After the long cold Winter months, you’re more than likely looking forward to taking part in sports and hobbies in the sunshine, that you weren’t able to do during Winter! Here are our top tips for avoiding tennis, cycling and gardening injuries.
There’s nothing more exciting than hitting the tennis courts during Summer, giving it your best shot! Following these tips will help you to be able to enjoy tennis all Summer long, without suffering from too many injuries.
Slowly Build Up Your Game
Instead of playing a full six sets during your first session, you may want to begin slowly. Increasing the length and intensity of your games as you progress over a couple of weeks.
Preserve Your Achilles
Before you begin the Summer tennis season, check your sneakers, have they been fitted properly?
It’s important to make sure that you’re wearing a pair of sneakers that have been fitted to your foot and aren’t too flat at the heel. This will decrease the stretch from your Achilles tendon, helping to reduce the chance of an injury.
In Your Down Time
Incorporate abdominal and back exercises with gluteal muscle strengthening exercises. We recommend incorporating single leg squats and dead-lifts into your training schedule.
This will prepare your body for tennis, helping you to avoid a Summer injury.
Cycling is an incredibly popular sport, our Physios treat many clients that are suffering from cycling injuries. You can bypass cycling injuries this Summer by checking out our tips and planning ahead.
Is Your Bike Set Up Properly?
It’s always wise to get a professional to have a look at how your bike has been set up, adjusting it to your individual needs. Our Physios are able to help you with this, fine tuning elements that include the position of your seat and pedals, they can also give you some postural tips whilst you’re on your bike. Good bike set-up helps avoid postural stress on your spine and lower limbs caused by prolonged repetitive stresess and time in the saddle.
Foam rolling for 30-60 seconds , 3-5 times on your front/back thighs and calves before you start your bike ride helps to reduce muscle tension during and after your ride.
When You’re Not Cycling
When you’re not cycling, keep your muscles supple and ready for your next ride or race. If your job involves remaining in the same position for long periods of time, set an alarm and incorporate a couple of minutes break into each hour. Standing up and performing a series of lower limb and back stretches will help you keep your body mobile and ready to ride.
Gardening can be a physically demanding form of exercise involving lots of bending over, stretching & lifting. When the weather is warmer, it’s much easier to spend time in the garden, here are some top tips that will help you to reduce the risk of Summer injuries whilst you’re gardening.
Warm Up Before You Begin Gardening
Gardening is considered to be a form of exercise, as with all types of exercise, it’s important to stretch before you begin. Whilst you’re gardening set an alarm on your phone and take a break every 20-30 minutes, you can hydrate and stretch as well as admiring the progress that you’ve made.
If you’re spending lots of time kneeling whilst you’re gardening, a pair of knee pads may come in handy. They will help to reduce the amount of pressure that you place on your knee joints, preventing pain from conditions such as bursitis and arthritis. They also help you feel comfortable in a kneeling position and avoiding bending over.
Invest In Various Tools
Having a variety of long and short handled gardening tools comes in handy, this will allow you to regularly change your position and the muscles that you’re using whilst you’re gardening. Avoiding repetitive strain injuries
Stretch Whilst You Garden
Getting out of the gardening postures and stretching regularly helps to balance out the forces on your spine and upper body. Some simple stretches to reverse the curve of your back are all that is needed.
Whether you’re playing tennis, cycling or gardening you’ll need a specific exercise program as a key part of staying healthy. You can check in with your Physio who can assess your current condition and give you a program of stretches tailored for you. If you have any previous or unresolved physical injuries this is even more important.
If there are any other summer sports or hobbies that we haven’t covered in this blog, our Physios are also able to give you some tips. Press the button that’s below to find your nearest practice.
This blog was written by Nick Lagos.