Unfit parents – tips on avoiding injury when getting back into shape
Everyone knows that having kids is a full-time commitment. Even so, many new parents are still caught off-guard by exactly just how full-time that commitment actually is! As a result of this, there are often a few aspects of a parent’s life that can begin to suffer; the most commonly neglected tends to be health and fitness of new moms and dads.
In an ill-advised, kneejerk reaction to this fact, many parents join a gym and throw themselves into an vigorous exercise routine that they are no longer able to handle – injuring themselves in the process. Whilst enthusiasm is a commendable trait, you’re no good to yourself or your family if you are laid-up in bed with various sprains and strains. With that in mind, below are some of the most common ways parents injure themselves when returning to the gym; as well as some tips on how to avoid such unpleasant scenarios ever arising!
Walk before you run – attempting too much too soon is a sure-fire way to end up injuring yourself. This is true for would-be bodybuilders and cardio-enthusiasts alike. Putting too much pressure on any system that is not adequately prepared can have disastrous consequences; whether this is attempting to lift too much weight, or run unrealistic distances on your first session back. Many parents would do well to learn a lesson from their children and don’t attempt to run before you can walk!
Safety first – parents spend a great deal of time laying down rules for their children. Many before so accustomed to it that they end up being neglectful of the rules that they should be observing themselves! This is particularly common at the gym, where injuries as a result of improper health & safety precautions are on the rise. Head injuries from running in wet locker rooms and by the sides of pools are being seen more and more; as too are broken bones and sprains from falls caused by water bottles that aren’t being properly looked after.
Overstretching yourself – it’s surprising to see exactly how many injuries at the gym occur in the warm-up stages of exercise routines. Perhaps the most common reason for these injuries is overstretching; people tend to “bounce” into a stretch in order to feel more benefit from it. Whilst this may feel like it is more beneficial than going slowly and incrementally, it also puts a great deal of strain on the ligament/muscle that’s being stretched, which could lead to a nasty strain!
Treadmill turmoil – treadmills are great pieces of kit for any parent to use when trying to recapture their fitness; however, injuries resulting from their usage are becoming more common. Surprisingly, it is not falls which are causing the majority of these injuries. The main culprit is the safety rail! Running whilst holding the safety rail can leave the body in a contorted and unnatural position; this can put excess pressure on a person’s back and shoulders. If you are going to go for a run, make sure that you let go of the rail!
By Nathan Clarke