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Injuries are a risk in almost any sport or activity but you can reduce the risk when you follow these tips.
Tip 1 – Always warm up and cool down
Warm muscles are less susceptible to injuries. The best way to warm up is by doing about ten minutes of light cardio, just enough to get your heart rate going and work up a light sweat. This increases blood flow and raises muscle temperature. You can do some stretches, but only after you have warmed up a bit.
Cooling down is just as important. It allows the heart rate to fall gradually. The end of the game or workout is also the best time to do flexibility work, as the muscles are warm and less likely to get hurt.
Tip 2 – Wear all the available protective gear
Never play without wearing the appropriate training and safety gear – helmets, mouth guards, gloves, protective pads and special footgear – designed for your specific sport. It can prevent catastrophic injuries. Also, ensure that you wear only gear designed for that specific sport – do not switch gear between sports. And ensure that the gear fits you properly.
Tip 3 – Know the rules of the game
Rules are not only designed to keep the game fair, but also to keep it safe. This is especially true of contact sports. Players, who know the rules and abide by them, know what to expect of each other and are therefore less likely to injure themselves and others.
Tip 4 – Never play when you are injured
Pain and swelling is a sign that something is wrong. Never ignore any warning signs from your body that you are not 100% fit. Playing while you are still recovering from injury can also be a mistake as it can exacerbate the original injury or lead to chronic problems.
Tip 5 – Get enough rest
Orthopaedic surgeons agree that athletes with high consecutive days of training suffer injuries more often. It is important to take rest days as this allows the muscles and connective tissues a chance to repair and prevents injuries resulting from overuse.