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Recovery and How Physiotherapy Can Enhance Your Training Program

inadequate recovery can lead to fatigue, burnout, and unwanted injuries.

 Woman training outside on the agility ladder

When it comes to exercise and sports, recovery plays a vital role in achieving optimal performance. It is just as important as the training sessions themselves. Without proper recovery, our bodies won't have the opportunity to adapt and improve. Moreover, inadequate recovery can lead to fatigue, burnout, and unwanted injuries.

At Four Physio & Health, we understand the significance of recovery in maximising your athletic potential. Our physiotherapy services in Christchurch are specifically designed to support athletes and help them achieve their goals. Whether you're a runner, a sports enthusiast, or someone engaged in high-intensity training, physiotherapy can play a crucial role in your overall recovery and training program.


General Recovery and Athlete Training


Physiotherapy is an essential component of any athlete's training program. It focuses on improving movement, function, and performance while reducing the risk of injuries. Partnering with an experienced physio can provide you with personalised strategies to optimise your recovery and enhance your athletic performance.

Physiotherapy encompasses a wide range of techniques and treatments that can benefit athletes during their recovery process. These may include:

Rehabilitation Exercises: Our physiotherapists will create tailored exercise programs to strengthen specific muscles, improve flexibility, and restore your body's balance and stability.

Massage: Massage has been shown to be beneficial when it comes to injury prevention and management, as well as for physiological recovery of soft tissue by improving blood flow to particular areas of the body. 

Injury Prevention Strategies: Our physiotherapists can assess your movement patterns, identify potential areas of weakness or imbalance, and provide you with exercises and techniques to prevent injuries before they occur.


In addition to this, there are other methods that can aid in sports recovery. 


Man sleeping in bed



Sleep is so important for many reasons, one of which is recovery from exercise. If an athlete is getting less than six hours of sleep per night for 4+ nights in a row, this has been shown to negatively impact mood, immune function, recovery and overall performance. Aiming for regular naps or to improve bedtime routine and sleep hygiene (eg, reducing screen time prior to sleep) is a good place to start. 



Nutritional requirements will change depending on training loads and stage of life. Speaking with a qualified sports dietitian regarding your individual needs is recommended. 

 Woman in an ice bath



Research suggests that the use of cold water therapy (cwt) or contrast water immersion (cwi) could be beneficial for recovery and performance, depending on the individual. Cwt should be aimed at 10-15 degrees for approximately 15 minutes. Cwi temperatures are similar, with the hot immersion being 38-40 degrees. The time spent between hot/cold should be equal. 



When used safely, there are no negative effects of compression. Some athletes report that they feel recovery is improved when using compression after training sessions. Compression (such as calf sleeves) can be beneficial for improved venous return. 


By incorporating physiotherapy (and other useful recovery methods) into your training program, you'll benefit from reduced recovery time, enhanced performance, and a decreased likelihood of sustaining injuries. Our experienced physiotherapists will work closely with you to understand your specific needs and tailor their approach accordingly.

About the author

Grace Coombs

Grace is one of the co-directors at Four Physio in Christchurch and is a Women’s Health physiotherapist. After graduating in 2013, Grace has further developed her skills by completing post-graduate studies in both women's health and pelvic floor physiotherapy, and sports medicine. She has a special interest in the female running athlete and in injury prevention.

She works closely with women of all ages in helping to restore and maintain their pelvic floor health and is experienced in managing a wide variety of conditions including pelvic pain, endometriosis, bladder and bowel concerns and pregnancy/postnatal care. Grace is enthusiastic about the benefits of exercise and movement and enjoys working with her patients to achieve an active and healthy lifestyle.

Grace is also the physiotherapist for Femmi - a female led business that was built to empower and educate women to understand and train to their own physiology. She has been involved with the development of Femmi Theory, a highly recognized online education platform that teaches coaches, athletes and trainers about the unique female physiology across a lifespan.

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