Blood Flow Restriction training helps you recover faster and improve strength in less time
When pro athletes are injured, it’s critical for them to recover their strength and get back to pre-injury performance levels as soon as possible. The main challenge in the past was that injuries (or surgeries) often prevent people from lifting heavy enough loads to challenge the muscles and promote healing.
Today, many top trainers and sports physical therapists turn to blood flow restriction (BFR) training to help athletes recover faster from sports injuries, reduce pain, and improve muscle strength – all while working with low loads that are much easier for injured joints to tolerate.
MoveMend is proud to bring blood flow restriction training to Eastlake to help people recover from injuries faster, and to help athletes gain a natural performance boost in less time.
Why choose MoveMend and Blood Flow Restriction training?
What is Blood Flow Restriction Training?
When performing Blood Flow Restriction (BFR) training, an athlete wears an FDA-approved medical grade tourniquet while exercising. By restricting blood flow to a specific degree, lighter weight/resistance can be used and still create changes in muscular size, strength, and endurance. You’ll feel like you are working close to maximum effort, even though you’ll be working with light weight that wouldn’t cause much exertion when done without the blood flow restriction tourniquet.
How does BFR work?
With traditional training, people need to work at a resistance level greater than 65% of their one-repetition maximum in order to build strength. However, with BFR training, you can work at 15-30% of your one-rep max and still see significant gains in strength and endurance. This is because wearing the tourniquet while working to fatigue raises your levels of human growth hormone, similar to high-load training.
How can blood flow restricition training benefit you as an athlete?
- In a study from Park et al., college basketball players who underwent 2 weeks of blood flow restricted treadmill walking saw an 11.6% increase in VO2 Max. These kinds of improvements in VO2 Max typically requires months of high-intensity training.
- BFR training is now commonplace in professional sports and is growing in rehab. This training method is low impact (working at ~30% max wattage) and fast (requiring less than 20 minutes 2 days/week for noticeable results), so it can easily fit into any current training regimen.
How could BFR help you recover from an injury or reduce pain?
Blood flow restriction training has helped many of our physical therapy patients return to daily tasks and favorite activities pain free. Here are just two examples:
- One patient in his late 60s had a history of osteoarthritis in his knee and had had recently had arthroscopic surgery. He had tried physical therapy before with mixed results. When he started therapy at MoveMend, he was unable to walk more than three blocks without severe pain and was often in pain throughout the day. Within 5 weeks of using BFR training as part of his physical therapy, he was able to hike 6 miles with virtually no pain. His daily pain diminished, and he reported leaving each session in less pain than when he came in. This is a common experience for BFR patients.
- Another patient had a fractured knee following an accident. They were unable to walk downstairs without pain, unable to lift weights, or ride a stationary bike. The fracture meant they needed to work with much lower loads, and with a month of BFR training, they were able to walk downstairs normally, could ride a stationary bike at high intensity without pain, and complete all normal daily tasks at their prior level of function.
Blood flow restriction training is not covered by insurance and must be paid out-of-pocket. You can purchase individual BFR sessions to complement your physical therapy at $19/session. Multiple sessions per appointment are typically recommended for best results. You can also purchase an unlimited BFR package to use in your physical therapy sessions for $100.
If you would like to experience how BFR training could help your athletic performance, you can try a 30-minute or 60-minute personal training session with Dr. Sam Watkins, our BFR-certified physical therapist.
Talk to our staff about trying Blood Flow Restriction training today!
NOTE: We have NO relationship with Medicare OR Medicaid and cannot provide services to beneficiaries. We cannot accept cash payments from individuals who have Medicare or Medicaid.