A good rehab program can greatly speed your recovery from injury. After you've been diagnosed by a sports medicine specialist, find out which type of rehab treatment makes sense for you.
Your doctor may rpescribe physical therapy. Based on your doctor’s recommendations, a specialized physical therapy plan can quicken the recovery process by gradually building your flexibility and range of motion, as well as correcting any muscle imbalances. Your therapist may also analyze your gait mechanics, shoes, and training program. After this evaluation, he or she will create a customized program that will address your limitations, guide your return to running, and give you a prevention strategy for avoiding injuries in the future.
Other potential members of your rehab team include a massage therapist and a chiropractor. Massage therapists help with muscle imbalances and altered muscle-firing patterns that may lead to injury, and they can alleviate fascial and muscular restrictions with hands-on work to improve blood flow and help you regain muscle balance.
The body’s structure can change over time and with repetitive movement patterns, causing joints to become less mobile. A chiropractor can help realign your vertebrae and stretch the tight, short musculature that supports your skeletal system, allowing for better body awareness and pain-free training.
Leigh-Ann Plack (PT, DPT) and Michael Silverman (PT, MSPT) are physical therapists at New York City’s Hospital for Special Surgery Sports Rehabilitation and Performance Center.