So, you’ve just suffered an injury that’s going to keep you out of the game for a while. Whether it’s a few days, weeks or months, the prospect of having to sit on the sidelines can be pretty daunting.
You may be wondering what you can do to speed up your recovery and get back in the game as soon as possible.
The answer, unfortunately, isn’t always straightforward.
If you’re an athlete, when you’re injured, the last thing you want to do is stay inactive. But is it better to keep moving, or take a break and let your body heal?
Here’s a look at active recovery vs. passive recovery—and how each can help you get back in the game.
Passive recovery is easy to explain, so we’ll start there. Passive recovery is when you take complete rest from all physical activity and let your body heal itself.
This means no working out, no going for walks or runs, and no playing your sport.
You’re essentially just giving your body the time it needs to recover without any outside interference.
There are a few benefits to passive recovery. First, it allows your body to completely focus on healing the injury.
Second, it can help reduce inflammation and pain around the injury site. And third, it can help prevent further injuries by giving your body a chance to fully recover before resuming activity.
The downside of passive recovery is that it can lead to muscle atrophy (loss), and it can take longer for your injury to heal.
If you’re looking to get back in the game as soon as possible, passive recovery may not be the best option for you.
Active recovery is when you continue to move and exercise, but at a lower intensity than usual.
The idea behind active recovery is that by keeping your muscles moving, you can help prevent atrophy and loss of muscle mass.
It can also help improve blood flow to the injured area, which can potentially speed up healing.
Active recovery is often recommended for athletes because it can help you maintain your fitness level while you’re injured and prevent further injuries down the road.
As you can see, there are several important benefits to active recovery compared to passive recovery. However, the downside of active recovery is that if you don’t do it correctly, you could end up aggravating your injury or delaying your recovery.
It’s important to listen to your body and not push yourself too hard while you’re injured. Otherwise, you could end up doing more harm than good.
That’s why active recovery should be done with the guidance of a qualified practitioner, such as a physiotherapist. They can help you come up with a plan that’s tailored to your specific injury and fitness level.
Active Recovery for Athletes
At Continuum Health Centre, our Integrated Support Team (IST) supports active recovery by promoting mobility exercises, a full range of motion, and increasing blood flow through an entire muscle set.
Enhancing blood flow to muscles surrounding a joint is imperative to expedient recovery—by increasing blood flow, muscles are better able to remove waste products and deliver nutrients to support repair. In addition, mobilizing joints and muscles helps to prevent stiffness and joint contractures.
Our IST works with patients to develop an individualized plan that meets their needs and helps them to recover as quickly and safely as possible.
For more information about Active Recovery or any of our other services, contact Continuum Health Centre today.