Exactly How to Workout Around Injuries
Injuries, aches, and pains are certainly no fun.
They can be just as mentally frustrating as they are physically.
Here at Dynamic Strength and Conditioning, we have new members starting with us every day.
Most, if not all, of our new members come to us with some kind of current or previous injury history.
Injured shoulders and elbows.
You name it, we've seen it.
Over the years we have built quite a niche for helping people get into a consistent workout routine, improve their fitness, lose weight, and feel their best, even with a current injury or limitation.
Most often these injuries and painful joints like knees and hips actually improve.
Yes, you can still reach your fitness goals even with a long list of injuries.
You see, movement is medicine.
But before we get into why, one thing we want to make clear is that we certainly understand your concern.
Being in pain is not fun and you don't want it to get worse.
Neither do we.
We do want you to know that we've got your back!
Imagine being able to workout, burn calories, build strength, shred fat, and muscle all the while working around your injury and pain.
That's where we come in.
You see, with the right direction, support, guidance, and exercises you can crush your goals and feel your BEST regardless of your past!
Today we're going to talk about why movement is your best medicine and give you step-by-step instructions on how exactly to workout around just about any injury to get you feeling GREAT!
"Let movement be thy medicine."
Our bodies and our brains crave movement.
It keeps us strong.
It keeps us mobile and flexible.
It keeps us moving freely.
It promotes blood flow to the affected joints, promoting healing.
It creates a natural lubricant for our joints.
It keeps our brains happy. 😀
Yes, endorphin-producing exercise has been well documented to be a more powerful anti-depressant than medication!
It improves brain power through improving your mood, memory, productivity and learning, while decreasing stress and anxiety.
What does a lack of movement cause?
Muscle and joint stiffness.
Lack of blood flow.
A reduction in mood and an increase in anxiety.
As you can see there is a big connection between pain and stiffness with a lack of movement.
We get it though.
You want to protect the effected area so you move (it) less.
This in turn causes more stiffness, more discomfort, less healing, and adds fuel to the fire.
Remember that when we move, we do some great things for the healing process within our body.
We first create blood flow to the joints we are working.
This increases temperature in the body and the joint, removes waste products, increases mobility, and flushes the area with nutrient rich blood, crucial for healing.
The great thing about movement and healing is that we do not even need to work the affected area.
Exercising and improving your fitness will actually decrease the time it takes for your injury to heal, even if you completely avoid the injured area.
The healthier and more fit you are the quicker you will heal.
Research has even shown a phenomenon called "cross-education" to be a powerful part of the healing process.
Say your right arm was in a cast.
By working out using just your left arm, you actually strengthen your right arm and speed its recovery in the process. This is due to the neural connection between your arms and legs. Pretty cool huh?
Since you don't need to work the injured areas to receive the healing benefits of movement, we are able to help you keep moving despite your injuries.
Are you ready to get started?
Today, we're going to take you through each major joint in the body, and show you exactly what exercises to avoid and what exercises you can do to improve your fitness, gain strength, lose weight, and improve your injury!
Let's get into it!
1| Bad Knees
Avoid: Any movements that cause pain or discomfort. These are typically impact exercises like jumping and running, as well as what's known as knee-dominant movements like squats and lunges that cause a lot of knee bending.
Do: Focus on what's known as hip-dominant lower-body exercises like the ones you will see in the video below.
These movements take the stress off your knees and place it on your hamstrings and glutes -- which are very important to keep strong for knee health.
You can also shift your workouts to have more of an upper-body and core emphasis with exercises like presses, rows, curls, and planks.
2| Bad Low Back
Avoid: Any movements that cause pain or discomfort. These are typically impact exercises that cause you to bend forward like deadlifts and kettlebell swings. Also avoid exercises that cause you to twist or rotate.
Do: Focus on keeping the weights lighter or get rid of them completely and focus on exercises that keep you and your spine upright and stable, like those in the video below.
The key is to select exercises that focus on keeping your low-back stable and help build core strength.
3| Bad Shoulders
Avoid: Any movements that cause pain or discomfort. These are typically exercises that cause you to reach or press a weight overhead.
Do: Focus on pain-free upper-body exercises like rows that keep your shoulder in a safe position and build shoulder strength and better posture.
You can also shift your workouts to have more of a lower-body emphasis with exercises like squats, deadlifts, and lunges.
4| Bad Feet or Ankles
Avoid: Any movements that cause pain or discomfort. These are typically impact exercises like running, jumping, jump-roping, or any movements that cause you to move side-to-side.
Do: Focus on exercises that keep your feet flat and grounded.
You can also shift your workouts to focus on your upper-body and core.