Pre-hab: What is it and How Does it Help?

Pre-hab: What is it and How Does it Help?

If you are an athlete, whether you’re a professional or a weekend warrior, it is in your nature to push your body to its full potential. But before you do so, it is important to ask yourself, “Is my body ready to take on that challenge?” Undetected weakness and vulnerabilities could prime you for a devastating injury. Additionally, if you are currently injured or recovering from an injury or surgery, getting straight back into a workout regimen could be more harmful than you may realize.

Fortunately, there is a way to prepare your body for a safe and speedy recovery: pre-hab. If you are in need of a surgical procedure, or if you have a long injury-related recovery ahead of you, you may be a prime candidate for pre-hab. For more information, contact NRG Athletes Therapy Fitness to schedule a consultation with a physiotherapist today.

How to tell if you are unfit for extensive physiotherapy or athletic training:

When your body isn’t conditioned to perform certain physical demands, it is likely that you may sustain even more damage, whether it be inflammation, tears, or ruptures. Think of it in terms outside of your injury or procedure: if someone lives a sedentary lifestyle for years and then decides they want to sign up for a triathlon, their body won’t physically be able to complete the event if they don’t spend ample amounts of time pre-conditioning.

Your body is the same way after it sustains an injury or surgical repair, and the same concerns hold true for anyone looking to undergo physiotherapy. A major injury or surgical procedure can leave you sidelined for weeks or months. You become physically weaker as you recover, even if you feel as if you have the same amount of strength.

During that time, joints may stiffen up, while muscles and connective tissues can atrophy. A complete lack of activity while you’re getting over your immediate damage may even promote the development of internal scar tissue called adhesions. That’s why pre-conditioning your body is so important before returning to any sort of physical activity – you are retraining your body to handle the specific motions and weight loads that it was able to do before it became injured.

Pre-hab exercises and techniques to get you started:

Pre-hab is a critical preparatory stage for getting your body ready for the physiotherapy rehabilitation treatments it has ahead, and achieving your end goal of returning to the activities you love.

One of the most important aspects of pre-hab is core training, which focuses on the core muscles of your lower back, lower abdomen, and pelvic region, in order to regain and enhance your body’s balance and stability. Exercises to strengthen and mobilize the upper back are also helpful in pre-hab, giving your body a solid degree of overall stability before moving on to other exercises.

When you participate in pre-hab exercises, you will work on repetitive motions that are common to your sport, such as throwing a javelin or lifting weights. Your physiotherapist will design a specialized treatment plan to your needs, which will focus on a selection of specific exercises to prepare your body for regaining its optimum function. This will allow you to complete your physiotherapy treatments in a quicker fashion and return to your athletic routine without the risk of hurting yourself.

Going beyond sports with pre-hab:

People who are non-athletes can also benefit from pre-hab practices. Sometimes just the physical demands of daily life can take a toll on the body, such as doing office work or handling household chores. A body with uneven muscle development is also a prime target for overuse injuries and repetitive motion disorders, such as plantar fasciitis, carpal tunnel syndrome, shoulder bursitis, and other uncomfortable conditions.

Pre-hab exercises can help people in these risk groups optimize their fitness and prevent such injuries. If you are in need of a surgical procedure, or if your daily activities are causing you chronic pain, a pre-hab program from our dedicated physiotherapists can help make your recovery faster and easier.

Contact us today:

Whatever the case may be, our physical team is ready to help you recover from injuries and prevent others from occurring. Call NRG Athletes Therapy Fitness today to schedule your appointment and get started on the path toward relief, recovery, and returning to your physical activities!

Sources:

How a Nutritious Diet Can Improve Your Physical Performance

Nutrition strongly affects your physical performance, whether you’re a dedicated athlete, weekend warrior, or just trying to get out and exercise more. Your body does a lot throughout the day, and the food you supply it with helps it to function properly, whether you’re hitting the gym or simply performing your daily tasks. The more demanding you are on your body, the more attention you’ll have to take on what you are fueling it with. If you are looking to improve your physical performance, a nutritious diet is a great first step.

What does a nutritious diet consist of?

Think of your body as if it were a motor vehicle – gas is the primary life source for a car, and it won’t be able to function without it. However, cars also need the necessary oils, fuels, electricity, etc., in order to run the way they’re supposed to. Much like your car, your body needs a consistent mix of proper nutrients in order to function at its peak performance. There are two primary categories for nutrients: micronutrients and macronutrients.

  • Micronutrients: Micronutrients consist of vitamins and minerals. Some micronutrients –  such as a sodium/potassium pairing or calcium/magnesium pairing – help with regulating the actions of each other. Other micronutrients are only beneficial to your body in trace amounts, such as chromium, copper, and selenium. Most athletes will flock straight to B-complex vitamins as they help to increase energy; however, it is important to also fuel yourself with a healthy mix of A, C, E, and K vitamins in order to keep your body functioning the way you want it to.
  • Macronutrients: Macronutrients consist of carbohydrates, proteins, fats, fiber, and water. The first three of those macronutrients assist your body in creating energy.  Carbs are used first, since they are the ones that burn the quickest, and are therefore helpful for short-burst activities or endurance training. Your body uses proteins second. Proteins contain 20 essential amino acids, referred to as the “building blocks of muscle.” They help in strengthening your most important muscle – your heart. Finally, fats are used last. Your body stores them as a reserve fuel supply. However, they also serve a lot of important duties in the body, such as managing inflammation, producing hormones, lubricating joints, and promoting strong brain health.

