FITNESS TIP

man holding back with red area indicating pain
Greg Lewis

STEPS TO CORRECTING A NAGGING INJURY

Greg Lewis, Certified Personal Trainer

Many of us deal with some form of injury, be it shoulders, back, or knees. I hear people complaining about a nagging issue that they have come to accept. There are ways, however, to reduce the impact those injuries can have on our lives.

The joint is encapsulated between opposing muscles. Balance between these muscles can produce strength and improved performance. Imbalances can cause pain and injury. From my experience, most chronic injuries are caused from muscle imbalances.

There are multiple steps that have to be taken to bring a joint back into balance. First, the overactive muscle must be inhibited. This can be accomplished by self- myofascial release (foam rolling or deep tissues massage). Then the muscle should be elongated through the proper static stretches. With the overactive muscle relaxed, the underactive muscle needs to be worked. It is very important to have a trained professional guide you through this process. We often times train for the “mirror,” focusing on exercising muscles that we can see or only working on muscles with a machine. Having some other eyes looking at your form can be critical in your rehabilitation. The use of free weights can become extremely important to build balance back in the joint.

Injury recovery can be a long road. There will be set backs. There will be a point where you think it’s unfixable. It takes time and consistency. Then one day, you may reach a point where there is no pain. Movements that were once avoided can be done with ease. There will be a point where you can go back to the things you love doing. Get help from someone who understands the body. Have them guide you in the right direction and, one day, those injuries may be a thing of the past.