What is Sports Injury Therapy?
Sports injury therapy is a therapeutic approach to treating injuries affecting the muscles, joints, ligaments or tendons. It incorporates various techniques, such as stretching, strengthening and mobilising the affected area, during the treatment process. It should be remembered that sports injury therapy is not only available to professional sportspeople or athletes. It can also be used on people who sustained injuries or suffered from trauma in their everyday lives, whether it is through exercise or an accident. It aims to relieve pain first and then restore the injured area to normal function and also promote optimal function to the whole body.
How Does Sports Injury Therapy Work?
Sports injury therapy works across different treatment approaches in the evaluation, treatment and prevention of pain and injuries. In the early stage of the treatment, a certified sports injury therapist will assess the client's condition and provide a diagnosis. Once the root of the problem has been identified, the practitioner will employ various treatment methods to reduce pain in the affected area such as ice packs, compression and elevation.
Once the pain has decreased, the practitioner can take the client to the reconditioning phase and work on restoring their balance, strength, mobility and endurance. It may include manual therapy, exercises, or a combination of both. To prevent future injuries, the practitioner will rebuild the client's proprioception by prescribing them with a series of exercises which they need to do religiously for a specific period.
What are the Benefits of Sports Injury Therapy?
A sports injury, whether big or small, will not only affect an athlete's performance but also get worse over time if it is not attended to immediately. Sports injury therapy is a complete rehabilitation program that aims to treat the injury and restore proper body mechanics to avoid issues concerning movement, strength and balance. A sports injury therapist can help address a variety of sports injuries, including:
- Ankle sprain
- Groin pull
- Shin splints
- Hamstring strain
- Knee injury
- Tennis elbow
- Shoulder dislocation
- Hand injuries
- Postoperative injuries
What Can You Expect From Sports Injury Therapy?
After an injury, it can take some time for the body to fully recover. Sports injury therapy is not a magic pill that will get you back on the field once the pain is gone. The therapist will completely assess the severity of the injury to be able to come up with a personalised treatment plan that is tailored to your needs.
For the treatment program to work, you have to follow the advice of your therapist to the letter. That means, if they say you have to avoid any strenuous activities for one month and focus on resting and exercising, you have to follow. Otherwise, the healing process will take longer than expected.
An initial sports injury therapy session can run for 30 minutes to an hour, depending on the seriousness of your injury. After the initial treatment, the therapist will advise you as to how often you should come in for the succeeding treatments. Professional athletes would usually see their therapist two to three times a week.
During the session, the practitioner usually performs the following:
- Provides treatment and rehabilitation for the injuries sustained
- Increases physical fitness and mobility
- Offers tips on injury prevention
- Improves athletic performance
- Develops treatment plans appropriate to the client's specific needs
- Uses therapeutic modalities such as heat packs, ice packs, bandages, massage and TENS machines in treating injuries
Is Sports Injury Therapy Safe?
Sports injury therapy is not only safe but highly recommended to everyone who engages in sports on a regular basis. Whether you're an elite athlete or love to participate in community sports activities, visiting a certified sports injury therapist regularly will keep your body in peak condition.