Wednesday, March 28, 2012

5 Ways to Prevent Exercise Injuries

I mentioned last week that I had twisted my ankle.  It was a pretty minor injury, no bruising or pain, so I P.R.I.C.E'd it and slightly modified my workouts.

Well, I realized that I didn't quite modify enough , as I woke up on Monday to a very stiff and swollen ankle.

So for the next few weeks I will be cycling, swimming and giving my ankle a rest. I will continue to teach classes, but will modify when needed.

Lesson learned:  Always give the body time to heal.

Injuries are (unfortunately) a frequent occurrence in the fitness world. Inflammation, bruises, sprains and strains happen most often in these areas:
  • Ankles/Feet
  • Knees
  • Lower Back
  • Shins
  • Neck and Shoulders

So what can you do to prevent injuries?

Warm up and cool down.  
Make sure that you warm up the body with active movements and range of motion exercises for at least 5 minutes.  You also want to include a full stretch in your cool down, holding each one for 30-60 seconds.

Focus on technique and form. 
No matter what activity you are doing, always check in to make sure that your technique and form is correct.  If you are not sure, book a few sessions with a personal trainer to get you started.

Know your body's limits.
This is not to say that you shouldn't push yourself during your workouts, you just don't want to overdo it.  Listen to your body and if you ever feel and strain or pain, stop, reassess and modify.

Schedule rest days.
Over training is a huge cause of injuries so make sure you are giving your body adequate rest.  These days and just as important as your workout day, so don't be tempted to skip them.

Get the right gear.
Ensure that you have well-fitting shoes, with enough support.  Also make sure that you have the right equipment based on your activity (i.e. helmets, wrist guards etc.).

If you are looking for some tips on dealing with injuries, check out this post!

Have you every underestimated an injury?  What are you best prevention tips?

Stay Healthy,

P.S Q&A time! Have any questions about women and fitness? I am going to answering your questions on the blog next week so fire away!

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