If you’re an athlete, on a weight loss plan or simply enjoy working out, it can be frustrating to succomb to an exercise related injury. If it’s something minor that doesn’t require medical attention, you can usually quickly get back to the gym with pain medicine and a few days of rest.
But for those unfortunate occasions when the injury is severe, it can be discouraging to forgo exercising for months of painful rehabilitation.
During the first visits to an orthopedic specialist and physical therapist, you should relay to them that outside of fixing your issue, you’d like recommendations on how to stay fit and active throughout your recovery. Here are a few that you can try for yourself:
1. Work Your Other Half
Bon Secours In Motion Physical Therapy states that the most common sites for overuse injuries are the lower leg and knee. If you’re plagued with a leg injury, put your upper body to work by using resistance bands, kettle bells and small weights to stay toned and burn calories without compromising your lower body’s recovery.
Finding chair workouts on YouTube and taking classes for active older adults at your local gym are also great options. These classes are tailored for people who have physical limitations that make standing up difficult.
2. Get in the Water
Water is vital to your overall health and has many therapeutic benefits. Whether your injury involves your upper or lower body, getting fit in a body of water is a no-impact activity that takes pressure off your joints. Local YMCAs often offer water exercise classes designed specifically for people which chronic illnesses or who are recovering from an injury.
3. Modify Existing Workouts
If you broke your leg and enjoy running or step aerobics, you may be out of luck. However, you can modify your workout to put less strain on the site of your injury. Speak with your physical therapist or fitness class instructor and ask how you can modify a move. Pure Barre, for example., is a low-impact, high-intensity class that involves a range of motions from floor, platform and bar. Participants with injuries can take a break and sit out portions of the class that might distress their injury site.
The most important factors are listening to your body and not being afraid to ask questions. Recovering from an injury can be long and hard, but finding ways to stay active can help with a speedy recovery.