Listening To Your Body
Every athlete is acutely aware of the delicate balance needed between training load (volume, intensity, frequency, type), and recovery to hit that sweet spot where you are performing to your best without breaking down. Remaining in peak physical condition requires persistence, determination and consistent effort, which can all come unstuck if young athletes fail to start listening to their own bodies.
In many a changing room, the slogan ‘No pain, no gain’ is heard and can lead athletes to push themselves too far, resulting in injuries which take longer to heal and keep teens away from their sporting dreams for longer periods of time. Pain in the body is an indication that something’s not quite right – whilst a little soreness may be normal after a particularly punishing workout, acute pain or constant pain can lead to overuse or repetitive strain injuries. It’s common for athletes to feel they’re ‘letting the team down’ if they’re unable to play or participate due to injury, sometimes resulting in athletes continuing to play, despite a worsening injury. Intense competition to reach a particular level in sport can compound the feelings of needing to carry on, but heed a warning, that ignoring your body often leads to longer term problems and lengthier periods away from your chosen sport.
Exercise related injuries happen for a variety of reasons but undoubtedly, not listening to how your body is feeling and not seeking prompt expert advice is one of the most common. It’s worth keeping a training diary, noting down not just the exercise you’ve completed but how you felt and if you experienced any challenges. Not only does this help you to identify any repetitive pain points, it’s also a useful tool for the team at Twelve9teen to assess your injury and build the right rehabilitation program to return you to full health.
Adolescents can be more susceptible to sporting injuries – a combination of still growing bone structures and an evolving sense of self and accountability necessitates the right support structure in place to ensure you maintain optimal health – both mentally and physically. Our advice at Twelve9teen is to build your own team, to help you develop the capability required to boost your changes of sporting success. This includes not just your coach, but your sports medicine team and parents, to provide a well-rounded, holistic view of how you’re tracking. At Twelve9teen we are part of Our Family Health Care and we have hand-picked medical specialists and allied health professionals that we feel are the best in Brisbane when it comes to sporty teens. We recommend athletes tap into the preventative physiotherapy sessions we offer, to enable our expert team to keep you in good shape, as well as rehabilitate you when injury strikes.
Training is an integral part of your success, but arguably listening to your body is just as critical. Allowing your body to recover and rehabilitate will see you return faster and in better physical condition than continuing to play, as though nothing has happened.