Protect Your Back with these 8 Summer Fit Tips
In the summer, we turn our attention to the great outdoors with activities, such as golfing, gardening or running. Recreational activities can help you maintain good mobility, sustain strong bones, and relieve stress — while having fun. Whether you pick up a garden rake, a golf club or pound the pavement in running shoes, the important thing is to get moving.
Remember to keep your back in mind, as you gear up for a fun-filled summer with these summer fit tips.
Eight summer fit tips to keep your back healthy as you exercise and enjoy the outdoors:
1 – Warm-up
Before hitting the links or even the back garden, consider a small activity to warm up first, like going for a short walk. And do gentle stretches to limber up your muscles and joints before lifting, digging, or swinging that golf club.
2 – Learn the Proper Technique
Learn the correct technique for your activity, right from the beginning. Poor technique can injure your joints and muscles. For example, be sure to kneel, not bend, when planting your outdoor garden. For golfers, take professional lessons to rid yourself of bad habits in your swing that can hurt your back.
3 – Maximize your mobility and range of motion
Maintaining good mobility for muscles and joints will contribute to your athletic ability and help prevent injury. Limited muscle and joint function can hamper your technique and lead to strains and sprains. If you’re a runner, take the time to stretch out your calf and thigh muscles before hitting the road.
4 – Drink Fluids
Drink plenty of fluids before, during, and after physical activity. Remember that once you’re thirsty, you’re already starting to dehydrate. Dehydration affects your energy level and your physical function.
5 – Don’t Overdo It
If you have a big day of yard work planned, break your activities into smaller chunks to avoid overloading your body. As you return to summer sports, consider starting with a short training session rather than a longer one. For example, take a trip to the driving range before that first round of golf.
6 – Cool Down
Cooling down after any physical fitness activity is just as important as warming up. Take 20 minutes for a brisk walk or a slow jog after your activity. Take the time to stretch out your muscles and joints before heading to the shower.
7 – Treat Injuries Promptly
If you suffer an injury or experience pain from your recreational activities, ice the area to reduce swelling and inflammation.
8 – Seek Professional Help
If pain persists, consult a health care professional, such as a chiropractor, to help you recover. In Ontario, you can visit a chiropractor without a referral from a medical doctor, nurse practitioner, or other health care professional.
To find a chiropractor near you, click/tap the Find a Chiropractor button at the top of our website.
Make a Positive Impact on Our Health Care System
If you already have a chiropractor and/or another health care professional, join our Partnership4BetterHealth online patient advisory community. Then, you can share your ideas on how to enhance chiropractic services and make a positive impact on our health care system. It’s confidential, free, and always your choice to participate.