Whether you are injured, pregnant, sore, tired, et cetera there is a benefit to training even in a reduced capacity. There is a positive hormonal response from exercise, which can affect a multitude of facets from body weight to recovery to mental state. Although the nature of injury may determine what is possible, the goal is still the same: replicate all workout variables as closely as possible.
- Make sure you partake in a pain-free range of motion. Where the movement cannot be performed exactly, a trainer should find a substitute that best replicates the basic function and/or range of motion. However, any movement that still relies primarily on the injured joint/body part should be used cautiously, if at all. A trainer may need to get creative at times to accomplish this in order to avoid boredom and still working for a new skill.
- Single-limb work can be utilized: contrary to the belief that this will result in a problematic muscle imbalance, exercising the non-injured side can reduce atrophy on the injured side. Dumbbells are a perfect tool for one-sided work, and the number of repetitions can increase in cases where the loading is limited. However, this should not be the only option for someone with an injured limb. If an exercise involves 2 movement functions, they may be able to perform one with both sides. For example, in a thruster, an athlete with an injured upper body may still be able to squat or front squat. If he or she has an injured lower body, the athlete might still be able to press or push press. If there are no reasonable options for an injured person to perform a similar movement, omit the movement or substitute something else.
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