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So, you've decided to start exercising again and get back on the field or court and start playing again. Great! However, many people end up injured and out of commission after only one or two times out there. Why?

Those getting into shape for the first time or after a long lay off need to start gradually because two-thirds of all sports injuries are a result of attempting too much too fast. Muscles, tendons, and ligaments of older athletes may tend to break down a little more readily, as well. Also, older athletes tend to ignore their injuries in spite of their warning signs. Here are 5 of the most common sports injuries and how to prevent them:

  • Knee Injury
Use the softest surface available
Wear proper shoes with soft, flexible soles
When jumping, land with your knees bent
  • Muscle Soreness
Allow for a warm-up and a cool-down period
Stretch afterwards as well as before
Don't overdo it
  • Side Stitch
(sharp pain under rib cage)
Practice proper breathing
Don't "work through" pain.
Stop and walk slowly
  • Shin splints
(mild to severe ache in front of lower leg)
Strengthen muscles in this region
Keep calves well stretched
  • Blisters
Wear shoes and socks that fit well
Wear a preventive taping, if necessary
If you get a blister, instead of using a band aid which will likely come off while exercising as well as create friction which will aggravate it more, put a large amount of greasy ointment over the blister and wear socks as normal.
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