If you undertake sports you increase the likelihood of getting a sports-related injury. Of course, many of these injuries can happen even if you’re not doing sports. However, being physically active does make an injury more likely.
You’re not alone, millions of Australians are hospitalized every year with sports-related injuries. But stopping the sport isn’t a viable option. Not only do you enjoy it, but regular exercise also has an array of health benefits.
Instead, you need to be aware of the risks and what steps you can take to prevent them.
- Visit A Physiotherapist
A reputable physio, such as this physiotherapist Concord, shouldn’t just be visited after a sports injury. Of course, they are very good at reducing recovery times. However, they are also excellent at devising exercises and other techniques that can help you reduce your chances of injury.
The key is to be honest with them about your current aches and pains if you have any. They’ll want to know your regular activities and will be able to decide which joints and muscles are most at risk. They can then provide targeted strengthening and flexibility exercises to reduce the risk of injury.
Visiting them and listening to their advice can help you to keep exercising, it will also give you someone who knows your body and can offer prompt treatment if you do experience an issue.
- Upgrade Your Gear
The right sports gear will help you to perform better. However, although old sports gear is generally very comfortable, continuing to wear it can increase the risk of injury.
For example, running with shoes that no longer have any tread will decrease grip and bounce. That places more strain on your body and increases the risk of injury.
There are plenty of affordable options on the market. Choosing the right gear will actually improve your performance and lower the risk of injury. It’s a good idea to chat with the experts in your local sports store. They’ll point you in the right direction.
You can also check out reviews online and with friends. It will help you to decide which is the best gear for your needs and your budget.
- Always Stretch
Before you start exercising you should always undertake dynamic stretching. These are exercises that mimic the movements you’re about to make but at a slower pace. The aim is to boost blood flow around your body. This warms your muscles and ensures they have the nutrients they need, effectively protecting them.
After exercise, you need to undertake static stretching. This is when you hold a position for 30 seconds. The aim is to maintain blood flow to the muscles and help them to cool slowly. This reduces the buildup of toxins which can cause Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness.
You can look up exercise suggestions online but you’ll find it beneficial to talk to your physio about this. They’ll be able to guide you and will know of any particular issues with your body that need supporting.
- Stay Hydrated
It is impossible to overstate the importance of staying hydrated. Losing as little as 1% of the water in your body will increase your risk of a variety of illnesses and injuries.
When you’re exercising in hot weather you can sweat 1% of your body’s water content in surprisingly little time. But, don’t think that you’re okay if you’re exercising in the cold, you can still lose a lot of water.
Staying hydrated isn’t optional, it’s essential for your ongoing health and reducing your risk of injury.
Don’t forget, water is essential for the transference of nutrients into cells and the removal of toxins. If you’re not properly hydrated your body won’t be able to give you 100% of the effort you need when exercising.
Of course, the reduced nutrient flow will also mean that your muscles are working to peak efficiency and are more likely to be injured.
- Know Your Body
The best way of avoiding injury is to know your body and your own limits. By doing this you’ll know when you can push against those limits, gradually increasing your fitness levels and capabilities.
But, you’ll also know when you’re pushing too hard. The more you strain your body the more likely it is you’ll incur an injury, which can stop you from exercising for a long period of time. It’s better to listen to your body first.