Your podiatrist has some preventive tips for keeping athletes in the game.
Whenever you get on the field or the court, you know that the game comes with certain risks. Injuries can happen anytime to an athlete; however, there are certainly precautions you can take to ensure that you keep your feet and ankles safe while also enjoying a challenging and exciting game. Whether you play team sports like football or soccer or you prefer solo activities like running, your Portage Park podiatrist is here to give you some tips on how to prevent foot-related sports injuries.
Warm-up your body
It’s important that you keep your body conditioned and warm before you participate in any sport. It’s especially important that you don’t push yourself so far beyond your abilities that you risk injury. If you want to participate in a marathon, you don’t want to wait until the week of to begin running. You want to train your body slowly and build up endurance and strength for months beforehand. Pushing yourself too hard means your body has to work twice as hard, which puts added pressure and force on your feet. Allow your body time to build up muscle so you can train effectively and safely.
Participate in light stretching and jogging to warm up your body before engaging in any sporting endeavor. Perform exercises that give your muscles full range of motion, to prevent injuries.
Listen to your body
If you’ve already had a foot or ankle injury, then you need to be careful and listen to when you body is telling you it’s had enough. You may need to wear orthotics or a special brace while playing sports to give you ample support and to keep unnecessary pressure off previously injured areas.
If you’ve had issues with your ankles or knees in the past, this can also impact your feet and put excessive pressure on the heels and soles. If you start to notice pain or discomfort, it’s time to take a break and give your body a rest. You don’t want to push yourself so hard that you risk re-injury.
One of the most important things you can do to protect your feet and ankles is to wear the proper gear. That means, investing in the proper pair of shoes for your chosen sport such as ski boots, running shoes, hiking boots, and skates. Find an athletic store in your area and talk to an expert on what shoes will work best for your activity level. Also, make sure to toss old, worn-out shoes when it’s time, as they won’t offer the same protection that you need.
If you are experiencing any pain in your feet or ankles, or notice any problems while participating in sports, call us today so you can see one of our Portage Park podiatrists. Don’t let an injury keep you down. We want to get you back on your feet and back in the game!