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Alternative Forms of Exercise for Injury Rehabilitation

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Alternative Forms of Exercise for Injury Rehabilitation

Cheryl Lin

There is so much value in resistance and functional training, regardless of how young or old someone may be or what ailments they may have. Aside from building a better body, resistance training can also help to rehabilitate any injuries present and build strength in the supporting muscles so as to prevent further or repeat injury.

In the case of injury, it is so important that exercises are prescribed by a professional and preferably guided by one too. Whilst both outdoor and indoor classes are great for all levels, when an injiury is present, particularly joint issues, it is important to have an instructor who is experienced enough to provide modifications for each exercise that the rest of the class is given. With knee and hip issues, it is important to strengthen the muscles surrounding those joints, so aside from functional and resistance training, Pilates is a great form of exercise that focuses on strengthening smaller muscle groups that support the joints. Exercises in the water such as aqua jogging or Aqua Spin are also great as they help to reduce load and impact on the joints. Many are familiar with Yoga as another gentle alternative, however, there is often a lot of hyperextension of the joints in Yoga, so again it is important in the circumstances of injury that the instructor is experienced enough to provide modifications of what each person can and can’t/shouldn’t do. FlyHigh Yoga makes for a fun alternative to a mat based class and can be a good way to incorporate more strength to your practice. FlyHigh Yoga has been also touted for relieving sufferers of sciatica and is brilliant at decompressing the spine.

As well as a great form of stress relief boxing is a very popular choice of exercise due to the high calories you can burn per session while working your muscle tone and overall endurance. More fun forms of exercise such as obstacle course racing and trampolining have become increasingly popular recently and good forms of team building activities too. Depending on the nature and mechanics of your injury, these alternative forms of exercise may be incorporated into your regime as a form of cross training and a way to build up strength and fitness in the non-injured parts of your body.

When starting a new form of exercise or class, it is most important that you seek clearance from your doctor, physiotherapist or osteopath. Issues which would require medical consultation include heart or respiratory issues, injuries in the back, diastasis recti, diabetes, degenerative discs or join issues and recent surgery. The safest ways to ease into fitness would be to start with beginner or introductory level classes, one on one sessions and also to start with one session a week before slowly building up to a better frequency. Once you're there, the only way is up!