Whether you’re suffering from a sports injury or have a surgery planned to correct an issue, the two things every person has in common is that they want to minimise pain and make a full recovery as quickly as possible. And while there are a number of individual things that can be done to contribute to both these factors, arguably the most impactful thing any patient can do is work with a physiotherapist to develop a fully personalised and integrated programme that starts with prehab before an injury occurs or surgery takes place, through to a rehab programme in the recovery phase.
But let’s take a step back for a second: what do prehab and rehab actually mean?
You know what they say, ‘prevention is better than a cure,’ and in the case of prehab – this saying rings true! Prehabilitation or prehab refers to the physical preparation of the body in order to reduce the chance of injury and improve your chances of a speedy recovery.
At Spectrum, our team of experts will give you a thorough assessment before working with you to create a personalised prehab plan that helps you achieve your goals – whether that’s protecting yourself from an injury as you start the football season or preparing for an elective surgery such as a knee replacement. Our programmes take into account your medical history and specific needs and are designed help stabilise, mobilise and protect the relevant areas of the body and equip you in your recovery by reducing limb swelling, restoring joint motion and boosting muscular strength.
But it isn’t just your body that we consider. Particularly for patients who are facing surgery, we offer a range of treatments and access to a wide network of consultants who will not only help you build physical strength and resilience, but psychological strength too. We’ll support you as you mentally prepare for what the rehab process will look like after surgery by thoroughly explaining the different stages of recovery you’ll experience and setting likely timeframes and scenarios so that you’re not left wondering.
Rehab, on the other hand, refers to optimising the way a person’s body functions and recovers after an injury or surgery. Rehab helps you get better after an incident, by speeding up your recovery time, and improving a patient’s overall quality of life, which is really going back to the root of what physiotherapy actually does for people. But it goes beyond just reducing pain; rehab programs are instrumental in helping people regain proper movement and rebuild strength in an injured area.
At Spectrum, we offer a range of different manual therapies, exercise and progressive treatments all in our London studio, so no matter whether you’re recovering from a sports injury and want to get back out there as soon as possible, or are taking your time to build up strength after surgery, we’ll be able to help. And of course, if you are a post-operative patient, we’ll work closely with your surgeon to ensure your personalised rehab programme is in line with their advice.
So, why both?
Of course, we can help people who are recovering from an injury by supporting them with a personalised rehab programme, even if they haven’t undergone prehab with us. And we’re always hopeful that patients that proactively undergo prehab for sports injuries will stay injury-free (after all, that’s the point) and avoid the need for any rehab!
And in the case of surgery, we hope that anyone who seeks out a prehab programme with us will bounce back from their operation faster – and we can still offer a post-operative rehab to those who skipped prehab.
But in all honesty, regardless of what the issue is you’re trying to correct, a combination of both prehab and rehab will serve you much better every time. It’s pure logic, really. If your body is working as well as it possibly can going into any sort of trauma (either injury or surgery based), it’s going to be in a much stronger position to recover better and faster. And when you combine this with a dedicated rehab treatment plan, that will only capitalise on the preparation you’ve done before. Stronger together!
Do you want to learn more about our prehab programmes or rehab programmes? Check out our other articles on these topics.