I recently finished an hour long training session with Jaime. I was running late but Jaime gave me a few minutes to warm up before we worked on a variety of poses and spins, some new ones and some that I’ve been working on for nearly 2 years. I trained each of the moves on both sides, some more successfully than others. That can be discouraging but I’m really happy that I was able to spend that time working on my skills. You see, I’ve been sidelined for awhile - and not just because of COVID-19. A year ago your Fly Circus & Aerial Arts Coach team performed in a show at the end of March and in preparation for that show, I over-trained some moves to the point of injuring my shoulder.
Most people will tell you that intense training will cause some aches and pains but unfortunately, mine didn’t go away and, after a few weeks, I found that I had limited mobility in my shoulder joint. I couldn't climb the pole, go jogging, or even fitness walking. In an effort to prevent further injury, I took a break from teaching and got in to see my primary doctor, then a physical therapist. The gal I saw had already helped me heal a hip injury a handful of years ago. Unfortunately, because I waited until early June to see the doctor I may have caused a bit of additional damage and I definitely missed out on the healing time. But through the summer and into the fall of 2019 I did my at-home exercises and avoided most other physical fitness activities. Eventually, I could tell my range of motion was returning and I didn’t have pain in my everyday activities. I needed more advanced exercises from my physical therapist as well. Over the winter I started to be able to do some pole training using my injured arm/shoulder as minimally as possible. This spring then (pre-COVID) I got back into the teaching lineup for Barre and Contortion classes which have helped me both build strength and range of motion.
As my recent hour of training with Jaime came to a close, it was obvious that I wouldn’t be able to physically work on much more. But we continued to talk while I stretched my muscles and reflected on the work we did. I now have a plan going forward and I plan to schedule future private lessons with Jaime to work on these moves!
Coming back from an injury takes a fair amount of time and patience. It also takes preparation in advance of the injury though!
Warming up before working out and cooling down afterwards are a big part of preventing injuries. Don’t skip these important steps!
Cross training your body for the demanding aerial poses and spins by adding in flexibility and strength building classes is also crucial to preparing your body to perform its best.
Training both sides, though not the most encouraging, is going to help you build strength and be ready in case of emergency (a.k.a. injury).
Finally, brain training will help you stay focused on good form even (and especially) when you’re tired - and ultimately, to know and respect your own limits.
Train hard, but train smart and always take time to enjoy the journey!