Neural Strategies .
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Neural strategies such as hydrotherapy and massage aim to relax muscles that have been fatigued or damaged as a result of high intensity exercise. Strenuous exercise impacts on the central nervous system and this may contribute to fatigue. Neural strategies, integrated with other recovery strategies, have become popular in recent years, particularly with teams involved in collision sports such as rugby league.
Hydrotherapy has become very popular involving recovery strategies. Hydrotherapy involves the use of water to relax, soothe pain and assist metabolic recovery. The water supports for movements, and eliminates jarring and straining movements that are associated with land drills and field exercises. Hydrotherapy methods involve use of steam rooms, spas, underwater massage and heated swimming pools.
With hydrotherapy, active exercise can be incorporated through use of gravity assisted movements such as jumping. Swimming, assisted flotation exercises and even movements such as sprinting, jogging and combat exercise can be performed in a gravity assisted environment, lessening the risk of injury. In some cases, hydrotherapy can be used in conjunction with cryotherapy techniques to help accelerate blood flow. An example of this is the use of contrast temperature protocols, where a hot shower or bath is immediately followed by a cold water plunge.