Sports Safety 101!
In honor of April being National Sports Safety Month, here are some tips for staying safe and healthy while participating in physically demanding activities.
5 Tips For An Injury-Free Season
1. WARM UP
A dynamic warm up is essential before any athlete takes the field, court, ring, etc.
Dynamic Exercise: active movement that activates and pre-stretches the muscles without over stretching.
An active dynamic warm up increases circulation, gets the heart rate going and wakes the muscles up.
Break a sweat! Some great dynamic exercises you can do are arm circles, high knees, butt kicks, and jumping jacks.
2. COOL DOWN
Following the game or physical activity, cool down the body with some static stretches.
Static Stretch: stretch and hold a position for 15-30 seconds
Static stretching relieves muscle tension by bringing blood flow to the area. Loosening up the muscles increases range of motion and flexibility, which helps you move more freely and pain-free!
Things like touching your toes, straddle, hamstring stretch, quad stretch, calf stretch are all static stretches.
Avoid overuse injuries with planned rest time. Allowing the body to rest and muscles to heal will help you function properly and perform your best on game day.
- Foam roll – rolling out the muscles is a form of myofasical release, breaking down muscle tightness and promoting recovery.
- Stretch – a daily stretch routine can help lengthen your muscles, improve recovery and even aid muscle growth.
4. DON’T IGNORE PAIN
Don’t play through an injury!
Pain is the body’s way of saying something is wrong. If you are in pain, rest. Playing on an injury only worsens the injury, which will increase pain and recovery time in the future.
5. CROSS TRAIN
Want to be the best at your favorite sport? Play other sports!
Playing a variety of sports trains different muscle groups and increases coordination. By conditioning a wide-range of muscle groups and skills, your performance in your favored sport will improve.