With the weather finally here, we can get out there and enjoy ourselves without the prospect of injury. Here are some strategies to prevent an injury from becoming debilitating.
1. Know how the injury happened. Check skills and movement pattern, frequency of injury of the specific joint
2. Prompt care is necessary otherwise long standing inflammation could produce secondary degenerative changes
3. Accurate assessment to prevent chronic changes with resulting edema leading to adhesions
4. Goal oriented, for both patient and therapist
5. Parameters of the sport and challenge the muscles and joints
A good habit can include:
-Look for biomechanical stresses specific to that sport. For example knee stretches on a swimmer practicing the whip kick.
-The feet and footwear are often overlooked in chronic injuries
1. Restore flexibility
2. Rebuild strength
3. Restore endurance
4. Remove hyper constriction
Delay the return if:
-there is increased swelling
-increase in pain
Return to activity:
1. Full pain free ROM of the affected joint
2. passive ROM
3. return to strength
4. rehabilitated muscle
5. return to normal movement pattern
Start slowly and increase speed.
Hold injury at normal distance for 3 months
Back off to lower level if discomfort begins at any stage
Get out there and enjoy getting back in the game.