For decades, runners have always had a singular goal when it comes to injury rehabilitation: “fix” the injury. But what if we’ve been wrong about this goal?
Endurance athletes and physical therapists have an interesting relationship. We runners love PT’s! But we wish we’d never have to see them, ever.
Alas, running has quite the alarmingly high injury rate.
Most of us will wind up with a running injury this year. And some of us will visit a physical therapist or physio’s office for treatment. How do we typically think about these visits?
- “I want to get rid of this pain my Achilles”
- “My goal is to become injury-free”
- “Fix what hurts!”
These are noble goals. But they’re not actually the most important part of visiting a physical therapist. While eliminating pain and successfully rehabilitating the injury are necessary, what is actually most important?
What’s critical is a return to your pre-injury fitness level and capabilities.
This is called a performance framework for injury rehabilitation. The goal isn’t just to get healthy and reduce pain, but to be able to run at your previous workload.
Because after all, if you’re healthy but unable to run your typical mileage levels, long run distance, or workouts… are you really “back to normal?”
My goal at Strength Running is to always challenge you and make you think more strategically about your running.
To help us reframe our thinking on running injuries, prevention, and treatment I’m thrilled to welcome David Joyce to the Strength Running Podcast.
David Joyce on Better Injury Rehabilitation
David Joyce is one of the top performance experts in the world. He’s worked at the highest levels of world athletics and with multiple national, world, and Olympic Champions. He’s worked at two Olympic Games, with elite rugby and soccer teams, and is currently the Head of Athletic Performance with the Greater Western Sydney Giants soccer team in Sydney, Australia.
David holds masters degrees in both sports physiotherapy and strength and conditioning and teaches the Masters of Strength and Conditioning course at Edith Cowan University in Perth.
He’s the main editor of two authoritative books on athletic performance and injury risk mitigation, the first is Sports Injury Prevention and Recovery: Integrating Medicine and Science for Performance Solutions and the second is High-Performance Training for Sports: The Authoritative Gide for Ultimate Athletic Conditioning.
In this episode, we’re discussing a more effective approach to injury recovery: a performance framework that isn’t simply interested in healing the injury, but actually getting you to your pre-injury level of performance.
We’ll talk about:
- the major goals of this approach
- how rehabilitation evolves over the course of an injury
- major screening considerations for injuries
- David’s top strategies for staying healthy if you currently don’t have an injury
Show Resources & Links:
Thanks Inside Tracker
This episode would not have been possible without Inside Tracker, who is offering a 10% discount on any of their tests with code strengthrunning.
They test over 40 biomarkers, like various stress hormones, to determine if you’re training too hard, too little, or have any physiological weaknesses that can be remedied by either diet, exercise, or lifestyle changes.
In other words, you learn about problems that have actionable solutions.
After getting your results, they communicate what you can do to lift or lower your results into the optimal range. For any runner who wants every advantage, to see what they’re truly capable of achieving, I highly recommend Inside Tracker. I’ve personally used their ‘Ultimate Package’ tier and loved the process and results.
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