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Sports Training and Injury Prevention
Early on in a season, most athletes are motivated to participate in their particular sport, especially if they've had some time off. However, as we progress through the season, we forget to manage our body, take care of ailments, sometimes before it is all too late.
Make sure you are rested; get the appropriate amount of recovery after a game or training session. Continue to do all those little things that you did during the early months like correct warm-up, stretching, appropriate hydration and nutrition as well as cool down post activity.
Within our experience, we see it all too frequently, when an athlete starts to take short cuts because it’s cold, wet and miserable this time of year. They neglect the sufficient time needed for getting the body warm to participate, then don’t hydrate well throughout because it’s cold (however they are still sweating throughout the activity). Finally when they finish playing/training because the temperature is not really conducive to remaining outside or “they just want to get home” BOOM there goes the cool down and post activity stretching.
If this pattern continues, the body becomes tighter, less flexible and puts unnecessary stress on the athletes joints, which predisposes the individual to overuse or repetitive strain injuries because the muscles are not suitably supple and are over worked. Additionally, there is the chance of acute muscle tearing, and joint injuries because the athlete isn’t as flexible so they take short cuts and force the body to do more than it is capable of because the range of motion (ROM) is compromised.
Understand appropriate responses to training or games. Fatigue, muscle soreness, and irritability may occur following strenuous activities. Therefore, ensure you take the steps to minimize damage if your body is singing out for help. Ensure a correct warm-up, maintain appropriate levels of hydration and make sure you have a balanced nutritional plan in place to ensure optimum fueling pre/during/post activity. Following activity make sure that you go through an effective cool-down and appropriate stretching routine to assist in alleviating prolonged muscle soreness.
If you start to get a “niggle” and it consistently causes issues with your training/games, don’t let it develop into something worse!
Seek out the help of a trained professional; get the body taken care of. At Active Body Physiotherapy our team are experts in movement and function and not only treat the presenting injury, but also, and more importantly, aim to prevent them. Active Body’s therapists aim to relieve the patient’s symptoms and pain, as well as return the individual to their maximal capabilities so that they can work, play and live.
Remember to do all the little things correctly and avoid having a post-season injury hangover because you didn’t look after your body during the winter competition months.
Good luck and enjoy the remainder of the season.