Student athletes are getting into full swing for their sports seasons. Football, soccer, volleyball, and cross-country are well under way. With students having just come off of a long summer break, it's important to practice good technique in sports to prevent sports injuries from happening. Everyone follows the age-old saying "don't forget to stretch." Stetching alone, however, does not prevent injury. Follow these 5 tips below for staying safe in sports.
Tip 1: Warm Up
Preparing for any intense activity is best done by warming up the body by doing a similar activity at less intensity. As the saying goes, you have to crawl before you walk, and walk before you run. The same goes for sports. Start off slow to allow your body tissues and muscles to heat up and become pliable.
Tip 2: Get Enough Sleep
Being tired is a major cause of injury in sports. Sleep deprivation is often overlooked as a problem in injury or pain, but not getting enough sleep can be dangerous. Next time Coach says to "rest up" before the big game, make sure to listen. Getting a good night's sleep will allow your body to function properly during the game without the strain sleep deprivation can cause.
Tip 3: Cultivate Coordination
A lot of traumatic injuries occur from lack of coordination. Developing good coordination takes time and practice. Doing coordination building exercises daily will increase your overall coordination and help to prevent injury in a game.
Tip 4: Relax
Being able to adapt quickly and easily helps prevent injury as well. Being too tense or too rigid causes the body to lock up. If your body is not at ease, it will not have the full range of motion needed to conduct the physical activity. The more relaxed you can be, the looser your body will be and the better it will function in sports.
Tip 5: Play Smart, Not Hard
Sometimes injuries are caused by effort that is overexerted or mis-directed. Knowing when to utilize force and intensity is important. Playing smarter and using tactical game moves allows you to save your energy for the plays that do require more work. Save the intensity for the moments that need it and keep your body focused and relaxed.
Stick to these 5 tips, and your injury prevention should greatly increase. Leave the stretches for after the game to cool down, and never solely rely on just one of these methods to stay safe. Each plays an important role in injury prevention and all should be used regularly across all sports. Just remember to start slow, rest up, stay loose and relaxed, and play smart!
October is National Physical Therapy Month! To celebrate, we will be hosting a Global PT Day of Service for 1st Responders, Police Officers, and Firefighters. During this day, we will provide screenings for injuries and wellness massages on site at our office. Check back for more information on the specific day and time in future newsletters!
December will be a month long Lafayette Animal Aid drive for food/supplies. We will start collecting food/supplies sometime around Thanksgiving. Check back for when and where to bring your food/supplies.
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