Is this actually possible without bubble wrapping your entire body and taking no “movement risks” to prevent injury to your body? We guess it could be possible with that approach but that doesn’t seem like a life of fulfillment. The better question then might be, “What strategies can you use to build resilience in your body allowing you to live a high-quality life with movement as a fundamental pillar?” Let’s discuss how we can build resiliency and prevent injuries to your entire body below!
Prehab – What is it & How Does it Apply?
The term that hopefully comes to mind is “Prehab”, which in short is prehabilitation or preventative rehab – taking the reactive strategies that healthcare providers use with patients in the rehab & sports medicine fields and putting them into action in a proactive manner. To get the full scoop on Prehab and our mission check out this article:
As mentioned, our goal of this particular article is to not discuss the term Prehab, rather we want to focus on putting Prehab into action for the full body – let’s get into it!
Full Body Approach
It’s very well known that Los Angeles highways are busy! They are so big they are given the title “The 405”, or “The 10”, not just 405 or 10 but the definite article of “the” in front of it. If you were to look at the roads on google maps or a GPS you would see a map with roads like gummy worms – part blue, part yellow, and part red.
When you’re driving, it seems very chaotic and unorganized. However, when you zoom out and fly over the city it looks extremely organized. All the roads form perfect rectangles with all the red tail lights going one way and all the headlights going the other way.
The same can be said about the movement system! Not that it looks like gummy worms but that when we zoom in, the system seems very chaotic and disorganized but when we zoom out organization and patterns emerge. Using the zoomed-in perspective a lot of new and confusing names and conditions are used but when we zoom out we can see the simplicity of what the body needs to prevent injuries.
What are those factors? Those answers are coming up soon or you could scroll to the bottom of this article but then you’d miss out on learning about injury patterns – and we don’t want you to do that.
The Most Common Injury Patterns in Our Body
Zooming out we see that patterns emerge and give us direction as to how to prehab the full body. For example, research shows that the number one injury plaguing athletes is hamstring strains. By evaluating the data on hamstring injuries retrospectively, hamstring injury prevention programs can then be made as a proactive approach. The same can be done for the rest of the body.
Research shows the most common areas injured include(1,2,3,4,5,6,7):
At least 10-15% of all foot complaints are due to plantar heel pain
By looking at this data retrospectively, we can then create a proactive program addressing these areas to create full-body resilience. We can target each area with isolated movements and couple them with larger patterned movements.
For example, rotator cuff banded external rotations superset with an overhead press:
A single-leg eccentric hamstring bridge with a conventional deadlift:
A Copenhagen hold with a barbell back squat:
The above movements work on targeting specific muscles and then putting it all together with a compound movement to prepare you for all of life’s unexpected surprises. You may be thinking at this point, “Sounds great but this would take forever to complete.”
For a full-body prevention program to be used in conjunction with a classic strength and conditioning program, the full-body program must be precise. This is what guided us when creating The Full Body Prehab Program which is now available on our App.
To build full body resilience movement is a key pillar but there is more to complete the story. Along with movement, the driving factor of resilience is your body’s ability to adapt to stressors and yes, a workout is a stressor. Check out some of the other stressors that we deal with on a daily basis to be sure that you are setting yourself up for success.
The strategy to Prehab your full body while living a life full of quality movement and memories starts with understanding that strategies exist and then taking action! Reflect on which pillar for your needs to be addressed: Movement, Sleep, Nutrition, or Quality Coping Mechanisms. After reflecting, it’s time to take responsibility and build up each pillar to become the best version of yourself. Note that this process needs to be an active one, it takes discipline but comes with the side effect of feeling empowered, motivated, and becoming a leader amongst your peers as you set the example of a healthy and fulfilled life!
Dr. Dillon Caswell is a sought-out enthusiastic clinical Doctor of Physical Therapy with expertise and a Board Speciality Certification in Sports. He is the author of Hope Not Nope: Reclaiming Identity as a Lifelong Athlete in a Sick Healthcare System.Along with a passion for writing, he works one-on-one with athletes across the lifespan with the goal to improve overall performance and providing on-field coverage for youth and semi-professional teams. He has spent more than 10 years in higher-level education both as a student and adjunct professor at SUNY Upstate Medical University in Syracuse, NY. He desires to empower and educate the next generation by cutting through the biased lies surrounding the human experience by constantly seeking and delivering the truth in science and healing.
Disclaimer – The content here is designed for information & education purposes only and is not intended for medical advice.