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Returning to sport and exercise

Who else is pinning their hopes on being able to hit the gym again or return to sports training and competition?
Maybe you’re already making the most of every minute of the new two-hour exercise window?
Even if you were previously training regularly and consider yourself ‘fit’, it pays to take precautions after a prolonged period of little or less activity.

Our physio Nav recommends these 3 ‘slow and steady’ steps to not only return to your peak performance or previous activity level, but maintain that level while minimising injury risk.

Slow down. That plan or ambition to ‘go hard or go home’? Dial it down a few notches. Even if you were at peak fitness a couple of months ago, prolonged periods of little or less exercise naturally result in some deconditioning. The effects may include factors such as greater fatigue than before, which can lead to compromised form and increased injury risk (which is why fast gains often don’t last).

Rely on science. If you don’t have the knowledge or confidence to stage your own progressive return, consider consulting a physio, sports chiro or personal trainer, who can help you to set goals that accommodate your current condition and work to strengthen weaknesses and leverage strengths to help you to safely and sustainably reach your fitness goals.

Go with what you know. It may be tempting to announce your return with a bunch of new workouts or a 12-week program. However, it is wise to wait a while before expecting your body to accommodate radically different moves. On your return, give your body a chance to adapt by following your familiar or regular routine. Once you’ve built up strength and stamina, you can safely explore new exercise types.

Have a question about your post-lockdown fitness goals or need advice for gradually preparing your body before training resumes? Ask us in comments! #keepsoaring

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