One of the biggest obstacles to attaining your fitness goals is injury. Muscle strains, ankle sprains, shin splints, knee and back injuries and tendinopathy are all common hazards that people face when attempting to become fitter. If you are constantly dealing with one niggling injury or another, not only does it make your everyday life harder, but it can also cause you to give up your exercise plans altogether.
If you know that you are injury prone, then you are already on the way to solving the problem. By taking adequate precautions and following the best advice, you can maximize your chances of staying injury free. To help you avoid injury, here are some useful workout tips for those who are injury prone or recovering from injury.
Braces and copper wear
If you are recovering from an injury or are injury prone in a certain part of your body, there are precautions that you can take to stay safe. Wearing copper compression or some kind of copper wear recovery support can be a very effective way to protect against injury. It is possible to find braces and support wear for wrists, knees, ankles and elbows, and this equipment can help to promote safer movement and joint and limb stability.
There are other practical steps that you can take that will help you to steer clear of injury. Applying ice to sore joints and muscles after a big workout is a great way to assist the process of healing. It’s also important to make sure that you are using the right training shoes for your arch shape and for the training activity that you are undertaking.
Know your weaknesses
Everyone has one part of the body that is weaker than the others, and by knowing your own weak points, you can have a better idea of what areas you need to target and what exercises to focus on. For example, if you’re a regular cyclist, it’s likely that you have strong quads, but your arms may be a weakness. If you play a lot of football, you may be prone to weak or damaged ankles. When some muscle groups are weaker than others, this can lead to imbalance and strain on certain parts of the body, increasing the risk of injury.
By knowing your weaknesses and targeting them during strength workout sessions, you can build up strength and help to guard against injury.
Don’t neglect the warm-up and cool-down
Going through a proper warm-up will help to reduce the risk of muscle strain and will get the blood flowing to the muscles associated with the exercises that you are about to undertake. A cool-down has the same effect, but in reverse, and can help to avoid dizziness. No matter how keen you are to fit in an exercise session during your busy schedule, never skip the warm-up or the cool-down. The five minutes spent on this part of your exercise training will be hugely beneficial in terms of the quality of your session and the reduced risk of injury.
Just as important as the warm-up and cool-down is the stretching interval. Though it can’t directly prevent injury, it will help to increase both the flexibility and suppleness of your muscles, which will make you less susceptible to pain or injury.
Remember to rest
It is vital to allow yourself regular rest days on which you either do no exercise or schedule only a light workout. This will make it possible for your muscles to properly heal from the stress of exercise. It is also a good idea to take a rest if you are feeling a few twinges or are generally unwell so that you can return to your schedule in a better state.
Give yourself time to heal
If you do pick up an injury, think of it as a time to break the cycle of being injury prone. Take the opportunity to consult a doctor or therapist about your repeated injuries and take practical advice on how to heal and when you can return to exercise. When you do get back in the gym, start small and build up to your normal level over a period of time.
Taking regular exercise is a vital part of staying healthy, and by following the guidance above, you can help to ensure that injury doesn’t get in the way of your fitness goals.