As the weather warms up and thoughts turn to running, care must be taken to avoid injury. An injury could result in a visit to the orthopedic surgeon and sideline your sports efforts. Here are some tips to help you prevent injuries during track season:
- Warm Up
Before you begin any physical activities, it is important to properly warm up your muscles. Some stretches and gentle jogging can prepare your muscles for the more strenuous running that will follow. Be careful not to bounce as you stretch and don’t quickly overexert cold muscles.
- Take it Slow
If it has been a while since you last hit the track, make sure to start slow and easy. Don't expect to be back at last season's peak when you start this track season. Give yourself time to work back up to your running habits and personal records from last year. Pushing yourself too hard at the onset can easily lead to injuries.
- Listen to Your Body
As you run, even at the end of track season, pay attention to your body. If you have new pains that you haven't felt before, or if you feel as though something is wrong, head to your sports medicine clinic. Listening to your body could stop an injury from worsening. Few injuries resolve on their own and pushing through pain and discomfort will only exacerbate the condition.
To prevent dehydration and other related injuries, make certain that you drink plenty of water before, during, and after track practice. Remember that if you start to feel thirsty, you are already partially dehydrated. Water is a good source of fluid, and sports drinks can help replace electrolytes that were lost while you were running.
If you do suffer an injury during track season and need a sports medicine specialist in Phoenix, Scottsdale, Tempe, Mesa or Glendale, visit TOCA, The Orthopedic Clinic Association. Our sports medicine clinics can diagnose and treat your sports injuries. Call us at (602) 639-4027 for an appointment today.