What is Pre-hab and why it will help your workout - South Pacific Health Clubs

What is Pre-hab and why it will help your workout

 In Health & Wellness, Training Tips

What is Pre-hab and why it will help your workout

Regular fitness devotees will be familiar with rehabilitation, or re-hab, exercises, used when you’re recovering from injury. But what about before you get injured? This is where pre-habilitation, or pre-hab, can play a role in your training.

A workout program that incorporates pre-hab exercises allows you to train more powerfully and reduce the risk of injury. This is because pre-hab improves how the body tolerates upcoming stressful activities, like exercise or surgery. In a fitness context, even short-term use of exercised-based pre-hab can make a difference to improve the muscle power in weaker areas. This can be as little as two weeks. So, what do you need to know when it comes to adding it to your program? Read below for our introduction to pre-hab and how to get started.

 

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Dependant on your level and type of activity, the type of pre-hab that suits you best will vary. Some athletes use it to combat symmetry issues when their specialty requires sustained unilateral movements, like cricket bowling. In this instance, resistance band work that targets external rotators is a likely pre-hab starting place.

 

Stability and strengthening is at the heart of any general pre-hab program because they reduce muscular weakness and joint overload. Mechanical risk factors are, therefore, reduced as pre-hab primes your body for exercise. It typically achieves this by performing a regressed or controlled version of the action you will complete at full scale in your workout. In short, pre-hab often involves you doing a ‘mini’ version of the action you will do in your workout. As you progress, however, your pre-hab also needs to evolve, so don’t get stuck doing the same old exercises.

Pre-hab is also useful for people with upcoming physical demands like surgery. The research shows that specific pre-hab programs prior to a procedure can help you to recover quicker from knee, hip and shoulder surgery.

 

How to

The best way to introduce pre-hab is to see your regular personal trainer, or find yourself one if you typically train alone. They will help you to identify the exercises specific to your training, but also any weaknesses that your body may have. You may, for example, find you need to focus on mobility and range-of-motion for your pre-hab, then add in some strength work as you progress. For the most personalised program, a one-on-one session where your muscles are tested is ideal. This is so your trainer can design your pre-hab exercises in the most individual manner.

 

If you’re not due to see your trainer for a while, many elements of pre-hab are present in Pilates. If you’re not already attending Pilates in Menton, St Kilda or the CBD, check out a South Pacific gym nearby to get introduced to some of the basics of pre-habilitation exercise. Whether it’s strengthening or lengthening, consider adding pre-hab to your workout to ward off injury and improve your performance, whether your passion is group fitness in the CBD, or ultra-marathons in the country.

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