Rest is an often prescribed mode of recovery. It is imperative after a long season, training session, or competition. It allows the body to heal and recover to be able to perform at the highest level. If an adequate amount and high quality of rest is not achieved, then athletic performance can suffer and potential injury can arise.
The problem arises when rest is prescribed for an injury. Now, I am not saying that rest is never indicated. There are times where a sport or activity needs to cease due to continued stress placed upon the body. Times where the level of stress exceeds the athlete’s capacity and their body cannot adequately recover.
If someone’s capacity cannot handle a certain level of stress, then rest may be indicated. But, if rest is the only modality that is prescribed, then we are missing the boat. When an athlete is injured, they are injured. They are NOT dead. Depending on the injury, there are usually other areas of the body that can be trained or other movement patterns at an “injured” area that can be trained pain-free.
Lower Body Injuries
For injuries or operations to the lower body, train the opposite leg. If someone is injured on their right leg, perform strength training on their non-involved leg. Movements such as:
Single Leg Deadlifts
For injuries that elicit pain in certain movement patterns, train pain-free patterns.
If someone has pain with squatting patterns, try hip hinging patterns such as:
Landmine Single Leg Deadlifts
Trap Bar Deadlifts
If someone has pain with hip hinging movements, try squatting patterns such as:
Goblet Squats to a Box
Upper Body Injuries
For injuries to the upper body, train the opposite arm!
1-Arm Cable Row
1-Arm Dumbbell Bench
½ Kneeling OH KB Press
½ kneeling Landmine Press
For pain with vertical/horizontal pressing movements, train horizontal/vertical pulling movements such as:
1-Arm Cable Row
1-Arm Face Pulls
Remember, if you are injured, you are not dead. You can still get a training effect by training the opposite limb and/or non-painful movement patterns.
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