People who actively participate in sports often come across injuries. For them, sports injuries can hinder their game and impact their daily routine. Sports injuries can be painful, debilitating and can sideline athletes for weeks or even months. The good thing is that different options for treating and rehabilitating the injured sportsperson are now available. These include conservative management, sports physiotherapy, pharmacological management and surgical interventions. However, it is always better to avoid getting injured in the first place.
But how sports injuries can be prevented? Whether you are a seasoned athlete or just starting out, the tips below will help you stay healthy, active and injury-free.
Common Sports Injuries
Before learning how sports injuries can be prevented, let’s discuss some of the most common sports injuries.
Sports injuries can be of various types and degrees, depending on the sport. The most common sports injuries are:
- Tendon or ligament injuries, such as ankle sprain, ACL tear
- Muscle injuries, as hamstrings pull
- Inflammation, as in tennis elbow or golfer’s elbow
- Joint dislocation injuries, like shoulder joint dislocation or thumb joint dislocation
- Fractures, etc.
All these conditions can be treated with sports physiotherapy and other interventions. However, the better option is to be vigilant beforehand and prevent such sports injuries.
Ways To Prevent Sports Injuries
Now let’s talk about how sports injuries can be prevented. Sports injuries can be prevented by keeping the following points in mind:
Keep yourself updated
Always stay updated about the rules and regulations, and new changes, if any, of the sports you are going to play. Knowing all the rules can easily prevent you from getting injured.
Use proper sporting and protective gear
Using sporting and protective gear, such as gloves, pads, helmets, protective cups, eyewear, shoes and a mouthpiece is for your safety and thus should be used whenever you are going to play. The gears should always be your size, and you should be comfortable wearing and using them. If not, either replace them with correct-fit equipment or practice more in them if they are your size but you are not habituated to using them. Protective gears must be properly worn and fastened with the provided laces or straps, as in the case of helmets.
Warm-up and cool-down
Instead of immediately starting to play, you should begin doing some warm-up exercises with some low-grade exercises. This can target the specific muscles to be used in the sport you will play. Your coach or sports physiotherapist can teach you these warm-up exercises.
Warming up helps your muscles get ready for and accustomed to the activity you will perform. Similarly, don’t just walk back idly when returning to the pavilion. Instead, keep moving and maintaining your body’s dynamics until you reach back. This is called cooling down, and it helps your muscles slowly adapt to their normal condition after being active. The cool-down phase is as important as the warm-up.
Whilst playing a sport in the sun, your body loses water continuously through sweat. Therefore, it needs to be replenished as soon as possible. This makes it important to keep drinking water to avoid dehydration during the sport, as there can be other types of injuries due to dehydration and exhaustion.
Rest when needed
People put in extra effort to stay at the top of their game. However, they often forget that rest is as important as playing. Resting gives your body time to revitalise and re-energise. In addition, continuing to play even when physically exhausted greatly increases your risk of injury. So, rest, drink water and stretch your body a bit before you get back on the ground.
Don’t play with injuries
When you have a pre-existing injury, it is always advised to give it the optimum time to heal before you pad up for a match. In such situations, sports physiotherapy can help. However, if you play before being properly healed, you not only risk new injuries, but you also ruin the condition of the previous injury. So, consult your sports physiotherapist and return to the ground only after you have recovered from the existing sports injury.
Use proper technique
Before playing, study the biomechanics of the sport. It will help you learn how to play effectively with less effort. Knowing the right technique helps you excel in the game and prevents the risk of sports injuries.
Follow your coach and the advice of your physio
Whilst on the field, you should always try to follow the lead of your coach and your sports physiotherapist, as they have in-depth knowledge of the sport you are playing. Their advice can help you prevent sports injuries.
Try not to be stressed because of the game
It is important not to put yourself under too much stress due to the game. It is as important to be mentally fit as it is to be physically fit to play and win a game. So keep calm and give your best.
Be at Your Best With FlexiFit Physiotherapy
If you’re an athlete looking to prevent sports injuries or recover from an existing injury, FlexiFit Physiotherapy can help! Contact us today to schedule an appointment with one of our expert sports therapists and take the first step towards a healthier, stronger and more active lifestyle.
Whether you need injury prevention advice, rehabilitation support or performance enhancement strategies, our team is here to help you achieve your goals and stay at the top of your game. Don’t let injuries hold you back! Contact us now.