Some ways on how you can avoid a spine injury
Simple tips that may prevent you from suffering a spine injury. All athletes, whether you are professional sports men or women or enjoy weekend sports, run the risk of incurring a neck or back injury.
Extreme strain to the lower back or lumbar spine region is quite common amongst most athletes and can lead to intervals where you may suffer back pain, or something more serious. While it is near possible to prevent injuries completely, we have put together some tips and advice for all athletes to consider to keep your spines healthy.
Stretch when warming up
Whatever your sport it’s vital that you warm up that should include stretching exercises. This increases your blood circulation and also improves the flexibility of your muscles and ligaments. It not only helps to enhance your performance, but can also prevent injuries to your body. Here are some ways to help you stretch properly
- Start off by stretching slowly and gently to the point where you feel mild tension.
- Hold each of your stretches for between 10-30 seconds and don’t bounce!
- Make sure you stretch for the equal amount of time for each part of your body.
- You should stretch after your game or workout also which will relieve sore or tight muscles
Use proper protective equipment
Some more than others sports run a risk of injury. A rule of thumb is that the more contact that is involved in the game you play runs to higher risk of injury. To help reduce the risk of injury to your spine, most athletes should wear protective equipment that is appropriate for their chosen sport. Well-designed footwear is also essential. Some types of sports equipment that can help prevent injuries to other parts of the body depending on the activity to you playing are
• Hurling Helmets
• Pads to protect your elbow, wrist, chest, knee, shins
• Mouth guards
• Face guard when playing hurling or Camogie
• Protective cups to the private area
• Protective Eyewear
Make sure you stay hydrated
You don’t have to live in tropical climate to suffer heat injury. Your movement on the pitch or track causes you to burn body fluid and this needs to regularly replaced to stop dehydration. Use common sense when playing your sport to avoid serious injury by following the simple steps
- •Drink plenty of fluids, preferably water before, during, and after your sport.
- Try and avoid playing or practicing during periods where the climate is hot and humidity.
- Make sure to wear light sports clothing that maximise skin exposure that will allow your sweat to evaporate
- Always take breaks when you can to allow your body to rest and recover.
Take care not to overdo It
You may or may not have heard of (RMD’s) Repetitive Motion Disorders such as tennis elbow (epicondylitis), bursitis, and tendonitis, which occur when the same movements are repeated constantly leading to damage to various parts of the body. Here are some steps you can take to avoid this
- Always ensure you take rest periods during sports practice and games.
- Always apply the correct form and techniques in your chosen sport. If you’re not sure how then seek advice from a professionally trained expert who will show you how.
- If you suffer from any pain or muscle fatigue, inflammation and swelling, or compression of nerve tissue, then always seek professional medical advice to find out the cause of the problem. Do not neglect your body.
- Another good way to avoid RMD’s is to try cross-training with other sports which will help lower the strain to individual muscle groups and areas of your body.
Lead a Healthy Lifestyle
Your health is your wealth as they say and you should always be looking at ways to improving your overall health and wellbeing. You don’t have to be a regularly participant in sports to adopt a healthy lifestyle as healthy living is not only good for the body but is great for the soul as well! Here are some simple tips to remember
- Rest when you can, while you can. Close your eyes and shut off the world from the outside. This is not only good for your body, but it helps relax your mind.
- Eat a well-balanced diet that includes low fat foods. Your 5 a day is always important so make sure you take time to each fruits and vegetables.
- Smoking and the drinking of alcohol takes its toll on your body and your overall health. If you do smoke then consider quitting or at least set a low target of cigarettes you can smoke a day and stick to it. If you like a tipple then try and reduce the units of alcohol you drink per week. A small change can make a huge difference to your overall wellbeing and fitness.
- Get medically checked out at least once a year. Whether you are a man or woman, a visit to your GP is recommended at least once a year for the old MOT for your body. If there are any problems, they can be detected early and treated before they get too serious.
- Before you engage in any sports activity and you suffer from a medical conditions, before you attempt to start please ensure you consult with your own doctor before engaging in any sports.
So just remember, whatever is your sport, it’s important that you look after yourself and take the necessary steps to help reduce the risk of a back or neck injury. Precautions will help you play longer!
Simple tips that may prevent you from suffering a spine injury