ATHLETES CAN AVOID INJURIES

13 Jan

Obviously no one ever wants to get hurt. Here are a few tips to consider / learn / remember / start doing / stop doing so that you can stay healthy!

OVERTRAINING – I get it! I admit that when I go to the gym sometimes I like to be in my “I’m tough and I can do anything I set my mind to” mode. It’s actually kind of fun too. BUT… whether you are a beginner or a seasoned athlete, it’s never a good idea to do too much, too fast, too soon. An effective fitness program always includes time for your body to adapt and heal from the micro-muscle tears that are a normal part of the process. An injury can slow you down in the long run.  So, remember to that the proper balance between exertion and rest is important.

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BEING INFLEXIBLE – Most people know that a good fitness program includes cardio, strength training and flexibility training. I spoke about the importance of stretching in a previous post.   If you ask a muscle that doesn’t have the flexibility to stretch in a way that forces it to stretch, it will get injured. A yoga and / or stretching practice can prevent these injuries.

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NOT WARMING UP – Again, the stretching post speaks about the importance of warming up. To be honest, I usually would rather just jump right to the fun stuff, but I do know better!

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EQUIPMENT PROBLEMS – In this situation equipment refers to everything including; shoes, machines, balls, bike seats, rackets, anything. Take the time to make sure it is all good and right for your needs.

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MUSCLE IMBALANCE – This one probably gets less attention that the others. Muscles work in pairs. While one muscle is flexed, its partner relaxes. If the strength ratio in the pair is out of balance, you can get injured. Examples of this type of injury include tennis elbow, shin splints, hamstring and / or quadriceps tears. Remember to train both muscles in the pair equally.

If you get injured, make sure you figure out what caused it. If you don’t know the cause, you won’t be able to avoid future injuries.

Have fun and healthy workouts!

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