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How to Avoid Weekend Injuries

Updated on March 12, 2015

Weekend Warrior Injuries

Everybody knows that a part of a healthy lifestyle is maintaining a routine exercise plane. For some however, this is harder then it seems. Time often restrains people from exercising which leaves their muscles and joints a bit weaker and more weary. The longer you wait to exercise, the more prone you become to injuries.

Its extremely important to plan ahead as if your body stationary throughout the week it will struggle to go from inactive to active in an instant. If you do try, not only will you struggle but you are also putting yourself at risk of injuries.

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Common Injuries

When putting your body from inactive to active in a hurry you are making yourself more likely to certain injuries. Some common injuries include:

  • Joint Inflammation
  • Muscle Tears
  • Ligament Sprains

All these injuries involve serious pain and a pretty hefty recovery time!

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A Progressive Approach

When planning your exercise, you need to sum up your desired fitness and your current fitness. By jumping straight into high intensity exercise without the proper preparation, you are putting yourself at risk for injury.

The intensity of your exercise must be progressively managed. For example, those athletes you see competing in high intensity sports don't just show up on the day and go hard at it. They will prepare themselves both mentally and physically; this process can take months, even years.

Hence why is it every important for irregular exercisers to prepare themselves gradually so that they can be mentally and physically ready for intense activities.

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The DO'S and DONT'S

Being realistic with yourself is the key part this understanding your limits. You need to know how your body adapts to the activities you wish to partake in and then do appropriate procedures to prepare yourself.

DO:

  • Warm Up: A warm up is often neglected as most people think they can just jump straight into an activity. However light exercises and stretching is key to ensuring your muscles are prepared for more vigorous work.
  • Cool Down: Cool down periods are crucial for exercise as they help reduce injuries and regulate and restore blood circulation. For instance if you are going for a run, don't just stop running and call it a day. You should progressively slow yourself down until you come to a slow walk and then once stopped perform some stretches. These will help prevent post-exercise injuries.

DON'T:

  • Unrealistically High Expectations: If you are not subject to regular exercise you shouldn't expect yourself to perform as an athlete. This is important as lots of injuries will come from people overestimating their capabilities.
  • Compare Yourself To Others: Everybody has different abilities. Comparing yourself to other people wont benefit you as you are not basing you exercise from your abilities.


Planning, Planning and more Planning

Planning your week is one of the best ways to physically get your body in shape. By doing this you can help ensure you get regular exercise throughout the week.

One of the easiest excuses for not exercising is time. However when you plan your week out you will find gaps that you can fit in some exercise or even stretching. This will help your body build the necessary muscles and requirements that enable you to perform as a real 'Weekend Warrior'.
Regular weekly exercises become even more important as you age. With age your muscles and joints wear, which means you become a whole lot more prone to injuries.


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Working with an Expert

It's very easy to read up on the topic and even implement some changes in your routine, but often having a professional give you personalized guidelines and tracking your progress will help you maintain a better habit.

Physiotherapists often provide good progress tracking as they can measure your results and give you advice to further enhance your routine. They can also give advice on existing injuries so that you can still implement exercise routines without causing any further damage.

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