How physiotherapy can help with your nutrition intake:

If your nutrients aren’t properly balanced, your physical function can be impaired. For example, neglecting to eat carbs before an endurance event will cause your body to burn fat as a substitute for fueling your energy. Your body may even start burning protein, which can deprive your muscles of the strength they normally have. Comparatively, if you have an overload of calcium intakes, but you’re lacking Vitamin D, the calcium won’t make its way to your bones or tissues. Consulting with a physiotherapist can help you understand how much you should be ingesting of each nutrient, and when more or fewer intakes of a certain nutrient may be beneficial.

A healthy balance of nutrients can help enhance healing, function, and overall comfort. For example, omega-3 fatty acids and Vitamin C both help in reducing inflammation, which promotes faster healing. Certain amino acids can also aid your body in synthesizing proteins. Eating the right amount of carbohydrates at the right times can help give you the energy you need to improve your physical performance.

Our trained physiotherapists can help assist you in how to properly fuel your body with the nutritious diet you need to train for an event or compete in a physical obstacle. Call us today to schedule a consultation and get started on your holistic plan toward peak physical performance!

 

Sources:

http://www.apta.org/PatientCare/Nutrition/

http://www.apta.org/Blogs/Pulse/2017/12/Nutrition/

3 Secrets to Completing Your Cardio Exercises – For Those Who Can’t Stand Cardio

We all know that cardio takes time. In fact, one of the most common complaints we hear from patients who come to us for physiotherapy exercises is that there simply isn’t enough time in their busy days to complete cardio workouts. Other times, whether there’s a time constraint or not, many people report a lack of self-motivation simply because they can’t stand the thought of doing cardio. Luckily, a physiotherapist can help you incorporate cardio into your exercise routine in ways that you may actually find fun – or, at least more bearable. If you’re a cardio hater, have no fear – you’re definitely not alone, and there are a few secrets for completing cardio in ways that you may not have considered. Call NRG Athletes Therapy Fitness today to find out more about how you can successfully implement these tricks!

 

  • Small doses.

 

Time is a big barrier for cardio. Even the thought of doing a half hour or more of cardio can be overwhelming for those who work full-time and have additional responsibilities. That’s why it may be better to split up your cardio into small doses. You can still shoot for a half hour of cardio a day, but breaking it up into three 10-minute doses can make it seem more doable. Wake up 10 minutes earlier and begin your day with a brisk 10-minute walk or jog before getting ready for the day. Take 10 minutes of your lunch break to walk to a cafe to grab lunch. Jog down the block for 10 minutes after you get home, while you’re waiting for the dinner in the oven to be ready. By splitting it up into three different sessions, it will seem as if you aren’t using up as much time – just remember that high-intensity matters in small doses, so do your best to get the best results!

 

  • Try something new. 

 

If you are doing something you enjoy, sometimes you’ll be able to complete your cardio exercises without even knowing you’re doing so. For example, cardio can be accomplished through:

  • Hiking
  • Mountain climbing
  • Biking
  • Swimming
  • Dancing
  • And more!

These activities get your heart rate up and allow you to get the cardio you need, but they’re not repetitive or boring. There may be a physical activity that you love doing in your spare time that you didn’t even know counted as cardio. Your physiotherapist can help you narrow down what activities count as cardio, and how often you should be doing them in order to see the best results.

 

  • Track your progress. 

 

 

There are numerous apps you can download for free on your phone that are designed to help you track your cardio progress. Even the Health app that comes pre-downloaded onto every iPhone keeps track of the number of steps you take, the miles you run or walk, and the stairs you climb in a day. Some more advanced apps can even monitor your heart rate or track the speed in which you complete your daily cardio exercises.

If you find cardio boring, there are some more engaging apps such as Ingress, Pokemon Go, or Jurassic World Alive that still keep track of your mileage while also drawing you into an exciting virtual world. What better way to complete your cardio than by playing a game? You may not even notice how much cardio you’re completing!

Contact us!

If you’re looking to add cardio back into your daily exercise routine, give our office a call today. Our physiotherapists are equipped to help you achieve your optimum level of physical fitness, and they can help you incorporate cardio into your routine in a way that works for you. Schedule a consultation with one of our physiotherapists today to get started on creating a personalized exercise plan that you won’t dread completing!

 

Sources:

https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/fitness/in-depth/vary-cardiovascular-workouts/art-20308360

http://www.apta.org/PTinMotion/News/2018/11/13/HHSPAGuidelinesRevision

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