Compensating for a sedentary week with a couple of intense workouts on days off is a recipe for injury, but experts say weekend warriors can take some preventative steps to reduce their chances of getting hurt.
“Heel pain, ankle sprains, and Achilles tendon damage are some of the most common lower limb injuries weekend warriors experience,” shares Kevin Fraser, president of the Pedorthic Association of Canada and a Canadian certified pedorthist. “These injuries typically occur because of a lack of conditioning, or because individuals push themselves too hard to make up for not getting enough activity during the working week.”
Although working out regularly throughout the week is by far the best method of injury prevention, Fraser says if this simply isn’t possible the following tips will help weekend warriors exercise more safely:
- Appropriate footwear makes all the difference, so make sure it fits properly and be sure to wear the correct footwear for your sport, replacing it when it gets too worn.
- Increase the intensity of your activity gradually. If you’re unable to train during the week, don’t set unrealistic goals by going from zero to 100 in a day.
- Warming up is key. If you’ve been idle for a week, take time to stretch all your major muscle groups and warm them up with a moderate activity.
- If an injury occurs, don’t push through it. Rest and ice it.
- Seek professional advice. Work with a trainer or running group to develop a program that is best for your schedule. If you experience a recurring foot or lower limb injury consult a Canadian Certified Pedorthist to find out if a change in footwear or custom-made foot orthotics will help.
Find more information online at pedorthic.ca/footwear/sports-injury-prevention.