Exercise is a great way to decrease stress, increase range of motion and build strength. Unfortunately, sometimes in our effort to stay active, we can end up injuring ourselves. Most injuries will heal in their own time with the correct management and treatment. However, It can also be a stressful time with work absence and difficulty to perform daily tasks. This is why injury prevention is essential so you can keep doing what you love to stay happy and healthy.
During 2011-12, over 36,000 people aged 15 and over were hospitalized as a result of an injury sustained while playing sports. Common injuries that we commonly come across in the clinic are ligament sprains such as a rolled ankle, muscle strains, shin splints, repetitive disorders of the tendons and joint pain in ankles, knees, hips, shoulders or spine.
We have listed some of our favourite tips to look after your body and reduce the risk of injury.
Warm-up and cool down
Warming up with a light jog, or dynamics stretching such as leg swings or … can help increase flexibility and blood flow to your muscles and joints. This helps decrease your risk of injury or re-aggravation of a previous injury.
Cooling down with some stretches or a light walk can help reduce that post-exercise soreness by eliminating waste products produced by muscles during exercise and replacing them with nutrients and oxygen to the muscles.
Progressing your exercise is vital to build strength, challenge yourself and meet goals. But be sure to do this progressively: doing too much too quickly when your body isn’t conditioned to do it can lead to injury. As well as heat exhaustion if you haven’t sustained the fitness level required for the level of intensity you are working at.
Use the correct technique
When performing exercises, it’s important to use the correct technique. You might decide to exercise under the guidance of a qualified personal trainer or classes to have a professional assess the way you move. This decreases your risk of injury as it means you will be loading through the correct muscles and joints.
Don’t ignore your body
Some people may experience joint aches and pains during or after exercise. This may be a sign of injury or imbalances through the body that may lead to an injury when exercising. Although sometimes it can be tempting to push through. Stop and ask for help as you may injure yourself more and increase your recovery time. Go and speak to someone who can provide a thorough assessment, treatment, and management plan. As if an injury isn’t managed and rehabilitated correctly, there is a high risk of re-aggravation.
How Can We Help?
Seeing the right health practitioner when you injure yourself, is important. This is because the correct advice and treatment of a condition can reduce your recovery time. We have a range of services that can help with existing injuries and injury prevention, including Osteopathy, Movement Therapy and Exercise Physiology
Osteopaths encourage the body’s healing processes to decrease the tenderness, increase range of motion and reduce muscle tightness. Our osteopaths not only treat sports injuries but also diagnosis giving you a specific management plan and addressing underlying postural imbalances that may have contributed to the injury in the first place. Osteopaths can help with the overall structure and function of your body’s mechanisms to allow you to move and perform better. This might involve strength or stretching program designed specifically for you to target areas of restrictions or weak muscles and joints.
Exercise Physiologists can provide assistance once the acute symptoms of the injury have been resolved. They can tailor an exercise-based injury treatment and management plan to ensure that you reduce the risk of re-injury, help reduce recovery time, provide injury prevention strategies and can get you back out there!
Movement Therapy sessions are 1 on 1 Movement Therapy and are designed for people looking to improve and maintain overall strength, flexibility and control or for those who would like to work on a specific injury or weak spot. These 60-minute sessions are conducted in a clinical setting by our knowledgeable osteopath’s and include a combination of hands-on therapy as well as mat-based exercises.
If you feel like you need any help with any of the above tips or aren’t feeling quite right come to talk to one of our health practitioners at Whole Body Health and Wellness on 5200 1044 or come in and say hello. We are always happy to help!