In part 1, I described what happens to the body during prolonged inactivity. In part 2, I will discuss the proper way to prepare the body for return to sports/vigorous activity.
Since most tissues in the body have weakened/deteriorated (due to prolonged inactivity), it is important to resume exercise without causing damage to the these tissues. This means resuming exercise at a much lower intensity than your normal level. Combining low intensity with high repetitions (low load high rep or LLHR) allows the body to strengthen the bones, muscles, cartilage, etc. in a manner that greatly reduces risk of injury. Studies have shown that LLHR actually encourages the body to repair itself more quickly and better prepares the various tissues for vigorous activity. See http://www.coast-physical-therapy-services.com/blog/why-we-use-high-repetition-exercises-the-tissue-toughening-technique/ for more information on LLHR exercise.
As the tissues become structurally stronger, higher resistance exercises can be added. High load low repetition (HLLR) exercises promote increase in bone density, muscle mass, neuromuscular connections and brain stimulation, among other benefits. Adding HLLR to a LLHR program provides for better long term results than a HLLR program alone. HLLR exercises are necessary to prepare the body for the higher demands/tissue stress loads associated with sports.
Knowing when and how to apply (high/low) loads and repetitions is the art behind rehabilitation, and the difference between full recovery and chronic injury.
Individual sessions with our qualified Santa Cruz personal trainers can put you on the fast-track back to the superior performance you expect out of yourself.