From personal trainers to coaches and even apps on our phone, today we have an abundance of resources to help improve our athletic abilities for all levels of play. Unfortunately, sports can lead to injuries. And when that happens, the key to getting back on the field, the court, the track, or simply everyday life, is the way you recover.
Recovery can be quick or can take time, depending on the injury. At clinics with sports performance zones, like that available at Anne Arundel Medical Group (AAMG) Physical Therapy – Jennifer Square, physical therapists can combine traditional physical therapy with sports performance practices to support an individual’s ability to perform at their peak level and recover successfully.
You might not realize it but your recovery period has many benefits, which is why you should take it seriously. Below are some ways physical therapy can change your sports performance:
Avoid training hazards and future injuries. Training with a physical therapist whose expertise is in both sports and rehabilitation can help you get back in the game better than ever before. A provider can help you heal and perform at your highest level while also showing you how to avoid potential training hazards or future injuries. This maintenance approach is similar to how we see a dentist several times a year for preventative care and not just before having a cavity or tooth pain.
Gain an edge in sports or higher-level hobbies. Of course, as a patient, you must be willing to work to bridge the gap between rehabilitation and performance. Look for a program that provides a personalized exercise program for sport-specific training, total body strength, power, stamina, flexibility and movement.
Spot incorrect patterns of movement. Identifying muscle weaknesses, tightness and coordination problems can help you avoid injury and move more efficiently within your sport of choice. For example, if you are concerned with keeping up with the pace of play or feel like you can’t hit the ball as well as you should, seek a physical therapist who can correct improper movement patterns to help you get back on the court – better, faster and stronger.
Perform exercises in a controlled, comfortable environment. Perform higher-level exercises in an environment with skilled experts prior to doing them on your own. If you pair that with innovative techniques, you can easily access parts of recovery not typically available in traditional physical therapy clinics. For example, think instrument-assisted soft tissue massage, cupping, blood-flow restriction training and dry needling.