So you got injured. And trust me, injuries totally suck. No one wants to take time off their training. Here are some tips from someone who has endured a lot of injuries:
Get a Proper Assessment
And I don’t mean the assessment that a personal trainer, coach, athletic therapist, osteopath, chiropractor, whatever gives. I mean dragging your butt and getting an x-ray and if needed an MRI and ultra sound. There are a lot of athletes that rely way too much on these in-office assessments that are totally wrong; and they continue training, thinking they are ok, only to make their injury worse.
Get Different Opinions
If your injury is really serious, get different opinions. Also trust your gut instinct. I remember when I injured my back and they wanted to do surgery. Surgery?! In my thirties?! I got osteopathy, acupuncture, massage, kinesiologist, laser, ultra sound, and finally used my brain and visited a sports doctor. Got a total assessment and went through a core test. Guess what? I just needed to work my core more. It was weak. Go figure. Get another opinion. You only have one body.
Don’t Sit on Your Ass
As soon as possible get back in the gym. Ask your therapist what you can do. What exercises can you do to make your injury stronger and what other body parts can you work on? Don’t rely on visiting a therapist 3 days a week. Ask and educate yourself on how to make yourself stronger. You can’t use your hand to punch? Work your conditioning. Work your kicks. Train around your injury.
Monitor Your Nutrition
If you can’t train as much as you want to, and you have to monitor your weight for an upcoming match, consider speaking to a nutritionist. They can give you a lot of information on how to manage inflammation, and how to eat properly to heal faster. You want to eat nutritionally dense food, and you want to consume enough calories to heal properly, suit your current exercise activity, without having excess calories go to your waist line.
Get an Education
Train your mind. Watch training tapes, matches, fights, for inspiration and to challenge your instructor with some training questions. Come to class and support your team mates. Take notes of the class lesson.
The Past has the Answers
How did you get injured? Is this a previous injury? Maybe you need to invest in a strength and conditioning routine. Maybe you have weak areas of your body that need to be strengthened. Or maybe you are training / sparring with partners that are really above your weight category. And finally maybe yourself or your training partners need to re-assess how you roll or spar. Some people spar as if they are on a reality TV show, or trying out for the UFC or K1. Rolling and sparring should be fun and educational. Not a fight to the death.
Finally my last point is to keep doing those re-hab exercises, so that they turn into pre-hab exercises, making those weak areas strong and hopefully reducing the chance of re-injuring that area.