6 steps to returning from injury or time away

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Make sure you follow these simple steps to ensure your road to recovery is a successful one:

Build up your general conditioning slowly

Whether you’ve been out of action for a couple of weeks or a couple of years, it’s important you don’t rush back into action thinking you’re capable of full training straight away.

If you’ve had an injury that’s knocked you back, your body needs time to heal and recover. Start slow and make sure you’re ready otherwise you risk further setbacks.

Regardless of your reason for a break, take time to make sure you’ve got the conditioning your body needs to be able to withstand the strain it’ll be put through in training.

Get a good support network

There will be times, no matter how long you’ve been away, that you’ll find it both physically and mentally challenging. It’s in those dark times that having a good training group, coach or someone at home who supports you will make a huge difference.

Go at your own pace and listen to your body

It’s all too easy to get sucked back into it and try and pick up from where you left off after a period on the sidelines. But it’s important to remember, no matter how long you’ve been away from the oval office, you need to ease back into it.

Whether it’s been a brief injury or a more permanent hiatus, make sure you listen to your body. If you’ve got an ache or are feeling pain, assess whether you need to dial back on the sessions in the short term to achieve your long-term goal.

Commit and stay focused on the task at hand

The “What-the-Hell Effect” describes how when someone first cheats themselves; it becomes easier and easier to do the same again. Before you know it, you’ve slipped from your routine and you’re now back at square one.

Once you’ve decided on your goals, make sure you stick to them and don’t allow yourself to slip into bad habits and think “I missed training today, I’ll make up for it tomorrow”.

Start small, think long term

Returning from longer bouts away should be approached with caution, you won’t be able to do the same sessions you used to do straight away.

Start with small and easier sessions; make sure your general body conditioning is good then build up gradually.

Patience here is important and having a series of achievable short-term goals that work towards a long-term target will help keep your mind focused and your motivation high.

Take advice from experts on board

It’s important to not only listen to your body, but to talk to your coach and physio and work with them to ensure your return is a successful one.

They’be helped others in a similar situation and have the experience and expertise to how guide you back into full training.

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First published on: 4 January, 2015 12:00 am

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