Injury Prevention in Chesterfield, MO. Whether you’re an athlete and want to improve your performance, or are entering your golden years and want to spend more time bike riding, don’t let the fear of reinjury keep you from the happy, healthy lifestyle you desire. While our certified Chesterfield, MO physical therapists work extensively with athletes and others to heal after an injury, we are complete movement health specialists who can evaluate your body’s current condition and how you move to show you methods that are proven to reduce the risk of injury by preparing your body for the stressors of your desired activity. Schedule an appointment at Axes Physical Therapy today or reach out to the location nearest you.
Physical activity is an essential part of many Chesterfield, MO people’s lives. Many of us participate in active endeavors such as playing sports, playing golf, or other physical activities. Furthermore, pursuing an active lifestyle reduces the risk of chronic diseases like type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, degenerative brain diseases, anxiety, and many types of cancers. Not only can physical therapy with one of Axes’ licensed Chesterfield, MO physical therapists help you return to action and perform even better than before, but our injury prevention specialists can help preserve your active lifestyle by optimizing your overall movement health. All of our treatment plans, both when helping restore motion health and when looking to improve it, are proven to be effective and are customized for each client and the activities they want to return to.
If you’ve recently sustained an injury, or have a persistent injury that just won’t go away, contact the Axes Physical Therapy location nearest you in Chesterfield, MO for a no-risk, no-obligation injury screening. To reduce your chance of an injury and ensure that you can keep up with your sport or hobby, read on below or call to speak to a physical therapist today.
Types of Injuries We Prevent Prevent in Chesterfield, MO
Most injuries happen for one of two reasons:
- Overuse injuries are injuries happen gradually as a body part degrades because of repetitive movements. They are common in overhead athletes athletes who are required to repeat throwing or striking motions and typically are accompanied by joint pain.
- Acute injuries are injuries that happen because of a specific and sudden trauma. Examples include landing on uneven ground or receiving a blow. These can result in bruises, sprains and strains, fractures, and dislocations.
Some of the injuries we see most frequently, such as rotator cuff tears, can result from either overuse or acute trauma. Other injuries, such as ACL tears, almost always occur spontaneously, with an immediate impact to or twisting of the knee.
What Causes Injuries? | Injury Prevention in Chesterfield, MO
While injuries can happen in a variety of circumstances, and are sometimes inescapable, they generally happen because your soft tissue, bones, and joints cannot handle the force, torque, or stretching that they are subjected to in a given movement or collision. There are three primary causes of why your body cannot adjust to an activity:
Muscle balance is crucial to maintaining healthy joints and reducing injury. Imbalance can result in dependency on one set of muscles, causing it to perform actions it cannot do safely. It can also lead to poor posture, and the weaker set of muscles will be pushed past its limit, resulting in failure and a higher likelihood of injury. Injuries can be caused by insufficient muscle balance in relation to other muscle groups, such as having a strong bicep and weak tricep, or in the same muscle group, such as the four muscles in the rotator cuff not having proportionate strength. Muscle imbalance can result in:
- Muscle weakness
- Muscle inflexibility
- Poor muscle recruitment
- Coordination deficits
Tailored injury prevention with our professional physical therapists in Chesterfield, MO will bring balance to your muscles.
Movement dysfunction can result in poor balance and impede your body’s ability to naturally perform functional movements, causing injury. Problems in your nervous system, swelling, previous injuries, and muscle imbalance call all contribute to movement dysfunction. It can lead to:
- Joint mobility limitations
- Muscle imbalance
- Poor coordination
- Reduced balance
When you first visit our injury prevention experts in Chesterfield, MO, we’ll go through your medical records and analyze your current movement health, strength, and flexibility. Then, in concert with with your physician or any additional providers involved in your treatment, we’ll come up with a personalized plan of attack based on empirically-backed research and studies to get your movement health to the level you need it to to do what you love.
Bad posture doesn’t just affect people who sit a lot. People who play sports and others with active lifestyles can suffer from postural dysfunction when lying down, using the computer, or in specific body positions they need to be in for a given activity. Good posture means correct alignments of your body from your head to your toes in a way that does not remove the spine from its natural curves. Poor posture can bring the vertebrae closer together, which interferes with our body’s ability to communicate with itself and reach optimal motion health. It causes injuries through:
- Muscle weakness
- Muscle imbalance
- Poor positioning
- Joint mobility limitations
- Poor muscle recruitment
Good posture is a vital part of injury prevention because it ensures you are using your muscles equally, your flexibility can be improved and maintained, and your nervous system can communicate as its intended to.
