How strength training can help you recover from injury.
Injury has an impact on your muscular system that can far exceed the healing time of the injury itself. In this post we discuss why that is and how strength training can help you recover.
The greatest risk factor for injury is having had one previously. In fact some studies show you are twice as likely to suffer from injury if you’ve been injured before.
There’s a good reason for this.
The muscle weakness that results from injury, or may even have contributed to it in the first place, will persist unless addressed directly.
Strength training is the answer but not as you know it.
The solution is to get stronger, but not necessarily with conventional strength training.
Will adding 10 kg to your squat for example resolve your knee pain? Maybe, but maybe not.
Your brain will have produced a specific solution to work around your injury and keep you moving.
Think how you limp when you hurt yourself, or lift your arm differently if you experience shoulder pain.
Whilst this situation is always in some degree of flux, these compensations may persist despite lengthy injury rehab programmes.
Merely applying an exercise that should require the target muscle to contract might not be sufficient.
Your body’s incredible ability to compensate around injury, can be the confounding factor when trying to recover from it.
The compensation becomes the new way to achieve a motion and the more injuries you’ve had, the greater number of potential compensations you have in place.
How do you find weak muscles?
Fortunately deficits in your muscular system leave a calling card, restrictions in range of motion.
Not just ‘my hamstrings feel tight’ but measurable differences in motion when comparing one side of your body to the other.
It’s these restrictions that give us clues as to where we’re likely to find the muscle weakness we’re looking for.
For example, you may not be able to rotate your left hip inwards as far as your right. Or lift one arm as high as the other.
Once we’ve found a limitation in range of motion, we use muscle testing to decide which muscles require attention.
Just this part of the process alone will lead to gains in motion and stability. We’re not done yet though.
Specific muscle weakness requires specific strength training exercises.
As we said earlier just applying a general exercise may not be enough to strengthen muscles that your brain has been working around for some time.
To do that we need to get specific and isolate these weaker areas as much as possible. We have a number of hand picked strength training machines with this purpose in mind.
Our in depth knowledge of anatomy and exercise mechanics allows us to customise exercises further to target specific muscle weakness.
Locating, isolating and strengthening weak muscles is the key to progressing you away from your current situation.
In time this will provide you with a stronger, healthier, more resilient body.