Punching Up: How to Return to Boxing After Injury Recovery
Injuries suck, but they are an inevitable part of boxing. Whether you are boxing for fitness, fun or as a professional athlete, tweaks, sprains and strains are all par for the course.
When you are on the comeback trail from these injuries, there are some vital factors to consider before going back to full throttle training. These tips will help you get back to your best and reduce the risk of getting injured again.
Ensure You Have The Right Gear For Your Rehab
You probably won’t be able to go back to full, intense training immediately and will need to have a dedicated routine mapped out to ensure you don’t re-injure yourself. The right boxing equipment is essential, which could include knee support, ankle support or other strapping and support for the body part that was injured.
You will need to regain strength in the injured area which will require a modified schedule and dedicated equipment so that you can get back to full strength and your regular routine in no time.
Listen To Your Body
In many cases, injuries can happen when boxers train too hard and don’t recognise the signs that they are pushing themselves too far. If you are a boxer that struggles with your ego, you are really going to have to reel it in here.
Returning to peak fitness is going to take time and you need to understand the reasons why you got injured, learn from them and listen to your body when it is telling you it can’t handle anymore.
Listen To The Experts
Before getting back to training, it is vital that you share all of the information about your injury with your coach or trainer, GP and physio. They will be able to help put together a training plan that is customised for your body’s needs and help you build up strength in the area that was injured.
Training incorrectly is one of the leading causes of injury, especially when you take on too much load, too quickly. The guidance of your coach and medical team will be essential as they can let you know if you are pushing too hard and where changes can be made to get you back to full strength faster.
Get Plenty Of Quality Sleep
To be at your physical best, you need to look after your body in every way – especially when you are on the comeback trail from injury. Sleep is one of the biggest factors that athletes tend to neglect, but it is vital for your recovery.
When you sleep properly, the blood flow in your muscles increases, delivering more oxygen and nutrients to areas that are healing. This extra blood flow is vital for repairing muscles and regenerating cells when you are looking to build strength. Not getting enough sleep can lead to excess inflammation as well, which further increases the chances of re-injuring yourself.
Try to steer clear of caffeine, sugar-loaded drinks and alcohol before bed, turn off all screens at least 30 minutes before you go to sleep and try to ensure the room is completely dark to get the best possible night’s rest.
Focus On Inflammatory Foods
Adjusting your diet when coming back from injury is important as well. Your GP or a nutritionist can help you here and there are plenty of healthy foods out there that contain natural anti-inflammatory qualities. Try to include foods that are loaded with nutrients, antioxidants and healthy fats like tuna, salmon, green vegetables, nuts, seeds, olives and blueberries or strawberries for a treat.
Processed food like deli meats, fast food and frozen meals should be avoided as they have been proven to cause inflammation. Unfortunately, this means red meat is also off the table for a little while. Try lean white meats like chicken and turkey with cooked green vegetables for optimal results.