5 tips on how to avoid picking up a sports injury!
Be smart in order to avoid picking up a Sports Injury!
You’ve decided to get fit and your determined to make the start line, many people think its unlucky if they pick up an injury. Unfortunately, the truth of the matter is that many injuries can be foreseen. Let’s look at the different issues surrounding this.
How heavy’s your training?
Measuring the load or weight of an object is quite easy, you simply put your object on some scales and hey presto, a figure arrives in front of you measured in kilograms. Unfortunately, measuring the training load in sport and physical activity isn’t so easy. One of the biggest contributing factors behind sports injury is an increase in training volume or intensity. An example may be the runner who increases their mileage from 20 miles per week to 40 miles per week. Alternatively, it may be the rower who suddenly increases their squat weight dramatically. The above sounds common sense but it’s surprising how many times we all make this mistake. So what can we do about it to prevent this from happening to you?
Top tip 1: Plan your training,
It doesn’t have to be complicated plans always involving loads of figures. It could simply be “lets aim for 20 miles per week for the next 4 weeks”. To expand that a little it would be great to include a measure of speed into the equation. That may add the detail of “lets aim to run mostly at 8 minute miles pace”. So you’ve decide how much you’re going to do, another top tip includes recording what you’ve actually completed.
Top tip 2: Keeping a training diary.
Training diaries can be really useful when reflecting on how things have gone. If you’ve had a good few months, a training diary can be really motivating to push on with your training, similarly if you pick up an injury you can often view where things went wrong and perhaps why!
Does age matter?
Over the years our expert physio’s have treated everyone from young to old. Growth factors can play a huge part in many injuries in children. Injuries including muscle strains and irritated tendon can arise due to a sudden change in growth. We often advise a regular stretching programme for any adolescents going through a growth spurt.
Top tip 3: if your embarking on an increase amount of exercise don’t forget to stretch the main muscle group required for your sport. This is especially the case if you are growing.
What about my feet?
Biomechanics and lower limb alignment can play an important part in many lower limb injuries. Our physio’s work with many elite athletes and the screening of foot position is an important part in any athlete screening. If you’re embarking on a running programme its always worthwhile either getting a physiotherapy screening session done or going to a reputable running shoe shop for advice.
Top tip 4, wear the right shoe’s that are specific to your foot type.
What about work?
Many people believe that Sports Injuries are solely “Sports Injuries” and should be dealt with in isolation. Unfortunately, our experience shows us that there is a massive crossover between sport, work and hobbies. During the physio assessment, the therapist may make reference to your posture to ensure there is no link. Many of us sit for too long at the computer and this can lead to stiffness through the spine. Unfortunately, that stiffness which has arisen due to work related issues, then causes pain when partaking in sport.
Top tip 5: do all the exercises the physiotherapist gives you even if they are not near the painful area!
The essence of the management of Sports Injuries is to look at the person not the injury. Only then can a comprehensive plan be formulated to ensure you get out there as soon as possible.
If you require any advice about a specific injury, please call 0191 285 8701 and speak directly to a Chartered Physiotherapist.