Regular physical activity is vital for good physical, social and emotional health. Here are a few tips to reduce your risk of injury with any type of physical activity!
1. Get active and exercise
It is recommended that Australian adults accumulate 150-300 minutes (2½ to 5 hours) of moderately intense physical activity and exercise or 75 to 150 minutes (1 ¼ to 2 ½ hours) of vigorously intense physical activity each week. Therefore, you should aim for at least 30 minutes of activity each day and the key to this is building a routine and staying motivated. Going to the gym regularly or blocking out time for an evening walk are great ways to start! Exercising with a friend or family member helps to increase motivation and success.
2. Warm up is important
Ensure you have a good warm up before exercise, to reduce your risk of injury. Warm up exercises can include body weight exercises, moving your joints, stretching, massaging or using a foam roller to relieve tight muscles. If you are sore during warm up, then you should have a lighter session and not over exert the area. If your soreness continues longer than expected or does not subside, please contact us.
3. Poor form and control can lead to injuries
Often when we review people who have injured themselves, we find the underlying problem can be traced back to poor technique. Using correct technique means targeting the correct muscles for the movement and reducing your risk of overloading joints and tissues. Utilising the expertise of your practitioner or a personal trainer, particularly for beginners, is highly recommended.
4. Stretch regularly
Sports coaches and medical professionals advise the use of stretching exercises to increase the range of motion of joints and relieve muscle tension to assist in improving performance and rehabilitation. The ability of connective and muscular tissues to change their architecture in response to stretching is important for their proper function, repair, and performance.
5. Don’t go too hard, too quickly
A large majority of exercise injuries can be attributed to increasing load too early. The body takes time to adjust to the stresses of increasing physical activity. Therefore, a slow progression through an exercise program is advised. For osteopaths, ‘load management’ is critical in starting patients on new exercise programs and for returning patients back to sport and exercise after an injury.
6. Injuries do happen
Even the best-trained athletes in the world will have injuries at some point. Following the first five points will greatly reduce the risk of injuries occurring. When soreness or injuries do occur, it is important to try and manage them as quickly as possible. Osteopaths are trained in assessing, treating and managing musculoskeletal injuries, and will get you back to your fit and healthy self as quickly as possible.
7. Healthy eating and drinking
A healthy eating pattern is fundamental to the maintenance of good health and well-being. Healthy eating benefits almost every aspect of our health, throughout our lifetime. While many Australians enjoy a varied and healthy diet, most of us can still improve. Try to drink plenty of water and limit your consumption of soft drinks and alcohol.
8. Rest and sleep
Finally, making sure you get enough rest and sleep each day is very important in injury prevention and rehabilitation.
For more exercise tips, please contact us to book an appointment with our Williamstown Exercise Physiologist!