Athletes with Long Term Sports Injuries
An athlete’s body can appear to be superior in fitness, function and performance in terms of strength, physical capacity and even flexibility. However, this does not mean they have a completely healthy connective tissue system. Their functional body just presents one small part of a whole system.
An athlete can be trained to perform well, hold strong and be flexible, but still have tension, energetic blocks, weaknesses, imbalances and disharmony in their connective tissue.
Due to the strength and superior flexibility in an athlete’s body they will often be able to cover any weaknesses and compensate for weaknesses, and can even discover the best type of training to keep their body functionally strong. Although the athlete may feel they are strengthening or developing their body in this instance, this is often deceptive as it is actually more detrimental or even harmful because it will mask conditions or even bury them deeper into the connective tissue system. These deeper layers of tension and disharmony in the connective tissue may take longer for the body to release or heal later.
After their active careers many athletes have suffered with musculoskeletal problems and other health problems and disorders that would normally be seen in the elderly population. The wear and tear that their bodies experience during their active career is comparable to fast forwarding their aging process, especially with regards to the connective tissue and joint integrity.
Both of these facts are often reflected in athletes saying that ‘since I stopped my active sporting career my body is falling apart’.
How ECTT can support and enhance the healing of an athlete´s body
When the body’s soft tissue is strained, inflamed or torn, e.g a bad ligament sprain of the knee, the body works on many levels to restore the tissue and body part to full movement and function.
How well the connective tissue - its fibres and cells heal depends on the extent of injury to that tissue and how supportive the person is to their body in the initial acute healing phase.
Often the fibres of the connective tissue heal in a less ordered and more thickened state with the healing tissue more fibrous in nature than its previous elastic pre-injured state.
This results in tissue that feels much like a lumpy scar you might have had after you badly cut your skin
ECTT Practitioners have noted that ECTT can support the body as it heals in a number of ways:
ECTT appears to support the healing tissue to mend in a more ordered, fluid and flexible way. For example, in some circumstances ECTT has assisted in the restoration of full movement to an injured body part e.g. in the above case - full knee bending and straightening in weight bearing activities.
ECTT appears to help restore the balance of all the muscles and joints of the injured part as well as the harmony of the organ system that may be under strain and in imbalance due to the injury or chronic stress on the body.
It is common for the nervous system to be over stimulated in ‘fight or flight mode’ if the athlete has been under physical and or emotional stress. The deeply relaxing and restorative nature of ECTT offers the space needed for a body with a nervous system under stress to find a state of relaxation and balance.
The gentle rhythmic nature of ECTT supports the athlete to connect to their body not just physically but energetically.
This allows them to perhaps feel that their body is naturally gentle and tender and not supported when they don’t listen to their body and drive themselves beyond their natural capabilities.
A session with Kate – an overview:
In the initial treatment Kate offers a thorough physical assessment and evaluates the problem area. Kate will work with you to assess the possible movements/cause or mechanism of injury. Kate also assesses the extent of the tissue damage, swelling and muscle weakness associated with the injured area. She may also inquire, if it is appropriate, about stress levels and your emotional health and what your expectations are of when and at what level you wish to return to sport/exercise. This thorough assessment allows Kate and you as her client to be very clear on the starting point of the extent of physical and sometimes emotional problems and your expectations before the treatment program begins.
A significant part of each treatment with Kate are modalities that support relaxation and settlement on the treatment table, which supports you to let go of tension in your body.
This approach helps to ease the general tension and stress often associated with a sports injury. As well as gentle physiotherapy, the treatment modalities may include esoteric connective tissue therapy, gentle muscle and joint releases and remedial massage. Together with Kate you will develop a specific home exercise program of gentle connective tissue exercises with a progressive strength and stretching program as your injury heals.
Kate supports you with a graduated and supervised return-to-sport program so that you can get back to your usual sporting activities as you work towards achieving full recovery.