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"using The Elliptical Machine To Work Through An Injury"

Recovering from an injury can be a very slow, tricky thing

. One of the most frustrating parts can be not being able to work out as you did before the injury.

If you have any kind of knee, ankle, or foot problem, your physical therapist will most likely tell you that you need to take pressure off the area, and take it easy for several weeks. If you are someone who likes to exercise every day, this can seem like a prison sentence.

Once you have completed your allotted amount of physical therapy, you can most likely begin to work your injury site a little bit at a time. However, you will still probably not be able to do any kind of high impact workout, such as running, sports, or even exercise walking.

You will need a comfortable low-impact workout, which can help to re-strengthen the muscles and joints, while giving you the cardio workout you are craving. The solution is simple: use an elliptical machine.

Elliptical machines are perfect for those recovering from injuries, because of their easy, low-impact nature. Your joints are protected, because there is not a jarring concrete underneath them.

A similar number of calories are burned with this machine, as are burned with jogging. However, because it is a low-impact machine in nature, the knees, back, and joints are protected from wear and tear that comes with jogging on concrete.

One benefit that the elliptical holds is that it works the lower and upper body simultaneously. While your lower body is getting a workout, your arms grip the pumping hand rails, which move your arms and contract their muscles.

There are not many machines that will work the whole body in this way! While this will not build muscle mass, it will give you a longer, leaner look that is desirable, especially among women.

If you don't want to work your arms, you do have the option of buying one that does not have the pumping handles. If you have neck or back problems, you might want to choose this option.

Another great benefit is that you can go in either a forward or a backward motion. With this, if you have an injury that works better going in the backwards motion, you can.

It is so important to keep that strength training going when you are trying to do physical therapy. If you take a complete break for several weeks, it will just be that much harder for you to get back into your regular routine.

To begin, try going very slowly, with no resistance or ramping of any kind. Keep yourself on the same pace as you would a relaxing walk.

Try to do this for at least ten minutes a day, working your way up to longer and longer. As you can, increase your pace slightly.

Do not add any resistance for at least a week. As you do, increase it very slowly and slightly-you do not want to cause any more damage to your recovering legs.

Be sure that you have the approval of your physical therapist to begin this kind of exercise. He or she will know better than anyone what you are capable of, and what you need to do to take care of yourself in the proper way.

After you have worked on the elliptical machine, make sure to elevate your injury, and ice it if it is appropriate. If you encounter any kind of swelling, this can be very detrimental to your healing process.

Taking an anti-inflammatory such as Aspirin or Advil before beginning your workout, might be a good idea. This will help to keep your swelling and pain under control.

Once again, make sure that this is acceptable to your doctor and physical therapist. If you are on other painkillers already, you may not be able to take more.

Make sure that you do your best to stretch before and after you use the elliptical machine. This will help to keep your muscles flexible and pliable, and prevent them from becoming atrophied.

The most important thing you can do is to go easy on yourself. Have patience, and know that in time you will able to do the things that you did before.

All you need to do right now is take care of yourself. Using the elliptical machine will help you to do this, while regaining the strength you need to recover.

by: Tom Selwick
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"using The Elliptical Machine To Work Through An Injury"