When we begin to exercise more frequently or change our training regimen our enthusiasm can take over. We may over stretch ourselves; aggravate existing problems or weaknesses we are not aware of. This can possibly lead to injury. Whether you are a beginner or an elite athlete – an injury can affect us all.
However, there are ways to help prevent the risk of injury. You can do this by including exercises that can help to prevent injuries in your training programme (once or twice a week). Here are a few of my favourites:
Calf raises (Strengthens ankle joint and calves)
Stand sideways to a wall and use an out stretched hand for support.
Lift one leg slightly so that it remains off the floor
Raise the standing leg heel as high as you can and hold for a moment and then lower.
8-12 repetitions on each leg; 3 Sets.
Tip: Make sure that hips are balanced and when you raise your heel the movement does not come from your big toe.
Variation: This can also be done facing the wall and using both arms for extra support and raising both heels at the same time.
Bridges (strengthens hips and glute muscles)
Lie flat on your back with knees been and arms to the side
Slowly raise your raise your hips towards the ceiling
Hold for 2 seconds and lower
Tip: Engage your core throughout the exercise by pulling in your belly button to spine and contract your glutes.
Planks (Good for core stabilisation)
Lay on the floor, resting on toes and forearms.
Body weight should be forward over the arms.
Your body should form a straight line from ears to toes
Your head should be relaxed and looking down so that it is in line with your spine
Hold for 30-60 seconds.
Tip: Engage your core throughout the exercise. If you find that you lose correct positioning during the exercise – stop as the exercise will no longer be effective.