Monday, October 1, 2012

Active Rest - "Can I Play?"

An athletic patient that has an injury will often ask the question "can I return to my sport."  This is a question that has many variables depending on the specifics and severity of the injury as well as the mechanics and type of sport they are returning to.

Research shows that early muscle activity of the injury promotes the healing process, speeds up recovery time and prevents deconditioning (muscle atrophy).  The days of prolonged bed rest for most injuries is not advised and actually can be detrimental to your recovery. 

I like to advise what is called "Active Rest".  This term sounds contradicting because if you rest how can you be active?  Active Rest means to do activities that avoid aggravating movements.  In order to prescribe an Active Rest exercise program the physician must have a deep understanding of the movements that aggrevate the specific injury and knowledge of the sport or activity that you are returning to.  The mechanics of the sport have to be evaluated so that the physician can design a specific fitness plan that doesn't make your injury worse.  

Criteria that must be met before an athlete returns to sport:

  • no visible swelling
  • full active range of motion
  • limited to no pain in the area
  • ability to perform the functions of the sport
  • mental preparedness of getting back to the activity

At SCNHS we hold certifications in CrossFit training, personal training as well as being strength and conditioning specialists.  We are qualified and knowledgeable in exercise and sports bio-mechanics and can design a training program to keep you active and help you to heal as quick as possible.  The days of recommended prolonged bed rest and avoiding all activity are over.  If you are told to stop doing what you love to do it is probably from someone that is unfamiliar with sports injuries and the benefits of Active Rest.  Please do not hesitate to contact us and have us review your injury and treatment plan.

Stay Active,

Dr. Todd Rodman, DC CSCS

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