Don't Let Injury Sideline You
One of the most common injuries for both men and women is the overuse of muscles from everyday activities. Soreness from running a race makes sense, but it’s important to tune in to unnecessary or unusual pain from a weekend project.
According to Paul J. Harriott, MD, orthopaedic surgeon at Beebe Healthcare, stretching is key for preventing overuse. Warming up muscles helps protect joints and decreases the chance of a potential strain or injury.
“Typically, we see more contact injuries among men and more over-use injuries among women,” Dr. Harriott says. “Both of these can be prevented if the right measures are taken.”
There are three easy steps to prevent injury during activities, instructs Dr. Harriott:
1. Stretch. Actively stretch muscle groups around major joints like the knees, shoulders, and hips.
2. Train. Avoid shocking your body with a challenging routine or sport. Build up to your performance goals slowly with appropriate conditioning and training.
3. Increase your heart rate. Pursue activities that boost your heart rate and get blood pumping.
“Sprains and strains in knees and backs seem to be most common as people age,” Dr. Harriott says. By applying the three practices above, you can strongly reduce your chances of unwanted muscle injury down the road.