Training Around Injuries:
If you spend enough time strength training, you are, in all likelihood, going to experience some aches, pains, bumps, and bruises along the way. Even if you are one of the lucky ones that doesn’t, you might sprain your ankle playing basketball, slam a hammer on your finger installing a deck, or cut your palm slicing an apple.
These things happen…but what does this mean for our workouts? Sadly, most doctors still prescribe general “rest” for folks that have a sore knee, bum shoulder, or broken thumb. This makes absolutely zero sense to me. Why would you advise someone with a broken thumb to just “rest” and take 2-3 weeks off of training?
This individual could still be getting a tremendous amount of lower body/core work, and a GOOD trainer would find away to offer several “hands free” upper body alternatives. Movement and blood flow are also some of the BEST forms of recovery, and a lack of both will certainly not do anything to expedite the process of feeling better. If you are nursing a nagging injury, all you need to do is listen to your body.
If overhead pressing ALWAYS hurts your shoulder, you DON’T need to take time off of the gym. You need to listen to your body, and select an alternative exercise that effectively works your delts, without causing you pain. You can’t force a square peg into a round hole. There are no “magical” exercises, some just work better for others.
Maximize your training, be smart with your training, and choose which ones work best for you, and your unique body structure. It is my hope that after reading this, you will train THROUGH your next injury, by being smart, listening to your body, and allowing strength training to continue to play a predominant role in your quest to improve yourself!