How Physical Therapy Can Improve Your Athletic Performance
Hi, Dr. Meredith Warner here –
If you are physically active, chances are you have already or will encounter sports injuries. Shin splints, for example, are common in runners – as are injuries to the knee joint and surrounding tissues. Muscle cramps, sport’s hernias, adductor contractures, sprains and strains; these are all common to athletes.
Rest is most often recommended following such injuries, but physical therapy can be equally important, and help you get on the road to recovery, faster.
Adapting your exercise routine in a controlled physical therapy environment can help you rebuild strength and maintain range of motion while actively recovering from your injury. Here at Warner Orthopedics & Wellness, our expert team of physical therapists and surgeons assess your injury, current state of fitness, and review your goals before recommending a path of treatment.
See a Physical Therapist Before You’re Injured, not After
Treatment often involves adaptation of your regular routines to accommodate your injury. If you are a runner with a knee injury, your physical therapist may employ certain stretches to improve flexibility in the joint, and combine it with balance or strength training exercise to further stabilize the joint and prepare you for a return to your running habits. Additionally, too often the stabilizing and performance-enhancing abilities of the hip complex are ignored; we won’t do that. The hip and core are massively important for performance of all sports and really all daily activities.
Common injuries for athletes include strains, swollen muscles, sprains, end even fractures and dislocations. These types of injuries impact more than just the affected area – if it changes the way you walk, for example, your healthy leg and foot may be negatively impacted by an increase in load-bearing from limping. There are amazing and complex fascial interconnections throughout the body that account for our ability to function in an upright position efficiently. It is important for optimal aging and performance to make sure these fascial trains are balanced and intact.
Even if you haven’t experienced an injury, and would simply like to overcome barriers to improving your fitness and to improve personal performance at your sport, it is a good idea to visit a physical therapist for guidance. A good PT will help you manage pain and heal from injury, but a great PT will also pinpoint areas of weakness and adapt your fitness and wellness routine to prevent future damage and improve performance. Remember, most professional athletes, dancers and performers have physical and massage therapists on speed dial. We believe that you deserve the same level of body care.
Make Physical Therapy Your First Stop Towards Recovery
Even if you are experiencing only a little pain, we recommend seeing a physical therapist before your condition worsens. They will be able to discover what is causing it and prevent it from getting worse, and recommend treatment for the areas that may have contributed to your pain – such as inflexible joints, weak muscles, etc.
Your physical therapist can also recommend more regular stretching exercises that can prevent injuries and pain in the first place. At Warner Orthopedics & Wellness, we want to make sure you maintain optimal health naturally, before injuries occur.