GREENVILLE, S.C. (WSPA) – With a new sports season kicking off, athletic trainers say there are several things athletes should be doing to stay safe.
Brian Bishop is a certified athletic trainer at Palmetto High School and he says dehydration is the number one mistake he sees at this time of year.
“You need to drink at least 16 ounces of water before you go out and then 8 ounces every 20 minutes,” Bishop says.
He also says athletes should always do a couple minutes of cardio before stretching, then start your work out.
“The warmer the muscle is, the better it’s going to stretch,” he says. “It really doesn’t do any good to go outside and stretch a cold muscle.”
For short term injuries like sprains, he recommends the rice method for 4 days, which is an acronym for rest, ice, compression and elevation.
“It reduces the amount of blood flow to the injured body site,” he says. “That allows the ice to penetrate to a deeper depth. If you need to elevate it at night while you’re sleeping take a suitcase and stick it between your box spring and mattress. That’ll keep it elevated.”
No matter what you are doing, he says, everyone should remember to lift with their legs, not their back, and to keep toes in line of vision when squatting.
“When I worked in a clinic, I saw a lot of back injuries simply because of improper lifting,” Bishop says.
For runners with tendinitis, Bishop suggests switching your route to alleviate pain.
“One lower extremity is going to be longer than the other because of the crown of the road so sometimes you see some injuries, you can just change the direction you run and it’ll help with the pain and alleviate the injury,” Bishop says.
The National Health Institute recommends that parents try to find sports programs for their kids that have certified athletic trainers and make sure kids get a physical exam before playing.
To hear more from experts at Bon Secours on this health topic and others, listen every Saturday morning at 10am on 106.3 WORD radio.
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