Exercise strengthens your cardiovascular system, builds strong bones, sharpens your mental acuity, improves your sleep and even brightens your mood. Improving your physical fitness through regular activity is one of the best things you can do for your overall health. However, ambitious exercise regimens and regular runs have a potential down side: an increased risk of suffering a, exercise or sports-related injury. Researchers at Monash University’s Centre for Research into Injury in Sport estimate that about a million Australians become injured during sports and leisure activities each year.
For athletes, injuries are an inevitable hazard. Hours of training and the physical stresses during competition dramatically increase the chances of sprains, strains, and tissue irritation. Weekend warriors and occasional athletes are also likely to suffer the occasional injuries. While professionals usually have trainers to teach them proper form, novice and recreational athletes often go it alone, increasing the risk of repetative strain injury due to lack of conditioning or trauma due to poor form. Most of the million Australians who seek help for a sports injury are amateurs, and if you’ve ever given your ankle a nasty turn while jogging in the park, you’re in that number.
Many activities that you wouldn’t consider a sport can also cause sports injuries. Golfer’s elbow can happen when you’re on the links, but you use the same muscles to rake leaves. Your tendons don’t know the difference between a golf club and a broom, so you may find yourself with a ‘sports’ injury without having set foot on the course.
Your first point of call after any musculoskeletal injury is your osteopath. As primary health care practitioners specialising in neuromusculoskeletal pain, osteopaths can make sure that your condition is accurately diagnosed and you are provided best practice management and rehabilitation treatment.