Spring has officially arrived. Golf clubs, gardening tools, bikes, sneakers and other outdoor accessories are being taken off the shelves and dusted off with eager anticipation of warmer weather and longer hours of daylight. But before you jump from the couch to “weekend warrior” mode remember while it is important to be physically active, it is just as important to avoid injuries at the same time.
Common injuries for weekend warriors include joint inflammation, muscle tears and ligament sprains. And while most injuries can be treated with physical therapy, wouldn’t it be better to plan ahead in order to prevent the injuries and therefore stay active during the season?
DO’s, DON’Ts and Other TIPS for Success
- Exercise intensity must be progressive otherwise the risk of injury increases - Don’t bypass preparation and jump right into intense activity
- Intensity builds slowly, the body is prepared properly and the risk of injury is reduced significantly;
- Set realistic goals - Don’t expect your body to adapt right away to intense activities if you have been inactive all winter due to the crazy flu season we suffered from or a crazy work schedule that prevents activity during the week;
- While we may want to, we can’t expect to run a marathon this weekend if we have never run a race before nor can we expect to spend hours moving mulch and prepping the garden without repercussions if we haven’t done any physical activity in months;
- Fuel your body properly - Drink more water . . . more and more research points to chronic dehydration of the body as a cause of various issues. Reduce your intake of caffeinated beverages which act as diuretics and increase your intake of water to stay hydrated;
- Make time to stretch - Increases blood flow which brings nourishment to the muscles;
- Remember, professional athletes train their bodies for months during the off season in preparation for the intense season ahead;
- Watch what you eat . . . limit / avoid processed foods, excessive sugars and high fat foods … choose a healthy alternative more often than not.
- Decreases muscle tension, anxiety, stress and fatigue;
- Increases flexibility and range of movement in the joints;
As your physical therapists, we are committed to helping you do the things you enjoy over the weekend. Regardless of your age and activity level, physical therapy can help prevent injuries and improve well-being. If strains, sprains or injury occurs, give us a call. Chiron wants you to enjoy your weekend activities and the Spring Season pain free.
Chiron Physical Therapy. . .committed to making people feel better.