Have you ever been injured? Injury is what started this whole amazing Original Strength journey for me. So not all injuries, if any, are bad. Some can be diamonds wrapped up in coal. Anyway, have you ever had an overuse injury? I think many injuries get labeled as overuse – you were injured because you overused some area of your body. I get the term, but I don’t think it is really accurate. What if there was no such thing as an overuse injury, but there were only “use” injuries or “override” injuries? 

A “use” injury would simply be an injury caused by use. To say overuse would imply that you used something too much. But to me, most overuse injuries are most likely use injuries; implying that you used something. In other words, what if use injuries were the result of a lifestyle of disuse. You weren’t using your body, you decided to, and it really wasn’t ready because you jumped into the deep end of the pool without ever testing the shallow waters and making sure you actually could swim. You get what I’m trying to say? I think to label an injury as overuse is to sugarcoat the injury. The actuality of the injury may just be because you decided to start moving in a way the body wasn’t ready for because you had no use or foundation beforehand in which to prepare the body. 

OR, maybe the injury is the result of an override. When you override a program you replace it with another program. This actually may be the exact same thing as a use injury, but let me explain it further. The body has movement pillars and programs embedded inside it to keep it healthy and strong. If we use and move through these programs, we become quite anti-fragile or hard to break. However, we can actually override these programs with other programs that we engage in often. The nervous system works on the – use it and build it/use it or lose it principle. If we engage in a movement more times than we engage in our default movement template (think of an assembly line worker) then we can override our the movement programs designed to keep us healthy, making us susceptible to injury. Another way to override our intended movement patterns is to simply not engage in them often, or a lifestyle of non-engagement (think sitting most of the day) – this disuse becomes an override and sets the body up for a use injury. 

What’s the point of the distinctions I’m trying to make?

Simply this: we are created to be “hard to break.” If we engage in our design by breathing properly, controlling our heads (in movement and thought), and using all our limbs when we walk we will be less likely to develop an injury, regardless of how we label the injury. And if we do these things, perhaps overuse, use, disuse or override injuries become less and less of a thing we ever have to deal with. 

Then there is another point that should be made: We are also designed to heal. The very design that helps to make us hard to break is the same design that mends us back together if we do get injured. The body is really a beautiful masterpiece if you ever stop to contemplate it. 

Anyway, you are made to move and made to be strong. You can become very hard to break even if you feel like you’re already broken. Know that and move. 

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