How to Prevent Injury in Chesterfield, MO
All sports and physical activities can potentially lead to an injury. We cannot promise that our injury prevention program completely negates the risk of injury. However, there are several steps you can take to greatly reduce the risk of injury:
- Take breaks — Injuries are more common in overworked bodies. If you’re heavily active, make sure to take one or two days off per week to allow your body to naturally heal any mild pain or soreness. If you have a more moderate activity level, relax for the rest of the day after an activity so you don’t overwork your muscles and joints.
- Wear the correct equipment — Helmets, chest guards, elbow pads, and other recommended equipment in many sports can help prevent injuries like rashes or head injuries. If you’re returning to activity after an injury, your Chesterfield, MO doctor or physical therapist may fit you for braces or Kinesio Taping® to stabilize the injured area. Other techniques like tying your shoes tightly can further help injury prevention by stabilizing your joints.
- Improve muscle strength — Strengthening your muscles, tendons, and ligaments helps them withstand the rigors of heavy activity. In your tailored injury prevention program with our experienced Chesterfield, MO physical therapists, we’ll work to build up your body to safely participate in the activities you love.
- Enhance flexibility — Stretching contributes to injury prevention in three way:
- It increases your range of motion, which allows for your soft tissue to adapt to more drastic movements.
- It boosts blood flow, which carries protein-rich blood to your muscles, eliminating waste byproduct and encouraging the muscles to recover.
- It boosts your posture, which, as we’ve discussed, is an essential part of injury prevention.
According to a peer-reviewed sports medicine paper, sports like football that include dynamic motions require muscles and tendons with sufficient flexibility to store and expel the high levels of energy required. Also, remember to stretch and warm up before games or training to further reduce the risk of injury.
- Use correct technique — Through the years, each sport and physical activity develops a consensus of the best techniques to use. These techniques not only improve performance but help prevent injuries by not forcing your body into unnatural positions and movements. Football players learn to tackle with the shoulder in order to reduce the risk of a concussion, and swimmers learn the proper strokes to use the appropriate muscles. We utilize DorsaVi video motion analysis to break down your movement and evaluate how to improve it.
- Listen to your body — If you feel pain in a muscle or joint, your body is trying to send you a message. If you feel a sudden crack or grinding sensation, immediately stop all physical activity and seek proportional medical care. If your body isn’t feeling up to an intense workout, save it for another day.
- Don’t play through an injury — Even though teammates, competitors, and fans appreciate a player that guts it out through pain, forcing your body to perform with soft tissue or structural damage could make that injury worse and leave you on the sidelines for longer than it originally would have. Depending on the severity of your injury, you may use methods like the R.I.C.E. method, visiting your doctor, and a series of physical therapy sessions to make sure your body heals properly and can withstand the activity you want to return to.
- Follow the rules — Depending on the sport or activity and age level of the participants, it likely has special rules to reduce the risk of injury. Penalties for targeting in football, rules against head-first sliding in baseball, and even the presence of bike lanes are examples of rules that leagues enacted to prevent injuries to ourselves and others. Those were enacted for a reason, and there’s a reason that violations of those rules are punished.
- Consult a professional physical therapist — It’s in your best interest to get a physical before starting another season or committing yourself to any strenuous physical activity. While there, ask your doctor if injury prevention with a knowledgeable physical therapist in Chesterfield, MO is something you should consider. All of our techniques have been proven to reduce the risk of injury, and we’ll personalize your program to your age, your injury history, and how physically active you wish to be.
Injury Prevention for Senior Citizens in Chesterfield, MO
Falls in the elderly were responsible for more than 3 million emergency room visits and more than 34,000 fatalities. Studies show that physical activity is invaluable in reducing the risk of falls. Other conditions that limit mobility like arthritis that develop over the course of several years can be slowed down by physical therapy exercises that keep your soft tissue and joints active. While seniors typically do not exert themselves as much as an athlete does, appropriate strength, stability, flexibility, and optimal posture are great agents in injury prevention.
Other services we offer in Chesterfield, MO include:
- Shoulder Pain
- Knee Injury
- Joint Pain
- Dry Needling
- ACL Tear
- Pain Management
- Rotator Cuff Tear
Chesterfield, MO Injury Prevention | Axes Physical Therapy
Suffering in injury in in an activity you prepare and train for and love can lead to a mental block that keeps us from experiencing the same joy. The professional Chesterfield, MO physical therapists at Axes are here to guide you through your own personalized injury prevention program that will keep your body prepared for the rigors of physical activity, and your mind confident that you do not have to fear going back to what you love doing most. We will aid you in feeling the physical and mental health benefits that you once valued so much. Schedule an appointment online or reach out to the location nearest you to discover what our Chesterfield, MO injury prevention experts can do for you.