Exercising provides our body with an impressive amount of benefits. Not only does it help us lose weight, but it can boost our immune system, improve our mental health, and keep our heart healthy. However, if done incorrectly, workouts can sometimes cause serious injuries. While most tend to be minor, some could be very harmful and make it difficult for your body to function correctly. This article will explain more behind some frequent workout injuries and a few ways you can avoid them.
What Causes Injuries?
Workout injuries are mainly caused by using improper exercise techniques or equipment. You’ll
also find that they could be due to a lack of proper nutrition. If you don’t consume enough
vitamins and minerals, your bones and muscles won’t be healthy. Because of this, you might find that they are unable to keep up with your workout routine and get injured easily.
Five Common Workout Injuries
Muscle Strain - Muscle strain occurs when you overstretch or tear a muscle. This can happen anywhere and can result in serious side effects like limited mobility and muscle spasms.
Shin Splints - Shin splints happen when you weaken your shinbone due to overuse. Shin splints can cause pain throughout your leg and make it difficult for you to walk.
Knee Pain - Many exercises require you to put pressure on your knees. This is especially true for workouts like running and weightlifting. This can put serious strain on your kneecap and hurt the muscles surrounding it.
Rotator Cuff Injuries - Your rotator cuff is situated within your shoulder joint and is designed to help you move your arm freely. However, excessive motions can irritate it resulting in pain and muscle weakness.
Back Sprains - Back sprains are a frequent problem because most people move their back in different directions when they exercise. Back sprains can be very uncomfortable and are a sign of misaligned vertebrae or muscle tear.
Eight Tips to Avoid Common Workout Injuries
Always Stretch - One of the best ways to prevent workout injuries is to stretch. Stretching not only warms your muscles up but prevents lactic acid build-up. Lactic acid can be very dangerous because it lowers the amount of oxygen your body receives. If there’s too much of this acid, it can result in muscle cramps and fatigue. There are plenty of stretches you can do before working out. By doing a few jumping jacks, standing jogs, or lunges you’ll energize and prepare your body. You’ll also want to stretch a little bit after your workout. By doing so, it will help your body to cool down, increase circulation, and release any lactic acid created.
Check Your Shoes - Wearing the wrong shoes often causes severe workout injuries. Shoes are designed to cradle your feet and provide support to your entire body. If they don’t do this, you’ll put pressure on your spine which can cause inflammation and muscle tension. To find the right workout shoes you’ll want to consider a few things. One is the size. You don’t want to invest in a tight shoe, but you also want to make sure there’s enough room for your foot to comfortably move around. You’ll also want to check the heel cushioning, arch support, and toe depth.
Eat Healthy Carbohydrates - While some people might try to avoid carbohydrates, they are very important to consume to prevent workout injuries. Healthy carbohydrates convert food into glucose, something which gives us energy. Most of the time, your diet should consist of at least 45% carbohydrates. However, how much you need to consume will depend on your weight and age. Some options to consider adding to your diet include:
- Pumpkin puree
Rest - Working out can make you feel great, but it’s important to take breaks every now and then. If you overexert your body, it weakens it. Because of this, you’ll find that rather than reaping the benefits of exercising, you’re only destroying your joints, bones, and muscles.
Drink Plenty of Water - Drinking enough water during the day is crucial to prevent workout injuries. Water lubricates your joints and sends important nutrients throughout your body. All of this works to help give you extra energy and provide adequate protection to your joints and muscles. You’ll also want to make sure to drink water during your workout. Excessive sweating can cause dehydration. If you don’t have enough fluid in your body, your muscles will start to contract. This could lead to muscle tension and cramps.
Start Slow - Sometimes it’s easy to overdo your exercises. It’s important to start slowly and gradually build your body up. Ideally, start simple workouts and each day add something new to the routine. This will help to prepare your body and prevent serious injuries.
Sip Tart Cherry Juice - Tart cherries are known for their abundance of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. Because of this, they can help protect against muscle injuries and pain. They have also been shown to speed up the recovery process for sore muscles. Ideally, you should drink about eight two-ounce glasses of it per day for best results. Keep in mind that you need to drink tart cherry juice, not regular cherry juice. While tart cherry juice might be a little sour, regular cherry juice doesn’t contain the same health benefits and is often packed with sugar.
Visit a Chiropractor - Another option to consider using to avoid workout injuries is to regularly visit the chiropractor. Chiropractors can help strengthen your bones, joints, and muscles while ensuring they are aligned. Getting your back adjusted will also encourage it to be more flexible so you can move with ease. All of this can prevent future workout injuries. In addition to this, many chiropractors offer massage therapy. This can be beneficial because it will release tension and increase blood flow to your muscles. Massage therapy can also be used after your workouts to reduce inflammation and soothe muscle aches.
Working out can be beneficial, but it needs to be done correctly. By keeping these tips in mind, you’ll be able to keep your body safe and healthy while exercising.
About Dr. Wells
Dr. Brent Wells, D.C. founded Better Health Chiropractic & Physical Rehab and has been a
chiropractor for over 20 years. Besides spinal adjustment, his clinic has treated thousands of Anchorage patients through massage therapy and physical rehab therapy designed to help give long-lasting relief.
Dr. Wells is also the author of over 700 online health articles that have been featured on sites such as Dr. Axe, Organic Facts, and Thrive Global. He is a proud member of the American Chiropractic Association and the American Academy of Spine Physicians. And he continues his education to remain active and updated in all studies related to neurology, physical rehab, biomechanics, spine conditions, brain injury trauma, and more.