We see it all the time – athletes who go through physical therapy then jump back into activity, trying to pick up right where they left off. Well, guess what? Those athletes end up right back here in no time! To return to activity safely and avoid getting injured again, follow these PT tips so you not only get back in the game, but stay there, too!
- Like we said, one of the most important rules of returning to activity is gradually building your fitness back up. PT has helped your injury heal and returned function, but your muscles need to slowly regain strength and mobility, until they get used to being active once again. Don’t ask too much of them too soon!
- Keep up with your PT exercises. Consistency is key. Continuing your physical therapy exercises while you gradually get back into the swing of things will help the recovery process go smoothly.
- Actively rest. What do we mean by that? Well, if you cross-train with low-impact activities like yoga, lifting weights, or swimming, you’re actually resting your injury while still staying fit. This reduces repetitive stress, too, which in turn reduces your chances of re-injury.
- Stop if you feel pain or experience swelling. These are sure signs that you are not quite ready to return to sport.
- Don’t attempt to come back unless you have full range of motion, feel close to full strength, and do not have any trouble bearing weight. You don’t want to alter your gait, overcompensate for your injury, and end up with even more problems. Your physical therapist will help you determine if you’re ready and can return to activity safely.
Follow our lead, and these rules, and you’ll be back to doing the things you love before you know it, instead of back to see us! If you need help recovering from an injury and could use more tips for returning to activity safely, just give us a call at (303) 805-5156 and we’ll be happy to help!