Shannon's health and fitness blog

Working out when you’re injured

Anyone involved in sports or exercise will surely suffer from at least one injury, if not many more.  It comes with the territory.  However, having an injury, while annoying, doesn’t necessarily resign you to being a couch potato.  How you exercise and what type of exercise you do will depend on your injury. 

If you have just suffered an injury, the most important thing to do is go to the doctor and get a diagnosis.  Now, I’m the most anti-doctor person around and I’ m telling you this is very important.  Having some pictures taken of the affected body part can tell you whether you have a fracture.  MRI’s will tell you what kind, if any, of soft tissue damage has been done (torn ligaments, cartilage, etc.)  Knowing this information is important because it will determine how your injury should be treated.  If you do have significant damage, get yourself a great physical therapist for rehabilitation. 

Initial injuries need to go through the healing process before being exercised.  Chronic injuries have already gone through this and are free to be worked out.

My rule of thumb for exercising while injured is this:  If there is severe pain during exercise-STOP! And only do exercises that don’t involve that body part or do exercises for that area that don’t cause pain.  If there is moderate (tolerable) pain, it is ok to do the exercise ONLY if the pain stops when the exercise is done and does not make the injury worse that day or the day after.  If you have an increase in pain, swelling, inflammation,etc. then you weren’t ready for that exercise yet.  In order to know if an exercise is not good for you, you must only add one new exercise in at a time.

Doing exercise that does not cause pain to the injured area is quite beneficial.  It will help bring oxygen-righ blood to the area, which increases the healing process, and keep the joints and tissues free from atrophy and tightness.


January 17, 2010 - Posted by | Health, Personal training

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