Do you like ice cream?
Do enjoy beer?
How many of you enjoy drinking beer and eating ice cream together?
Just because two things are both good, doesn’t mean that they are compatible or complimentary to one another and should go together.
The challenge with rehabbing an actively participating athlete is that the rehab in the sports medicine room may be good, and the strength exercises in the weight room may be good, and even some of the individual skill work on the court or field may be good as well. However, whether it be total volume, or time frame within the week, all the the "good" parts, might just not be all that good together.
The totality of all good things (or stressors) should be juxtaposed so that not one takes away from the one before, or the one after, but instead fit together to improve the athlete’s end performance profile. The main obstacle which prevents all those professionals who are caring for that athlete from being on the same page is that each one usually presents an argument for why the athlete should do x,y and z from a posture which protects their own interest and not necessarily the interest of the athlete. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for arguing, as long as the arguing and debating is on behalf of the athlete and their best interest.
So when you’re done arguing why your athlete just has to do 30 weighted jump squats, or that extra set of straight leg raises check with the guys and gals down the hall and make sure that the time spent doing those exercises are actually in the best interest of the athlete and not what’s best for you. Because if you’re not willing to put all the pieces together for your athlete then you might just be serving beer sundaes this coming season.
Art Horne is the Coordinator of Care and Strength & Conditioning Coach for the Men’s Basketball Team at Northeastern University, Boston MA. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.