Tend to Yourself to Prevent Tendonitis

While humans can’t actually hibernate, in the coldest months of the year, it almost feels like we do. We hunker down against the treacherous weather outside and preserve our energies as we await warmer months. Now that the time is finally here, we’re more than ready to get back to the activities we love!

Or are we?

It’s all fun and games until tendonitis comes to play. When you suddenly resume a repetitive activity that you haven’t been doing all winter long—like running, gardening, and tennis—tendonitis can become a serious issue. That’s why Optimize Physiotherapy adopts a “pre-hab” versus “re-hab” approach. We encourage our patients to come in and get potential problems sorted out before they develop into full blown tendonitis, which takes much longer to treat and delays your time out in the sunshine enjoying what you love!

Whether you’re a serious athlete or more of a weekend warrior, warmer months are usually when we’re most physically active. Summer is perfect for moving our bodies more than usual and enjoying being outside, but it’s this jump in physical activity that can put many of us at risk for injury. It’s too much, too soon, too fast. In fact, it’s not uncommon for doctors and nurses to refer to this time as “trauma season.” The good news? It can be avoided if we do a little pre-planning. 

Give your body time to adjust. That means well before the summer heat, see your physiotherapist for a “tune up” and keep injury at bay. Besides visiting Optimize, there are other ways to get your body moving with lower risk of tendonitis:

1. Start slow – Remember, it takes time to build up strength and tolerance, even if you have remained active with other activities during the winter. If you notice any soreness in your joints, don’t ignore it! Let us know as soon as you’re able so we can help pinpoint what is causing your discomfort.  

2. Prevention for performance – It seems like a no-brainer, but with how busy life is for all of us, training before the warm weather hits can get moved to the backburner. This year, try to make training for your specific warm-weather sport or activity a priority. Whether you golf, run, or swim, find workouts with movements that are similar. Consistency in doing so can help build strength and endurance in your muscles. Need some ideas? Check out our videos! 

3. Set a prehab plan – Sometimes we think we fully understand our movement patterns. After all, who knows us better than ourselves? The truth is, it can be hard to notice a lack of resiliency, strength, or preparedness that can lead to a tendon injury. At Optimize, our prehab plans often include concentric and eccentric resistance training, plyometric training, and sport-specific movements that mimic the physical demands of the activity you like to do.

Embrace summer in peak condition, or at the very least, with far less pain. Contact us today and we’ll be happy to set you up for summer success!

What is tendonitis?

Tendonitis occurs when the connective tissues between your muscles and bones (tendons) become inflamed. It can be either acute (short-term) or chronic (long-term). Unfortunately, it can occur in almost any area of the body where a tendon connects a bone to a muscle, but is most common in certain areas of the body:

  • Base of the thumb
  • Elbow
  • Shoulder
  • Hip
  • Knee
  • Achilles tendon