Recovery is a buzzword nowadays, and entire industries (outside of just sports physical therapy) have sprouted up to help athletes and weekend warriors improve their recovery from sports, challenging workouts, and injury. Foam rolling, compression garments, Theraguns, supplements, and cryotherapy (see a previous article I wrote here) are just some of what you may find.
Professional athletes like Tom Brady have gotten in on the action as well. He created his company, TB12, which focuses on “facilitating muscle recovery, injury prevention, and improved performance for anyone with an active lifestyle.”
Like many other approaches to recovery and health improvement, Tom emphasizes the importance of nutrition and sleep. People have argued about the finer details of how he approaches nutrition, but I’ll leave that to the internet to discuss.
One major factor is commonly forgotten despite all this information about optimizing recovery and performance.
The environment is critical to our overall well-being and can significantly impact our body’s ability to heal itself. Our bodies are very complex and constantly respond to their surroundings. Research has shown that environmental factors such as temperature, noise, and light affect our mood, stress levels, and immune systems.
Physical therapy and dealing with an injury is a stressful and anxiety-inducing experience, and a calming environment can help to reduce these negative emotions. Studies have shown that exposure to nature, such as greenery and natural light, helps to reduce stress levels and improve overall well-being. Exposure to sunlight and fresh air has also been shown to boost the immune system and help the body heal faster.
Tips for Creating a Healing Environment
Choose the proper lighting.
Natural light is the best option, so try working or relaxing in an area near a window. If natural light is not possible, consider investing in full-spectrum lighting to mimic natural light.
Consider incorporating plants, flowers, and other natural elements into your office or areas you relax.
Rest in organized places.
This is especially true when recovering from an injury. So much is out of our control as we wait for the body to heal, and research suggests that a clean and organized space reduces anxiety and promotes a sense of control. Keep your recovery area free of clutter!
Looking for ways to speed up your recovery from training or injury? Contact us to learn more!