Whether you’re coaching a sports team or parenting a junior athlete, sports injuries are a problem you’ll have to tackle at one point or another. Sports physical therapy is an essential tool that both helps athletes recover faster and helps prevent more complicated injuries in the future. Professional physical therapists have the knowledge and experience to provide the best restorative care for athletic injuries. Here are a few benefits of physical therapy for athletes and some of the exercises that help an injured athlete get back in the game.
Boosting Recovery Time Significantly
Waiting for an injury to heal on its own presents a few problems. First, a lack of activity while resting may undo athletic conditioning in other areas of the body. Second, on your own, you can never be completely sure if an athlete is truly ready to get back on the field.
Physical therapy has a reputation for taking a long time, but in reality, physical therapy stretches and exercises can restore blood flow and help injuries heal faster. A physical therapist can also suggest safe workouts so an athlete doesn’t lose their hard-won conditioning.
Guarding Against Re-Injury
A second major benefit of physical therapy for sports injuries is stopping a cycle of injuries. Many sports injuries, such as sprains and ligament tears, don’t recover stronger than they were before. Instead, major injuries can destabilize a joint and make it more prone to injury again. Every successive sprain destabilizes the joint further.
Physical therapists fight this by strengthening the muscles around the joint to re-stabilize it. A good physical therapist can give an athlete a targeted plan to avoid similar injuries in the future.
Effective Physical Therapy Practices
Physical therapy San Antonio encompasses many different techniques ranging from massage to stretching to exercise. Here are a few therapy practices that are effective for common sports injuries.
Stretching for Hernias
Hernias are common sports injuries resulting from tears in the muscles of the groin or the abdominal wall. These injuries can be painful and recur multiple times.
Stretches for the sides, abdomen and groin all promote flexibility in these muscles, helping stop them from tearing. Gentle stretches include side bends, while lunges are more intense stretches. Stretching can also relieve hernia pain while the injury heals.
Strengthening for Ligament Tears
Ligament tears are another common injury that can affect any joint in the body. Shoulder and knee ligament tears are often season-ending injuries for athletes.
Physical therapy relieves pain and promotes mobility while the ligament repairs itself. This is important because stiffness in the joint can persist far after the injury heals. Gentle bends, stretches and strength exercises provide support for joint healing and stave off long-term damage.
Pain Management for Tendonitis
Many athletes have chronic inflammation of tendons that can’t be treated. Stretching and breathing exercises in physical therapy can manage this pain so they can continue playing.
Don’t overlook physical therapy near me for treating sports injuries. Investing in good physical therapy now can prevent pain and further injury in the future.