As an individual’s experience the dynamics from rigorous training sessions, it is important to have a protocol set in place after training to enhance recoverability. Failing to address athletes' need for optimal recovery may cause an excessive build-up of unwanted fatigue and stress (Skorski et al., 2019). Skorski et al. (2019) state that neglecting to respect an athlete’s recovery can lead to non-functional overreaching or maladaptive training. Resources for optimal recovery will help improve muscular soreness, adaptability, and trigger parasympathetic activation (relaxation) which will complement the training program.
Hotfiel et al. (2019) explain that a variety of physiological functions impact the muscular forces for athletes from carbohydrate depletion, dehydration, hypoglycemia, electrolyte imbalance, and ultrastructural muscle damage. These weakened physiological functions can blunt the recoverability if not correctly managed. The muscle adaptive responses from training stimuli can be altered by means of contractile properties, nutritional interventions, environmental factors, and daily stressors (Sanchez, Candau, & Bernardi, 2019). The conditions listed will cause changes in cellular stress thus leading to a variety of adaptations in the surrounding tissue (Sanchez et al., 2019).
What is Recovery?
In recent years, a variety of professionals are implementing new techniques that are noted to increase the impression of recovery. Nicolas, Vacher, Martinent, and Mourot (2019) define recovery as the understanding of stress balance with the influences of well-being and health. While practicing a training program, understanding that training loads will impact the recoverability of the individual. Other dynamics can be considered to heighten the opportunities of non-functional overreaching or overtraining, to such a degree that adaptations will be interrupted.
Why is it Important to Recover?
Anyone that is training on a regular basis, recovery is needed to enhance performance! The benefits from an organized recovery cycle require the instruction to minimize muscular damage, fatigue and regulate stress to improve the qualities of neuromuscular and cardiorespiratory function in upcoming training sessions. Research has supported the cases that prolonged and continuous decrease in performance with impaired mood states are among reliable indicators of amplified fatigue associated with training (Nicolas et al., 2019). Therefore, an optimal recovery cycle should be planned to help improve a variety of physiological and psychological factors.
Optimal joint mobility is important in terms of functional range-of-motion so individuals can maintain maximal independence and optimal kinetics for daily activities (Doğan et al., 2019). Mobility is not just viewed among the integrity of training but rather daily activities as well. Individuals need to stabilize at the joint through articulation with superior mobility.
When reviewing the outcomes of heavy lifting, high compressive loads are placed on the joints, especially on the lumbar spine (Cholewicki, McGill, & Norman, 1991). Even movements such as a hang power clean or jump shrugs will place high mechanical demands on the body thus arranging high loads on the hips, knees, and ankles (Kipp et al., 2016). Frequent, large-range actions with high loads can induce fatigue of cartilage, resulting in injury (Zhou, 2018). The frictional response of cartilage is dependent on the load present, in which the mechanics of cartilage exhibit a range of complex characteristics and behaviors (Ateshian, 2009). Although injuries among proper and safe training (exercise or sport) are low, joint capsule thickness still may need to be addressed following a training session.
Following training, fatigue has been shown to alter biomechanics (Weeks, Carty, & Horan, 2015). Weeks et al. (2015) reported that fatigue on a single-leg squat induced an increase of trunk kinematics (flexion, lateral flexion, and rotation), pelvic kinematics (tilt, obliquity, and rotation), and hip flexion. In most cases, fatigue is inevitable in training (and sport), especially when programs manipulate rest, sets, repetitions, intensity, and integrate momentary failure (Jukic & Tufano, 2019; Shibata, Takizawa, Tomabechi, Nosaka, & Mizuno, 2019). Since training causes fatigue and fatigue can alter biomechanics, the increased compression at the joints should be addressed post-training to improve the joint confinement. Allowing the mobility at the joint to be restored through patterns of decompression.
At Linked Fit, our views strive towards the integration of an optimal post-training protocol to increase the transition towards efficient and effective recovery. In many cases, individuals abandon the ability to control movement in the pillar throughout daily living. It is important to consider the ability to control movement to perform fundamental movement skills that include jumping, striking, running, kicking, agility, balance, and coordination (Clark et al., 2017). Therefore, performing a mobility interactive technique post-training will assist in the reactional transformations such as the ones listed above.
The main objective of a recovery post-training protocol is to return the body back to homeostasis in a timely fashion. As with any movement that takes place, the body will have a sympathetic elevation causing an opposite reaction. The body will not be in a relaxed state, it will be heightened and producing a mode of fight or flight. However, the goal of an interactive technique is to restore the joint articulation. It builds the resilience of learning how the body can ‘flow’ through requirements of rotation around the body axis and vertebral column (Clark et al., 2017).
The mobility interactive technique is a unique approach to recovery, but it triggers the body to develop the functionality of local and global stabilization. Additionally, the ground-based movement can help establish the return of joint centration via coordinated movement.
Below a video that shows an example of our mobility interactive technique.
The post-training protocol is a method to enhance recovery after a training session. When reviewing the research, it is important to decipher the legitimate significance behind each study. Our goal behind developing the Recovery Cycle was to interpret relevant research that exists for each step of our protocol. Although some research doesn’t analyze exactly what we hoped, bridging the gap between a variety of disciplines supported this protocol. By introducing the Recovery Cycle into a training program, it will enhance recoverability and spark a parasympathetic mechanism to restore physiological and psychological functions.
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