Rehabilitation is the process of regaining full function following injury. This involves restoring flexibility, mobility, stability, balance, strength, endurance and power, and is achieved progressing through a structured program of exercise & training. Rehabilitation is as important as treatment following an injury but unfortunately is often overlooked.
The aim of a rehabilitation program is to regain pre-injury levels in all aspects of physical fitness. A full rehabilitation and strengthening program is essential to ensure full recovery and in order to prevent re-injuries.
Early stage rehabilitation.
Regardless of the type of sports injury, the principles of rehabilitation are often the same. It is important to understand that everyone is different and will respond to different exercises and treatment regimes at different rates. Your rehabilitation program will restore muscle strength, endurance and power, improve flexiblity, priorioception, stability and balance as well as more sports specific or functional exercises.
There are 3 recognized stages of rehabilitation, these are:
- Early stage rehabilitation is gentle exercise allowing for the damaged tissue to heal. This stage is often rushed and will result in poor quality healing and will be prone to re-injury.
- Mid stage rehabilitation involves progressively loading the muscles/tendons/bones/ligaments to develop tensile strength producing a healed tissue that will be able to withstand the stresses and strains of everyday life and exercise.
- Late - the final stage (late) of rehabilitation is where the tissue adapts and is stressed using functional exercises and drills to ensure the body is ready to return to play.
Late stage rehabilitation & injury prevention.
Injury prevention is one of the most important aspects of rehabilitation and is often overlooked. Non-contact injuries should always be preventable, so if you always seem to picking up niggles all on your own then something is very wrong!
If you come to my clinic with a sports injury (or any other injury or pain or problem) DO NOT expect to lie on the treatment table for a few sessions and experience a miracle (although this does happen from time to time!). You will be required to take part in a longer term rehabilitation process, either under regular supervision with me or taking yourself through a bespoke rehabilitation program custom designed by me. It is the only way that you can be sure the injury will not reoccur.