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Why Do We Get Injured? - Spark Performance and Physiotherapy

6056 E Baseline Rd.

Suite 147
Mesa, AZ 85206

Mon - Fri 6AM to 7PM

Sat 8AM to 12PM

6056 E Baseline Rd.

Suite 147
Mesa, AZ 85206

Mon - Fri 6AM to 7PM

Sat 8AM to 12PM

Why Do We Get Injured?

If you are human- you know, breathing and participating in life- then it is likely you have been injured a time or two. It could be as small as a little tweak in the low back to a full-blown tear of the shoulder labrum. We all experience injury, and it is frustrating. Nobody wants to get injured, especially since it seems that an injury always occurs at the least opportune time.

When someone gets injured, the first question they ask me is, “WHY?” Why in the world did I get injured doing X activity? I thought performing X activity was supposed to be good for me? The question is understandable- but I advise against the negative talk and the spiral down the Google rabbit hole to find your answer. If you look in enough places, you will likely find an answer that satisfies your need to know ‘WHY’- but is it the truth? Finding a ‘logical’ answer is both good and bad. The good? You found an answer and feel like you solved the mystery. The bad? You become fearful of the activity that you love because you believe it caused your injury.

I am here to tell you that the answer to the question of ‘Why did I get injured?’ will likely upset you because of how simple it is.

Here are some common beliefs on why we get injured, per Dr. Google:

  1.       Poor technique: there is no such thing as the ‘perfect’ technique. There is no single best way to do anything. Especially when you account for the fact that we are human beings – living, breathing, beings – that are highly adaptable. There is no single movement that has a 100% injury rate. Meaning there is no one movement that you can perform that will without a doubt cause an injury. Just think about that for a second. If there was such a thing as poor technique, every time you saw it, it must cause pain. But, that is just not how it is. So the next time the gym bro tells you that your form is garbage, just ignore them. They likely know little to nothing about what they are saying.
  1.       Something bad always happens to you: If you believe that you are always destined to be injured, it is likely you will be. The brain is very powerful and can contribute to injury if you believe…but it can also help you overcome any injuries by looking at the situation in a positive manner. The whole universe is not out to get you!
  1.       Somebody told you how you should feel. This is very self limiting and not the way life works. You can trick a baby into thinking they are injured by the way you act. Some people carry that into adulthood and say things like “lifting that much weight must kill your knees” or “that weight would crush my spine in half.” It is hard enough to get motivated to exercise/lift weights. When you add the negative talk you hear from others you can see why people are so hyperaware of what they are doing at the gym. This kind of talk gets in your head and makes any little twinge feel like a horrific muscle tear.

In reality, there are 3 reasons why we get injured:

  1.        There is a problem with you programming: You do too much, too often. You do too little, not often enough. Did you try something new that you haven’t done before? All of these principles of loading/unloading come into play. Maybe you pushed your first workout of the week a little too much.
  2.       You aren’t recovering well: You just pushed your body to adapt during an exercise or movement. Congratulations! Your body is doing what it is supposed to do and adapting! The problem? Your body doesn’t get enough time, fuel, or rest to recover from the new adaptation. Our bodies need time to recover after being challenged. When you decide to go back and push your body to adapt again when it isn’t ready, it will fight back!
  3.       Shit Happens: This seems to be the least favorite explanation among my patients. Things in life happen. The best thing to do is to accept it. Acknowledge it. And set yourself up for a come back.

The reasons that we get injured are not as complex as people make it out to be. Often times it can not be broken down to the slight degree of variation in your shoulder motion you have compared to your lifting buddy. Or the slightly increased use of the lumbar spine paraspinals upon return to standing from a squat rather than your buddy who feels his glutes engaging more during that same movement pattern.

If you get injured, which you will, ask yourself what you are NOT doing. Are you not sticking to your program? Are you not being honest with the program you are following? Is your recovery a priority?

And, remember, it could just be that SHIT JUST HAPPENS.

If you need help discovering your injury and help with finding your ‘why’, please reach out to us here.

We look forward to helping you recover and get your active life back!

Not ready for an appointment and just want some information? Check out the FREE GUIDES written by leading Physical Therapist Dr. Steven Alexander

Back Pain

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Shoulder Pain