3 Spring Sports Injury Prevention Tips
Posted by Jenn F. on Friday, May 9th, 2014
Spring is a unique season in that the weather ranges from freezing to balmy. Athletes who participate in spring sports, like lacrosse, track, and baseball, often face disparate training conditions. They need to think about avoiding frostbite and slippery falls in the snowy weather, and also hydration and cramp prevention when it finally warms. Spring can also be a nightmare for people with asthma and allergies. Here are a few spring sports injury prevention tips from the foot doctors at The Center for Podiatric Care and Sports Medicine in New York.
Spring Sports Injury Tip #1: Focus on Fitness.
We tend to see a lot of “Weekend Warriors” once the weather warms up. You can’t expect to spend a sedentary winter and then just hit the pavement running come spring. It could be weeks or months before a problem manifests itself, but you are setting yourself up for trouble if you don’t prioritize and place fitness first. Focusing on fitness means conditioning your heart and muscles with 30 minutes a day of low-impact aerobic exercise, like biking, swimming, or walking. You also want to do a few days of strength-training activity with weights and a personal trainer.
Spring Sports Injury Tip #2: Buy a New Pair of Shoes.
We can’t overemphasize the significance of a good pair of shoes. Cross-trainers are good shoes if you dabble in a little bit of everything. You can work out on an elliptical machine, play a game of basketball or tennis once a week, golf, walk, or lift weights in these versatile shoes. You’ll want to replace them after about 100 hours of wear.
If you’re an avid runner or play on a sports team, you’ll need specialized shoes to protect your feet from the wear and tear of the game. Running shoes are specially designed for a heel-to-toe motion, with added forefoot cushioning, and cater to many different foot types. On the other hand, walking shoes are designed for heavier heel strikes. Basketball and tennis shoes offer more lateral stability and side-to-side movements.
Spring Sports Injury Tip #3: Prepare for Spring Weather.
In the cold temperatures, start with a slow five-minute walking warm-up to get the body moving. From there, do a few basic stretches. We recommend stretching after strenuous exercise for maximum impact. To avoid cramps, drink extra fluids (especially sports drinks with electrolytes) and resist the urge to over-layer your clothing. If you have asthma, always have an inhaler handy. People with allergies should take a non-drowsy antihistamine before going outdoors and engaging in any activity. Choose water-resistant materials, like nylon or synthetic fibers, when it’s raining, and spray your shoes with waterproof spray.
What a New York Sports Medicine Doctor Can Do for You
Sports medicine doctors are great allies to have on your team. We understand the body’s biomechanics, so we can help you work through injuries, and give you tips to help you prevent injury, as well. Our goal is to keep you pain-free and help you continue playing the sports you love for years to come. If you’ve been injured, we can offer the latest technologies to get you back in the game as fast as possible. Our physical therapists can aid in developing the skills necessary to help you become more competitive. We can also help you figure out what foot type you have and choose the right pair of athletic shoes. Book an appointment with The Center for Podiatric Care and Sports Medicine to get the best personalized care New York has to offer.
If you have any foot problems or pain, contact The Center for Podiatric Care and Sports Medicine. Dr. Josef J. Geldwert, Dr. Katherine Lai, Dr. Ryan Minara and Dr. Mariola Rivera have helped thousands of people get back on their feet. Unfortunately, we cannot give diagnoses or treatment advice online. Please make an appointment to see us if you live in the NY metropolitan area or seek out a podiatrist in your area.