Are you struggling to recover from an injury? If so, here’s a great new model to hopefully help you progress. For a long time now I’ve advocated a more active approach to injury rehabilitation – ‘rest is rust.’ The traditional model using Rest Ice Compression Elevation has also been questioned by the latest research. This new model using PEACE & LOVE is, in my opinion, a great step forward in promoting a more pro-active, client lead graded return to active daily life.
Initially, find P.E.A.C.E
- Protect. Restrict workload for 1-3 days. Minimise rest as prolonged rest leads to reduced muscle strength. Rely on pain levels to determine levels of activity.
- Elevate the limb higher than the Heart to promote fluid flow out of the injured area. Not completely backed up by evidence but low risk.
- Avoid Anti Inflammatory Modalities. Using anti-inflammatory medications may well be detrimental to long term tissue healing. The use of Ice, despite being popular in clinics and the general population, isn’t backed up with strong science and may well lead to impaired tissue regeneration.
- Compression. Using bandages and supports seems to reduce tissue swelling and damage.
- Education. We should be educated to be realistic with time frames and outcomes rather than chasing the ‘magic treatment’ approach. A passive approach to rehabilitation (acupuncture, taping etc) has a minor effect on pain and function compared with an active approach. Nurturing the ‘need to be fixed’ can also create dependency on the therapist.
Then, all you need is… L.O.V.E
After the first couple of days, soft tissue needs LOVE
- Load. Add load early and return to normal activity as soon as symptoms allow. Choosing movements that don’t exacerbate pain.
- Optimism. Your brain plays a huge part in recovery and healing. YOU take it or it takes YOU! Being realistic and positive is key.
- Vascularisation. Cardiovascular exercise (Walk, Swim, Run, Bike) will promote this. Not only does this help the injured tissues but it’s great for motivation!
- Exercise helps to restore mobility, strength and proprioception (balance) post injury.
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We also have a post on Why Small Group Personal Training Can Work For You.