In this video, we investigate simple recovery methods you can use in your training program for improved recovery, and allow you to train harder, longer. Make sure you watch to the end to see a unique way of making Ice Baths more tolerable!
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We will look at why advanced recovery will help you attain better sports performance.
Topics include the use of Stretching, Foam rolling, The Stick, Pilates, and Contrast Showers/Ice Baths.


It’s really not that difficult to train hard but to make yourself a better athlete you need to train hard consistently and if you want to train hard consistently you better make sure you’re looking after your recovery. G’Day guys and girls its Anthony from GrandStand Clinic here. Today we’re gonna be talking about how you can ensure that you’re ready for your next training session. You should understand that your training has provided the stimulus to make you a better athlete but all those gains are going to be realised during your recovery If you are recovering properly from your training session. Then that’s going to allow you to go out and train to provide that stimulus again. The key to improving as an athlete is being able to provide a consistent training stimulus so that your body can adapt and improve. As you progress through your training calendar and whilst the training stimulus is important your body’s ability to recover between sessions will in the long term dictate how far you progress as an athlete.This is part of a series of videos we’re making to improve athletic performance, so if you like what you see hit the like button and if you new here, please consider subscribing.

Today’s video is really a self-help guide to show you methods to help your body recover. So let’s dive in and look at some of the simple recovery strategies you can integrate into your training program and make sure you stay through to the end because we’ve got a real surprise for you guys. Now let’s start with something simple, I want you to think about when you’re exercising your muscles work under a cycle of contracting and relaxing to produce movement. Now but the body is not a perfect machine and sometimes after a lot of repeated efforts the relaxation doesn’t happen fully and you’re left with some parts of the muscle which is still contracted. Our aim for full recovery is to make sure these are completely relaxed back to their normal tone. Now it shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone that one of the simplest ways that we can help our body recover is by stretching the muscles that have been evolved in the exercise. Stretching is as simple as applying a tension over the muscles to help encourage the muscles to relax completely. Now let’s not overcomplicate stretching… It’s such a simple thing to do. Find the stretch that feels like it’s targeting the muscle that you’re after and then apply that stretch in small bouts done frequently look for ways to introduce stretching into your day-to-day routine. And it may be as simple as doing calf stretches whilst you’re talking on the telephone. If you really want to target specific areas of the muscle well, I think foam rollers are probably a most effective way to go. With a foam roller you really be able to find those tender and tight parts of your muscle and just by gently rolling backwards and forwards you can feel the muscle relax. Remember that key to foam rolling is slow and steady, it should be painful but you’re only going to be there for a short period of time. It should take you less than two minutes to roll out any particular muscle. Again avoid bony prominences when you’re rolling, that’s just going to make it unnecessarily painful, and you’re not going to get any benefit from rolling over those.

If you really struggling with the foam roller you could try something like the stick. Now the stick is a really effective way to self massage those muscles and again, you can find those tight spots and work backwards and forwards over them. I like the stick particularly for traveling because it’s much easier to pack than a big bulky foam roller. Again, the same principles apply find the tight spots apply the pressure and roll backwards and forwards until you feel the muscle relax underneath the stick. For those of you who really want to get on top of your recovery, consider introducing something like a Pilates class into your weekly routine now. It’s no surprise why Pilates is so popular with dancers who rely on having long strong muscles for their performance. Now Pilates is a great way to open up all your joints stretch out all your muscles but you’ll also get the benefit of learning some core stability in functional positions. That’s got to be a bonus for any athlete. Now you may only do one Pilates session a week but you’re going to learn some exercises, which you can then take home and integrate into your daily routine.

You can also look at fast tracking your recovery by using contrast showers or ice baths. Now a contrast shower involves going from a hot shower to a cold shower. This is gonna force your blood vessels to vasodilate or open up and then rapidly vasoconstrict or close down. This produces a pump within the muscle to help flush out all the metabolic wastes and encourage new blood flow in there. To get the most out of a contrast shower sit under the hot for 90 seconds. This is because it takes longer for your body to vasodilate and then switch rapidly to a cold shower and stay there for 30 seconds. You can alternate between 90 seconds of hot 30 seconds of cold and you might run through four or five cycles of this. You’ll feel the benefits as soon as you step out of the shower and a quick tip: always finish on a hot cycle. Now you all would have heard seen or even experienced an ice bath for yourself the idea behind an ice bath is to minimise the inflammation of the soft tissue following a training session. For the best effect you’re looking to have the water as cold as you can tolerate and spending a total of three minutes immersion time. Now it doesn’t really matter if it’s three minutes straight or whether you want to break the three minutes up into three one-minute blocks. Now, not many people enjoy an ice bath, and we promised at the start of the video that we’d finish with something special. Here’s some footage of the 2017 World Cup Fiji Bati making their ice bath just a little bit more bearable.

So there we have four simple ways of boosting your recovery to a whole new level using stretching, foam rolling, pilates and contrast showers and ice baths. As we said at the start of the video your ability to recover is every bit as important as your ability to train at a higher level if you’re looking at long term athlete development. I hope there’s been something in this video for you! If there has hit the like button, consider subscribing and we’ll catch up with you in the next video