Are you ready for winter sports? Here are some top tips to ensure your body is prepared and remains injury free.

Work on your fitness

It’s always important to build up to your fitness in no matter what you doing – Winter comes round once a year and how many times in a year do you go skiing for instance?

Try increase your activity level each week leading up to starting your sport. Go to a dry slope and practice skiing or get into a gym and use a cross trainer to get cardio and legs fired up. Always important note…if you are experiencing pain during or after exercise, it’s likely to be too much too soon. Do things slowly so that your body has a chance to adjust and to ensure you don’t pick up any injuries along the way.

Warm up

To warm up our body we need to do some dynamic stretching – meaning: stretch whilst moving and don’t hold the stretch. This is better for a warm up than static stretching. Dynamic stretching prepares the body for intensity and helps to improve proprioception (Provides stability and improve position sense) which can enhance performance. – Example: walking lunges, torso rotations. These movements should be controlled and be sure not to stretch past your comfortable range of movement.

Stretch after exercise

Importance of stretching after exercise is to improve your recovery and ensure muscles don’t get stiff. It also helps to reduce post-exercise muscle soreness.

Static stretching is a really good way to improve flexibility, recovery after exercise and rehabilitation injuries. Stretches should be held in a position that is comfortable. It should not cause pain but you should be able to feel ‘tension’ in the muscle you are trying to stretch. Hold these stretches for 10-15 seconds and repeat 4-6 times for best outcome.

Stay hydrated

Staying well hydrated will certainly help prevent you getting injuries this season. Your chosen winter sport will dictate how much water you should be drinking.

It’s important to drink prior to, during and after sport to remain healthy and prevent dehydration. Sports drinks are generally not required or recommended unless your sport puts your body under extreme duress or you’re training as an elite athlete.

We do not recommend sports drinks for children.

See your osteopath

For a successful season, see your osteopath early to sort out any old lingering injuries from last season so you can improve your sporting performance.

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