Sports injuries really suck. How often do we train, everything is going well and then we are struck down, preventing us from achieving what we want?
Things were on the up, I had a few niggles here and there, nothing much I couldn’t do in training, when disaster struck. After keeping away from tuck jumps for a long time due to a long standing knee issue, I decided to reintroduce them, BIG mistake! 25 seconds in and a funny kind of popping/movement and there it was a knee injury. How much damage was unclear, the local accident and emergency department sent me off with painkillers and crutches!
Turns out is a cartilage tear in my left knee. Ligament damage had masked the real damage, the ligament was only pulled, the cartilage wasn’t so lucky.
Injuries shouldn’t stop you
Injuries don’t necessarily need to stop your training. If you injure your knee for example or tweak your wrist, work around them. If you can’t do lower body, do upper body. Switch it around do different types of strength training (Maximal, speed, explosive), even upper body conditioning is possible depending on the nature of your injury.
If you box or use the heavy bag as a conditioning tool and your wrist is hurting, use it as an opportunity to train your other arm, improve skill work, just keep things moving.
A knee injury years ago prevented me from martial arts training and squatting so I switched it around I decided to use running from sprint training to middle distance. I even went a bit crazy and was able complete 4 half marathons, and let’s face it everyone has to be crazy to run half marathons and insane to run a full one!
Work around the injury
The point is this, every time I have had an injury preventing some type of training, I have adapted to train in a different way. An injury is NO EXCUSE to stop training. This doesn’t mean to say I am advocating training an injury, just adjusting my training to work around it.
Too many people get a niggle and just stop everything, gym visits stop, TV goes on, job stopped. It does not have to be that way.
Now I am not saying go gung ho and ignore it, hoping it will go away, but by being sensible about it there are more options that you might realise.
I once had a wrist injury, I reduced the volume of training with the wrist but I still performed mobility drills and performed in a range motion so as not to aggravate it.
For example: I did one arm dumbbell exercises, hell I even boxed the bag one handed. It didn’t stop me and it shouldn’t stop you.
Prevention is KEY!
I have learnt over the years that you have to have a proper program in place to protect yourself. For a long time I took that as warming up before strenuous exercise as my training is always strenuous (is there any other kind?) and stretching. But it is much more than that. Daily stretching and joint mobility work is a must, deep tissue massage is a bonus if you can find a good masseur and better yet a chiropractor or an osteopath.
Tennis ball /foam roller
If you can’t find or afford a masseur or osteopath/chiropractor all is not lost. Foam rolling is an affective form of self massage and goes a long way to ironing out any knots and for more specific areas a tennis ball is ideal, but are an inexpensive way of keeping you injury free.
There is so much you can learn here. In fact I would say for longitivity in your training, mobility work and foam rolling are as important as your training sessions. Look after your joints and muscles!
Getting it treated
For me, this has always been the sticking point. Knowing who to turn to. I find it difficult in the UK to find good people to help with injuries. Word of mouth is scarce, but I do know some good people. Sometimes however the internet is your friend. I had developed another knee issue on the same problem knee. Physios here thought it was tendonitis, but it wouldn’t go. I found some called Keith Scott in America on Jason Ferruggia’s muscle gaining secrets forum and told me what it was, gave me some advice, I followed it and it was sorted.
Don’t ever give up on something, if you know there is a problem, keep looking until you find someone who can help.
Be strong and intelligent, Take care of yourself!Google+