The number of patients with COVID-19 continues to grow, and it is already clear that this disease will not disappear from our lives as quickly as we would like. This means that the number of people who have been ill with COVID-19 is growing and are eager to return to their previous life - with training, with a visit to the gym, with exhausting and such desirable physical activity. However, COVID-19 is not tolerated by everyone as a mild seasonal cold. The question arises: how to return to studies without harming yourself? MedAboutMe is looking into safety rules for resuming sports after COVID-19.
5 body systems affected by COVID-19
Doctors from the Hospital for Special Surgery (HSS) Sports Medicine Institute in New York identify 5 body systems that are affected by the coronavirus in COVID-19:
heart, lungs, blood, musculoskeletal system, gastrointestinal tract.
In addition, many drugs that are prescribed for the treatment of COVID-19, for example, hydroxychloroquine in combination with azithromycin, and others, can destructively affect all these body systems.
In accordance with this division into the main directions of the coronavirus attack, doctors recommend the following approach to resuming physical activity after suffering COVID-19.
People in whom COVID-19 has led to heart problems should take a break for 2-3 weeks after all symptoms of the disease have completely disappeared. If myocarditis or endocarditis were among the complications of coronavirus infection, then the return to physical activity should be postponed for 3-6 months. It should be understood that regular exercise in itself improves cardiovascular health, but each individual session of exercise puts stress on the heart and can cause fatal arrhythmias, especially if a person already had problems in this area.
If a person has suffered pneumonia during the course of the COVID-19 illness, it is recommended to rest for at least a week after the symptoms of the disease have completely disappeared. With the gradual resumption of classes, special attention should be paid to breathing control, you can add breathing exercises to the list of mandatory exercises.
In 2003, a group of scientists assessed the condition of patients who survived after acute respiratory distress syndrome - 3, 6 and 12 months after discharge from intensive care. According to the data obtained, lung volume and spirometry indicators recovered after 6 months, but the ability to transport carbon monoxide was still low. After a year, in 6% of patients, the level of saturation (blood oxygen saturation) during exercise decreased to 88%.
If the disease is haematological, it is recommended to gradually move from a sedentary lifestyle to low-intensity exercise to minimize the risk of blood clots.
Often, as symptoms and complications of the already transferred COVID-19, muscle (in 15% of those who have recovered) and joint pain develop. It is impossible to deal with severe pain. But a gentle warm-up to warm up your muscles and joints won't hurt, and can often even ease the pain. Proven ways to reduce joint and muscle pain include heat, cold, stretching, and NSAID gels or ointments. Intense exercise should be avoided until complete recovery.
Patients who have undergone COVID-19 with symptoms such as vomiting, nausea, diarrhea, loss of appetite must strictly control their calorie intake and monitor the water-salt balance in the process of returning to their previous physical form.
If, before the illness, a person was observed by a specialized doctor for some kind of chronic disease, he should definitely discuss with this doctor the question of his return to training. Most likely, you will have to do an electrocardiogram (ECG) to assess the condition of the heart.
How to return to training after a mild course of COVID-19?
If the disease was such that it was necessary to roll around in a layer (and it is good if still at home, and not in the hospital), then most people themselves guess that they should not rush to return to their previous physical form. Are there any risks for those who suffered from the disease almost asymptomatic or in a mild moderate form, that is, there are suspicions that there was COVID-19, but as such there was no disease?
Doctors strongly recommend:
Wait until at least one week has passed since the last suspicious manifestations, and then return to classes with 50% intensity. Listen to your body. Any strange sensations, incomprehensible symptoms are a reason not to rush with an increase in loads. Even athletes are advised to stretch the return period to 100% for at least a month.
The 2020 spring lockdown led to a decline in physical activity in all developed countries of the world. But it has been proven that reducing the number of steps from 10 thousand to 1.5 thousand in 2 weeks reduces the body's sensitivity to insulin and negatively affects lipid metabolism, increasing the volume of visceral fat even in healthy people.
How to exercise after COVID-19 vaccination?
Another question that is most relevant in our pandemic times: I did not get sick, but I was vaccinated against COVID-19. When can I go back to the gym after that?
According to doctors, one should not rush. Vaccination starts the processes of protein synthesis for the formation of antibodies to the coronavirus. This process requires a lot of energy. And with intense exertion, the body may experience a glucose deficiency. Therefore, even if there are no adverse reactions to the vaccine, habitual training should be abandoned for a few days.
Director of the Center. N.F. Gamalei Alexander Gunzburg
"When playing sports that require good endurance (for example, simple jogging, skiing or long-distance swimming), the load should be reduced by 1.5-2 times, in addition, giving the body more time to recover."
Infectionist, MD Nikolay Malyshev
“Studies have shown that with intense exercise immediately after vaccine administration, antibody production decreases and slows down. Therefore, it is recommended to refrain from sports for at least a week."
Conclusions People who have suffered from moderate to severe COVID-19 should definitely consult a doctor for a gradual return to physical activity. It is also necessary to consult those who had chronic pathologies before the COVID-19 disease. Even a mild form of COVID-19, as well as vaccinations, involves several days of interruption in training from the moment the symptoms disappear completely.