Whether it’s because we’ve been pushing ourselves too hard, forgetting about those ever important rest days or we simply landed the wrong way, injuries can happen to the healthiest of people.
Most people take this time to recharge, and it’s usually a blessing in disguise to slow down and give your body a well-deserved rest. Anywhere between a week to a month off is usually the norm depending on the severity of your injury.
If you’re a regular GuavaGuy/Girl these injuries are often met with annoyance and denial.
Stop working out!? Blasphemy!
Some studies have shown training through pain can actually improve your chances of full recovery, and immobilising the injury may just end up causing you more problems in the future. Don’t get me wrong, you should never train through a serious injury, and should consult your doctor before trying any new workouts with your injury, but what are your options if you want to work out? You know your body better than anyone, and if you’ve injured your arms, legs or back, there is always another way to workout…
Injured your neck?
One perfect workout type for injured necks are long walks or hikes. It’s an easy, low-impact exercise type that shouldn’t cause you any pain at all. Running or jogging can sometimes cause discomfort from the jolting in the spine and neck, but fast walking is usually a perfect option. Getting your blood flowing after an injury is one of the best things you can do for swelling, fluid retention and inflammation as it increases circulation throughout the area and across the body.
Another great workout is indoor cycling. As outdoor cycling can be a bit dangerous for someone with an injury, indoor cycling is the perfect way to get that high-intensity cardio workout, with minimal risk. Whether it’s by yourself, or in a class, avoid any of the upper body segments (if there are any) to reduce the chance of something being strained. Making sure your posture is correct is another way to ensure you get an amazing workout, not another injury.
Injured your shoulders?
There are lots of body weight and weight-bearing exercises that you can do on your shoulders that don’t actually hurt them. Firstly, working on an incline for bench press is one of the most popular workouts for shoulder and chest mass. It is also one of the best workouts for a shoulder injury when done right. The incline allows the range of motion to be limited, taking the stress off the shoulder, whilst building strength in the chest.
Secondly, a perfect body weight exercise for a shoulder injury is plank. It’s a perfect workout for increasing strength in one of the most prone areas for injury – the rotator cuff. Keeping your shoulders and the top of your back curved when you hold plank will help you maintain good form. For an additional workout from this, swivel your feet to the right, whilst lifting your left arm towards the ceiling, and hold in side plank. Make sure you keep both arms active and as little weight in your shoulder as possible. After 15 seconds come back down to plank, and swap sides to repeat.
Injured your leg?
If you’ve injured your leg, finding a cardio outlet is a difficult but often necessary task for optimal flow of blood around the area. One of the best things for you to do it to get in the water. Swimming is a fantastic low-impact workout option for any knee, foot or thigh injury due to the buoyancy removing any irritation or pressure. Light swimming, even if it’s just the kicking of your legs helps you build muscle, improves blood flow and thus, stimulates tissue repair.
Walking in the water is another surprisingly difficult and beneficial workout to the legs. The added benefit of increasing strength in your hips is one of the many reasons this should be in your post-injury routine. Doing 5 or 6 laps of a shallow pool (just above the hips) is a perfect way to get the legs working and your injury healing faster.
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