Groin Injury Rehab
Rehabilitation for groin injuries
A groin injury is one of the most complex injuries we see at Sports Physio Ireland. It’s location and anatomy is one of the main reasons for this. This area consists of the adductor longus, magnus, brevis and gracilis, all of which insert to the underside of the pelvis. The primary role for these group of muscles as a whole is the stabilisation of the pelvis during motion (running, jumping, cutting). These muscles also play a role in swinging the leg when turning and twisting during movement in scenarios such as game play.
When designing a rehabilitation program, it’s important not to only focus on the area of pain. You have to look at the overall balance between both groin areas, left and right. Tension or restriction of movement in one can directly effect the forces and pressures on the other side.
It is also important to assess and analyse the areas above and below the injured groin. Lack of ankle balance or stiffness can cause an overload in the groin when cutting or tackling. Quite often I see groin injuries in players who have had a history of bad ankle sprains or achilles injuries in the past. Strength in the core muscles above the area of pain and stiffness in the hip also have a huge impact on the cause and the design of the rehab program at SPI.
It is for this reason that we choose whole body movement exercises to rehab groin injuries. By doing so, you improve your overall movement and offload any imbalances that have contributed to developing the injury. The key thing with exercises such like side lunges, squats or single leg deadlifts is the attention to detail. I see many players performing these exercises in a rushed environment which can actually just compound the imbalances that are already there.
- The groin has multiple roles for an athlete.
- Don’t focus on the pain, look at the overall movement pattern.
- Find your imbalances.
- Attention to detail with your rehab.
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Speed For GAA Players
Speed is defined as the rate at which someone moves. We can divide speed into an explosive phase and a knee drive phase. A lot of GAA players spend far too much time developing muscles to move slowler, simply because this is an easier way to train during a gym session. We have to look at the relationship between gym sessions and the game played. GAA involves a lot of acceleration and deceleration, but many gym programs don’t reflect the two patterns.
There is a huge role for both strength and hypertrophy in athletic development but speed is often ignored. Reasons for this include;
It’s Time Consuming
In order to train absolute speed it can take up to 40 minutes to properly warm up and activate the muscles and patterns required. This can be slow and tedious. Quite often this part is skipped or sped up in order to get to ‘the good stuff,’ such as sprinting. Athletes can be resting for up to 4 minutes between exercises which can result in sessions lasting up to 2 hours . These sessions are regularly omitted from training plans because of an already busy schedule.
It Is Perceived As A Light Session
There is a ‘if its not hard its not worth doing’ mentality in GAA. Quite often coaches would rather see teams out of breath rather than doing a pure speed session. Athletes don’t get their heart rates up too high or break a sweat. For coaches and some athletes the temptation to work hard can be too much. Working smarter is better for athletic development.
Too Tired After Heavy Training Loads
Heavy weights, long training sessions and matches make it hard to fit speed work into a training regime. You need to prioritise it in your training week for when you are at your freshest. Typically GAA matches are on a Sunday so a speed session would be optimum on a Wednesday. Pitch sessions and gym sessions are regularly prioritised ahead of this, with pitch sessions regularly on a Tuesday and Thusday and gym sessions on Mondays and Wednesdays.
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