Joining a sports club or acquiring a gym membership is an excellent way of getting regular, vigorous exercise, or if you prefer to take up running or jogging you can stay fit and healthy. Following one of these activities, although excellent for your health, may also lead to injuries if the proper precautions for risk areas are not taken, and if the damage is severe enough or you do not seek the right medical care, it can lead a permanent disability.
Sports related injuries are common in joint areas, such as the knee and ankle joints or the elbow and shoulder joints. Injury or accidents tend to occur most often during running, jogging or sports relating to running such as soccer, football, basketball. Activities that require a great deal of dexterity such as aerobics, cheerleading, gymnastics, or most winter sports are also high risk activities. To avoid straining your joints and muscles, follow these eight steps recommended by well known PT’s and professional coaches, before beginning any vigorous exercise.
Always begin with a warm-up: Beginning any exercise or sport with a warm-up is imperative to avoiding strained muscles or cramps. It also allows greater movement and flexibility.
Get a good coach or trainer: Having a coach or trainer who is up to date on the latest medical knowledge for physical training can help you to avoid injury caused by ignorance. Most gyms or sports clubs have a resident coach or trainer who can give you sound advice.
Work on conditioning your muscles: To avoid injury your muscles need to be able to support your joints properly. When you build your core muscle strength your muscles supports your whole body and you will be able to move faster without hurting yourself.
Use training equipment with care: Most athletes use training equipment to help develop individual muscle groups. When using training equipment make sure you have supervision from a properly trained individual, or at least have a teammate be your spotter while you work with weights or on an exercise machine to avoid accidents.
Learn jumping techniques: Learning the right way to jump or lunge will help you to avoid common injuries that can happen to the legs and ankles. Try to avoid extending your knees or legs at odd angles or you may end up like Kevin Ware who experienced an unusual leg break during an Easter basketball game last year just from wrongly landing on his leg.
Watch your joints: Ankles and knees, shoulders and elbows are all weak points that can easily be injured if the proper precautions are not taken. Wear support on weak joints if needed and learn to balance your weight equally on the balls of your feet to avoid sudden impact.
Do stretching exercises: Stretching should be done as part of your warm up routine and also after vigorous exercise. Supple muscles will carry your frame better and be able to accommodate twisting movements better along with providing greater agility.
Avoid seasons of inactivity: Even if you cannot participate in your regular exercise routine, either due to injury, sickness, or weather conditions, try to remain active. Enroll in a temporary alternate sport or activity so that you do not lose muscle strength and continue with daily stretches and core muscle development.