The benefits of an active lifestyle are manifold. Exercise and sport are great for building up core strength and for increasing endorphins which helps with stress and even makes you happier. You probably already know that, but with the high number of people suffering from sports-related injuries, it seems that some people do not know the best way to work out to look after their long-term fitness. Joint and muscle strains can be a particular worry but there are things you can do help yourself.
There are two types of joint injury associated with sports. The first is from collision and high impact contact sports like rugby and football. Joint strains and instability are some of the things to look out for. Overuse injuries are associated more with non-contact sports such as rowing or running. The types of injuries to look out for here include stress fractures and torn ligaments. Have a look at the NHS site for a comprehensive overview of the risks, www.nhs.uk/conditions/Sports-injuries. Arthritis Research UK 2011 found that over 40% of active people worry about having mobility and joint problems in the future. If you are one of those making the effort to keep healthy, you should a lso take the care to make sure that sporting activities won’t have a negative impact further down the line.
WARM UP/COOL DOWN
Absolutely crucial is to remember to warm up and cool down appropriately. The stretches and warm-up exercises you do before your chosen sport are a lot more important than the exercise itself. Get these wrong and you’re risking injury, so don’t scrimp on the time you spend on them either. have a look at this warm-up video for a few ideas:You should jog for 5-10 minutes to warm up your cardiovascular system before you start pushing it further. The cool down at the end is also important. You should jog or walk to allow your heart rate to gradually return to your rest rate. Static exercises will also help to relax and realign muscle fibres and to re-establish their normal range of movement.
LISTEN TO YOUR BODY
You have to remember to listen to your body. As you get more enthusiastic about your sport or exercise regimen, the danger is that you start to stop listening to your body and pushing yourself too far, too fast. You have to listen to your body and include rest days when you don’t exercise at all. Even professional athletes do this, so don’t think it’s something that signals weakness.
Even the most competent athletes need help from time to time. A personal trainer will help to design a regime to fit you. Tim Hayes Fitness comes recommended if you’re in the London area. He has a very personal approach and will pay attention to how your body works to give you the workout you need, look here for details: www.timhayesfitness.co.uk. If you do run into difficulty and are injured or detect a muscle strain issue, try sports physiotherapy. For sports physio in Harley Street, try www.techniquephysio.com. Physiotherapy is not only for post-surgery or catastrophic injuries. Rather, if you take care of the aches and pains and find out what is at the heart of the twinges, then you will develop a far closer relationship with your body as you understand better how it works. When it comes to looking after your health and wellbeing, exercise is only one part of the picture. By taking a more holistic approach to your health, you can begin to understand how your body works. Knowing this, you can do warm up and cool down exercises to fit your body then detect and treat any problems as soon as they arise. Get the most out of your exercise and try to avoid long-term damage.