Spring sports are starting to ramp up and as the seasons approach for each spring sport, we want to emphasize just how important it is that you start the season in shape and ready to go so that you avoid injury.
Nobody wants to be sidelined in their sport due to an injury. What an athlete does before the season to get the body in top shape and ready for the high-level of competition is often times what keeps them in the game and competing at their best, because the concern of potential problems is lower because the time was taken to strengthen the body before the season.
To get ready for the upcoming season, athletes should start training early and focus on building strength and conditioning as well as maintaining a healthy lifestyle. That is why we want to give you an idea of the things you can be doing to stay on the field, pitch, or court this season.
How Can You Be Getting Spring Sports Ready?
First and foremost, it is important that you understand what the body needs in order to stay healthy through a long, strenuous, and intense sports season.
You’ll want to begin by maintaining a healthy diet, getting the proper rest, and listening to your body which will ultimately keep you in a spot physically and mentally to compete at the highest level this spring. Injury prevention starts with your daily routine. If you are doing these things mentioned, you’ve already increased your chances of staying healthy in your sport. We might be stating the obvious here, but it needs to be understood that this is the first step.
As you start your offseason preparation and getting ready physically, there are a number of things you can be doing to make sure that you are ready to go from day one of the season. Here are just a handful of exercises we recommend in maintaining a healthy body:
Exercise 1: Foam Rolling
Many athletes use foam rolling as a way to increase flexibility, decrease muscle soreness, and speed up recovery time. Foam rolling should be done after every workout or competition to help break up lactic acid build-up in the muscles, which can cause stiffness and soreness. It’s important to remember that the goal of foam rolling isn’t just to stretch your muscles, but also to apply pressure that helps release adhesions between the layers of connective tissue under your skin. To do this correctly, focus on applying pressure for several seconds on particular points in each muscle group you are targeting before releasing it.
Exercise 2: Plyometrics/Jump Training
Plyometric exercises are a great way to improve your explosive power and speed, which can be very beneficial when preparing for the start of spring season. Research has shown that plyometrics provide an effective training stimulus for athletes by combining strength and speed together in order to produce explosive movement. Some examples of plyometric exercises include box jumps, jump squats, tuck jumps, single leg hops, lateral bounds, and skater jumps. When performing these exercises it is important to maintain proper form and focus on landing softly in order to reduce the risk of injury while still reaping the benefits of improved agility, balance and coordination.
Exercise 3: Medicine Ball Training
Medicine ball training is a great way to add variation into your workouts while improving strength, power and core stability. It challenges your body to work at full speed while recruiting more muscle fibers than traditional weight training alone. Medicine ball exercises involve a wide range of movements such as throws, catches, rotations, slams, and chops which helps develop power, agility and coordination. Adding medicine ball exercises into your routine can help you take your performance to the next level for the upcoming spring season.
Exercise 4: Weight Training
Weight training is a great way to get your body ready for the upcoming spring sport season. It can help you build strength and power, improve agility and speed, and develop better balance and coordination.
Exercise 5: Core Training
Core training is an important aspect of any athlete’s training program as it helps to protect your spine by providing strength and stability in the midsection. Your core muscles (abdominals, obliques, hip flexors, lower back) work together to support your entire body while you are performing a physical activity. To ensure that you are adequately prepared for the start of spring season, incorporate some core exercises into your routine such as planks, landmines, Russian twists or mountain climbers. Doing these exercises regularly can help strengthen and stabilize your core so that you can perform at your peak when the season begins.
Exercise 6: Agility Training
Agility is another important component of any athlete’s training program as it helps to improve coordination, quickness and reaction speed. Agility exercises involve quick movements that require you to change direction quickly while maintaining control and balance. Examples of agility drills include ladder drills, cone drills, shuttle runs or box jumps. Incorporating these activities into your routine can help improve your footwork, explosiveness and overall performance when the spring season starts.
Injuries Do Happen, No Matter How Prepared You Are
Injuries are an unfortunate reality of any sport, especially in contact sports. No matter how well you prepare for the season, injuries can still happen as a result of hard training, unexpected contact, or just an unlucky sequence that happens on the field. Injuries can range in severity from minor muscle strains to devastating ligament tears or concussions, which require long-term rehabilitation and keep you from enjoying the sports that you love.
As we talked about above, the best way to prevent injuries is by taking precautions before they occur. Getting the body ready to play should reduce the chances of injury. This means ensuring that all players have proper protective gear, following warm-up routines and stretching exercises regularly, focusing on strengthening the body, and staying hydrated throughout practice and games. It also involves being aware of your body’s limits and knowing when to take breaks in order to avoid overtraining.
If, unfortunately, you do pick up an injury during the season, we recommend you seek medical advice on the best treatment for your injury. Physical therapy is a great way to understand the body and pain you are feeling. We are trained in creating an individualized treatment plan to help you recover from your injury and get back in the game as soon as possible.
Are You Experiencing Pain Playing Your Sport or Have You Picked Up an Injury That is Keeping You Sidelined?
If you are experiencing pain during play or have picked up an injury keeping you out of your sport, then come see us and we will get you started on the treatment process to get you back in the game.
We are offering a Sports Injury Assessment, which will begin the process of us identifying the right treatment for the pain or injury you have that is keeping you from competing at a high level.
We’ve worked with many patients that are being kept from the sports they love and we want to make sure that we getting you started on the road back to competing this spring. Nobody wants to miss time with an injury, and we want to make sure that when you return that you will be ready to finish the season pain-free.
To find out how our rehabilitative experts utilize a variety of physical therapy techniques that can help you overcome your pain and stay active, schedule a time to come see us by completing our online contact form in under 30 seconds or call our friendly team on (425) 252-3908.
Unsure whether we are right for you?
We understand that you may not have visited a Physical Therapy clinic before and be unsure whether it’s going to help you after suffering an injury in your sport. That is why we invite you to come in for a Sports Injury Assessment.
Arrange A Sports Injury Assessment at one of our five locations (Bellevue, Everett, Factoria, Kirkland and Lake Stevens) today!
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