Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Preventing Sports Injuries



Photo Credit: franky242 via FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Staying at the top of your game, as the U.S. Olympic athletes try to do, can take a toll, and sports injuries can happen in an instant. Snowboarder Shaun White has battled a sprained ankle and jammed wrist, and ultimately he is withdrawing from the slopestyle event to hopefully avoid a more serious injury. Freestyle skier Hannah Kearney has conquered a torn knee ligament, a concussion, and broken ribs to work her way back to the top, but unfortunately skier Lindsey Vonn’s knee injury is keeping her out of the Olympics entirely.

Being an athlete is risky, as the high demands of most sports put a lot of stress on the body. While some sports injuries are unavoidable, there are several things you can do to help prevent the unthinkable from happening, particularly with regard to your feet. While an Olympic athlete has been training for years in preparation, you need to ease into training slowly if you are starting a new sport or wanting to go the next level. Your muscles need time to be conditioned, and doing too much too soon is a recipe for getting injured.

Build muscle strength by increasing training gradually, and cross train in different activities to maximize your potential. Warm up before and stretch after any activity. Stretches for your calves, arches and Achilles tendon are beneficial. Keep your feet in shape with various foot exercises as well. Pick up marbles with your toes while watching TV, or walk on your heels and then toes for a minute at a time each. Depending on your foot structure, orthotics can be inserted in your athletic footwear (including ski boots) to prevent pain.

At Houston Foot Specialists, we have a strong relationship with our active patients. We can help you manage any foot pain you may be having so you can stay in top shape. Contact Dr. Jeff Bowman for treatment or if you have any concerns about your foot health. Call our office in Houston, TX at (713) 467-8886 today.

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