February 11, 2015

If you are a member of the ever growing and diverse cross training clan, you've probably had your fair share, and then some, of injuries. Though some could have gone a lot better, you can believe that some of them could have been a lot worse as well. A lot of these are pretty common, so you'll be much better off if you don't get all bent out of shape over it (see what I did there?) The most prevalent in the cross training scene are anterior knee pain, anterior shoulder pain, and the worst, given it can damage the most, is back pain. Not to worry, cross training accidents happen, and these are some of the best ways to prevent and even treat them should you find yourself in a pinch (no pun intended, sort of.)

 Anterior Knee Pain  

One of the main warning signs and most common factor in cross training injuries is form. If you are really struggling to maintain your leg and knee lines in a lunge or a squat, chances are those guys are going to roll in. This could also indicate a fault in your pelvic area or that your glutes aren't as strong as they need to be just yet. Doing 150 wall balls and weighted back squats are going to do a number on anybody, but if you're prone to getting tight ITBs that run from thigh to hip, it's going to be worse. You absolutely need to make sure that your form and strength is on point, so use a foam roller on the ITB to give it a bit of a release, and then get to working those glutes so they can keep your pelvis, and in turn the rest of your lower body, in line.                                                                                                                            

 Anterior Shoulder Pain

I don't know about you, but I find my rotator cuffs to be incredibly annoying when it comes to getting them on the brighter side of the pain factor. It seems like this is also a common cross training injury for others as well. Sometimes heredity can be a hindrance, but again form is critical here. More often than not, people end up trying to use their pecs (chest muscles) to make up the joint's poor ability to hold the shoulder in place. When this occurs, the spine begins to flex causing even more unnecessary tension, and your rotators pinch. This does not feel nice, and you'll know when it happens. In between sets, use this time to stretch, not chat about, your chest muscles. Even using a doorway to moderately pull it out will do a world of good for you and your cannonballs.

Back Pain

This one is a tough one because you use all the muscles in your back for so many things like balance, form, support, the list goes on and on. Throwing out your back could be detrimental, and if you're experiencing lower back pain frequently this is a sign that something bad could potentially get worse. I just can't stress enough about form.  Keep your back straight, because you need to make sure pelvis stays as in line as possible. If you're finding this to be a challenge, you really don't have much of a choice but to bring the weights down to a manageable level (I know, I know) to train up your core strength a little more. Trust me; taking a bit of an ego hit is better than getting an injury of this caliber. If it persists, you might need to lay off on a couple exercises as well while your muscles are being built.

If you're continually getting injuries or nuisances while training, take an extra minute or two to add to your stretching routine. A few extra moderate tugs and twists are going to help you in the long run, and even when you're not training, and you find yourself with extra time, work on your form!

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