Psychological Rehabilitation of Sports Injury
Athletes will need clear communication of roles of different health professionals in rehabilitation as well as clear communication of all aspects of the injury and its rehabilitation and expected outcomes. Detailed communication can facilitate rehabilitation – this includes detailed description of the injury, anatomy of the area, purposes of each type of intervention, effects of interventions on the tissues, goals of rehabilitation, timeframes etc. Communication must also pay attention not only to the clinician’s message, but also the athlete’s internal response or understanding of the message.
Several psychological techniques can be used, especially the psychological skills training of goal setting , relaxation and imagery. Low self-esteem has been associated with low adherence to sport injury rehabilitation
Use rest of team, coach, family social support to enhance motivation – keep the injured athlete involved.
Psychological readiness to return to competition:
Depends on level of anxiety, motivation and self-confidence.
Too early return to competition:
a) Prone to re-injury
b) Poor performance due to lack of self confidence
c) Fear, anxiety, self doubt depression more psychological problems
Determining psychological readiness is highly subjective – mostly this will depend on the athlete’s self-confidence.