Proprioception for Recovery
Written by: Amjad Albaghdadi, CAT(C), R. Kin, RMT, Massage Therapist, Sport Medicine Clinic & Adelaide Health Clinic
We all have experienced the recovery process before. After a workout, playing a sport, after going through a long hike, sitting for long periods of time, or recovering from a musculoskeletal injury. We stiffen up, we feel sore and tight, and can experience pain as well. We know that our body is recovering because we are not able to repeat or increase the level of activity we had performed before without experiencing some pain or weakness doing it. What if our body was able to recovery quickly? Shouldn’t we strive for the fastest recovery possible?
Professional athletes are able to recover quickly. They go through an endless cycle of performance and recovery to become the best version of themselves in their sport. So how do they recover quickly? They have full body balanced movements that help to attenuate forces acting on them. Force attenuation helps decrease stress placed on one part of the body.
So how do we achieve sound and balanced movements for our daily activities? We need to enhance our proprioception. Proprioception, at times referred to as our sixth sense, is also known as kinaesthesia. It is the sense of self-movement, force, and body position. Enhancing our proprioception increases our self-awareness of our body positions in space. We become aware of how much ranges of motion we have available for us in each of our joints (spine, shoulders, pelvis, hips, knees, elbow, hands, and feet) and how to share the stress amongst all of them.
How do we enhance our proprioception? The proprioceptors of the body are primarily found in the muscles, tendons, joints, and skin- they are called muscle spindles, Golgi tendon organs, and joint receptors. Because some of them are located within our skin, soft tissue release is a great manual technique to target them. Another technique called proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation (PNF) is a very effective form of stretching that targets the ones in the muscles, tendons, and joints.
Enhancing your proprioception will speed your recovery.
As an Athletic Therapist and Massage Therapist at the Sport Medicine Clinic and Adelaide Health Clinic, I can help speed up your recovery so you can be as active as you want to be.
Book a 15-minute complimentary session with me to learn more!
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