Coping With a Sports Injury & Recovery
Athletes react to sports injuries with a wide range of emotions which may include denial, anger, sadness, and even depression. An injury often seems unfair to anyone who has been physically active and otherwise healthy. Although these feelings are real, it’s important to move beyond the negative and find more positive strategies to cope with a setback like these. Staying positive with an athlete suffers an injury helps an athlete become more focused, flexible, and determined to improve.
Emotional Stress From an Injury
The more you know about the cause, treatment, and prevention of your injury, the less it can cause fear or anxiety. Learn about your injury and ask the following questions to your doctor, trainer, coach, or therapist as it can give you great insight to your best path to healing faster:
- What is my final diagnosis?
- How long will recovery take?
- What are my treatment options?
- What should I expect during rehab?
- What alternative workouts can I safely do?
- What things should I limit myself from doing?
- What alterations will I need to make for my life?
By understanding the injury and knowing what to expect during the rehabilitation process, you will feel less anxiety and a greater sense of control and confidence. If surgery is recommended, we always suggest a second opinion as we try to avoid surgery at all cost.
The Process To a Health Recovery For The Body & Mind
Accept Responsibility for Your Injury
This is not to point fingers if the injury is your fault. What this means is your mindset needs to change. Instead of focusing on performance, you need to accept that now you have an injury and you are the only one that has control over your outcome.
By taking responsibility for your recovery process, you will find a greater sense of confidence and will quickly progress in recovery, rather than pushing yourself to perform at your pre-injury level.
Maintain a Positive Attitude
To heal quickly you need to be committed to overcoming your injury by showing up for your treatments, and listening and doing what your trainer recommend. You also need to monitor your self-talk—what you are thinking and saying to yourself regarding the injury and the rehab process.
Your self-talk is important as it gauges your self-confidence. To get the most out of your daily rehab, you need to work hard and maintain a positive attitude. Remain focused on what you need to do, not what you are missing out on.
Home & Work Balance
It is important to try to maintain a healthy work-life balance as well. Some people are highly motivated and work extra hard to get back in the game, while other people get discouraged and slack off on therapy.6 Setting small daily or weekly goals that build momentum can help you stay balanced as you reach your end goal of healing.
Set Appropriate Goals
Just because you are injured doesn’t mean you stop planning or setting goals. Rather than viewing the injury as a crisis, make it another training challenge. Your goals will now focus on recovery rather than performance. This will help keep you motivated.
By monitoring your goals you will also be able to notice small improvements in the rehab of your injury. You will feel more confident that you are getting better and improving.