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Staying Safe During Summer Sports

Summer is such an exciting time of year, largely because of all of the sports and outdoor activities everyone can engage in. In order to get the most benefit from your activities this season, take a look at the following tips for staying safe during summer sports.

Staying Safe While Golfing

Playing a round of golf is a somewhat unassuming sport when it comes to physical activity. Even though the speed isn’t as intense as, say, a round of tennis, you’re actually burning a significant amount of calories and walking a lot (the average 18-hole course is five to six miles long!).

Golf is also good for strength building and improving balancing as people get older. It’s important to prepare for your time on the course so that you can make the most of the benefits of the sport without risking injury.

  • Make stretching a part of your daily routine to maintain and improve your

 range of motion. Stretching keeps your muscles elongated and flexible, and helps avoid muscle spasms, pulling a muscle, swelling, and pain/soreness.

  • Hydrate before and during your time on the course. Remember that proper hydration starts days before, and so too can dehydration. If you don’t drink enough fluids leading up to your day on the course, you may easily become dehydrated, especially in the sun.
  • Protect yourself from the sun. Summer sun exposure is a factor with all outdoor summer activities, but golf courses offer very little shade when you’re out on the green. Of course, you should wear sunscreen and reapply

throughout. The best protection is coverage, so find a comfortable, protective hat and clothing.

  • Treat any aches and pain that arise from playing. Muscle and joint pain are physical symptoms that should be treated properly, especially if they

linger after a day or more. Graston Technique is a clinically proven method of addressing a number of conditions that could be causing you pain. Many people with active lifestyles find that regular sessions alleviates these issues.

Staying Safe Playing Tennis

Tennis can be a very high-intensity cardiovascular activity that exercises most of the

muscles in your body. Engaging in this type of exercise has many benefits for your body, including promoting a healthy heart rate and blood pressure, improving cardiovascular and metabolic health.

  • Keep up with regular aerobic fitness. Going from zero to sixty is stressful on your aerobic system and muscles. Incorporating regular fitness sessions at

 the gym and with a trainer or physical therapist can ensure that your body will be ready for the aerobic demands of tennis.

  • Make sure you have the right shoes and equipment. Wearing proper fitting tennis shoes is especially important for avoiding ankle injuries and added leg pain. Using the wrong size racquet can put added stress on your arms and shoulders.
  • Pay attention to tennis elbow, shoulder pain, and your lower back. Tennis elbow is a very common injury that’s caused by overuse of the forearm and creates pain in the elbow. Regularly working on your range of motion to stay flexible will go a long way to minimize the effects of tennis elbow and alleviate stress on your shoulders as well.
  • Treat pain and soreness when it arises. After a strenuous tennis session, there are plenty of treatment methods to make sure that your body doesn’t

sustain chronic pain or injury. This includes cupping and G raston Technique

massage to get blood circulating to your joints and muscles, as well as healing any damaged tissue.

Staying Safe While Swimming

It’s widely known that swimming is a fantastic zero-impact cardiovascular exercise. It’s also one of the most popular summer activities. Swimming is effective at increasing your body’s heart rate, which promotes a healthier cardiovascular system, builds strength, and improves muscle flexibility, among other health benefits.

  • Focus on learning proper breathing techniques. Just like with any sport, it’s crucial to deliver oxygen to your body during aerobic exercise. Not

breathing well causes your muscles to contract and tense up, which can lead to a pulled muscle. It also causes fatigue.

  • Improve your swimming technique by slowing down. Learning the proper movements for different strokes will not only enhance the benefits of swimming (and your experience), it also decreases the risk of injury. Keep in mind that swimming movement is smooth and purposeful, not aggressive.
  • Be aware of common swimming injuries, like swimmer’s shoulder pain. Many swimming strokes require a fairly large range of motion in the shoulders, which can lead to pain known as swimmer’s shoulder. Stretching and proper conditioning before and after swimming are a couple of ways to

reduce the risk of shoulder pain and swelling.

Any sport has a risk of injury, pain, and discomfort. No matter what activities you choose to do this summer, it’s most important to maintain a good level of fitness, stretch before and after every activity, and hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. Make sure that you’re protecting yourself from the sun, too.

If you do sustain an injury or experience chronic pain, consult a professional as soon as possible to make sure that it’s not serious (and it won’t become worse). You don’t have to live with pain and discomfort. Here’s to a happy, healthy, and safe summer of activities.

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