The notion that physiotherapy exists to simply serve athletes is a lot like saying that you should only take your car for a service if it’s a Porsche, an Aston Martin or a Bentley. All cars require service and all bodies need physiotherapy.
As annoying as this notion is, it’s perfectly reasonable that it exists. Why? Because common misconceptions are the result of misinformation and lack of proper, informed education on a specific subject matter.
In the “Golden Era” of information, we’ve populated the web with so much information that we’ve made the truth hard to find. At Club Health, we don’t brag of knowing a lot, but we are confident in the few things that we know and one of those is physiotherapy.
We specifically decided to kick off our blog with this subject, as one of our biggest goals in creating the Club, is changing the notions, beliefs and thinking around physiotherapy.
Let’s dive into it.
Injuries Don’t Just Happen on The Pitch
Physiotherapy is closely associated with injury recovery for athletes and this is where things start getting tricky.
Athlete’s injuries usually happen due to the stress and duress their bodies are put through – from calves and strains and pulled hamstrings to ACL and Achilles tears, these injuries rank high on the pain and recovery threshold.
Where the misconception was born, is when people started thinking that anything less than these injuries, is not considered an injury and therefore does not need the treatment or consultation of a medical professional.
What we have ended up with is a belief that someone who is an accountant, or a stay-at-home mum, or does anything other than a professional sport, is not subject to injuries or physiotherapy.
That couldn’t be furthest from the truth.
Your daily routine is your pitch, your stadium, your battlefield. What most of you know as a “nagging back injury”, a “sore neck” or a “stiff hamstring” are the injuries you are sustaining on a daily basis and do not attend or treat.
Our body’s output and performance adjust to our daily routine and stress, attrition and friction cause these seemingly minor injuries. Just because you learn to tolerate the pain or find ways around the injury in order to get on with your day, that doesn’t mean the injury is gone.
On the contrary, failing to attend to the injury will aggravate it and most probably turn it into a chronic issue that’s hard to cure.
Injuries are a natural phenomenon and the sooner we start disassociating them with athletes and associating them to our bodies, the sooner we’ll find a solution.
Talking of solutions, let’s segway to this.
Injury Treatment & Injury Prevention Are (Almost) The Same
It goes like this: injury treatment is necessary for giving us immediate relief. If we just do that and never proceed to work on injury prevention, it won’t be long before we’re back at square one, visiting the physio for another treatment.
Let us give you an example you’ll probably relate with – it’s like going to the dentist for a filling because your tooth is killing you, only to leave their office and start eating sweets all over again without brushing your teeth at night.
At its most refined version, physiotherapy is strengthening and empowering the human body to fulfil its potential. It creates a strong, fully functional body that can go through its routine with more vigour and endurance, avoiding injuries.
Physiotherapy is not a reactionary practice but a proactive lifestyle. It’s something you insert into your routine much like drinking water, showering and brushing your teeth. No, physiotherapy is not a daily habit like the ones we used as an example but it’s definitely a habit that belongs in your bi-weekly or monthly schedule.
The benefits to physical therapy are countless but here are some that stand out:
- Improving muscle length and flexibility
- Decrease stress
- Increase energy levels
- Address “every-day” injuries
Physiotherapy is a Holistic Experience
Building on the “physiotherapy is just for athletes” idea, comes the notion that physiotherapy simply makes the pain and discomfort go away. Once again, that’s something that essentially underestimates and underplays the value of the practice to the human body.
Physiotherapy is based on the understanding of the individual, their interests, routines, habits, diet, and overall lifestyle. The hip pain that made you walk through the doors might be the outcome of so many different scenarios.
A physiotherapist’s job is not to make the pain go away. Their job is to locate and understand the source of the pain and help you change that. The approach to solving the problem is holistic, taking into consideration so many variables.
From the way you sleep, sit at your desk, drive your car or watch TV, your body develops weaknesses and tendencies that eventually turn into injuries. A physiotherapist will help you reprogram your daily routine in such a way that you learn to protect your body from seemingly harmless habits.
When you start piecing all of it together, you’ll see how it all starts making sense. You’ll realize that every action has a reaction.
That sleeping on your right arm is probably the reason your right shoulder feels unstable. That looking down at your laptop makes your neck sore and bringing the screen to your eye level might actually relieve you greatly.
There’s so much physiotherapy can offer you then merely removing the pain you’re currently experiencing.
“But My Body Feels Ok…”
One of the core beliefs here at the Club is that life’s too short to just be ok. We don’t just want people to feel comfortable in their own skin, we want them to feel fantastic in it.
Ok is not ok and we believe that after visiting the Club, you’ll probably wonder why you allowed yourself to live a lesser life, underutilizing what your own body can do and achieve.
We want to welcome you to our blog by busting one of the most common myths around physiotherapy and encourage you to take a small step in changing your life greatly. Feel free to pick up the phone and our staff would be more than happy to assist you with any questions you might have.
To the athletes of the daily routine,