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Preventing Sports Injuries

Yuri ElkaimPreventing Sports Injuries – One of the most interesting thing about pro athletes is how prone they are to sport injuries and feeling like “crap”. Believe me, I’ve been there. So I want to share some tactics that you can employ to bulletproof your body in preventing sports injuries and that general feeling of “oh…my body is so stiff and sore.” Apart from the 3 tips below you also need to make you have a good exercise recovery strategy.  This will help you keep-up you good workout routine to help you remain healthy in old age and who know could you live for 1,000 years….Naaa! So lets talk about what we can do in preventing sport injuries.

 

Tactic #1 – Drink Lots of Water to Prevent sports injuries

Okay, this almost sounds too cliche but it’s true. Staying well hydrated helps to ensure that your tissues are well hydrated while engaging in sports, which means that they can perform better which will help in preventing sports injuries. After all, muscle contains far more water than fat. Plus, many times when you are playing sports and you feel tired or lethargic dehydration is often at play. By drinking lots of water you can also effectively burn more calories.

My recommendation is the following:

  • Drink 1 litre of water first thing in the morning.
  • Drink 1-2 litres of water throughout the day.
  • Drink 1 more litre 2-3 hours before bed.

Yes, it sounds like a lot but it will change your life, I’m serious. Quick test: if your pee is yellow or any colour other than clear, that’s a sign that you need more water! So drink more its better for your health.

 

Tactic #2 – Foam Roll Away Your Aches and prevent sports injuries

Please, please,please, use a foam roller or something of the like to roll-out your muscles. Consider this your personal message therapist and a help in preventing sports injuries.

 

A few years ago when I was working with mens soccer at the University of Toronto, I was given $750 for new equipment. The vast majority of that went towards foam rollers and “the stick” (runners will know what this is) to give our sports players another tool to keep their muscles healthy and limber. I recommend using a foam roller every day. Do it whenever you have a moment. And especially BEFORE and AFTER your workouts. Remember, healthy tissues are happy tissues, which means fewer aches, pains, stiffness, and preventing sports injuries.

 

Tactic #3 – Yoga – Yes, Yoga will help in preventing sports injuries

In all my years of playing soccer – even to this day – the only sports injury that has sidelined me was a broken leg when I was 15. However, while almost all of my teammates (at some point) were sidelined due to muscle strains, tears, or other preventable sport injuries, I enjoyed more playing time. One of my secrets was (and is) doing regular yoga. But not the kind where you sit around and meditate (which is fine if that’s what you’re into). Instead, my brand of yoga is more athletic and geared towards preventing sports injuries and correcting imbalances, improving stability, and enhancing flexibility. Yoga is also a well know exercise fact about fat loss.

 

In fact, I created a 25-minute routine that I introduced to mens soccer at U of T about 5 years ago and within a few months of doing 2-3 times per week we saw an 82% reduction in sport injuries among our players! That’s huge.

 

>> This is the program we used <<

 

I recommend doing yoga as often as you can because as far as I’m concerned it’s one of the best exercise modalities out there. Combining stability, strength, and flexibility is the holy grail of staying healthy and bulletproofing your body in preventing sports injuries. Plus, for those of us who sit all day, feeling stiff and sore is as common as the morning sunrise. Doing yoga can help. And, when you combine that with good hydration, foam rolling, and regular exercise, you’ll feel (and look) 10 years younger, and of course help in preventing sports injuries.

 

 

Okay now take action!

 

PS. Whenever I travel, I take a little blue cricket ball (courtesy of my man Dan Go) that I use as my mini foam roller for rolling out my feet and tight muscles from sitting on the plane. Then, when I land, I usually do this yoga routine in my hotel room.

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