Spring will be here before we know it. For our team at Indigo Urgent Care, it can mean an increase in minor injury visits – especially for high school athletes. The most frequent types of injuries are sprains, strains and stress fractures.
All sports have risk of injury, but there are steps you can take now to avoid injuries during the spring sports season.
Switch up the routine with cross training
Cross training with activities other than your athlete’s typical sport can help prevent injury. Track or soccer athletes may consider weight training. If your child plays baseball or softball, consider endurance conditioning workouts. A variety of physical activity can ensure athletes are strengthening muscles throughout their body instead of straining the same muscles over and over.
Know when rest is best
Proper rest and recovery are essential for preventing injuries. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends at least one day off a week and at least one month off per year from training for a particular sport to allow the body to recover. If your child has been complaining of an injury or pain, more significant time off from training may be needed to avoid playing through an injury, which has potential make injuries worse.
Balanced, nutritious meals and plenty of water are important for anyone’s health, especially athletes. A diet consisting of fruits, vegetables, proteins and fat fuels the muscles to perform at their best. Make sure water is close by before, during and after sports activities.
Reach for the stars … and your toes
Increase flexibility and lower risk of muscle strain by stretching. Encourage your children to incorporate stretching into their daily routine, but it’s most important while warming up and cooling down from activity.
Get a pre-season physical
Most schools in Washington require one sports physical each school year. Sports physicals are available at Indigo Urgent Care locations all year around. Our team can discuss any concerns and assess athletes before they take on new activities. You can book an appointment online or walk-in.
When injuries happen
Sometimes injuries happen beyond our control. Be aware of limping, swelling or continuous pain that isn’t responding to rest. These may be signs of minor injury. Indigo Urgent Care has over 20 locations across Washington with onsite X-ray. Our team is ready to assess and treat minor injuries and get your athlete back on their feet as soon as possible.