How 'PEACE and LOVE' improves injury recovery (It's not what you might think)

How 'PEACE and LOVE' improves injury recovery (It's not what you might think)

Dr. Chris Daily


Physical Therapist and Golf Performance Specialist

The 'PEACE and LOVE' method, introduced in a 2020 editorial in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, offers a more holistic approach to injury recovery, particularly beneficial for individuals over 50. 

This method is a shift from the traditional RICE (Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation) method, focusing on both immediate and long-term injury management. Here's how it works:

Short-term recovery management: PEACE

  1. Protection (P): Immediate protection of the injured area is crucial to minimize further damage. This may involve using support or avoiding activities that increase pain for the first few days after injury.
  2. Elevation (E): Elevating the injured area above the heart as much as possible helps reduce swelling by encouraging blood flow.
  3. Avoiding anti-inflammatories (A): In contrast to the RICE method, which often includes the use of anti-inflammatory medications, the PEACE approach recommends avoiding them. Research suggests that these medications can intrude on the natural healing process of tissues.
  4. Compression (C): Compression with a bandage or taping helps reduce swelling and provides support to the injured area.
  5. Education (E): Educating patients on the nature of their injury and the recovery process is so important. Understanding the healing process can reduce reliance on useless treatments and promote active recovery.

Long-term recovery management: LOVE

  1. Load (L): Gradually reintroducing mechanical stress, such as weight-bearing and movement exercises, is essential. It helps in rebuilding the strength and function of the injured tissue without overloading it too much.
  2. Optimism (O): A positive mindset can significantly impact recovery. Optimism has been linked to better pain outcomes and more effective rehab and recovery.
  3. Vascularization (V): Encouraging blood flow to the injured area is key. Activities like walking or cycling, which increase heart rate, promote healing by delivering nutrients and oxygen to the site of injury.
  4. Exercise (E): Tailored exercises are recommended to restore mobility, strength, and function. This step is vital for long-term recovery and for preventing injuries in the future.

For my patients over 50, It's fantastic that the 'PEACE and LOVE' method has been shown to potentially enable a faster and more effective recovery compared to the traditional RICE approach!

For me it works best as it considers the slower healing process and the need for a more gradual increase in activity.

Why don't you try some of these at home yourself! Don't forget to educate yourself on the nature of your injury and stay positive, these both play huge roles in empowering patients in their recovery journey with me in the inside and outside clinic!