inside of your forearms. To strengthen the muscles involved in this type of injury, you can either squeeze a tennis ball or rolled upsock, or do wrist curls with a light dumbbell both with your palms facing upwards and downwards.
Area of Injury: Knees
Among sports injuries, one of most well known and most feared is damage to the ACL, the anterio
r cruciate ligament. It’s acritical connector in the knee joint and “blowing it out” can mean months on the bench and, in some cases, can prevent an ath
letefrom ever returning to their sport. The ACL works along with the PCL (posterior cruciate ligament). LCL (lateral collateralligament) and MCL (medial collateral ligament) to connect the bones above the knee with those below it, and they can all suffer damage from sports like football, soccer, hockey, skiing and any other sports that require unexpected demands on the knee jointsuch as stopping suddenly, twisting with the foot planted or overextending the knee.Prevention: Unlike sports injuries caused by repetitive motion such as rotator cuff or elbow issues, damage to the ligaments of theknee are a little more difficult to prevent as it often happens as part of a one-time accident. Still, the key here is also strengtheningand stretching. Athletes should warm up with some light aerobic activity for approximately five minutes and then stretch thecalves, quadriceps and hamstrings. The strengthening component of the injury-prevention recipe comes in two parts: standard and plyometric. Standard exercises should include walking lunges, calf raises and hamstring-strengthening movements like reverseleg curls or one-legged cable kickbacks. Plyometric exercises are those that make use of explosive movements. To help bringstability to the knee joints, you can try lateral jumps (where you jump side to side over a line or other other object), scissor jumps(where you begin in a lunge position, jump upwards and switch legs), or running butt kicks (where you jog lightly but do your best to get your heels to lightly tap your butt as you move along).
Area of Injury: Ankle
For a relatively small joint, the ankle is a powerhouse of human locomotion. It is the area in which two bones of the leg
thetibia and fibula
meet the foot bone known as the talus, and it is all held together with a network of muscles and tendons. Inevery step we take, the ankle helps to stabilize us and propel us forward. When the ankle is made to move in a direction to whichit is not accustomed
as is often the case in certain sports
the tendons can tear, causing a ankle sprain. In fact, according tothe Mayo Clinic, half of all ankle sprains happen as the result of athletic activities.Prevention: To help prevent the ankle rolls and twists that can take months to heal, it is recommended that you strengthen themuscles in the joint. One of the easiest ways to do this is through ankle rotations. Simply sit and raise your foot off the ground.
Then, circle your foot ten times clockwise and ten times counterclockwise. You can also use a rubber “theraband” to help
strengthen your ankle by wrapping one around the top of your foot and resisting it in all directions: forward, backward and side toside.
Area of Injury: Lower Back
Pretty much since human beings began to stand upright, low back pain has been a part of daily life. Add in activities like weightlifting, jumping, twisting and running and the odds of that part of the body getting sore increase dramatically. Most low back painis simply a strain caused when the tendons are pulled out of their normal range of motion. However, more serious back problemssuch as slipped or herniated discs can also occur from sports activity. If your back pain is severe or lasts longer than a we
ek, it’s a
good idea to visit your doctor.Prevention: When it comes to preventing low-back injuries, whole-body stretching is critically important. Tight hamstrings or glutes are often implicated in low back pain, as they can pull on the pelvis, causing your back to become misaligned, so be sure todo stretching exercises that open these areas of the body in particular. Some common yoga poses such as downward dog, triangle pose and chair pose can help bring stability and flexibility into the low back area and prevent injuries. An excellent strengthening
exercise is the plank because it works the core muscles both along the abdominal region and the back. The “superman” exercise
can work well also. To execute this strengthening exercise, lie flat on a mat on the ground. Then, either raise both arms and legsat one time and hold, or do the same thing with alternating arms and legs (lift the left arm and right leg and vice versa).