We know that it’s good to move our bodies on a daily basis. But when we get injured, it’s a good excuse to chuck in the towel for a few weeks– right?
Wrong! Exercise or at least some type of movement is an important part of your recovery process. Although it might not be good to go for a run 2 hours after you break your ankle (ouch!), you do want to incorporate movement as your body heals.
Let’s look at why exercise is so beneficial, and how to include it safely.
What are some of the general benefits of exercise?
So first up – why do we want to exercise on a regular basis? I’m glad you asked! There are so many benefits to exercise for your physical, mental and emotional wellbeing. Some of them include:
Exercise, injury and pain
The old-school approach to pain was all about rest and inactivity. But now we know that movement done correctly is one of the best things you can do for pain.
When it comes to pain and injury, research has shown that exercise can:
But there are also the indirect benefits. For example, exercise improves sleep, which is when your body does its best healing. If you’re not sleeping well, it will take you longer to heal. But if you use exercise to improve your sleep, it can boost your recovery.
How to exercise safely after an injury
Convinced that you need to move that body? Let’s go about this with safety in mind. Here are a few tips to get you started.
Start slow. After an injury, there are a lot of complex processes going on. So the last thing your body needs is for you to try and run a marathon while it’s still healing! Begin with gentle movements, and work your way up over a period of weeks until you’re back to your pre-injury levels.
Use your non-painful joints. If you have an injured upper body, use your lower body for exercising. If you’ve got an injured lower body, do some upper body exercises. Endorphins don’t stay in the one place – they are systemic. So if you’re moving non-sore parts, the endorphins will make their way around your body to the sore parts to help relieve the pain.
Get a proper rehab program prescribed. This might not be necessary if you’ve only rolled your ankle or stubbed your toe. But if you have had a significant injury or are in significant pain, it’s best to get help. As a myotherapist, I can prescribe rehab exercises that build your body’s strength back up, and adapt exercises that might be causing pain. Your exercises will change throughout our treatment plan - we start from light, easy exercises while the pain or injury is acute, and work up to more challenging exercises to rebuild strength when your body is ready for it.
Ready to book in a session? Head to the booking page here.
As a myotherapist, I see my fair share of weird and wonderful injuries. But one of the most common injuries that requires proper rehabilitation is a dislocated joint. So let’s look at all the things you need to know if you’ve dislocated a joint.
What is a dislocation?
A dislocation is the full displacement of a bone at the joint. So the bone is moved to somewhere outside of the joint it belongs to.
Dislocating a joint is incredibly painful for most people. But along with short-term severe pain, it can also predispose someone to chronic pain if not rehabilitated correctly.
Why do dislocations happen?
Generally, dislocations occur due to high-impact trauma to the joint – think car accidents, falls, fights or high-impact sports like football and rugby.
However, if you have a joint that is weakened or unstable, it could be caused by something with minimal force. This is commonly seen in people with hypermobile joints or a hypermobility condition.
Joint shape differences such as hip dysplasia or variations in the shape of shoulder bones can also increase risk of dislocation.
Joints that are at risk of dislocating
Pretty much any joint in the body can be dislocated if there’s enough force. But some have a greater risk of dislocation because of their location and/or their structure. They include:
Dislocation red flags to watch for
If you’ve experienced a dislocation, there are a few things to keep an eye on. These can often warrant medical attention.
The rehab process for dislocations
This can depend on the type of dislocation. The greater the damage to muscles, tendons or ligaments, the longer the process of rehabilitation.
For some people, recovery will take a few weeks, and they will regain their full strength. For others, they are starting with almost no function or stability. So for those people, it’s like learning how to use the joint from scratch.
A history of previous dislocation to the same joint can also mean a longer rehab, as you’ll be attempting to heal twice the damage (or more!) to regain full function.
What can a myotherapist do for dislocations?
So you’ve dislocated a joint, and you want to know what your friendly local myotherapist can do for you. Here’s what I can do to help you recover!
What I CANNOT do is help you relocate a joint that is still dislocated. Relocating dislocations is a medical procedure that is out of my scope as a practitioner.
If you come to the clinic with a dislocated joint, I’ll send you straight over to the Angliss for medical attention! So do yourself a favour and skip the myotherapy session until your joint has been relocated by a medical professional.
Are you recovering from a dislocation injury? Head on over to my booking page, so we can start strengthening your injured joint and get you back to living life!
Wondering why the clinic was closed at Ferntree Gully on the weekend?
It was because I set up a pop up clinic at the Seven Sisters Festival in Mt Martha!
My wonderful friend Mel from Your Myotherapy in Apollo Bay joined me to offer myotherapy and remedial massage treatments to the ladies at the festival, and we had a blast - even in the 38-40* heat!
What is the Seven Sisters Festival? Its a 3 day weekend of workshops, classes, markets, food and connection. Think yoga classes, sound healing, singing, presentations, crafts, camping with your friends and a whole lot more!
The preparation time and effort was well worth it. We got to offer about 70 treatments over 3 days, and we were in high demand. We had info brochures available, and got to discuss myotherapy with a lot of interested ladies.
Our most frequently asked question was - what IS myotherapy? I like to explain it in simple terms, so I usually explain it in relation to other treatments that people might be more familiar with:
Its a treatment for muscle and joint pain or dysfunction that can have a lot of hands on time (like a remedial massage) and has a bunch of other tools and techniques to achieve very specific outcome goals for recovery and rehabilitation (similar to a physiotherapist)
I had a great time, but I must say I am really glad to be back to the air conditioned comfort of my own treatment room!
Did you miss me? I'm back to normal clinic hours again so you can book in to see me when you need me.
Mel is a Myotherapist based in Ferntree Gully.