• Phil

4 Steps Back from Injury

The injury rate in Zumba is incredibly low, but if you prefer to exercise, broken bits are just a part of the game. There is a skill returning from injury – what is it?

Step 1 – Do more harm than good, by doing nothing.

“It’s scary for them as they do not want to cause more harm than good.”

Interesting that you should these words because in most cases, the most harm, is caused by doing nothing.

“A lack of activity destroys the good condition of every human being.” ~Plato.

In this biomechanical paradox, the systematic ravaging of your tissues, is the very thing that keeps you strong.

We are built to move. From an evolutionary perspective, motor bike’d McDonalds, is a relatively new phenomenon. In days of old, if you wanted lunch, you’d have to run a long distance to get it. Today, we’ve traded 9K of running, for 9 hours of sitting. In days of old, a daily hour of movement wouldn’t be necessary, because life was movement. But in the modern world, exercise has become a critical component of health. The essential ying to our life of sloth yang. Unless you’re completely riddled with injuries, or you have one of the Big 5 – heart / lung / brain / spine / anything nasty that I haven’t mentioned – you should be in the gym, grinding away. The question then becomes… how?

Step 2 – Sedated snails – The most common way to re-injure yourself is to go full throttle in your first class back. You remember what a beast you were before your injury, so the moment you get back, you try to prove exactly that. Problem is, you’re training in a different body now. Your endurance is down, and your freshly healed muscle is weaker than the rest. You are most susceptible to injury, in your first class back, so tone the ferocity down. Don’t let the pumping house, or the flying sweat lead you astray – adopt the pace of a heavily sedated snail.

“Slowly, slowly, catchy, monkey” ~Sigourney Weaver

That was a Gorilla’s in the mist gag there. (You know you’re funny when you have to explain your own jokes).

Step 3 – Sunroofing – The goal is to work the whole body, while resting the injury. For example, if you’ve just had a sunroof / C-section, and the doc’s given the all crystal, avoid planks, press-ups, and anything else that puts downward pressure on your abdomen. Go slowly on sit-ups, crunches, and all other core moves. Carefully scale the weights up, and if you feel pain, stop.

“But I haven’t had a Sunroof.” You can still apply the wisdom of Sunroofing. Avoid moves that apply direct stress to the injury. Go slow on potential aggravators, and save the heavy stuff until you're fully healed.

To me, this is common sense. Health and fitness to me, is common sense.

Step 4 – Wiping your own bum – “But I don’t know the alternative moves.” I’m not here to wipe your bum for you. In every Circuit Factory class, we demo around 20 movements. A mix of upper, lower, full body, and core. It isn’t hard to discern the right moves if you stay alert during the demos. If your lower body is injured, do upper body moves. And if you vice, then versa. Every time you reach a move that threatens to aggravate the injury, select a move that works the opposite. If your head goes blank, just ask a trainer – we will be only too happy to dole out the pain.

Why don’t you just give me a list of moves?

“I hear and I forget, I see and I remember, I do, and I understand.” ~Confucius.

Put your bum away. I will not do it!!


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