We all know how important it is to move your body and eat good food. However, in order to move your body well, without restriction and pain, you need to make sure recovery strategies are included in your routine. Depending on the demands you put on your body will depend on what and how much recovery is needed. As a result, incorporating recovery techniques into your current routine is the most time efficient way to do it.

What actually is recovery, you may ask. Well, recovery is a process of restoring balance within the body that has been disturbed. In this instance we are talking about the disturbance caused by physical activity. There are many different recovery techniques, but some are more important than others. The most important recovery you can do for your body is rest and sleep – how good is that! Second to this is good nutrition and hydration. Fuelling your body appropriately for your activity levels is really important to ensure your muscles have the energy and nutrients they need to build and repair. This includes making sure you are eating enough food, it’s often more than you think if you are a really active person and drinking enough water.

After you are getting enough sleep (8 – 10 hours), eating good food and drinking enough water, sometimes in our busy lives we need a bit of extra help. This is where recovery techniques come in. There are lots of different recovery techniques that you can use to assist with reducing muscle soreness faster and improving performance. Some include: massage, hot/cold contrast therapy, compression garments and foam rolling. Foam rolling is the most cost-effective method and has good evidence for reducing muscle soreness post exercise. It can be done before exercise to warm up your muscles by promoting blood flow and done after exercise to promote a quicker recovery. It is suspected to improve muscle soreness post exercise by reducing edema, increasing blood lactate removal and promoting tissue healing.

The largest barrier to foam rolling is often the discomfort, especially if you have sore muscles. At Brayva our Physiotherapists have designed a foam roller that is kinder on your sore muscles with a softer foam which allows you to be more consistent but still provides the benefits. If you are experiencing sore muscles all the time and it’s getting in the way of your performance, hindering your ability to move your body, give foam rolling a go. You can shop our rollers and recovery tools here.

It is important to remember that recovery is multi-factorial and looks different for everyone. Whilst sleep, nutrition and hydration are essential for everyone, what is the best formula for you will be completely different to someone else. Unfortunately, there is no size fits all when it comes to recovery. Understanding your needs and wants is a good start and this may also include activities such as reading, time in the sunshine, active recovery, journaling and meditation. It is important to remember that spending time to calm your mind is just as important and will play a role in how your body is feeling.

September 28, 2022 — Jayde Williams