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Summer Of Sport

01.08.23

With so many tournaments taking place during the warmer months, including Wimbledon, The Open, and The Ashes, St John & St Elizabeth Hospital share a few top tips to avoid summer sports and leisure injuries.

Our bodies are built for motion and regular exercise is really important. Try to incorporate a variety of workouts into your week that cover both cardio and weight training. There’s plenty to inspire and motivate us to get moving and enjoy summer sports. However, without due care and attention, and particularly if you’re a little out of practice, it’s easy to get injured.

Eat Well

Eating a varied and balanced diet, rich in protein, calcium and vitamin D is crucial as well as drinking plenty of water to stay hydrated. If you’re exercising but not refuelling, you could be doing more harm than good. The skeleton is our body’s storage bank for calcium, which is especially important as a building block for bones. However, our body can’t produce calcium, so we must get it from the food we eat. If you don’t get enough calcium from your diet, it will be removed from the bones, where it’s stored. Over time, this will cause the bones to grow weaker and eventually lead to osteoporosis, particularly in women. Weight bearing exercises are also particularly important in order to maintain healthy bone density.

Gradual Build Up

To avoid an injury, it’s important to warm up before and after exercising, stretch regularly, and build muscle gradually. When re-starting any sport, enlist the support of a personal trainer to show you the basics and develop a bespoke plan. Alternatively, start slowly and increase your capability over time. For example, if you take up running, kick-off with a short 10-minute run, and gradually build up the distance. When it comes to weight training, starting with lighter loads is essential to avoiding muscle strains and tears. Focus on perfecting your technique first, then work on your strength. 

Common Injuries

Overuse injuries are very common. All this means is that the body has been put under more stress than it can tolerate at that moment in time. This often happens when people pick up exercising after a break and assume their abilities have remained the same. In these cases, jumping into a vigorous exercise regime could result in injury. Start small, make incremental gains and listen to your body.

On The Road To Recovery

Injuries happen. Stop your activity and if necessary, take painkillers and anti-inflammatories, ice the injury, and
get plenty of rest. If after a day or two, you don’t see any improvement, seek help. If you feel intense pain straight away and can’t move properly, seek a specialist immediately and have a scan, so you can get back on the road to recovery.

Here to Help

If you’ve been injured recently, or would like an old injury checked over, London’s St John & St Elizabeth Hospital
has a wealth of expert doctors you can seek for advice. The hospital works with a range of consultants who are leaders in their respective fields and who can treat anything, from a sprained ankle to tennis elbow, to complex fractures.

Find out more: hje.org.uk/orthopaedic-clinic or call +44 020 7806 4060 to book an appointment.

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