Recovering From a Sports Injury (Zero Gravity Chairs May Help!)
Staying active is good for both our physical and mental health. It can elevate our mood, help us fight symptoms of depression, and keep our bodies in top condition. Of all people, athletes should be acutely aware of their bodies and how to protect them. So what happens when things go awry and you encounter a sports injury?
Today we’re looking at three major tips for recovering from a sports injury that may help get you back on your feet and ready to compete in record time!
Common Symptoms of Sports Injuries
Before we hop into tips for recovering from a sports injury, let’s talk about some of the common symptoms of sports injuries you may encounter. Naturally, the most obvious one is pain. Whether you’ve pulled a muscle or injured a part of your body, the immediate response you may expect is pain. It’s important to note, however, that not all sports injuries result in instant pain, so it’s important to be aware of your body and recognize when you may have pushed too hard or done something that might have caused an injury to begin.
Another symptom of sports injuries you may notice is swelling. Slight swelling and inflammation is part of the healing process and may show up within a few hours. If you experience major swelling immediately, you may require more emergency assistance and should seek medical help right away. The aim of inflammation within the body is to prevent infection from setting in and is a major indicator in how the body heals itself.
Other symptoms of sports injuries may include limited range of motion, low energy levels, tenderness, or visible displacement of bones (in the most serious cases). It’s important that you seek out medical help for any injury to make sure you’re able to heal entirely. Without proper treatment, some sports injuries may result in permanent reduction in range of motion or performance.
Tips for Recovering From a Sports Injury
While you should always consult a medical professional for any injury or maladie you encounter, there are a number of common methods for how to recover from a sports injury at home that may help along the way. Three of these methods for recovering from a sports injury are:
- The well-known R.I.C.E. method
- Using a zero gravity chair when recovering from a sports injury
- Active stretching early on to protect range or motion
R.I.C.E. Method for Recovering From a Sports Injury
The most common method for how to recover from a sports injury is the R.I.C.E. method. In recent years some experts have expanded this to P.R.I.C.E. with the addition of a new first step to start the process.
Allotting for the additional step, P.R.I.C.E. is an acronym that stands for:
Starting with protection,, the point of the newest addition to this method for recovering from a sports injury is to prevent further harm. This may be in the form of alleviating pressure from the injured area (like using crutches for a leg injury) or fully immobilizing a section of the body with a splint.
Up next (or first, depending on if you opt for “protection” as your first step) is rest. Rest is crucial for the first 24-48 hours of recovering from a sports injury because it helps prevent further damage to the injured area.
Once you’ve rested the area and the recovery process has begun, it’s time to ice the area, which is the next step in this method. You can apply ice 4 to 8 times a day, as needed. Each cold therapy session should last no more than 20 minutes and have at least 2 hours in between. The ice portion of the (P)R.I.C.E. method is intended to help reduce swelling and inflammation, alleviate pain, and prevent muscle spasms.
After 48 hours or so, next up in the R.I.C.E. method for how to recover from a sports injury is compression. You should wrap the affected area with an elastic medical bandage and secure it tightly. Be sure not to wrap it too tightly, however, which could result in poor blood circulation. Compression is meant to help prevent excess swelling and inflammation, which may be very painful and hinder the healing process.
The last part of the R.I.C.E. method is elevation. Elevating the injured area could help prevent pain, swelling, or throbbing while your body starts to heal itself. You should try to elevate the injured area above the heart level as much as possible. If you’re on a regular couch or in bed, you can prop the area up on pillows. If you’re using a zero gravity chair while recovering from a sports injury, however, the zero gravity position can be a huge benefit.
Using a Zero Gravity Chair When Recovering From a Sports Injury
This brings us to the next method for how to recover from a sports injury. There are many health benefits of zero gravity chairs that may make them excellent recovery tools for athletes. Not just for injury, the zero gravity healing benefits for athletes also make these chairs perfect for any post workout recovery routine.
For injuries, however, we look to the zero gravity position as the source of enhanced bodily healing. In the zero gravity position, the legs are elevated above the heart level while weight is evenly distributed along the body. As lower back pain and leg injuries are two of the most common sports injuries encountered, this is a prime place to begin.
When choosing between a zero gravity chair or recliner, you’ll see that zero gravity chairs alleviate pressure from the lower back and pelvic region. In traditional recliners, pressure is actually focused in this area, which is one of the most common causes of back pain and may exacerbate sports injuries. Zero gravity chairs also help facilitate spinal decompression at home, which may alleviate lower back pain and help you get back on your feet in record time.
Another benefit of the zero gravity position is that it helps improve poor blood circulation. This blood flow is extremely important for muscle strain relief, alleviating swollen joints, fighting inflammation, and enhancing how the body heals itself.
The bonus features of zero gravity luxury recliners make a huge difference when recovering from a sports injury, as well. Features like heat therapy keep muscles loose while they heal and help you relax more deeply. Relaxation helps reduce stress levels from pain, which can be an overlooked cause of muscle tension and prevent healing as quickly. The best zero gravity chairs may also have vibration massage or air pressure massage features that are beneficial when figuring out how to recover from a sports injury as fast as possible!
Early Movement When Recovering From a Sports Injury
Last, but certainly not least, in our guide to tips for recovering from a sports injury as quickly as possible is the importance of early movement. While your first inclination may be to simply rest entirely while you heal, this can result in a loss in range of motion. For athletes, this could prevent them from being able to perform at their best levels in the future.
Protecting range of motion isn’t overly difficult. It’s all about active stretching, engaging in physical activity starting at the early stages of recovery, and being sure to operate within your physical limitations. The last of that list may be the most important as overdoing it can be counterproductive to your healing process. Be sure to pay attention to what your body is telling you and not push beyond your limits as you heal.
Doing simple exercises meant to increase mobility and flexibility are ideal for how to recover from a sports injury. You might consider going for a walk or light jog if you’re up to it. For those needing low-impact movements to practice, yoga and tai chi are excellent for keeping up mobility without further damaging your body.
We hope this guide to recovering from a sports injury has given you some new things to consider and try. It’s important to consult a medical professional before treating any kind of sports injury to make sure they say it’s safe. Once approved, try different methods for how to recover from a sports injury and see what works best for you. Remember that preventing sports injuries with post workout recovery routines and self-care treatments are just as important as knowing how to take care of sports injuries if they happen!
To learn more about the health benefits of zero gravity chairs and how they pair with active lifestyles, check out these additional resources: