I'm sure we have all had at least one in our lives.
Injuries are normally viewed as limitations to what you can do physically from that point on until you have recovered. We're here to tell you that injuries are actually opportunities.
An injury is an opportunity to become an expert in a different area of your training.
Most people would agree with this statement, and most people would think that we're not even saying anything new... but how many people actually take the opportunity that an injury gives them to become a specialist in a different aspect of the gym?
Here's a few guidelines if you're dealing with an injury.
1. Talk to your Coach
None of the coaches here at Urban Athletic Club are doctors and we cannot diagnose injuries. But let us know that something is going on. We'll always recommend that you go see your doctor or PT and figure out what is wrong. Then let us know how we can help!
2. Identify everything you are able to work with and make a list
Identify every part of your body that you can work on that isn't related to the injury. For example if you have a shoulder injury, working out your core, hips and legs should not be an issue. For a lower body injury, doing upper body movements should not be an issue. Your coach can help you!
3. Focus on the mobility and health of your muscles and joints.
Mobility is a huge aspect of our fitness and usually overlooked. Ignoring mobility can be a cause of many minor and major injuries, so taking the time to focus on the parts of your body that are not yet injured, and doing some extra mobility can help prevent future injuries.
If you know you have problem areas that can get tweaked easier, make an effort to get to the gym earlier to do extra stretching and mobility as well staying after class a few minutes stretch out or roll out.
4. Make strength and strict movements your priority
Again, working around the injured body part, begin working on strengthening every other muscle that you can think of. A shoulder injury is the perfect opportunity to start a strict squat cycle. A leg injury is the perfect opportunity to master strict/weighted pull-ups, shoulder presses, or push-ups.
5. Make it your goal to become a specialist
CrossFit teaches that specializing is the enemy, and that is normally true. However, if you have a broken leg and you cannot squat, run, jump, etc, why not specialize in gymnastics? Master the muscle up, practice L-sits everyday, learn how to walk on your hands!
Again, injuries are not limitations. They are disguised as opportunities to learn something new, and to become a specialist around the gym. Make sure you work with a coach to determine appropriate scaling and modifications, and always refer back to your doctor when it comes to the actual injury itself.