to rehabilitate the injury, but to prevent it from happening again.
“We talk about prevention when we get to the point that they’ve finished therapy,” says Matt Gannot, a physical therapist for OSR Physical Therapy. “When we get to that point, we tell them what they need to do to continue injury-free.”
To continue to be injury-free, patients need to continue with the home program devised by their physical therapists. Focusing on strengthening supportive muscles as well as avoiding the mistakes that led to the previous injury will help in preventing a re-injury from occurring.
Start Re-Training Gradually
When an athlete gets injured, they miss their normal training routines, which leads to reduced fitness. Their performance goes down and it may be harder to work at the same level as pre-injury. Many times, after rehabilitation, many athletes think they can go back to the same level of training as before. However, this can lead to another injury.
The key to staying injury-free after coming out of an injury is to start training off slow and at a lower level. It’s important to have a gradual increase in training intensity so as to avoid over-exertion and even overtraining, both of which can lead to injury.
Talk To Your Physical Therapy Or Athletic Trainer
Another aspect of remaining injury-free after recovering from an injury is to maintain contact with your physical therapist or athletic trainer. It’s important to get answers to your questions if you have any. Especially if you’re starting to feel pain in the same area, it’s important to reach out to your physical therapist and seek advice. They are there to make sure you recover fully and stay injury-free.