When we get injured, whether it is through running a 5k or playing netball, getting back to full fitness can be difficult. You can completely rehabilitate the injury, but get back to doing what you love and break down again. Making sure you are hitting specific markers or goals you set is key to make sure that when you return to your activity of choice your body is as ready as possible.
What is sport specific rehab?
Similar to normal stages of rehab, this is where you get your body accustomed to the requirements of the sport or activity you will be participating in. For a lot of sports this will involve multi-directional running. Therefore, you would tend to start with straight line running, building up in stages until you are able to complete change of direction exercises.
Sport specific rehab should cover all aspects of movement, use of equipment and making it as specific to your role as possible. This rehab should be fun and enjoyable throughout, talk with your therapist or if you are doing this yourself, break down your routine when you perform your activity and build this back stage by stage. Be adventurous in your development of your plan, make it challenging but attainable.
For sports such as Netball, you will want to also do positional specific exercises. If you play in a defensive or attacking position you will want to get yourself a netball stand and have a netball. Nowadays, these are well-priced and quality pieces of kit.
How to use different types of equipment to hit your goal?
Once you have your netball stand, you can then simulate match specific events for your position. If you play in goal attack, you will want to simulate jumping into the D, catching a ball, keeping your balance and shooting. Having equipment that is specific to your sport can help you in a few ways.
- Helps with positioning
- Can have a greater variety in your rehab exercises
- Makes match simulation far easier
Having a variety of kit at your disposal can help to develop a sport specific rehab plan that is interesting and enjoyable to complete. Whether that is simply some collapsible cones to run around, a football goal for you to practice shooting or an agility kit to help with change of direction exercises.
Sport Specific Rehab should be the best part of all rehab. It should be the reward for all the effort you put into your early exercises, that can often feel very boring and monotonous. Get in touch with your nearest therapist, then you can formulate a full rehab plan to get you back to your best.
I have limited space, how can I still do this?
A lot of equipment is manufactured to accommodate all walks of life. Netball stands are small pieces of kit that can hide away in a corner of the garden, which is perfect if you have a small space or a large space. It is fully manageable for everyone. Football goals don’t have to have a solid frame, you can buy pop-up goals; in this case the goal is more a target for you to aim your passes or shots at.
However big the space is you have available, there are many pieces of equipment that can work for you. Find something that works, and have fun with your rehab!