There are very, very few conventional sports that don’t put strain on your lower extremities. Even volleyball, tennis, and basketball involve a lot of running, leaping, and twisting. Keep these tips in mind to prevent athletic injuries.
Ease into your activities. On a macro level, don’t go straight from a sedentary lifestyle to boot-camp style training–start with long walks and light strengthening exercises for a reasonable amount of time–i.e. an hour each day. On a more micro level, stretch out before games, practices, and intense workouts, and ease into more intensive cardio sessions with light jogs or other low impact activities.
You aren’t yourself when you’re dehydrated. Dehydration can cause you to feel woozy, sleepy, and nauseous–all of which in turn can impact your judgment and make you more vulnerable to injury.
Know Your Limits
Weakness, leg switching, and weak grip are all indicators of muscle fatigue. Muscle fatigue is a very real condition that leaves you extremely vulnerable to injury. Think of it as your body’s emergency brake. If you are experiencing muscle fatigue, take a timeout, even if you feel like you’ve pushed through longer or more strenuous activities before.
Mix It Up
Many common injuries are caused by repetitive motion. Mix up your workouts, activities, and positions as much as possible to avoid stressing the same joints or tissues too much. Be sure to incorporate appropriate strengthening exercises into your workout routine to adequately support areas that get a lot of action or pressure.
See A Professional
If you are regularly experiencing pain or stiffness, see a professional ASAP. You may have an injury, which, left unattended could heal in a way that causes permanent deformity. Or, you may be moving in a way that doesn’t work for your current physiology. Either way, a professional can get you the treatment your need to heal existing injuries and prevent new ones.
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