Working out can be fun, rewarding and cause you to feel great. I love to hear when our clients give testimonials of reaching new levels of fitness, and getting stronger. There is a certain high or euphoric feeling that comes with completing a good workout session. What’s not fun is when you have an injury. Injuries can make your workout extra challenging and grueling. I have provided a few tips below to help you get a productive workout and reduce injuries.
Use the correct form: When you use good form you can obtain proper utilization of the entire targeted muscle group and alleviate injury. An appropriate exercise is completed when you align the targeted muscle’s origin with the muscle’s insertion and place tension on that muscle. This often involves aligning the joints to facilitate the muscles movement. When the joints are not aligned pain often occurs from improper tension of the ligaments and muscles. Pain can also happen when a weight is too heavy for the particular exercise. If you feel pain during your workout, stop immediately to reduce further injury. Many times you may only need to reposition yourself or drop in weight to continue the exercise. Proper form is vital in building strong muscles. Practice using proper form with each exercise.
Stretch Daily: Stretching is directly related to athletic performance. Muscles that are stretched can fully move and function as intended during a workout. Stretching lengthens your muscles and increases your range of motion for optimal performance. A good stretch involves isolating a muscle group under tension for at least 8 seconds.
Wear the correct shoes: Shoes are very essential to your structural functionality. Wearing an improper shoe can cause stress to your ankles, knees, shins, hips, and spine. Running shoes are the best for exercising in a fitness program. Running shoes provide the support and flexibility needed to perform a wide variety of exercises. I often see people wear shoes far past the limit that the shoes are intended to be used. If your tread is worn down or sole is coming apart it’s a good indication that you have used your shoes to the limit. Arch pain is a common injury that will occur if your insoles fall and no longer supports your arches. When this happens it is imperative to buy either new supportive insoles or new shoes that are fitted to your feet. Some stores have trained associates to help you choose the correct shoe for your foot type. These stores include Fleet Feet, Big Peach Running Co., and Sports Authority.
Find the appropriate care: Sometimes, I observe clients who live in intense pain because they do not get the proper care for their injury. Injuries can stem from a number of different causes and may need specialized attention to correct the problem. When dealing with a muscular injury you will need to see someone who is trained in Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation (PNF) or Neuromuscular Massage Therapy. If the belly of the muscle spasms it will cause intense pain and temporary immobilization of that area. There are special techniques that can be used to relax the muscles. PNF stretching uses your golgi tendon organs of your ligaments and muscle spindle fibers to loosen a particular muscular group. I use this active form of stretching many times when I have a client who catches a nasty cramp in their hamstring or calf. The PNF method is effective for muscle soreness and pain but not effective for nerve pain.
Nerve pain disorders need to be handled by a chiropractor or orthopedic surgeon. Many Chiropractors are very good at alleviating pain radiating from a compressed nerve. Common nerve based injuries include sciatic nerve pain, impingement of the shoulder, crooks in the neck, and back pain. More serious injuries require surgery to improve structural alignment and take pressure off of the nerve.
It is important to know that all practitioners are not the same and some will not be able to help you. For example; there are a wide variety of alternative methods that Chiropractors use in their practices making them different in nature. Some Chiropractors use crystals, PNF and metaphysical energy healing as the basis of their practice. I have not found those methods to be useful in relieving nerve pain. Traditional Chiropractic care places focus on the manipulation of the spine and joints to improve structural integrity and reduce pain from compressed nerves. A very good traditional Chiropractor who is experienced in relieving nerve pain is Dr. Justin Fierro. You can find out more about Dr. Justin by visiting his website: www.healthquestchiro.com
For more questions concerning injury prevention techniques and methods of healing please contact
David Nash at 770-367-2539 or visit us online at www.PinnacleFitnessCenter.com