An injury can wreak havoc on a swimming season and it can devastate the body. When injuries keep swimmers away from the pool, they suffer not only physically, but mentally as well. Even though pools are often used as therapy for recovery, there are certain things that swimmers should do when they get back to training so they do not injure themselves again.
Take Your Time
Instead of diving in the pool and going all out, recovering from an injury can take time. Swimmers should know that there will be good days and bad days, or even good laps and bad laps. It is wise to not take those good laps or good days too seriously, because overdoing it on the days when you feel good can lead to more injuries. It is best to strive for a middle ground by taking it easy until you are given the go-ahead to go all out. When you jump into the pool and start moving around, you might find that you will need to return to physical therapy a few more times. Don’t let it bring you down – this is the way it goes in real life.
Don’t Let Your Down Time Affect Your Recovery
Don’t forget about your other activities. While you are recovering and recuperating, it is important to work on your nutrition and sleep. You won’t help yourself if you eat junk food and get minimum amounts of sleep. Your recovery could be shorter if you stay healthy outside of the pool. Don’t go too crazy on the weekends. If your goal is to get back to swimming, then you should focus on getting back to swimming not on activities that could aggravate your injury or set you back in other ways.
Stay Mentally Strong
Mental determination is important. If you let down your guard and succumb to the frustrations of being injured, you might not ever get back into the pool competitively. Many of the best swimmers in the world have suffered through injuries, but they did not let the injuries get them down. They dealt with it and did what they needed to do to overcome the issue. The important part is being able to do what you love, but when the body doesn’t always cooperate, it doesn’t mean that you will never get back to swimming. You might not be able to swim as quickly or for as long, but that’s ok. You are still swimming.
Learning about the cause of your injury can help make your return to the pool more successful. The best source of information will be your health care professionals. They will be able to tell you what caused the injury, especially if you have some memory of the first painful experience. They will also be able to tell you what not to do to bring back pain. You might have to avoid certain strokes or you might have to put your flip turns on hold for a while. If staying in your pool is the goal, then you will need to do what you can to Stay. In. The. Pool. You might even have to take on a new physical activity to balance out your pool time. Something like yoga or pilates could be the balance that prevents injuries.
Get into a Routine
It can be helpful to have a routine that gets you working on your injury so it doesn’t happen again. Your routine might have stretches or gentle exercises that slowly, but surely strengthen the area of the body that was injured. It is a good idea to do those exercises and stretches so you can get back into the pool quickly and successfully.