MANAGING YOUR SPORTS INJURIES – EVEN WHEN YOU’RE NOT INJURED
So you’re injured; get over it.
Talking about injuries is almost a sport in itself. If you’re are a regular participant in sport, you’re probably very happy to trade stories about injured knees, IT bands, Achilles tendons and rotator cuffs. So why wait until you are injured to do something about it.
We asked four members of Team proto-col, a collective of some of the UK’s leading athletes, to give us their tips on injury management and prevention.
Laura Massaro – squash player, world champion 2016, current World Tour Finals and British Champion.
“Racket sport players need to spend lots of time on their ‘prehab’ to maintain healthy backs, ankles and hips.
I do a lot of glute work through regular circuits and mobility sessions to keep the hips loose and flexible. I also recommend lots of strengthening work around knees, hips and back to make sure these stay strong. Pay special attention to the smaller stabilising muscles, not just the big muscle groups.
“I am also passionate about eating well and fill in the gaps with good supplements.”
CHRIS ROXBURGH – Powerman Duathlete, top 20 at World Championships 2016 and a qualified strength and conditioning coach
“As cycling is a low load activity on the body, it’s easy to spend hours riding without noticing that you’ve got a problem.
“Minimise the risk of injuries to your knees, lower back and neck by spending time, and if necessary money, getting your set up on the bike correct. As the feet are fixed into the pedals there is a high risk of damaging the structures in the knee i.e. ligaments, meniscus and tendons. A knock-on effect is to the back which can result in muscle strains and neuromuscular problems, such as sciatica.
“Bike set up can be so simple to address and most of this you can do yourself with the help of numerous YouTube videos that are available on the subject. This is perfect if you’re a weekend rider that does it mostly for fun. If you require those marginal gains to hunt down PBs and race results, then get set up properly by a professional.”
ANGELA HANNAH – GB Olympic canoeist racing in K1, K2 and K4 disciplines, bronze medallist at 2014 European Championships
“I place lots of emphasis on a good warm up before I hit the water, using resistance bands and free weights to encourage a good range and mobility. Never overlook your warm up.
“Paddle sports require plenty of upper body power and trunk rotation so I do lots of gym work strengthening the shoulders, wrists and core. Like many sports, canoe sprint requires a precise technique and quality of movement. So often poor execution of technique leads to injury.
“In the gym I use dumbbells in strength exercises and the bench press. Both of these allow control of smaller muscles so they can ‘keep up’ with the bigger muscle groups.”
CHRIS THOMPSON – GB long distance runner and former European Championship 10,000m silver medallist
“It’s not all about your body. Keep your mind in a good place too as you train and race.
“I have a notebook that I trust to keep track of all the things I need to do before a big race; training sessions, travel plans, nutrition, hydration and dedicated time to rest and recover. Trying to keep all this information in your head is tiring so park the information somewhere or on something that you trust.”