This post is focused on how to train with an injury. This is based on my many years as a competitor and International coach in the martial arts. I have found this to be a very interesting topic, for the simple reason that most people will try to keep going by taking pain relief.
When this doesn’t work they do what I would advise, which is consult your doctor. If you’ve ever had any discomfort in general and you’ve consulted your doctor, the answer to your problem can vary. This post is going to talk about a doctors approach v’s a competitors approach.
My post will deal with sport related pain issues and what I have done to keep my training program running.
How To Train With An Injury.
If you’ve ever found yourself in this position, you’d do almost anything to be pain free. Now that’s a very common or should I say normal approach. The first thing I’d like to point out is that you should not try to continue training if you’re experiencing pain. This is because pain is the way our bodies lets us know that something is wrong!
Now, when it comes to pain, there’s a few things we should know. We can experience pain at different levels and this is what tells us and what we can and cannot do.
Types Of Pain.
- Headache. (Migraine)
- Muscle. (soreness)
- Nerves. (Trapped)
- Recovery from an injury.
- Ligaments. (Strained)
This is how to train with an injury.
As you can see there’s quite a few reasons why our body might hurt. Some reasons are simple and straightforward but some are not. Learning how to train with an injury is easy if you’ve got a good idea what’s wrong.
This isn’t really a pain but I have put it in my list, to be able to describe different levels of pain. You’ve woken up and during your breakfast you see a little flicker in the corner of one of your eyes. If you’ve ever been here, you know it’s the beginning of a migraine. A migraine can be very disruptive and it will play with you taste buds, make your stomach ache and your head will start pounding.
This will last for approximately an hour but I have known some people having migraines last hours. Now it doesn’t take a genius to tell you that you can not possibly train through this and to even try would we a case of abuse. Wait it out and try later or better still, give it 24 hours if you can.
Having sore muscles is one of the favourites. Talking on the experience I have had, I can say I have had many students who have suffered with muscle soreness on a weekly basis. This is referred to as delayed onset of muscle soreness (D.O.M.S) which is what you will feel within 24 – 72 hours after training. (3 Days)
You can train through this, in fact I have found training the best way to get over this type of pain. I would also like to say, muscle soreness can be limited if you go through a cool down routine after your workout.
Image of delayed onset muscle soreness.
My first question her would be, what kind of joint pain are you feeling? There’s various types of joints in the human body and if for some reason, other than the obvious you’re experiencing any form of discomfort, you should take note. In my experience the usual joint pains I have been from knees, elbows, back, hips and shoulders.
Any joint issues should be taken seriously and I would only train with this kind of discomfort if I’m fully aware of how the pain started. By this I mean did you over reach or over stretched? If you experience any pain for longer than a few days, I would advise you to speak to your doctor.
If you are struggling to continue with your daily routine I would suggest taking Ibuprofen but not Paracetamol. My reasoning here is, Ibuprofen will help with any swelling and Paracetamol helps to relieve pain. Unfortunately if you block out the pain, which is the way your body tells you what’s wrong. You could make the injury worse!
Most people don’t know the difference between muscle or nerve pain. This is a big problem because if you don’t know what you’re feeling, how can you possibly understand how to train with an injury. Especially if don’t know what type of injury you have.
Well let me throw some light on the subject for you. Nerve pain is felt like a sharp pain, another way to explain this is it feels like fire. Meaning it can feel hot and will make you jump. Muscle pain feels like an ache. Now you know this listen out for it.
This can be awkward to remedy, it might un-trap itself but in my experience it will require a little manipulation to un-trap the nerve. Training with this problem will not be possible and training should not commence until you have resolved the problem.
Recovery After An Injury.
Learning how to train with an injury is simple if you know what you’re doing. When you’re recovering from an injury, training can be a part of the rehabilitation program. So training is good to keep the joint moving, in order to avoid creating a frozen shoulder for instance. A friend of mine over did his stretching routine on his abductor, which left him injured for approximately 6 months.
He consulted his doctor which was the sensible thing to do, but kept training to keep progressing. Now if you look at this example and hopefully take note that he did the right thing. He sought his doctors advise, which was resting the injured muscle but he was still allowed to train, so he could still improve his flexibility in other areas and also keep improving his stamina. All areas would have suffered if he hadn’t trained for 6 months.
This is a tricky injury to train with. Ligaments play a special role in our bodies, they connect bone to bone. Ligaments are made of a dense elasticated tissue. Ligaments can be found around our shoulders, elbows, hips, knees and ankles. Even though they are very strong they can be injured by overstretching or by hyper extending the joint. My advice here on how to train with an injury of this type is simple. I would advise R.I.C.E.
This is what most doctors or medically trained personnel would suggest you and this is common sense.
Conclusion On How To Train With An Injury.
I believe the only way you can get this right is by listening and understanding your body. During our lifetime we’ll experience different types of pain for various reasons. What I would like you to understand from this post is that not all injuries are the same and they all require a different type of treatment.
If in doubt consult your doctor and heed their advice before you continue any physical activity. I hope this post has given you a good insight into pain and if you have any questions or comments please leave them below.
To good health and decisions.