One of the toughest things to overcome for any athlete is an injury. The recovery process requires patience and restraint, and not doing so can make matters worse. We provide a few tips for athletes recovering from injury.
Don’t Push It
One of the biggest mistakes many athletes make is coming back from an injury too soon. When you push a serious injury and play on it, you run the risk of causing an even bigger issue for yourself in the long run. Instead, you need to give your body the proper rest necessary. Gradually work your way back into practice before you start playing in games again.
During the time of recovery, it’s recommended that the athlete rehabilitate. This typically means working with a physical therapist, athletic trainer or personal trainer who will guide an athlete and help develop a routine to strengthen muscles, provide finely tuned muscle balance for the injured area, and build muscle to provide local dynamic stabilization of an injured area, if possible. Understand your recommended range of motion limits and exertion limits if your injury involves a joint, or a muscle or tendon near a joint. Also, learn whether you can train other parts of the body at higher levels while not overdoing it near the injured area. Also, consider participating in skills training workouts that don’t exert healing tissues, and use mental imagery to rehearse sports skills while the rehabilitation phase limits full physical performance.
Communicate with Your Coaches
While in recovery, it’s important to give a coach a timetable. Keeping a coach in the loop will help your team account for your loss. Let them know how you’re doing as you progress through your rehabilitation.
Listen to Your Doctor
Another given is to trust and listen to your doctor. Nobody will be more reliable than a doctor; however, you must honestly report with how you feel as well. When a doctor gives you a timetable, take that to heart.
Be A Good Teammate Off the Field
Even though you can’t play, there are still plenty of ways you can be a good teammate while on the sideline for practice and games. Support and motivate your teammates as you work back to full strength.
Take Care of Your Body
A final tip for athletes recovering from injury is to take better care of your body. Follow any and all directions from professionals as you recover. To avoid any future injuries, build back your strength in the gym and make sure you eat meals that provide enough protein and drink plenty of water. While you can’t control injuries, there are preventative measures you can take to put yourself in the best position possible.
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