Whether you are a professional athlete, training for your first marathon or simply playing pick-up games of basketball from time to time with your neighbors, you are susceptible to injury and should take preventative measures to stay safe. These tips also apply to youth, whose growing bodies need extra care.
In any level of sport, you should already know about the need to warm your muscles up for the ensuing physical activity. However, you may not be doing it properly, for long enough or maybe you’re not warming up at all. Your muscles need time to acclimate to the pressures that you are about to cause. This does not have to be a long activity. A quick paced walk for five minutes before a run works well or jumping jacks before a game is also suitable.
A routine of stretching is absolutely necessary to keep muscles agile and performing at their peak. Depending on your activity, you should stretch the muscles that will be strained the most during your exercise. Your quads, hamstrings and back muscles are particularly susceptible to strain. Be sure to stretch them adequately.