Preventing Injuries: Identifying the Signs Before There Are Symptoms
The best form of treatment is prevention.
Most patients come to see us because they’re suffering from pain or injury, but did you know that often there are early warning signs and changes in your performance that if recognized, can reduce your risk of injury?
Signs (without symptoms) act as a warning that something bad is about to happen.
Some of the things to look out for include:
- Range of Motion: Range of Motion (ROM) is how far you can move or stretch a part of your body. Has there been a change in your ROM recently? Has it become limiting?
- Coordination: Can you perform simple and complex movement skills as easily as before? Are your movements performed with precision?
- Strength: Have you noticed any changes in your strength, endurance, or power?
- Speed: Are you able to move as quickly in different movement directions and movement patterns as you did before? Do you fatigue more quickly?
- Symmetry: Are you able to control your body in the same way on both sides? Do your movements look symmetrical on both sides when you perform them in front of a mirror.
- Lack of confidence: Do you feel a lack of confidence to perform a skill well? Does something just feel “off”?
- Poor decision-making when performing a skill: While performing a skill, are you able to make decisions about your environment to figure out what your next action should be?
- Inability to multitask: Do you find it more difficult to talk (or do any number of other things) while performing a skill?
- Poor body language: Do you feel awkward performing a skill that you used to be good at?
If you’ve said yes to any of the above, it’s worth seeking the guidance of an experienced physiotherapist that can assess your movement and create a plan to mitigate your risk factors to avoid future injury.