This month 20 – 27th October the fourth Invictus Games will be taking place in Sydney. If you’ve never heard of them, or don’t know much about them, the whole premise of the games is to use the power of sport to inspire recovery, support rehabilitation and generate a wider understanding and respect for wounded, injured, and sick servicemen and women.
The word “Invictus” actually means “unconquered”, making it a fitting title for the games. Injuries, whether they are visible or otherwise, do not have to be defining. Equally, regardless of ability, sport can help everyone suffering from injury and/or illness both physically, mentally and just as vitally, socially.
Not only are the games great fun, and a wonderful experience for all those taking part (including those watching), but they have a far-reaching underlying message. Nobody should be defined by their injuries, disabilities or health problems. Everyone should be included, at a level suitable to their ability.
It’s something we all need to remember, should the worst ever happen. Many injuries can be recovered from. Those that have longer-term complications and place some limitations on you do not have to mean you give up your beloved sport entirely.
Physiotherapists, and other healthcare professionals, will always work with you to help you regain full fitness and mobility after an accident or injury. They can provide you with advice to help avoid further strain and issues, and can provide guidance on stretching, exercising and warming up to get you back in the game. They may be able to provide you with pain relief techniques to ensure any discomfort you’re experiencing is managed, or minimalised.
For situations where a full return to your previous form isn’t possible, then the best alternatives will be found. Again, advice can be provided on how to adjust your expectations, and train in a slightly different way to make the most of your new physical abilities.
Giving up something you love, due to injury, purely because you can no longer do it the way you used to, is not good for you mentally. Perhaps you have made peace with such a decision, but for many, it is a regret and disappointment that will haunt them for years. Always that nagging in the back of the mind that wonders what things would have been like if X, Y and Z hadn’t happened to you.
Finding ways to carry on, and embrace your life as it is now, rather than lament that it isn’t what it was, is much healthier. As we’ve mentioned many times before, any form of exercise is good for the body and soul, and remaining active in some capacity will help you stave off depression, anxiety and despair.
If you, or someone you know, has suffered an injury, and they’re concerned about finding a way to return to the sport or activity they love, give us a call.