The following article was discovered at tabatatimes.com. Thanks for posting this guys!

Coach’s Corner: “Injuries as RX”

 

by LARRY PALAZZOLO

Larry Palazzolo is a trainer atCrossFit Delaware Valley. He is a Certified Holistic Health Coach through the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and has been CrossFitting since 2005.

In our line of Fitness, injuries will happen. Think about it: we throw shit-tons of weight around, climb ropes way up high in the sky, run Broomiles carrying odd objects, and push weighted sleds around an unevenly paved parking lot. And we do it all while sharing one bathroom.

Injuries WILL happen. The question is whether or not you acknowledge them and how you go about recovering from them. Most of the time, rather than scaling the workouts or substituting movements that won’t further aggravate the injury, we push on bullheaded and do more damage.

We throw an ice pack on it, pop a few ibuprofen, and be on our way. But then we do that again the next day: ice pack, Vitamin I, push on. And the next day. And the next. Not realizing that the ice isn’t doing anything and the Vitamin I is just making our stomach bleed and damaging our liver. No big deal.

Perhaps we should keep the weight light for now and practice the technique…

We get injured because we do stupid shit. Stupid shit includes but is not limited to:Overtraining/under-recovering, consistently doing the movements with sloppy form, going heavier with sloppy form, overuse of a muscle and/or joint, and/or tendon with sloppy form. See a pattern here?

If you’re doing it wrong – your back rounds in a deadlift; your knees cave in on a squat; you’re flailing about on the pullup bar like one of those inflatable tube guys at a car dealership – then you need to back off and start from scratch.

The coaches point it out. Your gym buddy points it out. But you’d rather show everyone how bad ass you are by going up in weight when clearly you need to go back to the basics. And you’ll say, “But  I think I can do this workout RX.” I’m sure you can but if your power clean looks like a monkey f*cking a football, perhaps we should keep the weight light for now and practice the technique, mmkay?

Less is More

Overtraining is a common reason for injuries and chronic pain. Be patient. You have to go slow if you want to go fast.

The “3 days on, 1 day off” classic CrossFit training prescription doesn’t work for everyone. That’s six intense workouts in a week. There are diminishing returns when it comes to the Fitness, and for the majority of people, less is always more. You may never need that many workouts in your weekly training unless you’re trying to compete in CrossFit, and even then it may be too much. Overtraining is a common reason for injuries and chronic pain. Be patient. You have to go slow if you want to go fast. Make that the standard.

Scale, Scale, Scale

There will be a time and a place for you to do the full version of the workout. Today may not be that day.

How many times do we have to say this: “DON’T BE AFRAID TO SCALE!” Scaling is keeping a movement but changing the load, sets, reps, or range of motion. There is always something new to learn in CrossFit. Allow yourself to be a beginner. It doesn’t make you less of a person. No one is going to judge you or think you’re cheating or not working hard enough. And you shouldn’t think that way either. Delete it from the hard drive. This is smart training. There will be a time and a place for you to do the full version of the workout. Today may not be that day.

Training Through an Injury

There is a substitution or modification for any movement. Remember, that’s the beauty of CrossFit: Everything is scalable.

The Cylons have a plan. You need to have a plan too. Doing nothing is not a viable option. You’ve identified the problem: X hurts and it’s not getting better. What are you doing to make it better? Does this require a professional to take a look at it? Do you just need to back off for a week and take it easy? Once you have come up with a game plan, talk to the trainers about your substitution options. This means changing a movement prescription due to injury, limitation of movement, flexibility, strength, or conditioning. We routinely substitute movements for our athletes. This is one of the big reasons why we try to keep our instructor to athlete ratio low, so that we can do a better job of accommodating everyone.

A common example of this in CrossFit is shoulder injuries. Let’s say your shoulder is bothering you when you go overhead, and today’s workout involves a clean and jerk. One possible substitution for this would be to remove the jerk portion and just do the clean (as long as there wasn’t any pain with that movement). There is a substitution or modification for any movement. Remember, that’s the beauty of CrossFit: Everything is scalable.

Use your head and listen to your body. The human body is an amazing thing, and it will heal itself if you let it. If something hurts, don’t do it. It’s that simple.

This article is re-published from CrossFit Delaware Valley’s affiliate blog. Originally posted on November 20, 2012.