Physiotherapy as a profession has evolved more than ever during the last decades. Getting back to 90`s when every team physio had their fancy electric machines, traction benches and thermal baths have turned in to a situation where physios are programming injury prevention, reconditioning and performance enhancement plans for individual players.

Goal after injury: to return the player stronger than ever back on game

Too often there is still a long bridge between old school physiotherapy and game performance. The progression towards team training and game performance has to start right away when injury occurs. Every step afterwards must have a target to get the player back on game in better condition than before injury, both mentally and physically. Rehab, reconditioning, performance training and returning to team training must all be on the same continuum.

Recovery from an injury is a journey, not an event

Return to team training is a journey, not an event, where modern day sport physios must guide the player with a criterion-based rehabilitation process back to the game. Physios are leading this process with highly experienced staff of strength and condition coaches, medical team, mental coaches, skill coaches and team coaches. In return to game process all those factors have their own important roles.

In Pro Prospect, we can offer this shared decision-making concept and multi-professional team behind the player. We can support the player from every corner during the rehab process or just making him or her to a better player.

Rehab of ice hockey player without the ice?

Many times, the injury is treated only by medical based view and not by performance based view. This might lead to a gap where player is medically healthy and recovered from the injury but not ready to perform in the same level or higher than before. Same rehab protocol cannot guide the process of amateur athlete’s training and professional athlete’s training.

It’s often seen that rehab is carried out only by off-ice training and then jumping back to the team training without rehab on-ice. Another pitfall is to develop only sagittal plane bilateral strength, power and movements for hockey players when knowing that hockey is a high speed multidirectional unilateral sport.

Prepare the player for skating

History of old style Olympic weightlifting training, which is mostly based on sagittal plane bilateral movements, won’t prepare hockey players to skating actions. Sport physios and strength and condition coaches must understand the demands, biomechanics, physiological characteristics and different skating and movement characteristics of ice hockey.

Do not settle with your recovery

If you have injury, you need performance enhancement or you are struggling with injuries season after season, Pro Prospect expert team could have potential solutions for you. The biggest risk factor for musculoskeletal injury in ice hockey is the player’s earlier injury in career and how it was rehabilitated. It’s about what the player can’t do against what the player can do right away after the injury and before the first game again.

Team training and playing requires the player to be athletically normal but it doesn’t necessarily develop the player to be so. To become a better player, getting back to the same level after injury and decrease the injury risk, you should demand the best coaching staff behind you. Whether you are in a team setting or finding a new team situation.

Best Regards,

Jari Puustinen

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