Thousands of people experience exercise-related injuries every year. Here are five common injuries and ways to prevent them:
1. Sprained Ankle:
Approximately 25,000 people sprain their ankles every day. An ankle becomes “sprained” when one (or more) of the ligaments in your ankle is injured through a sudden twist or an over-stretching takes place.
Some ways to prevent it is by exercising on even surfaces, wearing shoes with good support, and making sure you’re placing weight evenly between the inner and the outer foot.
2. Knee Pain (“Runner’s Knee”):
“Runner’s Knee” is an injury where the knee bone becomes misaligned in its groove, causing the cartilage in the knee to wear down. The injury usually occurs on the back or the side of the knee and can be caused by weak or tight quadriceps.
A couple of ways to prevent this is by doing quad-strengthening exercises such as squats and lunges and by gently stretching the quadriceps muscle with a foam roller. Another way to prevent this is by slowing down the wear and tear by decreasing the impact in your cardio training.
3. Shin Splints:
Shin Splint is the pain that is felt in the front or inside of the lower leg along the shin bone which can result from overworking them through running too long or too often.
You can prevent shin splints by strengthening your feet, ankles, calves and hips with exercises such as the “heel drop”, where you stand on your toes at the edge of a step and alternate lowering the heel towards the ground.
4. Lower Back Strain:
Lower back injuries usually occur from twisting awkwardly, lifting something heavy using improper form or from weak/tight back muscles.
Preventing a lower back strain is simple: Do the opposite of what causes the strain. Twist and lift using proper form, and strengthen and stretch the back muscles. Strengthen by doing planks and stretch by using a foam roller on the back.
5. Muscle Strain (in the Hamstrings, Quadriceps, Calf, or Groin):
This injury is a small tear in your muscle, often caused by overstretching a muscle due to not warming up properly, limited flexibility or overexertion.
Some ways to prevent a muscle strain is by warming up before exercising and stretching afterwards. Also, when starting a new physical activity, build up the intensity and frequency in a gradual manner.
Respect your body by understanding its limitations and improve it gradually. You have one body. Take good care of it!
Jheni Solis, Fabletics Master